Headmaster’s Headlines

Headmaster’s Headlines

19th June, 2019

Each year, boys in the Lower Sixth have the chance to undertake a Cecil Stagg Project, an independent research project on a subject of their choosing. This has resulted in the production of some truly excellent work over the years – you may well have seen some examples on display around the School. This year, 17 boys completed projects to the standard required to receive a Headmaster’s Distinction Award, a tremendous achievement, and in this week’s Assembly, we invited them on to the stage to collect their certificates.These were the research topics undertaken:
Nikita: To what extent was the French and Indian War a crucial trigger of the American Revolution?
Hector:Quantifying the Whammy Effect
Alexander: Are there still prisoners of geography in today’s globalised world?
David: What type of characteristics determine elite vs non elite athletes in a given sport
Magnus: Reasons for the decline of puffin populations
Archie: Bricks, Mortar and Ideas: Why London’s Commercial Property Market Remains Robust.
Adrien:  Why does the rise of populism endanger the legitimacy of the European Union?
James: Does Mary Tudor deserve her negative reputation?
Muhammad: To what extent are free trade policies responsible for the decline of American manufacturing jobs?
Jeffery: The Biological effect of nuclear disaster (Chernobyl, Ukraine and Fukushima, Japan)
Findlay-Broch: Wilfred Owen, George Orwell and the Loss of Literature’s Innocence
Rory: Ethical issues surrounding psychotropic medicines
Oscar: Why is Luxembourg such an attractive destination for major global organisations?
Kavin: How free-to-play games changed the game industry
Alexander: The North South Divide
Hamza: Antibiotic Resistance
Egor: The ABC of Life: Problems in Arithmetic as a Unique Source of Information

Our congratulations go to all these pupils and our thanks go to all the staff who have supported them with their projects, and to the Cecil Stagg supervisors, Dr Mayoh, Dr Mechie and Mr Newham.

UN Sustainable Development Goals Book ClubTo raise awareness and to support the realisation of its 17 Sustainable Development Goals, the UN has started a Book Group that we are following in the library. The first Development Goal was ‘No Poverty’ and Ali from Second Form read an excerpt from one of the books in Assembly, “The Happy Prince” by Oscar Wilde. The story of a Prince who was privileged in life, and in death enlisted the support of a swallow to share his riches among his poorer subjects. To read the full story, the book can be found in the SDG section of the Library, where you’ll also find the new Book Group books, on Goal 2: Zero Hunger.

In Cricket, the 1XI, 2XI, U15A, U15B, U14A, U14B, Pringle 1XI, Pringle 2XI all won against Stewart’s Melville. The Pringle 3XI and U10s lost. The 1XI and U14B also won against Edinburgh Academy. The U14 match was tied. The Pringle 1XI also played some fantastic Cricket in the inaugural Super 8s Festival on Sunday. They won two matches and lost against the eventual winners, Belhaven Hill.
Following a sudden death ‘bowl off’ win against George Watson’s, the U15s Cricket team qualified for the National Finals day held at the picturesque Perth Doo’cot Cricket Club. After a dominant semi-final victory against Dollar, Merchiston scoring 157 for 3 off their 15 overs and bowling them out for 42, the final was played against Robert Gordon’s.
Batting first, Merchiston set a challenging target of 101 and after a few early wickets took control of the game finally winning by 20 runs. Notable batting performances from Oscar, Thomas, Matthew, Thomas and Lachlan were backed up by excellent bowling and fielding from the whole squad. Isaac ended up as the top wicket-taker on the day with 4 wickets.
Merchiston U15 Cricket Cup WinnersWe congratulated the following boys on Tuesday:
Oscar, Mackenzie, Freddie, Robbie, Matthew, Monty, Jonathan, Isaac, Will, Thomas, Lachlan, Cole and Andrew

Thank you to Mr Raikes for organising the Annual Junior Games last Tuesday afternoon. It was a fantastic event for all involved and one which saw the Dreghorn Clan win the overall event. 90 boys competed throughout the day which is an amazing 96% of the Junior School. Congratulations to all the boys who took part.

Two weeks ago several boys took part in the Annual Scottish Schools Athletics Championships. These events provide boys with an opportunity to compete at a National Event and participate against the best Athletes in Scotland. We had numerous Personal Bests set and also several podium finishes. The following boys excelled during these competitions and they must be congratulated for their dedication to Athletics this term.

Scottish Schools Athletics Relay Championships
Merchiston Athletics boysGOLD Medallists – U17 Boys 4X100m – Rudi, Arran, Thomas, Amaan
SILVER Medallists – Open Event 4 x 400m – Henry, Angus, Oskar, Hector
Individual Championships
SILVER Medallist – U17 Boys 100m – Arran
BRONZE Medallist – U15 Boys Discus – Robbie

Finally, during the past three weeks, 6 new school records have been set which is a remarkable achievement. This bodes well for an exciting Senior Games day on Thursday. Well done to the following boys on their achievements:
Merchiston Junior Athletics recordsRuaridh – U14 800m (2:20.91)
Freddie – U10 400m(1:21.02)
Hamish – U10 Cricket Ball Throw (36.81) and U10 Discus (14.44)
Lucas – U12 Shot Putt (8.69)
Nicholas – U12 400m (1:10.85)


These final days of the term and this Academic year are full of fun activities and I would encourage everyone to remember to thank the staff who have made all these trips and visits possible. Thank you for all your commitment, hard work and good humour and let’s all remember to maintain our excellent standards in all that we do, especially as we all start to feel a little tired and the holidays approach. We look forward to the Senior Games this coming Thursday.

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