4 March 2020

The College has been running a Football Reading League for some of our Year 7 and 8 students to engage boys in reading - and we are delighted to say it has been very successful.

The students have been reading football books and showing their understanding of the books by taking quizzes on them to earn ‘penalty kicks’.

All the students who have taken part in the League were invited to a special football coaching session with professional footballer and author Seth Burkett, who has written books about his experiences.

Mr Burkett, 28, used his own story to inspire our students about the importance of reading and resilience. After being released by his local football club, Peterborough United, Mr Burkett thought his dream of being a professional footballer was shattered. However, he said: “That setback just paved the way for an even better chance - to play in Brazil and Sri Lanka.”

Mr Burkett now dedicates his time to writing his books and speaking in schools.

As well as taking the coaching session in the sports hall, Mr Burkett also presented two assemblies to Year 7 and Year 8: “My main message to young people is that reading and writing opens up amazing and varied opportunities,” he said. “The reason I had the chance to play in Sri Lanka was because they were aware of my books.

“My other message is the importance of resilience, of not giving up, but instead, of seeing a setback as an opportunity.”

Head of Girls Football at Plymouth Argyle, Ryan Perks, was also at the coaching session and he handed out free tickets to see an Argyle home match.

The event was organised as part of the College’s programme of events for National Careers Week, to show how reading and writing skills can lead to rewarding careers.