Pieter Vlieland on behalf of ‘Dignity in Dying’ and Dominica Roberts from the ‘Care not Killing’ group visits Anglo

Invited speaker Pieter Vlieland on behalf of ‘Dignity in Dying’ and Dominica Roberts from the ‘Care not Killing’ group visited the Anglo European School to debate euthanasia in front of the school’s sixth form students.

Upper sixth student Kevin Pearce gives his account of this special event:

“Two very experienced speakers had a strong willed debate about assisted suicide. Pieter Vlieland, a former Journalist who was chief reporter for the Brentwood Gazette in 1954, now part of the charity ‘Dignity not Dying’ argued to the students the positives of changing the laws on assisted suicide, making it legal. Opposing him was Dominica Roberts from the ‘Care Not Killing’ group. Although opponents, their chemistry was amazing and the debate had an ambience feigning an episode of BBC’s ‘The Big Questions’.

An entire hall full of students fell silent as the debate went on. The interest of the students became clear when the floor was opened up for questions with many hands raised. The questions from the students were clear and heavy, not shying away from ethical and international issues, reflective of the school’s student base. As the questions came in the debate got more and more heated, turning the debate more into a reflection of an afternoon in Parliament than a BBC program.

Whilst Mr Vlieland played on sympathy and Mrs Roberts preyed on fear, the students were inquisitive and thoughtful, with the winner, as voted by the students, being Pieter. The whole event gave the sixth form students an insight into the analytical aspect of politics with the speakers remaining afterwards to answer questions.

This comes just weeks after four of the school’s sixth form students won a regional debating competition advancing into the next round taking place in Cambridge in March 2015. With all that is happening, it may be the case that this is the school that will produce some of our future politicians.”

Anglo is awarded the Artsmark Gold in recognition of excellence in arts and cultural provision.


The Anglo European School has been awarded the highest level of achievement for arts provision and practice in Art, Drama, Music, and Dance in gaining Artsmark Gold. The award is in recognition of excellence in arts and cultural provision.

The assessor recognised that the distinctive international ethos of the school provided students with an enriched and unique arts experience through international arts exploration and study, leading to an outstanding appreciation of cultural and linguistic diversity amongst the student body.

The school achieves notable academic success in the arts; Art results place them in the top 10% of schools nationally. However, the validator also commented on the inclusive nature of Arts provision at AES and, as one student Arts Ambassador put it, “Arts is for everyone here”. Imminent arts events include the Winter Arts Fair on 5th December and the annual Christmas Concert at Ingatestone Church on the 18th December where the local community are welcome to attend. Deputy Headteacher, Jody Gee, said ‘We are delighted with this accolade for our Arts provision which is a fitting acknowledgement of the efforts of Arts staff and students. Both will benefit from the further opportunities Artsmark affords us in our continued aim to enrich arts provision.

Sixth Form Students participate in a prestigious interschools legal debate

Photo: (L to R) Jonathan Douglas-Hughes, Senior Partner, Gepp & Sons; Lord Justice Burnett, Robin O’Connor, Polina Harris and Hannah Ruschen.

On Tuesday 4th November Year 13 students Polina Harris, Robin O’Connor, Billy Roche and Hannah Ruschen took part in a prestigious interschools legal debate contest hosted by Gepp & Sons, a major regional law firm, at Anglia Ruskin University.

The Anglo team competed against 7 other local schools and were tasked with speaking in support of the proposition “This house believes that defendants of sexual crimes should be afforded anonymity”. The team spoke persuasively and confidently in their round against Great Baddow High School. The team won this round after facing some tricky follow up questions from a distinguished panel of real judges, including the Honorary Recorder of Chelmsford, His Honour Judge Gratwicke. Unfortunately, despite winning their first debate, the team did not progress to the final. However, the evening offered the students a rare opportunity to network with a broad range of professionals, including Lord Justice Burnett, a judge at the Court of Appeal, the Chief Constable of Essex Police and David Monk of BBC Essex. 

This is the first time the school has fielded a team in this competition and all of the students worked very hard to a tight deadline to construct their arguments, before going on to present themselves with energy and confidence during the entire event.

Year 9 students attend the Local Democracy week

Mrs Brown took 13 of our AMA Year 9 pupils to County Chambers in Chelmsford as part of Local Democracy week. The pupils met representatives from schools around the county who had also shown an interest in democracy and did activities such as a local government budgeting exercise and Q&A with county councillors. The visit pre-empts work Year 9 will do in Citizenship on Government after half term.

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