Essay competitions are an excellent way for pupils to exercise independent thought, depth of knowledge and clear reasoning, and they provide an opportunity for pupils to present their ideas in a persuasive, well written style. Oundle pupils have risen to the challenge and been recognised for the quality of their submissions.

Aditi Kailas (D) was awarded runner-up for the Professor Oriana Bandiera Prize in the 2021 Economics Essay Competition hosted by the London School of Economics for her response to: “Who, if anyone, do you think within society should be responsible for improving inequalities?”

The competition was launched by the LSE Student Union Economics Society to encourage secondary school pupils to think critically on current affairs and apply their economic knowledge in an academic essay. It attracts submissions from around the world.

Also from the Economics department, Cherry Yang (D) submitted an essay titled “The Role of Institutions in Economic Development of Botswana” to the Marshall Society Essay Competition at Cambridge University, and received a Highly Commended Award.

Cherry submitted another economics essay to the John Locke Institute Essay Competition, and was highly commended for her entry: “Should we abolish the minimum wage?”.

Jennifer Yang (N) was commended for a history essay also submitted to the John Locke Essay Competition. She took part in lectures and a gala awards dinner hosted by the John Locke Institute at Magdalen College, Oxford, where prizes were presented.

The Institute receives upwards of 1000 essays from pupils in over 100 countries, on topics in philosophy, politics, economics and history. Essays are judged by academics from the University of Oxford and Princeton University.

For creative writing, Jennifer was a Junior Winner in The Orwell Youth Prize for her short story “On Keeping a Time Capsule”. The competition is rooted in Orwell’s values of integrity and fairness, and with a focus on social justice, it aims to introduce young people to the power of language and provoke them to think critically and creatively about the world in which they are living.