The House System aims to facilitate more mixing between the different year groups, increase community spirit and peer mentoring, boost the existing rewards system and encourage pupils to get involved in competitions.
Every student who attends St. Michael’s School is assigned to a house. There are four houses, each overseen by a dedicated Head of House.
St Edmund, Original Patron Saint of England
It is surprising to learn that St George was not the first patron saint of England. That honour was originally held by St Edmund, or Edmund the Martyr, King of East Anglia in the 9th century AD.
House Colour: Yellow
St. Helena, Patron Saint of Colchester, Abingdon & Discoveries
Saint Helena was the mother of Constantine the Great and was born around 248 AD in Drepanum, located in modern-day Turkey.
Empress, mother of Constantine the Great. Helena is best known for her pilgrimages to the Holy Land, during which she allegedly found the True Cross. She converted to Christianity late in life, but donated generously to the Church and to the poor, and was greatly revered by her son, Emperor Constantine.
House Colour: Red
St. Hilda, Patron Saint of Learning & Culture
Hilda is one of the patron saints of learning and culture, including poetry.
In 657 Hilda became the founding abbess of Whitby Abbey, where she remained until her death. The original ideals of monasticism were maintained strictly in Hilda’s abbey. All property and goods were held in common; Christian virtues were exercised, especially peace and charity. Everyone had to study the Bible and do good works.
Hilda was a woman of great energy, who was a skilled administrator and teacher. As a landowner she had many in her employ to care for sheep and cattle, farming and woodcutting. She gained such a reputation for wisdom that kings and princes sought her advice. She also had a concern for ordinary folk. “All who knew her called her mother because of her outstanding devotion and grace”.
A local legend says that when sea birds fly over the abbey they dip their wings in honour of Saint Hilda. Another legend tells of a plague of snakes which Hilda turned to stone, supposedly explaining the presence of ammonite fossils on the shore; heads were carved onto these ‘petrified snakes’ to honour this legend. In fact, the ammonite genus Hildoceras takes its scientific name from St. Hilda.
House Colour: Blue
St. Cedd Patron Saint of Essex
A disciple of St. Aidan of Lindisfarne, St. Cedd was the brother of St. Chad, Cynebill, and Cćlin, all of whom became monks. Cedd, whom Peada of Mercia invited to preach among the Middle Angles, was ordained in 653. A year later, the priest was sent as a missionary to Essex, when the East Anglian King Sigbert converted to Christianity. Finan of Lindisfarne made Cedd bishop because of his success. Cedd went on to found several monasteries, including Tilbury and Lastingham. In 664, Cedd was an interpreter at the Synod of Whitby and accepted Oswiu’s adoption of Roman usage
House Colour: Green