15 September 2021
“That was amazing! It feels like such a long time since we’ve played Netball. It was great to get back into it.” – Melanie (Year 6)
Girls at The Mount School York were exhausted yet delighted after welcoming Leeds Rhinos’ netball coaches to the all-girl Quaker school for the first of their ongoing training and coaching sessions.
“It’s the first time that we have had the pleasure of coming to The Mount. Fabulous facilities, amazing assistance from staff and enthusiastic girls,” said Assistant Coach and former England international player, Maggie Birkinshaw, who commanded yesterday’s sessions with girls from Junior School through to Sixth Form College. “The girls’ development and improvement was visible in each session,” said Ms Birkinshaw.
“The session was really good,” said Alice (Year 10) who is a Sports Scholar at The Mount. “The Leeds Rhinos coaches very quickly spotted various weaknesses and helped us all to improve. The quality of coaching was excellent. These coaches were faster thinking and it felt like the session was really centred on helping us. The players responded much better and quicker by the end of the session. The Leeds Rhinos coaches communicated incredibly well, and were very helpful to each of us.”
The Mount partnered over the Summer with the Superleague club, which holds a coveted place within the Vitality Netball Superleague and delivers Netball England’s Performance Pathway in Yorkshire for ages U15 to U21. This partnership opens up exciting new opportunities for netball players in York and surrounding areas to have access to the very best coaching available. Future sessions will include Masterclasses, current Leeds Rhinos Netball players and England internationals. During the Autumn, sessions will open to the public for players of senior school age.
Gareth Cook, Head of Community and Engagement at Leeds Rhinos Foundation, said, “We are absolutely delighted to be working with The Mount School York this academic year, providing high quality netball, and hoping to inspire a new generation of Rhinos Netball fans and players. As part of our partnership, Rhinos Elite players will be making appearances as well as exploring opportunities to attend Rhinos Netball home fixtures next season. The Mount will be a flagship school for Rhinos Netball and we look forward to a long and successful partnership. We will be announcing community sessions shortly running on a Tuesday evening for the local community and I would like to thank the support from the staff over the Summer.”
“We are delighted to partner with Leeds Rhinos Netball to offer this programme to our girls and players in York. At The Mount we are fortunate to have world-class sports facilities, and having Leeds Rhinos Netball choose to partner with us recognises this,” said Adrienne Richmond, Principal of The Mount School.
“Netball is a sport much-loved by Mount girls. You could see clearly on their faces how much they enjoyed the session with Assistant Head Coach Maggie Birkinshaw and the other Leeds Rhinos Netball coaches. We want our girls to enjoy participating in sports, because that will have a positive impact on how they embrace sport and physical activities for the rest of their lives,” comments Jackie Greenwood, Acting Head of PE at The Mount. “This partnership with Leeds Rhinos Netball is the icing on a most excellent cake.”
The partnership with Leeds Rhinos Netball is another great achievement for The Mount as a leading school in girls’ education, after the School became North Yorkshire’s first school to achieve the coveted “All-Steinway School” status in 2020.
“We are leaders in educating girls, which means we understand girls’ needs,” explains Adrienne Richmond. “As the needs of girls change, our educational offer is able to evolve accordingly. Throughout the School, we offer girls a myriad of opportunities to hone their skills and to try their hand at something new. Our aim will always be to ensure Mount girls are equipped with the skills, ambition, and courage to succeed, in anything they aspire to be whether that is in sport, academia, performing arts or humanities.”