LIFE at Robert Burns Academy has been gathering pace as pupils get ready for Christmas - and it hasn't all been about the festive season.

In their final column for 2023, pupils at the school lift the lid on what they've been up to over recent weeks...

How to Save a Life

A group of S3 pupils from RBA recently received an awareness session on bystander CPR and how to use a defibrillator.

A team of volunteers from St John Scotland delivered the session to 40 pupils.

St John Scotland are a charity who help local groups fund public access defibrillators. More information on the work they do and how you can support them can be found at their website -

Members of the charity and Mr Robertson are pictured at the defibrillator installed at the school.

This is located on the outside of the building at the main entrance to the Barony Campus.

The new defibrillator has been installed in memory of a young Ayrshire woman, Laura Henderson, whose family have helped fund cabinets for all secondary schools in East Ayrshire.

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Ayrshire swimming success

Congratulations to Keir Copeland (4E1) who won a silver and a bronze medal at the Ayrshire Schools Swimming Gala at the Citadel in Ayr last week.

Keir got a silver medal in the 15/16 year old age group for the 200m individual medley, and bronze in the 100m breaststroke. He also competed in the 100m freestyle, and achieved personal best times in all three events.

Keir also achieved the qualifying time in the individual medley for consideration for the Scottish Championships at East Kilbride in January.

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National Language Competition

Well done to our two teams of S3 pupils - Liam Daily, Alexander Gass, Conlan McLeod, Finlay Gault, Emma Johnstone, Olivia McCulloch, and Aaron McGrath - who took part in a National Language Competition that was created by the Government Communication Head Quarters.

This involved both teams completing language-related puzzles to solve codes. Both teams did well using their quick wit and investigation skills to solve language related puzzles which involved many European languages.

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They were competing against teams from all over the United Kingdom.

They certainly have the code cracking bug and are looking forward to taking part in future GCHQ competitions.

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Lochlan’s Legacy

The British Citizen Youth Award (BCyA) ceremony 2023 occurred on Thursday, October 14 - and a Robert Burns Academy pupil was invited to be a part of it.

The ceremony took place at the Palace of Westminster, House of Lords and celebrated many young people’s achievements from all across Britain!

The BCyA was created to raise awareness of the accomplishments of young people, who are aged 18 and younger, in the country who have gone out of their way to do great things for their community; such as supporting others in exceptional circumstances and raising awareness of charities.

Among those present was 14-year-old RBA pupil Lochlan Murdoch, who was given a Medal of Honour for all the incredible hard work he has dedicated to his charity, Lochlan’s Legacy.

Cumnock Chronicle: Lochlan Murdoch.Lochlan Murdoch. (Image: Robert Burns Academy)

Lochlan’s Legacy gained charitable status in 2020 and was created with the intention to remove the stigma and raise awareness of type 1 diabetes which many people in Scotland struggle with, including Lochlan!

Lochlan’s also helped to raise £10,500 for JDRF, an organisation that funds type 1 diabetes research, as well as The Kris Boyd Charity, which specifically works to keep people, including those with type 1 and type 2 diabetes to maintain good mental and physical health.

Lochlan has done amazing work for the diabetic community by running his own charity and raising money to fund others! Well done Lochlan, you’re doing yourself proud!

RBA Representing Ayrshire

Boys' U15 football: Taylor Gordon, Lucas Campbell, Aron Anderson.

Boys' U18 football: Dylan Brown.

Girls' U18 football: Sophie Allan, Grace Carson, Carmel McHattie.

A special mention to the U18 girls team who beat Glasgow Schools 7-4 and Paisley and District Schools 8-2, finishing top of their group and progressing to the quarter finals.

Grace scored five goals in the two games and Sophie scored one.

The U15s boys have one game remaining and if they win, they will also progress to the quarter finals.