Ms. Knight-Johnson’s Inspiring Opening Assembly | Trafalgar Castle School
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September 08, 2023

Ms. Knight-Johnson’s Inspiring Opening Assembly

Castle News

Head of School Ms. Knight-Johnson welcomes students, faculty and staff back with inspiring opening assembly address 


On Wednesday students from Grades 4 through 12 were welcomed back to campus. All students along with faculty and staff gathered together in the gym as new Head of School Ms. Knight-Johnson (Ms. K.J.) led the School’s opening assembly. 

Inspired by retired Admiral William McRaven’s book ‘Make Your Bed’ and his 2014 commencement speech at the University of Texas, Ms. K.J.’s opening address focussed on valuable principles and top 10 key takeaways that can be applied across all aspects of life.

  1. Start by making your bed.
  2. Find someone to help you paddle.
  3. Measure a person by the size of their heart, not the size of their flippers.
  4. Get over being a sugar cookie and keep moving forward.
  5. Don’t be afraid of the circuses.
  6. Sometimes you have to slide down the obstacle head first.
  7. Don’t back down from the sharks.
  8. You must be your very best in the darkest moment.
  9. Start singing when you’re up to your neck in mud; and
  10. Don’t ever, ever ring the bell.

Drawing on her own unique experiences as a Naval Warfare Officer with the Royal Canadian Navy, Ms. K.J. shared personal stories and life lessons to emphasize the importance of resilience, teamwork, and stepping outside your comfort zone. She spoke about the importance of starting the day with a small task like making your bed, never giving up in the face of challenges, and the significance of showing up even in your darkest moments.  

Ms. K.J. implored students to believe in themselves, persevere through adversity, and to make a positive impact on the world through their actions as we set off on this new school year together. 

In closing Ms. K.J. had this to share: “Here at Trafalgar, each of you will grow and learn guided by wonderful staff, your families, fellow students, and a community of alumnae. I encourage you to embrace the incredible opportunities available to you and the strength of this community. Pair that with these 10 life lessons to help you further develop as an individual, a student, and a leader, and you will see that you can achieve incredible things.”

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