The English Department of Campbell College has the legendary status of having among its list of Old Campbellians, Nobel Prize writer, Samuel Beckett, who taught in the College briefly and early in his career, and the remarkable writer of the Narnia books, and theologian, C.S Lewis, who attended the College whilst originating from nearby Circular Road. The English Department is very mindful of the literati who have donned the College grounds: lyricists, such as the award winning musician, Gary Lightbody; actors, such as David Caves and Michael Brown; as well as high achieving pupils in the subject, such as Chris Wilson, who came first in English Language GCSE, in 2009. We are equally mindful of our fortunate location, not just surrounded by the inspirational views across the beautiful grounds of Campbell - for creative thinking and reflection - but the wider landscape of East Belfast, which is enjoying a literary and artistic output never witnessed before in such a surge, and never more needed and lauded in such a virtual-reality oriented society as in recent decades!
It is heart-warming and reassuring that in these increasing secular times, English takes on the added role of providing young people the understanding of the skills of thoughtful self-expression, and ensuring standards and forms of written and verbal communication are maintained, while language usage becomes challenged and, at times, undermined by social media trends.
Small classes, of up to seven sets, arranged by pupils’ literacy skills and language needs, tailor for the new international boarder, as well as challenge and stretch boys who have transferred from the local feeder primary schools with high AQE/𝘎L scores. The English Department prides itself on nurturing the skills of confident self-expression, repartee and debate, which sets a Campbell boy apart from his peers and competitors.
‘I certainly owe a lot to football…to teach me how to become a man and balance my own self-expression with the well-being and success of my teammates’.