Congratulations to Kennedy Bullington – Year 8 who has won the House Naming Competition.

Several months ago we sent out an entry form to all the pupils at Cranleigh and asked the children to submit their ideas for the future names of our vertical houses.  We had so many wonderful entries and it was so difficult to select one out of so many, but Kennedy Bullington had really done her homework and presented her idea remarkable well.  She also managed to somehow knit together her idea with the Cranleigh code and I would like to share with you the meaning and thought behind your new house names at Cranleigh .

Sadeeq (Friend), Etihad (Unity), Al Sharaf (Honour) and Zaeem (Leader) are the new names.  Below are Kennedy’s thoughts:

Kennedy writes….

What’s in a name?  Having lived in the UAE for the past 7 years, I’ve learned that names are important and have a great value to all Nationalities.  A house name represents the team’s ability in striving to the path of excellence and success.  It also demonstrates the traits of a student and is a reminder of being a good representation of the school.  Because of the significance of a name I wanted to explain why I have chosen these house names.

Etihad (Unity)

When you hear the word Etihad, you probably think of Abu Dhabi’s airline.  However, there is much more than an airline behind that name; it actually mean ‘union’ in Arabic.  The UAE is only forty three years old, which is very young for a country, and since then it has vastly improved.  Forty three year ago, it was a desolate dusty land containing a few structures.  Nowadays, the UAE is a major port and popular tourist destination.  The cause for this miraculous change is the unity of all seven Emirates.  By just making an alliance, the Emirates were able to accomplish so much more!  That is what I believe Cranleigh needs to accomplish in order to truly be the flagship school of Abu Dhabi.  Cranleigh needs to be unified with the community, the students, the teachers and the UAE leadership.  With everyone working together, we can achieve more and do what is thought to be impossible.

Sadeeq (Friend)

The UAE is home to over 100 nationalities.  I have called this my home for almost 8 years and consider many people here my ‘sadeeq’.  They have welcomed my family and I into their country and provided opportunities that I wouldn’t have in the United States.  The Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum once said ‘ We do not hesitate to help and support the brother, the ill-fated friend or the needy where they are”.  The UAE is a friend to its nationals, expats and visitors.  Just like the UAE, Cranleigh’s students should be a welcoming safe place that takes care of each other just as a friend.

Zaeem (Leader)

Through the past forth three years, the UAE has had amazing leaders such as H. H. Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan.  All Sheikhs, current and past, have led their country righteously.  The UAE is a leader in tourism and world records.  For example, the biggest aquarium, skyscraper, waterpark, and about 150 more records.  In 2013, more than 10 million people visited Dubai, which is only 1 of 7 Emirates.  Also Dubai will be hosting the 2020 Expo.  Cranleigh has been referenced as the future flagship school of Abu Dhabi.  Therefore, similar to the UAE, we need to lead righteously in academics, sports and be a leading example in the community.  Cranleigh needs to develop future leaders both for the country and for the other nations.

Al Sharaf (Honour)

As Sophocles said “I would prefer event to fail with honour than win by cheating”.  Honour is the heart of the Arabian culture.  Cranleigh’s motto Ex Cultu Robur (From Culture comes Strength), and honour plays a major role in culture and strength.  Honour brings mutual respect, great esteem and admiration.  Cranleigh should strive to be honourable in academics and with peers and teachers.

I strongly believe that in order to accomplish the Cranleigh motto, we need to achieve those four characteristics.  Union, Friend, Leader and Honour.


Kennedy Bullington

Year 8