As a student at The Radclyffe School, he was Head Boy when the school moved into its new modern building in 2008. Ten years later Atiqur Rahman spoke to students, staff and parents as the Guest of Honour at the Chadderton secondary’s Presentation Evening.
The evening was a celebration of students’ achievement across all year groups, but especially for the leaving year 11s to receive their GCSE and other exam certificates. With the Mayor of Oldham, Cllr Javid Iqbal also present, students received their prizes and awards, and shared performance in music and song.
After leaving the school Atiqur completed his A levels with ambitions to study Medicine. But after a change of plan he studied Islamic Studies at the University of Cairo. He is now teaching English at a school in Bury, serves as an imam at a mosque, and founded the Al Adab Institute, a youth organisation in Oldham.
Addressing the students Mr Rahman urged them to believe that they will be able to make a difference and overcome any difficulties they would face. Reflecting on his time at The Radclyffe School he said it was about much more than exam results, as each person took a journey of education and becoming a better person.
Sharing a personal memory from 2013 Atiqur spoke of when his mother died whilst he was away studying in Egypt. Speaking with her by phone she told him not to worry, he wouldn’t be able to study by her bedside, and to stay and complete his studies.
He told students, “Teachers open doors for you. Students must choose to step through or stay in the doorway. It doesn’t matter how slowly you go, but keep going.”
“When I left The Radclyffe School with all the opportunities I had been given, I was fortunate in so many ways. My teachers had opened the doors, and I stepped through.”
During the Presentation Evening, retiring Chair of Governors Jim Greenwood received a presentation recognising his 36 years as a governor, and 32 as Chair. A framed collage of news cuttings over the years, including the creation of the new school building and achieving Outstanding status from Ofsted, was presented by Head Boy Tahmeed Mahmood and Head Girl Sarah Nazir. Mr Greenwood continues to serve on the school’s Governing body.