Head’s Round Up: Friday 12 June 2020
#BlackLivesMatter continues to inspire the girls to take action and find out more. I have been in communication with a number of girls of different ages this week and had an exciting discussion with the SPLT about how girls and staff can work together to make a difference. We have various plans as to how to support the cause and broaden understanding. We are looking at ways to enhance the curriculum and to review some school policies appropriately. There are many suggestions coming in from teachers. Girls are also asking for more material on this topic in PSHE and are themselves generating ideas about what they would like to do as a community to show their support.
I have been hugely impressed with the girls’ interest in and passion for this movement and I can see that the inspiration which they are feeling has a power of its own. I have received a number of emails from parents and girls on the subject this week. Some of the girls’ emails have frankly awed me in their maturity and I myself have found them inspirational.
From Monday, we are delighted to be welcoming some of the Fourth Form and Lower Sixth girls back into school. Mrs Wilcock has been able to put together a timetable enabling every girl to have contact time with teaching staff in school. We have been very busy preparing the school for partial re-opening and are very much looking forward to seeing the girls from next week.
The Sixth Form team, including Catherine Taylor, our Careers Coordinator, have been providing wide-ranging support to the Lower Sixth. The mock interview process has been completed successfully with the girls having experience of preparing a CV and covering letter before having a video interview. The girls doing Level 3 Certificate in First Line Management (CMI qualification) have started the course and are being taught through online tutorials, with web–based and online resources and one to one tutorial support. Finally the UCAS process has been launched and Mrs Taylor will be delivering a session on personal statements. Whilst the future remains uncertain in many ways, it remains exciting and full of opportunities.
World Oceans Day was on Monday this week and A Level and GCSE Geographers and Biologists had the chance to join Dr Helen Czerski for her lecture on all things ocean. She shared her latest research about the action individuals can take and impressed upon everyone just how important the oceans are, as the ‘engines of the world’. It was a great opportunity and you may like to learn more by watching Dr Czerski’s latest documentary that is still on iPlayer ‘Ocean Autopsy‘.
Many girls will be preparing for their assessments next week. As with everything at the moment, this will be a very different experience from the normal end of year exams. I know the girls will do their best, as always, and encourage them to be relaxed about the week and enjoy their assessments.
Congratulations to the Fourth Form girls who have been made House Deputies for next year: Austen: Rosina N, Madeline C, Mia D, Alexandra N, Scarlett K, Kira T, Romana B, Emily M; Pankhurst: Amelia W, Chloe H, Claudia M, Libby C, Izzy H, Tabby O, Charlotte J; Frank: Natasha J, Coco Y, Kaelin V, Genevieve N, Hannah A, Juliette R, Iris W, Mathilde N, Mola C.
‘Club of the Week’ has continued to provide the girls with co-curricular activities to fill their time. Miss Curtin has been sent photos and videos of fantastic dog toys that have been made; girls, amongst them Hope K, have used the sign language video tutorial to learn how to sign ‘hello’, ‘good morning/afternoon/evening’, ‘are you alright?’ and ‘how are you?’. Hope has gone one step further independently and has also now learnt to spell her name in sign language! Well done, Hope, what a fantastic skill to be working on. I hope there are more people who have been inspired to give sign language ago. Miss Burdass has set another sign language lesson this week – why not give it a try?
This week, Miss Curtin has challenged the girls to take part in one of The Big Three challenges. The Bright Ideas Challenge, a STEM challenge proposed by Mrs Ali, asks girls to contemplate what cities will look like in 2050. How will they be powered to be vibrant, healthy and clean places to live? The Bright Ideas Challenge, Shell’s cross-curricular schools’ competition, invites young people aged 11-14 to use their creativity, problem solving and STEM skills to devise innovative solutions that could power cities of the future. With fantastic STEM prizes up for grabs, there’s every reason to think big! Girls should speak to Mrs Ali if you would like to enter or follow this link. Miss Fernandes has set a Fitness Challenge to encourage the girls to use lockdown to improve their fitness and help them feel fitter and stronger. Finally, Ms Brown has challenged the girls to build a model of Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. I hope these challenges have motivated the girls to take part and I look forward to seeing and hearing about the results!
Mrs Baines has received some lovely emails from parents, nominating their daughter to be Star of the Week. Please do keep these nominations coming. We know that the girls will have been stars in so many ways during this period.
Congratulations to Millie L, who completed her 10k run ahead of time on Sunday, 7 June. From not being a confident runner, she has been training with her mother for the last five weeks, and completed a 10K run, without stopping, in 1 hour and 13 minutes. She has raised over £450 for the NHS so far – what a fantastic achievement. There is still time to donate money via Millie’s fundraising page.
Well done too to Lucy N, who is currently working as an administrator at the Royal Surrey. We are very proud of you, Lucy.
Some sad news which I know the girls will be sorry to read: the Picken family have recently lost their beloved Victor at the age of 14. He will be much missed and will be remembered fondly by many old girls as well as everyone here. There will be a plaque in his memory in the part of the Rose Garden dedicated to his original owner, Jo Purkiss.
Finally another musical treat: our very talented Development and Alumnae Officer, Polly Murray, has produced this simply beautiful cover of the Pentatonix’s arrangement of ‘Take me Home’ by her choir, the Half Circle Vocal Group.
Have a wonderful weekend