Anne Everest - Head's Message 03-02
Snowdrops in the gardens and the gradually lengthening hours of daylight are clear indicators of the advent of spring. This is the time to look ahead, plan holidays and consider options for the future.
With the mock examinations now almost over for everyone, our older girls, from Upper Four upwards, will soon be making decisions about their education that have the potential to affect the direction of their careers - and therefore their lives. After three years of a broad secondary education, our Upper Four students now have to make a choice of subjects to take to examination level. By now, of course, they have a good idea of where their strengths lie - and we would always advise them to go with their strengths.
Naturally, we are also keen to promote the principle of a broad education for the next two years, and so we recommend that the girls all continue to take at least one language, social science and science, whatever their talents suggest at this point, in addition to compulsory English and mathematics. It is important at this stage that no pathways become closed off and that they continue to have as many options open to them as possible: some girls may well have clear and precise ideas about their future already, but those ideas may change over the next few years, and we have to be ready to adapt to such change.
Conversely, even our much older students may not yet have an absolutely clear idea of a future career path. For these students, a reasonably broad choice of subjects at the best possible grades would seem the best way forward. Some degree courses, even vocational ones, are competitive but not necessarily prescriptive about required examination subjects: the grades achieved become more crucial. The advice to play to one’s strengths thus becomes even more cogent in these cases.
Whatever their preferences and talents, we shall be providing structured support and advice to help our students and their parents with the challenging choices that lie ahead. Options Evening next week will help with the journey ahead. And this time next year, when the first spring flowers begin to appear, the staff of St George’s will be just as enthusiastic about doing this all over again with our current Lower Four girls.
Anne C Everest
Head. St George's School for Girls