Alex Hems: Head's Blog April 28, 2017
Although the weather has taken a disappointingly wintry turn, the tennis nets are up and the exam desks are out, telling us we are definitely in the summer term. It has been lovely to see the younger children playing on the beautiful new equipment in the Fantastical Forest which brings an even greater sense of adventure and fun to their time outdoors. At the upper end of the school we are into the examination season now, with A Level and GCSE Art and GCSE Drama practical assessments completed in the last few days.
Last night the staff and Upper 6 girls shared a farewell dinner and today will be the final day of lessons for Lower and Upper 6 before study leave begins. As they near the end of their careers at St George's we wish our leavers every success in the papers they will be tackling over the coming weeks. A number have been at St George's since the Junior School or even Nursery, while others joined much more recently, but I hope they will all leave here with affection and respect for their school. It is right that they are ready to leave now and to take their places in the world as young adults. I have been impressed by the range of courses that they have been applying to and we are delighted that they continue to receive so many offers from excellent institutions in highly competitive disciplines. When the Lower 6 return from their examinations they will start to prepare for their university applications, with a programme that will help them to do the research that they will need to do to identify the most appropriate courses and plenty of guidance from an experienced team of tutors and advisers at school to enable them to make good decisions.
If we and they have played our parts, the girls will certainly leave here with the excellent academic qualifications that will be their passport into the next stage of their education, but I hope they go with so much more than that. Whether they have been sportswomen, debaters, members of the MUN teams, Prefects, Heads of House, musicians or sung in choirs, taken part in a play, supported younger girls through paired reading, joined the CCF or completed the Duke of Edinburgh's Award, they will have had the opportunity to stretch themselves and maybe have surprised themselves with their own achievements. By working alongside others they will have learned to recognise their own strengths and to value the abilities of their peers; one of the loveliest attributes that I have seen in girls here is their genuine, discerning and warm appreciation of each other. They are equipped to take on the world and make the most of every opportunity that the future will bring. They also know what it is to feel a part of a very strong community, one that looks outward and encourages a sense of responsibility. It is right that the girls should aim high in all that they do, and goodness knows our world needs their talent, energy, creativity and willingness to collaborate if we are to meet the many challenges that face the global community. In the brief time that I have known them they have impressed me with the care and respect they show for one another, their independence of mind and the warmth with which they speak about their time here. I look forward to hearing about the class of 2017 in years to come and to welcoming them back to St George's whenever they would like to come to see us.
Head, St George's School for Girls