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The professional journal for Management & Staff - Chair Head Bursar Registrar Staffroom SchoolOffice
November ~ December 2019

Chair   Head   Bursar   Registrar   Staffroom   School Office
...the professional journal for Management & Staff
The professional journal for Management & Staff - Chair Head Bursar Registrar Staffroom SchoolOffice
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2 Independent Schools Magazine                                                    Advertisement Sales: 01242 259249
The professional journal for Management & Staff - Chair Head Bursar Registrar Staffroom SchoolOffice
In this issue...
                                                     05 ‘Plant a Tree for Every Pupil’
                                                           climate change challenge
                                                     06 Collaboration can Transform Education
                                                           across state and independent partnerships
                                                     07 Promoting Transformational Bursary Schemes
                                                           how 28 independent schools co-operate
                                                     08 Preparing Young People for a Very Different World
                                                           careers & aspirations in the era of AI
Abseil Challenge
Fifty primary school children have united            14 Sometimes Children Need to ‘Get Their Hands Dirty’
in Perthshire to take part in the inaugural
Glenalmond College 1847 challenge, successfully
                                                           are we becoming far too ‘clinical’?
tackling 18 activities in 47 hours.
The wide-ranging activities the pupils were
                                                     20 Profile
challenged with on the grounds at Glenalmond,              in conversation with Rose Hardy
ranged from kayak polo and making pots in
a fire pit to building bug hotels and playing        35 VAT on Fees
different musical instruments.                             expert analysis reality check
One major highlight, however, was the
opportunity to abseil down the flag tower
located over the Front Arch which forms the           36 General Election Special
main entrance to Glenalmond.
                                                      – Equipping students with the right tools & mindset before they vote
Among the first to undertake the abseil
challenge were Warden Hugh Ouston, Head
                                                      – Promoting a healthy view of masculinity in a toxic political climate
of Glenalmond, pictured, and Katie Gladstone,
whose family traces back to William Gladstone,
founder of Glenalmond College in 1847.               Plus
Said Mr Ouston: “We developed the 1847               18   Remembering Bernice
Challenge to celebrate the school’s heritage, and    18   Changing Faces, Changing Places; Heads Hunted
to give the young people who take part in a          22   Poppies in tribute
unique opportunity to discover their strengths,
                                                     24   Well-being initiatives
and nurture a positive mindset in the face of
challenge.                                           26   How boarding can overcome disadvantage ~ new report
                                                     28   With the HMC at their 150th anniversary Conference
Leading the activities were 27 teachers from
Glenalmond College who were very impressed
                                                     29   Music, Drama, & Dance Focus Feature
with the determination, ingenuity and                34   Debating education
endeavour shown by the young people, most of         37   New Products & Services; The Digest ; Editorial Advisory Board;
whom camped in the Glenalmond grounds for                 Free e-mag subscriptions; Contact Us
the duration of the Challenge.
The pupils came from schools as far afield as
                                                     Is Your School Mentioned? See page 39 for an A-Z listing
St Dominic’s in Crieff; Belhaven Hill in East
Lothian, Craigclowan in Perth, Cargilfield in
Edinburgh and St Leonards in St Andrews.

Cover background

New well-being space                                 8 Careers
Longacre School, Surrey has opened a new             & aspirations                     29 Music, Drama & Dance
wellbeing space for pupils and staff as part of

                                                     Season’s Greetings
the school’s focus on mindfulness and mental
The ‘Bear Hut’, so called after the bear that
                                                     As has become our custom, this is a combined November~December issue.
features in the school’s logo, opened at the start
of term and is already proving popular with          Our next issue will be out in January.
Longacre pupils.                                     The team at ISM wish all readers, advertisers, and advisory board
                                                     members a pleasant Christmas and successful New Year.
Full story page 24                                                                    Independent Schools Magazine 3
The professional journal for Management & Staff - Chair Head Bursar Registrar Staffroom SchoolOffice
Salute to Arnhem veterans
Walhampton Preparatory School, Hampshire,
hosted a special Service of Remembrance to mark
75th anniversary of the Battle of Arnhem, Holland...
Walhampton School hosted a              service in the cemetery, during
special service to mark the 75th        which Walhampton children join
anniversary of the Battle of            hundreds of local Dutch children
Arnhem, fought in Holland in            to lay flowers at the graves of
September 1944.                         fallen soldiers.
The service was held in                 Titus Mills comments
Walhampton’s Chapel and was             “Walhampton wants to preserve
attended by approximately 400           the powerful stories of those brave
pupils and adults, including 5
                                        men and women who endured
Arnhem veterans (dressed in their
                                        the battle of Arnhem. We want
berets and medals), who are all
close to 100 years old. These           to be guardians of these stories
veterans were: John Bosley (94),        of life and death, humanity and
Jeffrey Noble (95), Arthur Bailey       inhumanity, compassion and
(95), Jim Hooper (97) – pictured        courage. I want our pupils to feel
with head Titus Mills – and Victor      connected to this story. I want           is permanently on display in                   and catering team. Supper was
Gregg (99). Many relatives also         them to shake hands with the last         honour of the veterans. On arrival             laid on after the service for all who
attended the service, including         few veterans and to experience            guests were served afternoon tea               attended, served by pupils of the
John Grayburn, son of Victoria          History in a compelling way.              specially made by the school’s chef            school.
Cross winner Jack Grayburn, who
                                        They need to know the price
died of his wounds at Arnhem
                                        of freedom. That is why pupils

Bridge aged 26 years old.
                                        presented the veterans, in our
Over the last decade, Walhampton        service, with stones on which were
has developed a unique
relationship with the veterans
and the stories of Arnhem. Mr
                                        painted the words ‘The young are
Mills has been taking parents and
pupils to the battlefield, every
                                        After the service, guests enjoyed
                                        looking around the beautiful
                                                                                    for Royal
year, for in depth tours. They
are the only UK school regularly
                                        Remembrance Garden where a
                                        bronze statue, specially made
attending the commemorative             by the school’s art department,            Pupils from Wellington School
                                                                                   were delighted to meet the

Teacher is true star                                                               Countess of Wessex when she
                                                                                   visited last month (October).                   the Countess enjoyed tea with
Mike Shaw, a science teacher            Mikes first introduced GCSE                Children from Year 4 and some                   some of the staff and members
at Bootham School in York, has          Astronomy to the Bootham School            Senior School musicians met                     of the centre. They were also
been elected a Fellow of the Royal      in 2005 and then extended the              Sophie, Countess of Wessex at the               joined by Angela Rippon, CBE
Astronomical Society.                   programme offering to local                Reminiscence Learning Centre,                   – former BBC newsreader and
                                        state school students through the          where she was learning more about               TV personality who is Patron of
Mike said: “It‘s a great honour to
                                        York Independent State School              the excellent work the Centre does              Reminiscence Learnings’ Archie
have been elected to a fellowship
                                        Partnership (ISSP).                        in raising awareness of dementia,               Project – a scheme linking schools,
with this long-established and
prestigious society. I’ve been          He continues to tutor the GCSE             providing training for health                   care homes, businesses and
teaching astronomy in one form or       programmes, as well as engaging the        professionals and carers and activity           services to create more inclusive
another for over four decades, and it   wider York community with his love         organisers who work alongside carers            communities and reduce the fear
is very generous of the RAS to have     of astronomy. He recently organised        in care homes and the community.                and stigma of dementia.
recognised this in their decision.”     and designed a ‘Mission to the                                                             Prep School pupils enjoyed an
                                                                                   The Countess, whose brother
                                        Moon’ event for the York Festival of                                                       assembly about The Archie Project
                                                                                   attended Wellington School,
                                        Ideas (a major citywide lecture and                                                        recently and will be taking part
                                                                                   enjoyed a concert given by
                                        outreach programme organised by                                                            in activities with the project to
                                                                                   Wellington School musicians; Sixth
                                        the University of York) which saw 70                                                       help raise awareness of dementia
                                                                                   Former, Abi Govey, was introduced
                                        young people participate in mini-
                                                                                   to the Countess before singing                  amongst younger children.
                                        workshops at Bootham throughout a
                                                                                   a range of songs, accompanied
                                        day of astronomy.                                                                          Wellington School musicians have
                                                                                   by Director of Music, Andrew
                                                                                                                                   performed a number of concerts
                                        He is also a regular guest speaker         Trewhella.
                                                                                                                                   at the venue as part of The Archie
                                        about astronomy for BBC York
                                                                                   James Morrell in Year 10 and Harry              Project and are delighted to
                                        radio and presents at the ‘Café
                                                                                   Tabb in Year 7 also sang, whilst                support such a worthwhile venture.
                                        Scientifique’ (an open public lecture
                                        series about sciences).                    Pictured: Sophie, Countess of Wessex meets Wellington School’s Director of Music Andrew
                                                                                   Trewhella and pupils James Morrell, and Abi Govey
                                        Mike Shaw in Bootham School Observatory

4 Independent Schools Magazine                                                                                             Advertisement Sales: 01242 259249
The professional journal for Management & Staff - Chair Head Bursar Registrar Staffroom SchoolOffice
Planting 1 trillion trees
                                                                            could stop climate
School commits to                                                           change, argues study
planting a tree for each                                                    A report from Swiss scientists
                                                                            published last month said
                                                                                                               to the study. That’s about
                                                                                                               as much carbon pollution as

new pupil for 7 years                                                       an effective way to stem the       humans have spewed in the
                                                                            catastrophic consequences of       past 25 years.
                                                                            climate change would be to         Crowther added, however,

& challenges other
                                                                            plant about 1 trillion trees.      that while this was a cheap
                                                                            This would take up an area         solution, it would not work
                                                                            roughly the size of the United
schools to do the same
                                                                                                               without emissions cuts.
                                                                            States, but there is more than     Researchers emphasized that
                                                                            enough room, according to          there are also behavioral
Suffolk’s Royal Hospital School is     The school has recently stopped      the study published in the         changes that would work
planting a tree for every new pupil    purchasing single-use plastic        journal Science.                   faster, such as cutting animal
joining the school over the next       bottles and provided every pupil
                                                                            “Every other climate change        products out of one’s diet.
seven years. Launched at its Open      with a refillable, stainless steel
Day earlier this month (November),     water bottle. It has also replaced   solution requires that we all      The report noted that the
the tree planting is part of its new   the use of non-biodegradable         change our behavior, or we         countries with the most
Grow with Us campaign, which           items at its events and this         need some top-down decision        room for the trees are
also includes a range of initiatives   weekend will see everyone            from a politician who may          Russia, Canada, the United
aimed at sustainability and            attending the Open Day receive       or may not believe in climate      States, Australia, Brazil, and
promoting well-being.                                                       change, or it’s a scientific       China. Brazil has been the
                                       a packet of butterfly and bee-
Scientists have stated that if 1       friendly seeds.                      discovery we don’t yet have,”      site of some devastating
trillion trees are planted in the                                           researcher Tom Crowther            deforestation in the world in
                                       Commenting on Grow with
next few years, the amount of                                               told the Thomson Reuters           recent decades.
                                       Us, RHS headmaster, Simon
carbon in the atmosphere would                                              Foundation. “This one is
                                       Lockyer said: “We are fortunate                                         The benefits of this solution
be reduced by 25% - levels the                                              not only our most powerful
                                       to live and work in a beautiful                                         would also be seen relatively
world has not witnessed for                                                 solution — it’s one that every
                                       part of Suffolk and our pupils                                          quickly as trees remove more
at least a century (Details see                                             single one of us can get
                                       are constantly seeking and                                              carbon from the air the
box). RHS hopes its example will
                                       suggesting ways that will protect    involved with.”                    younger they are.
encourage other schools to do
something similar - if every school    both the local ecosystems and        Over decades, the growing          Planting trees will also help
in the world - of which there are      global environment. They are         trees could suck up nearly 830     stop the loss of biodiversity
3 million - planted 200 trees a        environmentally conscious and        billion tons (750 billion metric   occurring all around the world
year over the next seven years, that   recognise that through their         tons) of carbon dioxide from       and prevent natural disasters
would mean over 4 billion trees        collective individual actions they   the atmosphere, according          such as floods.
had been added to the total.           can make a difference.”                                                                           Independent Schools Magazine 5
The professional journal for Management & Staff - Chair Head Bursar Registrar Staffroom SchoolOffice
“Collaboration can transform education
across state and private partnerships”
                     Head of Kirkham Grammar School, Lancashire, Daniel Berry, has served as a
                     Head in both the state and independent sectors. He takes a look at how his
                     experiences and introduction of change have improved the school and more
                     importantly demonstrated how the two sectors can work together for mutual
                     benefit and improved educational and community outcomes...
I served as a Head of St. George’s      culture of new initiatives being          attainment for all and the value          state. Having experienced Headship
Church of England Academy,              discussed. Regular observations           this brings to educational outcomes       in both state and independent
Blackpool for four years. In this       across clusters and introducing           became infectious. The aim is             schools, with the exception of
period the school was inspected by      regular ‘Health Checks’ allowed           to prove that collaboration can           catering services being of a
OFSTED and SIAMS and improved           all staff to review teaching and          transform education across state          significantly higher standard (Jamie
from a failing school to outstanding    learning practice at regular intervals.   and private partnerships with some        Oliver heaven) the area of sport is
across all areas. This included         Reducing marking workloads and            factual examples from KGS.                one that clearly stands out. It has
improved exam results and pupil         the number of assessments gave                                                      always been an important focus for
                                                                                  What if the privileged few who
numbers exceeding capacity. This        time back to staff to have a better                                                 independent schools and has been
                                                                                  access private education could be
journey taught me a lot about the       work/life balance and allowed them                                                  supported with larger than average
                                                                                  increased and a larger number of
fundamental skills and duties of        to focus on teaching. Parental                                                      Olympians coming from private
                                                                                  pupils offered assistance to attend
Headship. In all I had a challenging    reports received an overhaul as                                                     schools. Despite the educational
                                                                                  Independent Schools in key social
but rewarding time at St. George’s      we used Durham University data                                                      trends and government policies that
                                                                                  areas? Or stronger partnerships
seeing a school transformed from        systems alongside our assessment                                                    have forced both independent and
                                                                                  between state and independent
when I started there in 2004.           period to enable quick and fast                                                     state schools to respond to, sport
                                                                                  schools ensure access to private
However, we are all often ready for     updates to parents in a ‘twitter’ style                                             has remained protected from this
                                                                                  school resources or support.
a new challenge and a change of         approach. This was run alongside                                                    interference and has thrived. For a
                                                                                  Therefore, we have increased our
direction. Therefore, I took up the     the introduction of a parent app                                                    variety of reasons sport has declined
                                                                                  continued support to families with        in maintained schools and in society
position of Headmaster of Kirkham       for regular updates. The new              Bursaries and Scholarships. We have
Grammar School during a period          parent reporting system introduced                                                  in general as more children than
                                                                                  introduced sport, science lessons         any previous generation are deemed
of change. The school was an            pathways such as green, orange,           Drama and Technology to our local
established independent school of       pink and red. This reflected the                                                    obese.
                                                                                  state schools. A partnership with
850 pupils 3-18 and a Boarding          new 1-9 scoring system and used           the local state senior school which       The possibilities are endless for
House of 65 pupils. Kirkham             the Durham University data to set         introduced Combined Cadet Force           a transformation of the British
Grammar, or KGS as it is fondly         a predicted pathway range from            programmes to 25 pupils every             education system. Making high
known, was and still is a place with    1-3 (pink), 3-5 (red), 5-7 (orange),      week. This area of school, such           quality schooling a choice for many
a strong family ethos, excellent        7-9 (green). This system has proved       as sharing facilities and resources       alongside schools that support
exam success and a reputation           very popular and is used across the       between schools can often feel very       the needs of a community and
in sport, drama and music that is       foundation from 3-18. All staff now       complex and has the potential to          ultimately a child. Quite apart
the envy of the area. However, it       mark using pink/green if needed to        present a number of barriers to a         from the 275,700 jobs provided
did feel as if it had lost its spark    highlight areas for improvement.          significant change in cultures and        by independent schools as local
and the school was coasting along       Alongside a number of policy              views of such. Sport and extra-           employers and the places for
relying mainly on reputation and        changes, building enhancements            curricular activities have long           600,000 children, who have no
had become isolated. The Governing      and key staffing appointments             been the bed rock of independent          additional cost to the state I
Body and school community fully         the school started to transform           education. This aspect of school          can confidently state that the
understood this and made the tough      itself into a modern academic             life is possibly one of the largest       independent sector being allowed
decision to make a radical shift in     establishment with traditional            untapped resources a school               to support more pupils from a
a new direction without losing the      grammar school values. Which still                                                  wider variety of background would
                                                                                  can offer to another with little
traditional values but bringing in a    managed to focus on ‘educating the                                                  transform communities and life
                                                                                  additionally. Independent schools
period of modern ambition.              whole child’.                                                                       experiences. This is the chance to
                                                                                  have a long history of sporting
                                                                                                                            offer a diverse education across
How is this achieved in a school with   However, what is possibly more            excellence and promoting a wide
                                                                                                                            Britain to ensure social cold spots
a history going back to 1549?           important and of more benefit             range of extra-curricular activities
                                                                                                                            are no longer entrenched in
                                        to Kirkham Grammar School and             because they value them and invest
The first areas to identify and                                                                                             today’s society. Many independent
                                        local communities is how the              time in them. This we have done
address that needed a level of                                                                                              schools are at the heart of local
                                        offer of additional co-curricular         incredibly well, hosting fixtures
consistency was the systems                                                                                                 communities, cultural life and, as a
                                        opportunities, educating the              and tournaments and offering free
around teaching and learning,                                                                                               result, give back – in unquantifiable
                                        whole child and the freedom from          coaching. There are currently more
including monitoring, marking                                                                                               terms – so much more. As we
                                        OFSTED and constant government            than twenty partnerships each
and assessment. We embarked on                                                                                              enter a brave new era of British
                                        initiatives allows a school to thrive.    year between KGS and state sector
introducing a number of transparent                                                                                         independence we should look
                                        How independent education can             schools, as well as many extra-
protocols in the classrooms and                                                                                             more towards what unites us in
                                        support and accelerate change in          curricular activities enabling children
for staff and parents to use to                                                                                             education than what divides us. In
                                        state schools was becoming more           and young people from all walks
fully understand the educational                                                                                            my experience across both sectors
                                        apparent.                                 of life to broaden their experiences
process. Subjects being organised                                                                                           we have so much to share and
                                                                                  outside the classroom.
into Clusters with a Senior Teacher     We started to demonstrate how                                                       celebrate. We often try too much to
supporting them and regular             the benefits of partnerships in the       Sport is clearly a significantly          set independent and state schools
meetings allowed problems to be         community, bursaries and social           different experience in an                apart and often to the detriment of
nipped in the bud and created a         mobility enhanced standards and           independent school compared to            the pupils we are trying to support.

6 Independent Schools Magazine                                                                                         Advertisement Sales: 01242 259249
The professional journal for Management & Staff - Chair Head Bursar Registrar Staffroom SchoolOffice
Schools collaborate to
                                      signpost life-changing
                                      opportunities for children
                                      A total of 176,633 pupils at Independent Schools Council (ISC) schools
                                      currently receive help with their fees, representing 34% of all pupils. Twenty
                                      eight of London’s independent schools are working together on a publicity
                                      campaign to raise awareness of transformational bursary schemes...
Pictured: David Goodhew, Headmaster at Latymer Upper School and Chair of the consortium; some images of the London underground promotional announcements

Every year parents of Year 6          Goodhew, the current LFAC Chair           school name in its approximate
children around the country           and Head of Latymer Upper School          geographic location. The visuals
embark on the process of choosing     in Hammersmith. “Our group was            were applied across a range of
and applying for secondary school     formed to raise public awareness          materials, including tube car ad
places for their child. It can be     of the availability of fee assistance     panels and tube station poster slots.
a difficult undertaking, with the     in London schools. Encouraging            LFAC also worked with a journalist
emphasis being on selecting the       a wider and more diverse pool of          to create an eye-catching full-page
right school for a given child’s      applicants is one way we seek both        advertorial that appeared in both
personality, skills and attributes.   to help individuals and improve           the London Metro and the London
                                      social mobility.”                         Evening Standard newspapers on
The London Fee Assistance                                                       two separate occasions.                  campaign goal in a practical and
Consortium (LFAC) has stepped         Established more than a decade
                                                                                                                         efficient way?”
into this space with the aim          ago, this year’s LFAC project             On Facebook, LFAC used a short
of highlighting the financial         involved 28 single-sex and co-            animated video of the tube map           LFAC has 28 members from
assistance that is available to       educational schools from across the       creative in order to increase            different prestigious schools, and
provide free or subsidised places     capital. It is the consortium’s largest   engagement with its Facebook             only a single gathering each year
for children whose families might     campaign to date and follows on           advertising, as research shows that      at which they all come together in
not otherwise be able to afford       from a refresh of their campaign          viewers are more likely to respond
                                                                                                                         person. With that being the case,
independent school fees.              creative and website in 2018.             to video than to static imagery
                                                                                                                         it seems that this focus, evaluation
                                                                                on the platform. A Facebook Pixel
                                      Working with communications                                                        and continual refinement is the key
Raising public awareness              agency WSA, and with the support
                                                                                was added to the LFAC website to
“There can be a perception                                                      help further extend the advert’s         to securing the positive outcomes
                                      of Melanie Huntley, Head of
that independent schools are                                                    potential reach. Furthermore, a          that the campaign achieves, and
                                      Marketing and Communications
inaccessible to anyone who isn’t                                                Google Adwords drive used carefully      which any other like-minded
                                      at Alleyn’s School, LFAC delivered
posh or wealthy,” says David                                                    researched keywords to reach             group might seek to emulate.
                                      a multi-platform campaign that
                                                                                relevant users and refer them to the
                                      included out-of-home advertising,
                                                                                LFAC site.
                                      press advertising and digital adverts.                                               The 28 London Fee
                                      The campaign ran over several
                                                                                Working together                           Assistance Consortium
                                      weeks in September and October to
                                      raise awareness at the right time for     for success                                member schools are:
                                      parents to organise visits to school      Each year, the LFAC campaign is            Alleyn’s School; Bancroft’s School;
                                                                                proven to bring about significant          Chigwell School; City of London
                                      open events and meet subsequent
                                                                                increases in direct and organic            School; City of London School for
                                      admissions deadlines.
                                                                                                                           Girls; Dulwich College; Emanuel
                                                                                searches for the website URL,
                                                                                                                           School; Forest School; Francis
                                      Linking parents to schools                more click-throughs from digital
                                                                                                                           Holland School, Regent’s Park
                                      The aim of the campaign was to            advertising, greater numbers of            and Sloane Square; Haberdashers’
                                      drive as many people as possible          page views and increased average           Aske’s Boys’ School; Highgate
                                      to the consortium’s website, www.         session duration, indicating that          School; King’s College School,
                            ,        relevant users are visiting and            Wimbledon; Kingston Grammar
                                      which features an inventory of the        finding pertinent information.             School; Knightsbridge School;
                                      member schools and links through                                                     Latymer Upper School; North London
                                                                                It is certainly a compelling story.        Collegiate School; Northwood
                                      to the individual school websites so
                                                                                “Each year members are provided            College for Girls GDST; Queen’s
                                      parents and guardians can obtain
                                                                                with a report in order to evaluate         College, London; Queen’s Gate
                                      more specific details of what each
                                                                                the campaign results,” says                School; South Hampstead High
                                      institution provides in the way of                                                   School; St Benedict’s School; St
                                                                                Melanie Huntley. “Everyone is
                                      fee assistance.                                                                      Helen’s School; St Paul’s Girls’
                                                                                welcome to propose refinements
                                                                                or new ideas for discussion around         School; The Godolphin and Latymer
                                      Promotions for the campaign
                                                                                                                           School; The Lady Eleanor Holles
                                      centred around a striking tube            the table at the AGM. The criteria
                                                                                                                           School; University College School;
                                      map style visual concept, which           for decision-making is simple: will        and Westminster School.
                                      helpfully represents each member          a given activity support the main
To learn more about membership of the London Fee Assistance Consortium, contact Tobi Clifton-Brown at Latymer Upper School on                                                                                    Independent Schools Magazine 7
The professional journal for Management & Staff - Chair Head Bursar Registrar Staffroom SchoolOffice
Careers & aspirations – how to prepare children for a very different future

21st Century Work, 21st Century Skills
Dave Coplin is former Chief
Envisioning Officer for Microsoft UK,
author of two books, and has worked
all over the world with organisations,
individuals and governments - all
with the goal of demystifying
technology and championing it as a
positive transformation in our society.
What better person to ask to consider
the challenges and opportunities for
schools to prepare children for the
future world of work...
We urgently need to realise that        access to every fact (and opinion)
the world we inhabit requires           our society has ever generated and
very different skills from those        has in the palm of his hands, a
we have deemed so important for         calculator of almost infinite power
hundreds of years. Today, experts       and he will be expected to wield
argue that 80% of the maths we          both skills with confidence in
teach our kids is irrelevant. Of        order to help him offer value and
course we need to know the              be valued by the future society of       as enabling a “BYOD” policy or           changes to ensure we are helping
basics of arithmetic, but we don’t      which he is a member.                    even (god forbid) allowing smart         people to be fit for purpose in
need to be able to do complicated                                                phones in lessons. The only way          the future that they will actually
                                        Can you imagine what might
long division sums in our heads                                                  forward is for us to come together       inherit, rather than a world that
                                        happen if we suddenly decided to
because, like it or not, we will                                                 to ensure we can connect the             no longer exists. If we fail to make
                                        ban the use of mobile devices in
always have access to calculators                                                dots between the skills we give          this change, we will be derelict
                                        the office? Or if we took all the
that will go further and faster                                                                                           in our duty of helping to prepare
                                        computers and laptops away and           our young people and the jobs,
with numbers than we ever could                                                                                           subsequent generations for their
                                        put them in a separate part of our       vocations and careers they will
alone. Equally important will be                                                                                          future, ensuring they have the skills
                                        office buildings, only to be used        ultimately inhabit.
the distinction between knowing                                                                                           to thrive and make the most of all
                                        while in that specific location?         It will be up to all of us to help       the incredible opportunities that
facts and knowing what to do
                                        A few luddites might be pleased          the education system make these          the 21st century has to offer.
with them. We no longer need
                                        but for the most part, the world
students to be able to retain
                                        would stop spinning and we
endless facts about any given
                                        workers would revolt.
                                                                                    "Significant sections of traditional professions like
subject, instead we desperately                                                     accountancy and law will be taken over by robots.
need to make sure that students         Given that school is supposed to
                                        be the vehicle through which we
                                                                                    We will be able to speak any language to anyone
are able to process the infinite
amount of information they all          prepare younger generations to              in the world and AI will even help us decide what
have access to, and be able to use      be able to take up their place in           food to eat and when we should rest in order to
it to construct a positive, sensible    both the world of work and more             live healthier and more productive lives. Knowing
outcome. This is a world where          broadly in society as a whole, I            ‘stuff’ is no longer enough – schools might
wisdom rather than knowledge is         think by restricting their access to        move right away from exams and use AI to build
the scarce commodity.                   technology in the classroom, we
                                                                                    personalised learning schemes.
                                        are failing in our commitment to
When my son gets his first job in
pretty much any vocation, he will
                                        help them prepare for and to be             Technology will get quicker, cheaper, more powerful
be expected to be self-motivated,
                                        fit for purpose for the world that          and smaller. Your huge smartphone may not be a
                                        they will actually inherit.”
to work well with others, to be                                                     phone at all by 2030 but instead a small implant
curious and most definitely to think    But we can’t think about this               inserted under your skin…
outside the box. He already has         in isolation. It’s not as simple
Dave Coplin’ s latest book is called The Rise of the Humans: how to outsmart the digital deluge. ISBN: 9780857194053. Available on Waterstones, £9.99 He has a new book out next year.

8 Independent Schools Magazine                                                                                        Advertisement Sales: 01242 259249
The professional journal for Management & Staff - Chair Head Bursar Registrar Staffroom SchoolOffice
Careers & aspirations

Supporting the next generation of workers
There needs to be a paradigm shift in how schools prepare pupils
for the future world of work, argues accountant Alyson Howard...
It is no secret the nature of                        to be “preparing students for                        independent working, resilience,
business is changing and new                         jobs that don’t exist and to use                     creativity and analytical skills
commercial models are emerging                       technologies that we haven’t even                    provides those fusion skills
that would have been unthinkable                     discovered yet, to solve problems                    that will be the cornerstone of
when today’s A-level students first                  we haven’t identified yet”1.                         employment in the future.
set foot in a classroom. Disrupters
                                                     The existing methodologies of                        In order to address Casap’s
Uber and Airbnb, for example,
                                                     schools being measured on out-                       challenge we need to develop
were founded in 2009 and 2008
                                                     dated academic metrics and the                       people who are keen, even eager
respectively and have grown to
                                                     sledge-hammer of exam results                        to work in uncharted areas,
become leaders in their sectors,
                                                     seem counterproductive. These                        and this needs imagination,
despite not owning the assets they
                                                     paradigms produce a bell curve,                      adaptability and the ability to
market.                                                                                                                                               Pictured: Alyson Howard FCCA DChA CF is
                                                     a few ultra-performers at the top                    work alone. How do we encourage             Education and Not-for-Profit Partner at MHA
To take another example – one                        and some under-performers at the                     curiosity and the skills to sift out        MacIntyre Hudson. She is a former Council
that has traditionally provided                                                                           the relevant from the plethora of           Member of the Institute of Directors
                                                     bottom but most results gathered
well-paid jobs for the alumni of                     in a clump in the middle – middle                    data we are all exposed to every            The need for a paradigm-shift is
independent schools – more than                      achievers targeting an ever                          day? Are we showing young                   urgent if we are to support the
50% of the workforce in the City                     decreasing and more threatened                       people how to be empathic                   next generation of workers and
of London is now self-employed.                      environment of middle skilled jobs.                  and intuitive, can they balance             change the mind-set of those
Not only do we have this shift                       It’s a concerning thought.                           differing perspectives and agenda           for whom successful academic
in the structure of work but                                                                              in a class? And how can we be               results and a university experience
                                                     One is that the next generation
the workforce is also polarising.                                                                         inspirational leaders to show them          culminating in a degree are an end
                                                     of children could be replaced
While high skilled and low skilled                                                                        how to oppose the negativity and            rather than a means. Only then
                                                     in the workplace by computers.
jobs are steadily increasing in                                                                           cynicism that so many wear as a             could we look forward to being
                                                     That is not acceptable so can
number, medium skilled roles                                                                              badge of honour?                            prepared for a brave new world.
                                                     we change the educational
are disappearing and what is                         paradigm to support a generation
left is the most at threat in the                    that maximises the potential of
future from the introduction of                      AI and further computing to                             Exciting Activity and Field
Artificial Intelligence and robotised
                                                     support positive human work
                                                     opportunities? China is using AI in
                                                                                                             Study Trips in Cornwall
Our approach to education in                         the classroom to boost knowledge,
schools, by contrast, has remained                   understanding and future
fundamentally unchanged –                            development and Georgia Tech
teachers and teaching assistants in                  in the USA has an AI teaching
front of classrooms of pupils, with                  assistant. We should follow their
curricula to follow and exam time                    lead and focus on teaching the
tables to perform against. We may                    right skills for the future.
now use interactive whiteboards
                                                     These have been described as
and iPads rather than chalkboards
                                                     fusion skills i.e. those basics
and exercise books, but the basic
                                                     of human education and
overall approach is the same.
                                                     development which, while
The question is whether this                         inherent in daily school life, are
method of teaching fits the new                      yet to be targeted and codified
models of work both now and                          into a primary educational
looking forward. If not, and it can                  paradigm. Balancing thematic                            • The Manor House offers quality courses with personal
be argued that a gap has not only                    understanding with applicable
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employment methodologies but is                                                                              • Stay in an 18th Century Manor House
widening, what do schools need to
                                                     of educational development.
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No-one is pretending that this is                    programmes in subjects ranging                          • Please ask for details
or will be easy. The task is akin                    from presentation, teamwork,
to alchemy. As Jaime Casap from                      initiative taking, problem solving                            For more information please contact us on: 01841 540346
Google has said, education needs                     and organisation to flexibility,                   |
1 Google’s Jaime Casap on classroom innovation. (2014, August 07).                                              Manor House Activity & Development Centre, St Issey, Wadebridge, PL27 7QB
Arizona Education News service. Online                                                                                                               Independent Schools Magazine 9
The professional journal for Management & Staff - Chair Head Bursar Registrar Staffroom SchoolOffice
Careers & aspirations – how to prepare children for a very different future

                     Lower Sixth life skills diploma                                                                                                    “...It’s disturbing to find that around
                                                                                                                                                                 half of young people feel their
                                                                                                                                                            education has not prepared them
                     Sarah Pritchard, Life Skills Coordinator at Moreton Hall,Shropshire, describes                                                        for the world of work, at a time of
                     how the new Rylands Diploma prepares pupils for life after school...                                                                     great economic uncertainty and
                                                                                                                                                                         technological change.”
At Moreton Hall we are proud to                   with a focus on presenting yourself               and physical well being and                                 Sir John Allan, CBI President,
be ahead of the game in preparing                 confidently and communicating                     helping them to develop healthy                                          November 2018
our pupils for life after school. It              effectively in the workplace. The                 coping strategies for the demands
is in response to the demands and                 approach is one of opening mindsets               of life. We need to help them find                second, they must submit evidence
pressures that face young people                  and fostering a strong sense of self              their own solutions for when their                of voluntary work.
leaving school today that we have                 belief. The students are encouraged               goals and aspirations may prove                   We place great importance on
developed the Rylands Diploma.                    to identify their values and interests            unachievable. As the requirements                 students giving of their time
                                                  and to understand the importance                  of PSHE no longer extend into                     to help others, whether that be
The Rylands Diploma is a bespoke
                                                  of aligning these with possible career            the sixth form years, our diploma                 gardening at the local residential
Life Skills programme delivered on
                                                  choices.                                          provides ongoing opportunities for                care home, taking part in our
a weekly basis over the course of
                                                                                                    education and discussion around                   student mentoring programme
the year, to all of our Lower Sixth               In order to help our students
                                                                                                    the issues of women’s health and                  or helping with local community
girls. The course comprises 20 key                to be ‘work ready’ we see it as
                                                                                                    healthy relationships.                            projects.
elements that broadly fit under 6                 essential that they are able to
headings: Working World Skills,                   manage their finances and plan                    The course also has a practical                   Surely the most valuable skills we
Managing Finances, Health and                     for their financial futures. In                   focus, educating the girls on how                 take away from our time at school
Wellbeing, Essential Household                    partnership with local businesses                 to maintain a car, change a tyre                  is the ability to make a valuable
and Car Maintenance and                           we run sessions on budgeting,                     and reset a fuse in the fuse box.                 contribution and to function
Independent Extended Learning.                    managing bills, borrowing, saving,                Over the year there are cookery                   effectively as part of a community.
The programme is delivered by a                   tax and VAT. We believe these are                 sessions designed to make the                     To understand not only our values
number of experienced teachers                    key areas that have been missing                  transition to independent living,                 and our goals in life but also
and professionals from within and                 from educational provision at                     away from the school dining room,                 our responsibilities. The Rylands
outside of the school.                            sixth form level. They are an                     easier and fun.                                   Diploma is a holistic programme
                                                  essential element of the tool kit                 The course is not all taught. A                   that responds not just to the
Our Diploma is endorsed by a
                                                  that prepares young people for the                key element to the Diploma is to                  demands and pressures facing our
number of businesses, which support
                                                  world of work.                                    encourage independence in our                     children but to the criticisms, often
the programme and offer follow
up advice and mentoring. The                      In addition to equipping them                     students. To achieve the Rylands                  unfairly, levelled at them that they
programme, this year, was launched                with these skills, we aim to teach                Diploma the girls must not only                   are neither resilient nor fit for the
with an interactive session from                  them the importance of balancing                  attend key sessions from each of                  working world. Moreton’s pupils
recruitment consultant, Sarah                     their work lives with their home                  the five taught areas of the course               are not only socially responsible,
Hopkins, from Hopkins Longworth,                  lives. Transforming the mental                    but also to fulfil two additional                 resilient, confident and capable but
on creating ‘BrandYou’. Following                 health of young people must begin                 criteria; first, they must submit                 well prepared for all the challenges
this launch, the programme begins                 with building resilience, emotional               evidence of independent study and                 that lie ahead.

Creative entrepreneurs
return for careers &
business networking
The Pocklington School                            the power of social media and how
Foundation (PSF) Careers and                      it has helped them to grow their
Business Network held its latest                  businesses and communicate with
event in the Yorkshire schools’                   their customers.
new Art & Design Technology                       Toby Seth, Headmaster co-hosted
Centre recently, with the focus for               the event with three Pocklington
the evening on creative and small                 School business studies students,
businesses. The guest speakers                    who helped create the highly
for the evening were former pupils                informative question and answer
Beth Todd, who left the School in                 session.                                          varied and so I think it is even                   School community, including
2014, and James Wilkinson who                                                                       more important that we prepare                     current and former parents, Old
                                                  Mr Seth commented: “This is my                    them for life after school with
left in 2010.                                                                                                                                          Pocklingtonians, current and
                                                  third Careers and Business Network
                                                                                                    more than just excellent grades.                   former staff and supporters. Its
Beth and James shared with                        event. We have heard from OPs
                                                                                                    That is why I think our Values and                 aims are to help each other thrive
guests their experiences of setting               who are lawyers, business people
                                                                                                    Virtues are fundamental.                           in a highly competitive world
up their own businesses, what                     and now entrepreneurs who have
motivated them to do so and the                   started their own businesses. What                The PSF Careers and Business                       and, by working together, to help
challenges they have faced along                  former pupils get up to when they                 Network is open to everyone                        inspire both students, and each
the way. They also spoke about                    leave Pocklington is astonishingly                in the wider Pocklington                           other, for life.
Pictured (l to r): Trevor Loten, President of the Old Pocklingtonian Association, Toby Seth, Headmaster, Beth Todd, F&B International and James Wilkinson, Omwani Coffee Co

10 Independent Schools Magazine                                                                                                                 Advertisement Sales: 01242 259249
Careers & aspirations

City first for careers advice
Sheffield Girls’ Senior School                      in a school where the teachers
has become the first school in                      are not just concerned about
the city to have been awarded a                     academic achievement, but are
prestigious national accolade for                   committed to supporting a range
careers advice.                                     of work experience opportunities,
The school is the first in Sheffield,               extra-curricular clubs, enterprise
and one of a handful of schools                     education and off-timetable
across England, to fully meet the                   days, that help our students to
Department of Education’s Gatsby                    understand the skills they will
Benchmarks with a Career Mark                       need in a fast-changing world.”
Gold Award.                                         A Career Mark Assessor visited
Carole Hall, Head of Careers at                     the school back in September
                                                    and commended its work to               national criteria incorporating the      education, gap years, degree
Sheffield Girls’ said: “We are
                                                    continually monitor, review and         eight Gatsby Benchmarks.”                courses abroad, employment
absolutely delighted to have been
                                                    evaluate the school’s approach          The assessor not only                    opportunities, voluntary and work
awarded this highly prestigious
national award, and to be the first                 to its CEIAG (careers, education,       recommended Sheffield Girls’             experience placements for A-level
in Sheffield is tremendous.                         information, advice, and                should be awarded the Quality in         leavers through its tutorial system
                                                    guidance) provision.                    Careers Standard provided by the         and careers events programme.
“We are one of the few schools
in England able to demonstrate                      The assessor commented: “The            Licensed Awarding Body Career            Recent examples of the non-
that we have fully met the                          school continues to critically          Mark, but additionally, recognised       traditional paths that students
Department of Education’s Gatsby                    explore its CEIAG programme on          the school’s long-standing               have taken post-Sixth Form
Benchmarks, which are a measure                     a regular basis, ensuring that it       commitment to career learning            include studying Liberal Arts
of the provision of excellent                       remains current, vibrant, central       for students, awarding the Career        at Utrecht University in the
careers education, information,                     to the school’s purpose and,            Mark ‘Gold’ award.                       Netherlands, joining the RAF to
advice and guidance for all                         critically, meets the legislative and   Sheffield Girls’ offers a variety        undertake Physical Instructor
students from Y7 to Y13.                            best practice requirements.             of initiatives to help its students      Training, and doing an
“As a qualified Careers Adviser, it                 “Sheffield Girls’ has fully met         research, plan and prepare for the       apprenticeship with accountancy
is a real pleasure for me to work                   the Quality in Careers Standard         future including advice on higher        firm PwC.
Pictured: Carole Hall, head of careers at Sheffield Girls with sixth form students

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                                                                                                                                                      Magazine      11
Careers & aspirations – how to prepare children for a very different future

Ambitions should be fostered, not limited
                         Following a report recently published by the Organisation for
                         Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), David EJJ Lloyd,
                         headmaster at Solihull School, says children need to have all possible
                         information at their fingertips in order for them to make informed
                         career choices.
The report states that by the           jobs are of less value, parents,         and comprehensive psychometric          were to focus on what really
age of just seven, some children        teachers, schools and governments        testing is carried out at key           matters, instead of the latest
are already facing limits on            must work harder to improve              intervals, followed by a detailed       teaching and learning initiative,
their future aspirations because        information flows and foster             report and one-to-one follow-up         at a time when schools are being
of stereotyping about social            ambition and growth mindsets.”           meetings.                               forced to cull the curriculum
background, gender and race.                                                                                             and teaching staff, then it would
                                        At Solihull School, a variety of         Mr Lloyd believes the enrichment
Mr Lloyd, said: “I grew up in a         careers guidance is offered to arm       curriculum, for example, school         provide us with confidence that
world where career choices were all     pupils with the information they         debating and the Engineering            social mobility really matters.
too often guided by the familiar        need to make the right choices for       Education Scheme, careers advice        “Social mobility is not about
and many young people followed          themselves.                              and links with businesses and           changing social classes, it is about
their parents into the workplace,                                                universities are vital in schools       making informed choices, and if
                                        It organises a varied programme
for example, working on the                                                      and must be given appropriate           young people are to do this then
                                        of interactive career lunch events,
factory floor at the Ford Motor                                                  time and funding, but said he           the information must be at their
                                        there is access to a network of
Company or Huntley & Palmers                                                     understands the difficulty of           fingertips.
                                        career mentors, there are specific
biscuit factory on Merseyside. This                                              doing so in the modern education
                                        career networking events, an                                                     “Teachers must lead on this, but
type of social immobility is still                                               system.
                                        annual junior school careers fair                                                they must feel this is a real priority
very evident today.
                                        is held, support is given with           He said: “The teaching shortage         and not political rhetoric around
“While not suggesting that such         applications to overseas universities    doesn’t help and if the government      underfunded soundbites.”

New Sixth Form initiative aimed at
boosting employment opportunities
Truro School Connected is a new         universities and careers’.               help each other, so this isn’t          be held in Bristol, in February
initiative which puts Truro School,                                              exclusive to current Sixth Form         2020.
                                        Although all alumni are invited to
Cornwall, Sixth Form students                                                    students.
                                        Truro School, perhaps to give a                                                  Nicky said: ‘Many of our Sixth
and alumni in contact with a vast       talk, to conduct mock interviews,        ‘Talking to people at various           Form students go off to university
professional network. Consisting        or to host a table at a business         stages of their career is really
                                                                                                                         in the South West. We’re hoping
of alumni, past and present             lunch, activities are not limited        important. We want to offer Truro
parents, governors and staff, the                                                                                        by running a Bristol event it will
                                        to the School grounds. Alumni            School students the widest of
network offers students a wide                                                                                           give those alumni about to leave,
                                        from all over the UK and around          opportunities to discover the many
range of advice and opportunities                                                                                        or who’ve just left university living
                                        the world have signed up to be           careers out there and give them
whilst choosing universities            part of Truro School Connected           an opportunity to discover careers      in those areas, the opportunity
and career paths. Truro School          offering to review CVs, become           they had previously never heard         to connect with people in their
Connected starts in the Sixth Form      university representatives, or offer     of. It means that our Sixth Form        chosen career’.
but will continue as a resource         internships and shadowing days,          as well as our 4th and 5th Years
                                                                                                                         The scheme has already helped
when needed, at any stage of life.      all of which are key elements of         can get hands-on advice, and give
                                                                                                                         a former pupil, Tom, about to
It is there to advise those who do      the programme.                           them a real view of what’s going
know what they want to do and                                                                                            leave law school. Tom said:
                                                                                 on in the world’.
                                        Jayne Grigg, Director of                                                         ‘After contacting Truro School,
those who are still working that
                                        Admissions, said: ‘It’s really helpful   The initiative includes building
out.                                                                                                                     my details were passed on to
                                        to talk to someone who’s just            upon the pre-existing annual Truro
                                                                                                                         two other newly qualified junior
Nicky Berridge, Development and         set out on their career or just          School Alumni networking event
                                                                                                                         barristers working in London. In
Alumni Relations Manager, said:         started their university course in       in London, and expanding it to
‘In the former pupil community,                                                                                          a profession where networking
                                        addition to somebody who is long-        reach as many alumni and current
Truro School has an abundance of        established in a particular field;       students as possible. Due to the        can really help, Truro School
talent, who are willing and happy       there is help at every single point      success of the London networking        Connected has gone above and
to assist the School help its current   in the process. Not only that, Truro     event, for the first time, a Truro      beyond to help me get my career
students in progression on to           School Connected helps alumni            School Connected event will also        off the ground’.

12 Independent Schools Magazine                                                                                      Advertisement Sales: 01242 259249
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                                                01832 280 011                        Independent Schools Magazine 13
“...It is essential that we safeguard our children’s health but also ensure they receive a rounded and grounded education and that
includes exposure to the raw and exciting world outside the classroom - and sometimes that means getting their hands dirty...”

                                Living in a ‘clinical world’
                                 As we find ourselves living in an increasingly anxious world and one that is becoming more prone
                                 to allergies and infections, emphasised by concerning reports that over use of antibiotics today
                                 is leafing to super resistant strains of bacteria, one has to question if the way we are educating
                                 and nurturing our children has played some part in this whole mess, suggests Edge Grove,
                                 Hertfordshire, head Ben Evans.
We live in a world where children         toilet cleaner or a new chemical         dancing outdoor learning provision,      Changing the road ahead
expect to wash their hands with           to kill all bacteria in your washing     Forest school and adherence to           It is the responsibility of every
hand sanitiser at regular intervals       machine. Even one of my own              the ‘Daily Mile’. While all of these     school to encourage independence
throughout the school day and rely        family members once starred in a         excellent initiatives are designed       of thought and action in their
on parents who are well-equipped          TV commercial that suggested, with       to enrich the curriculum, teach          pupils. Teachers should be
with lashings of antibacterial wet        the use of a particular anti-bacterial   new skills and ensure children are       modelling good learning habits to
wipes as they battle with fears of        cleaner, it was possible to eat one’s    fit, active and ready to learn, it is
                                                                                                                            ensure that children are reflective,
good and bad bacteria. There is           meals off the table without even         worrying to see that even these
                                                                                                                            curious and self-motivated with
genuine horror at the thought of          needing a plate. Make of that what       areas are being led by safer more
                                                                                                                            the skills necessary to face failure
children being exposed to germs           you will. These kinds of products        clinical objectives and are often
                                                                                                                            with the determination to carry
and dirt, let alone be expected           are all obviously aimed at the           very far removed from what was
                                                                                                                            on, succeed and celebrate their
to run around outside on cold or          frantic, over-cautious parent who        originally intended.
wet days. Add to that the rule that       believes that only the most clinical
under no circumstances must food          of home environments are safe for        Children are missing out                 First and foremost though, schools
be eaten if the best before date          their children to live in.               Forest School areas should be            must ensure a safe and nurturing
has expired and it’s not hard to                                                   wild, unkempt, full of nature and        environment where children feel
see that our children are living in       The quest for a sterile                  wildlife and places of adventure         supported and valued. This in
an increasingly clinical world with                                                and excitement. But instead, these       turn will allow them to become
little opportunity for their bodies to
                                          environment                              areas are now centred around             independent learners, to flounder
                                          One of the most worrying of
develop any real resistance.                                                       expensive and gleaming wooden            intelligently with confidence,
                                          recent trends is the avoidance
                                                                                   shelters or outdoor classrooms           communicate their understanding
There also seems to be a feeling          of medically proven vaccinations
                                                                                   which are surrounded by neat             and take risks. Inevitably, things
amongst parents today that                such as MMR and most recently,
                                                                                   woodchip pathways, raised beds,          will not always go as planned,
unless they are constantly looking        the widely available flu vaccine.
                                                                                   innovative bug hotels and neat           children will face difficulties, get
ahead and removing all perceived          For whatever reason, parents
                                                                                   and tidy reading circles. It is a real   things wrong and make mistakes.
obstacles in their children’s way,        erroneously believe that these are
                                                                                   shame that children are missing          They should be supported through
they are failing as parents. In           wrong and harmful. Whilst they
                                                                                   out on the actual purpose of             these times but helped to see why
days gone by, people lived by             may be happy to pollute their
                                                                                   outdoor learning, all seemingly to       they have failed, seek solutions and
the principle that in bringing            homes (and our waters) with the
                                                                                   satisfy the modern need for tidy,        be encouraged to have the self-
up your children as sensible and          harshest of chemicals in their quest
                                                                                   sterile and manufactured learning        motivation to achieve their goals.
independent human beings, you are         for an ever-sterile environment,
preparing them for the road ahead.        they do not believe in heeding the                                                Rather than falling apart when
Today it is more a case of ‘pre-          best possible medical advice? In         Walking through mud, exploring           faced with adversity, children will
preparing and sweeping the road’          turn, this will only lead to greater     wild hedgerows, building camps           learn to develop the skills necessary
as far as visibly possible for children   health problems as we are seeing,        in meadows of long, unkempt              to become resilient, self-reliant
before they even step onto it.            which certainly can’t be solved with     grass, cooking on open fires and         and ultimately achieve far greater
                                          a good squirt of hand sanitiser or       observing nature and wildlife in         success in their learning and in
‘Just eat around the                      an anti-bacterial wipe.                  situ are all experiences of which        life. Only when this happens are
                                                                                   memories are made, skills are learnt     we truly preparing the child for the
bruise’                                   That said, any school which ignores      and habits are set that will last a      road, rather than the reverse.
This in itself has added a new            basic hygiene requirements is clearly    lifetime.
term to our modern parenting              negligent and doing its pupils an
dictionary; the ‘curling parent’          injustice. But children of all ages      If we are to change the road ahead       Rounded and ‘grounded’
which now sits alongside the              should be outside, properly dressed      however, it’s essential that schools     education
much-used ‘helicopter parent’ and         for whatever the weather throws          step in where they can to support        If children are not regularly exposed
of course our growing ‘snowflake          at them and become accustomed            and equip children for the future.       to the natural, often dirty and
generation.’ It is inconceivable that     to getting muddy and jumping             Most schools live by mottos that         disordered world outside of their
children raised in this way will be                                                are constantly encouraging pupils        sterilised, centrally heated homes,
                                          in puddles in a far less sterile and
equipped adequately to cope with                                                   to take risks, step outside their        they are missing out on a wealth
                                          clinical environment. For many
                                                                                   comfort zones and challenge
the exigencies of adult life with         children, this may not be easy and                                                of experiences. They will naturally
                                                                                   themselves to succeed, even
resilience and determination. What        they will struggle with getting dirty,                                            shy away from anything different
                                                                                   when faced with possible or real
ever happened to ‘a little bit of dirt    digging in the soil or handling                                                   and as a consequence, limit their
                                                                                   disappointment or failure. It is
does no harm’, or ’just eat around        rocks, leaves or twigs. However,                                                  opportunities throughout life. As
                                                                                   only when this happens that real
the bruise?’                              it is all an invaluable learning                                                  schools and parents, it is essential
                                                                                   and meaningful progress is being
                                          experience and one, which will                                                    that we safeguard our children’s
Media hype and advertising doesn’t                                                 made. Parents must support schools
                                          encourage them to step out of their                                               health but also ensure they receive
help matters either. It is rare to                                                 on this and take a step back to
                                          comfort zones, be adventurous,                                                    a rounded and grounded education
switch on the television today                                                     allow the developmental processes
                                          take risks and explore.                                                           and that includes exposure to the
without seeing an advert for a new                                                 to happen without interfering and
kitchen surface cleaner aimed at          There are very few schools today         trying to protect their children from    raw and exciting world outside the
‘providing a safer environment for        that do not advertise from the           disappointment. After all, this is in    classroom - and sometimes that
our children’, a super bug-busting        roof-tops, their all singing and all     the best interest of the child.          means getting their hands dirty.

14 Independent Schools Magazine                                                                                         Advertisement Sales: 01242 259249
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