Message from the head of school - 5 May 2017

Trinity term presents the challenges of cold weather and sniffles. It is also the time of mid-year examinations, and the academic programme comes into sharp focus. 

The teachers at St Mary’s are encouraged to assess and review our academic programme on a continual basis. As a learning community, we spend much time reading and discussing current material on education, learning and teaching.

A concern of the teachers is the intense focus that the girls place on marks. This approach means that the outcome takes priority over the process. The default is to focus on specic marks or results instead of what has been accomplished. I want to challenge the girls on this trend. 

Most of the current research in education expresses the importance of skills and character traits in influencing academic success. Creativity, curiosity, resourcefulness, resilience, empathy, self-awareness, sociability and integrity are believed to be the skills and traits which determine access to future success. Such skills and strengths are developed and gained slowly over a period of time and, contrary to the general trend of today, instant gratification.

Learning is slow and uncomfortable; it is a process and our children must understand that this is normal. We must reassure them that learning is a long yet rewarding journey, where the short-term achievements are not nearly as important as the long-term goals. 

Deanne King

Head of School