Jenny Price, Deputy Head Pastoral
International Women's Day, Wiltshire Life
To mark International Women’s Day on 8 March, we would like to focus on girls in education.
What particular issues face girls’ at different years?
Initially making new friendships and finding your feet in a new school, which might be much bigger than primary/prep schools but then, I think girls can sometimes struggle with their identity as they move into the Upper School. This is can be magnified by social media, having to make choices as to which subjects to pursue, self-esteem issues, peer pressure, not to mention, physical, emotional & mental health issues which can have a huge impact. In the Sixth Form, girls are preparing to move away from home and this can release new emotions of excitement but also some anxiety of the unknown and life beyond school. Growing up at Godolphin ensures that the girls have a fantastic support network, which will exist well beyond the school gate for years to come.
How does the school work positively to tackle this?
By keeping our lines of communication open between staff, pupils and parents. We take a proactive not reactive approach. We invite parents in regularly to attend talks with the girls, we work together and believe transparency is best. Nothing is taboo - education is key and we must work with whatever comes our way. We encourage resilience and allow girls to develop at their own pace. Girls must be allowed to take risks and find their own solutions and we encourage this from an early age. The new Godolphin Learning Pogramme for KS3 will help to develop skills for life.
Any specific case studies etc to help illustrate – trips, individual story, clubs etc ?
For the developing curriculum at KS4, we are introducing a change to the curriculum for KS3, in the form of the new Godolphin Learning Programme. In September 2019 we will be introducing the new programme which meets the needs of a 21st Century curriculum whilst maintaining the ethos and values of Godolphin. This is a new initiative, taught in one 65 minute lesson per week to all students in First, Second and Third Years. The Godolphin Learning Programme draws together a breadth of experiences and practical skills which our students need beyond those taught in a traditional curriculum. The programme will also consist of a Digital Literacy aspect, which will focus on content such as Self-image and Identity, Discerning Research Skills, Privacy and Security and Managing Online Information. The GLP curriculum will see content such as Cultural Appreciation, Bright Futures career options, Sixth Form taster lessons, Critical Thinking and Mindfulness.
Any thing that might support the examples of the advancement of girls (eg statistics, case studies, curriculum examples, results etc)
We believe our boarding houses to be the perfect place for girls to thrive - happy, well-supported, fun, busy, clear boundaries, brilliantly staffed, perfect environment for happy girls to flourish.
The importance of boys as well. How might the above also positively impact on boys?
Our girls are articulate and confident but never arrogant. They have respect for boys but are not intimidated or put off by them.
Please do feel free to add anything you think relevant.
Each year on International Women’s Day, our Vocal Ensemble take part in the International Women’s Day service at St Thomas’s Church in Salisbury. Our girls involved are extremely excited and grateful to be performing.