The reflection of our history is a strong reminder of our strong community
As we nudge ever closer towards the end of term, I have been reflecting once again on the remarkable community we have here at Blackheath High School. I know I have said this many times, but I never fail to be amazed at the generosity of spirit shown by everyone in our school - students, parents, staff - in what has been an incredible time for all of us.
This week, we hosted the latest of our ‘Wollstonecraft Lates’ online events for our alumnae and open to our school community. I know many parents joined for what was a fascinating talk on the school’s proud history and its place within that of the local area. As a historian, I loved hearing the stories of the area; the strong tradition of supporting the arts in Blackheath and the clusters of activists who fought for social and political progress in the nineteenth century. In particular, I loved hearing about the women, including our second Head, Miss Gadesden, who were part of the women’s suffragist movement and who fought so passionately for women’s rights and ran a women’s reading room above what is now ‘Copper and Ink’.
We have received many emails from alumnae and members of the local community, who also joined, to say how much they enjoyed the event. None made me smile as much as the comment, “I expect in the years to come more names will be added to the illustrious list [of incredible women], many of whom may have passed through the portals of Blackheath High”. They are certainly right! Whilst we were unable to bring everyone together in person, the reflection of our school's history and our virtual reminiscing, was another reminder that our community is as strong as it ever has been.
The strength of our community is, of course, felt every day here at school. I especially enjoyed seeing the smiling faces of Year 4 here at the Senior School last week as they met teachers and students and enjoyed a morning experiencing life in the Senior School, taking part in special drama, coding and trampolining lessons. This followed a special 'Crime Scene Investigation' Day for Year 5 earlier in the term. These are just two examples of our whole school community coming together to support each other on their individual journeys.
Diversity and inclusion is in our DNA here at Blackheath High School. We proudly celebrate every girl, striving every day to do all we can to help every individual thrive, and are always working hard to do more. A few weeks ago, I wrote in The Times about our learnings from lockdown, where we saw some students thrive in a different learning environment. We are taking these learnings to incorporate changes into our teaching to help more introverted students continue to thrive. A link to the article is included in this edition of HIGHLife, for those who would like to read more.
Finally, I am very grateful to our Sixth-form led Equality Society who are selling rainbow laces and badges this month to support The Trevor Project, a charity focused on the prevention of suicide amongst LGBTQIA+ youths. For more information please visit our website.
So, as I sign-off for another HIGHLife, here’s a shout out to each and every one of you that makes our community so special.