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May 10th 2023

New HST focus on importance of student voice and key areas of change

As the incoming Head Student Team, we would like to thank the outgoing team for all their amazing work during the past year. They have made such a positive impact on the school and student community. From raising awareness of breast cancer through self-breast exam posters to reconstructing the school council system to amplify student voice even more, we are so grateful for everything they have achieved and it's safe to say that they have left very big shoes for us to fill! 

Even though we have only been in the role for little under a week at the point I am writing this, the team and I have already stormed ahead with our excitement and ideas for the year ahead. We intend to listen to our fellow students and act upon their ideas very quickly. In early February I gathered some opinions and suggestions from students lower down in the school - one of my main focuses as Head Student is ‘Student Voice’, so being able to hear what the students need and want is very important to me.  

Our first week as the Head Student Team has been very busy indeed. We have assigned roles within the team to ensure that we are delegating responsibilities fairly and utilising the different strengths of the team. I am mainly focused on the Student Voice and active change within the school. The other members of the team are focused on the Environment and Sustainability, Diversity and Inclusion, Mental Health, and Charities.  

As Pride month is quickly approaching in June, we are eager to increase the celebrations this year. Our plans are to create lots of smaller charity events that students can take part in throughout the month, with money raised going to an LGBTQIA+ charity.  This will both strengthen bonds within the students and staff at school, and add to our already outstanding community spirit. As part of the LGBTQIA+ community myself, it is important that students of all areas of the community are well represented, and they are able to feel safe to come out at school.  I intend to make this happen by working with members of staff who are part of Diversity leadership to not only help LGBTQIA+ students to be accepting of themselves, but to educate other students on how to be allies. 

Mental health is of the utmost importance here at Blackheath High School, and it is crucial that we raise the profile of mental wellness at school. We have some plans up our sleeves to make mental health resources more accessible and to put a system in place where students can help each other. 

In terms of our overarching plans for the year ahead and the legacy we want to leave as a team, my personal goals are to make the school a place in which every student feels they are able to express themselves in any way they wish and to make it so that when students leave school, they are confident in themselves and ready to take on the outside world!  

Having been at Blackheath High School for 12 years now, I have not only learned so much about the importance of hard work and motivation, but I have also appreciated the many fantastic opportunities for all students to explore. I would encourage all students to explore their interests and passions, for example, for me as a Drama Scholar, numerous school plays, debating competitions, and performing at the Edinburgh Fringe to name just a few.  

Being Head Student is the perfect chance to give back to the school for everything it has done for me.  As a Head Student Team, we have so many more ideas and plans to share this year and I know I speak on behalf of all the team in saying that we are so excited by this opportunity. 

Written by Grace, Year 12, Head Student Team

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