‘Leadership is a way of thinking, a way of acting and most importantly a way of communicating’  Simon Sinek.

Earlier in the term, senior leaders were announced at the Senior School Leadership Assembly, and last week we held the Junior School Leadership Assembly, recognising every Year 6 student as a leader in Junior School while also recognising some more formal positions across the Junior School from captaincies to Library monitors to SRC representatives. These assemblies are important symbolic events in our school calendar that highlight the value and importance of providing students across the school with opportunities to learn about, develop, and put leadership skills into practice in the many forms they come.

Listening to teachers and students, it is clear there is an alignment across the sub-schools in our values, purpose and shared understanding of what leadership should look like and why it is so essential for our students. At the heart of this is that leadership at school is far more than a badge or a title but a vehicle that allows all students the opportunity to give service and connect to our community, to develop voice and agency, model our values and build character. Most importantly, it encourages students to:

  • Understand themselves as learners and as actively engaged citizens
  • Appreciate their abilities, the abilities of others, and work collaboratively
  • Demonstrate empathy and consideration of other people’s thoughts and feelings
  • Act on needs within their community
  • Have the courage to make good choices
  • Persevere in the face of difficulties
  • Understand that taking the initiative can involve risk-taking and criticism

An emphasis and value of authentic student leadership focusing on student agency and service further supports the development of character, citizenship, collaboration, communication, creativity, and critical thinking – skills we know are essential to students’ success well beyond school.

In the words of John C Maxwell, ‘A leader is one who knows the way, goes the way and shows the way.’  I look forward to watching our students as they find ways to put this into practice in our school community and beyond.

Catherine Samuel
Head of Junior School

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