Nothampton High School
High News
High News

High News 20 October 2017

Headlines

Seeing the first UCAS form from the earliest applicant for 2018 appear in my in-tray in September just two days after receiving news that the last of the 2017 leavers had had confirmation of her medicine place reminds me that the work of guidance doesn’t have a quiet season nowadays.

This is very positive because it means that our 6.2s are making the most of all available expert advice from the very start of their sixth form courses and are seizing the opportunity to gain early offers.

Reading everyone’s UCAS form is one of the greatest pleasures of this term for me and I never cease to be impressed by the quality of the submissions and by the breadth and ambition of the individual profiles evidenced in them.

Concise yet compelling self-presentation requires a level of skill and confidence that is only gained over a number of years and with practice and encouragement.

How pleasing, then, to see the U3s starting to hone these very skills in their House story-telling competition this week, with the help of their sixth form leaders (who were once, in their turn, helped along by long-gone Alumnae when they were in U3).

From presenting a character in a few lines from ‘Pumpkin Soup’ to crafting 4000 characters into 47 lines for a persuasive Personal Statement – that is one way of encapsulating the story of a High School life.

I wish all girls and their families a good, restorative half-term break.

Dr Stringer, Headmistress

Head's Blog

Last week we celebrated the 25th anniversary of the School’s move from Derngate to its current, purpose-built site in Hardingstone and a tree was planted to mark the occasion.

“As we sprinkled the roots of the specially-chosen rowan tree with soil, I was reminded of the many reasons why a tree-planting is such an appropriate way to celebrate this milestone for the School.

Because a tree is a powerful symbol of so many of the attributes that characterise an excellent school.”

Click to read the full blog post.

Week Ahead

Events and activities

Monday 30 October
Back to school

Wednesday 1 November
L4 Parent’s Evening

Thursday 2 November
U4 Classic Trip to Bath

Friday 3 November
Demeter Charity Cake Sale

Sports Fixtures

Monday 30 October
U12/U13/U14/U18
Bedford Girls School
Swimming – Home

Thursday 2 November
U14
Campion School
Hockey – Home

Saturday 4 November
U12 A & B, U13 A & B, U14 , U15, U18
Princethorpe College
Hockey – Home

25th Anniversary Celebration

On Saturday we celebrated 25 years since the School has been at Hardingstone. The new school was opened by the Queen on 15 October 1992.

The day began with a lunch; over 100 alumnae, former staff, current staff, governors and friends of the school joined us in the Dining Hall for a fizz reception and delicious food. There was a wonderful atmosphere as old friends reminisced, some of whom hadn’t been back to the school for many years. There were big group of alumnae who left in the years 1994- 1999 and some who had left more recently.

After the lunch, the afternoon activities began and many more guests arrived for the afternoon tea. To mark the occasion, a tree was planted in the Cripps Courtyard using the same spade the Queen had used 25 years earlier. Dr Stringer, Headmistress, Mrs Mayne, former Headmistress when we moved to the new site and Mrs Newnham, Chair of Governors, said a few words.

Into the senior hall next for the Mayor to cut the 25th Anniversary cake and a chance to view the archive exhibition, have photos taken, contribute to the ‘My fondest memory from school….’ board and of course chat over cake and tea! A memorable afternoon for all who came along.

The Winter's Tale

On Tuesday evening we were treated to the Senior Drama Company’s production of The Winter’s Tale. The Company is now in its tenth glorious year and to celebrate this, we welcomed a director in residence, James Gillam to work with the actors. James is the director of Masque Youth Theatre, a community Drama and Theatre group for young people in Northampton. He is also a teacher of eighteen years’ experience and was recently Head of Drama at Winchester House School in Brackley for ten years. He is an avid devotee of Shakespeare and has a Postgraduate Award in the Essentials of Teaching and Performing Shakespeare with Children and Young People from the RSC/University of Warwick.

The production was a moving adaptation of the complex tale which includes themes of friendship, suspicion, abandonment and punishment. Phoebe Abbott played the lead as Leontes with poise and conviction. Holly Barry presented the accused Queen Hermoine with grace and elegance. Mariam Ziada gave a striking performance as Polixenes with a virtuous presence. Sonia-Maria Popazov performed her character of Paulina with compassion and faith and Ezri Mannion embodied her character of Camillo signifying honour and integrity. The entire ensemble was engaging and convincing.

The text was brought to life beautifully by the truthful delivery of the poetic lines and still presence of the characters and their intentions, in a formal and royal stage setting.

The intensive rehearsal period at the beginning of the academic year is such a valuable experience for our senior pupils. It gives them an opportunity to gain knowledge and understanding of working as a team to focus and deliver to a tight timescale. They gain so much from participating as a company in this way and I always notice changes in the girls’ confidence, maturity and work ethic as a result of this involvement.

Mrs Care, Director of Theatre

GSA - Girl Power

On Wednesday 11 October, a group of 11 students went to Cambridge arriving for the first talk by Dame Barbara Stocking, who has campaigned to make poverty history, as CEO of Oxfam and is now the president of Murray Edwards College, Cambridge.

The next talk we received was from Dr Nadine Johnston, a marine ecologist who works as part of the British Antarctic Survey. She delivered an informative talk about her career path and the huge variety of job opportunities at the BAS, as well as how engineering benefits the world we live in today. We found this extremely insightful and intriguing and some of us are now considering investigating marine ecology.

Afterwards we were given a talk from five women in science with an array of careers ranging from an environmental sustainability consultant to an astronomer. They told us about the journey they had taken throughout their careers. We particularly enjoyed speeches from Katie Hanniford, a software engineer, and Dr Lisa H Butler, Director of Clinical Development, because of the variety of jobs on offer in their lines of work.

After lunch we were split into breakout sessions, two schools per session. Our chosen workshop was ‘Wearables for Good’, where we were tasked with solving real life problems by creating a realistic and achievable plan or device. To do this we had the help of several ARM employees. ARM is a company that develops microchips for the majority of our daily used devices, and yet most people have not heard of it. During this session we worked as a team to come up with innovative ideas which were eventually pitched to the rest of the room. Both groups were immensely proud of their schemes and we managed to achieve both first and second place separated by only one vote. This workshop helped develop our quick-thinking, problem solving and team skills which will help carry us forward, and was great fun.

To finish the day, we had an exciting talk from Yewande Akinda, a design engineer, on engineering for our developing world. It was by far our favourite simply because it was eye-opening and thought provoking to be shown how engineering is related to nearly everything around us and many of the group are now considering a future in STEM careers. The talk was a brilliant end to an inspirational day, leaving us feeling empowered with an understanding of real life application of our STEM subjects taught in school.

Khushi Bhullar and Charlotte Fletcher-Stables

Economics, Politics and History Trip to Parliament

Twenty-eight Sixth Form girls headed to the heart of our democracy this week aiming to learn more about how our political system works and also to offer their services to Mrs May in the Brexit negotiations. We were greeted by guides at the fabulous Parliamentary Education Centre before passing though tight security to gain access to the awe inspiring Palace of Westminster. Our first destination was the House of Lords where our guide explained the part that the Lords play in the passing of laws. Central Lobby was extremely busy with journalists and MP’s as Prime Minister’s Questions had only just finished. Our next port of call was historic Westminster Hall, scene of the trial of King Charles I, place where Henry VIII used to play tennis and the host to great speeches by the likes of Nelson Mandela and other world famous political figures. After that, we sat in the Common’s Gallery above the famous green benches to listen to MP’s debate new proposals to make property rents fairer.

Later, we took part in a workshop exploring the different types and methods of Pressure Groups such as Greenpeace and the British Medical Association. A discussion and quiz about the female suffrage movement earlier in the Twentieth Century followed before the girls were split into teams and designed campaigns on causes that interested them, such as giving 16 year olds the right to vote. The final part of the day was a meeting with Chris Heaton-Harris MP, who kindly gave up time from his busy schedule to answer questions from the girls and staff. The best question was from his daughter Tess who asked him “what’s for tea?”

Hannah Berck-May – “I really loved the trip and would like to go again next year.”

Noor Hammad – “I’d definitely recommend this trip to any younger students. Studying Politics in the Sixth Form Elective has been fascinating.”

Mr Donaldson, Head of History

Sports News

We have received very good news this week that our U13 swimming team have qualified for the National Finals after their superb performance at the regional finals a couple of weeks ago. Aside from this we have had a number of exciting events this week, including an emphatic badminton team win against Caroline Chisholm School. In addition to this our U14 hockey team played brilliantly achieving a 3-3 draw with Rugby School last night. We hope that you all have a relaxing half term.

Badminton

On Monday 16 October, the U14 team played against Thornton College and Caroline Chisholm in a tri-tournament. The team players were Avani Nandhra (captain), Shreya Srinivasin, Isobel Ward and Radhika Pandya. Unfortunately, we lost to Caroline Chisholm School – winning only 1 of our singles and 1 of our double games. Luckily, we smashed Thorton College, winning all of our singles and doubles games, winning 8-0 overall. Well done to the team for excellent play, we look forward to the next match!

Avani Nandhra

Equestrian

Last Sunday our Equestrian Team competed in the Beachborough School Eventer Challenge.

Eloise Harvey had a great clear round in the intermediate class, but was too fast, incurring time faults so not in the placings.  Jodie Welton did the same in the Open class – too fast but great clear round.  We need to try and slow them down a bit!

Meg Bazeley and Lily Roberts both completed the Intermediate with a few penalties and huge smiles all round, and  Lexie Dykes had a great ride round the Open with just a few show jumps down. No placings, but it was a great day, with hundreds of entries from loads of schools so we definitely held our own!

Mrs Carolyn Harvey

Northampton High School
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