Now, more than ever, the top schools are looking for the qualities that will enable children that enter their schools to take advantage of the incredible opportunities on offer. The new breed of Head Teacher and their visions are championed by the likes of Simon Henderson at Eton and Julian Thomas at Wellington, both of whom in recent press articles have highlighted the necessity for skills and aptitudes beyond the pure acquisition of academic grades.
Multiple intelligences across the spectrum from physical to emotional are increasingly what they are looking for; well-rounded, interesting, curious and passionate students with growth mind-sets. Creativity, enterprise, ambition, resilience and confidence are a few of the faculties being sought. This is the same for graduate employers.
Knowing that they are being assessed on more than just the number of students they get into Oxbridge, the schools are looking to produce graduates who go on to make recognisable contributions to the wider world. They do, of course, develop the characteristics in students that enable this to happen, but they are also acutely aware that if a student has those qualities when they arrive then they have a better base on which to build. As such their interviews and assessment days are designed specifically to unearth which children have, and which don’t have, these characteristics. The Head Teacher’s letter is providing exactly this information, from a trusted source who knows the children well.
So, whilst academic grades remain a vital component in the admissions process, there is an ever-increasing requirement to ensure children have these important life skills. The good news is that investment put into developing these skills has the benefit not only of helping children navigate the admissions assault course, but also in giving them the best chance of prospering and enjoying their time at whichever school they end up at. They are also skills that will never be wasted as they are exactly the skills needed to give your children the best chance of succeeding & enjoying life beyond school.
Having met with a number of parents, academics, Head Teachers, Deputy Head Teachers and Admissions Teams at various primary & secondary schools (including Eton and Wellington), Role Models understand what they are looking for in new students. Role Models’ Confidence & Resilience Courses help 8-12 year old children to present themselves effectively and react positively to pressure. They teach children to value collaboration and imagination, to be unafraid of complex challenges and to develop a positive and robust approach to setbacks.
The courses are delivered by young, fun & engaging staff in a non-pressured environment where children are really encouraged to give things a go. The staff’s energy & enthusiasm is key to the success of the course and they will have the children on their feet for most of the week. The activities include debating, public speaking, outdoor & indoor team-building exercises and some interview practice. We know children learn so much more when they are having fun – this is an action-packed and exciting learning environment, which will cover many of the key life skills not always nurtured in the London education system.
The next Role Models Confidence & Resilience Courses are October 24-27th (10am – 3pm) in Chelsea & Putney. Click here for more information.