Co-education - A Letter From The Headmaster
I’m pleased to announce that from the start of 2023, we will be welcoming girls to Hereworth and commencing our journey as a co-educational learning environment. Crucial to this will be our continuing focus on preparing students for a 21st century life, ready to take their place within, and contribute to, a community which has equal footing for both males and females.
Fortunately, this is not my first time being involved in a school that has undertaken such a strategic change in direction. Over the past 35 years I have worked in three schools that have encompassed the transition to co-education, and just like Hereworth, these schools were initially specialist providers of education for boys. All of these schools continue to flourish today.
So I understand the challenges that face us, and whilst 2023 is still 9 months away, we as a School have been planning for this move to co-education for the last year. Indeed, working towards this transition is paramount, especially the careful implementation of initiatives to cater for, and be inclusive of, all students.
Key to this is an understanding that boys and girls have preferential learning styles and different rates of development. Neuroscience and educational studies conducted in classrooms throughout the world have shown that male and female brains are “structured and wired differently” at an early age. Boys and girls also have different maturation rates.
As a scientist, I have read and followed these studies for years. And as a headmaster, I have been able to implement practices and solutions suggested from these studies to create the best environment to accommodate, support and enhance learning for both genders.
Thus in 2023, your son or daughter will be welcomed into a school which is primed for their success. Our teaching staff, who gain incredible results from our boys, will be implementing proven strategies with a deep understanding of co-education, so they can be used flexibly and effectively to engage students.
Below are the positives I have observed at my previous schools that have transitioned to a co-educational environment.
Students report that by learning together with the opposite gender, they are exposed to a diversity of ideas that broadens their experience and helps to improve their own academic performance, because boys and girls often have very different perspectives on events and issues.
Co-education helps to develop a healthy respect between girls and boys as they work and learn together both in and outside the classroom. Whilst our boys currently do set the highest parameters for interpersonal behaviour, stereotypical male/female problems are minimised through both genders sharing classrooms and playgrounds. Students report feeling they can be themselves and therefore are happy and motivated to do well.
In a co-educational setting, students gain experience of leading both boys and girls. All the major leadership roles will have joint positions - School Captains, Prefects, Performing Arts Captains, Sports Captains and House Captains.
Prepared for Life after Intermediate School
Hereworth’s co-educational environment will help to develop well-rounded and confident young adolescents with the emotional intelligence, maturity and understanding of inclusivity that is critical for 21st century life beyond our School gates.
This is a truly exciting time at Hereworth. I feel very privileged to be at the helm of this change. As we move towards a future which is collaborative and inclusive, our duty as a School remains the same – to make sure that every child that leaves us is a lifelong learner, a leader, someone connected to their community, and a young man or woman that is ready for whatever life throws at them.
If you have any questions regarding Hereworth's transition to a co-educational school, please email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org