Our pupil leadership team has been unveiled for the new academic year.

Genny Hogg and Jamie Wakeley have been named Head Girl and Head Boy respectively, with Honor Elvins and Theo Dunfield-Prayero acting as their deputies.

Highfield and Brookham School takes the appointment of its pupil leadership team very seriously and, as such, the new incumbents had to come through a thorough selection process.

All pupils are actively encouraged to apply for the prestigious roles and those that decide to apply must submit a formal letter of application to Highfield and Brookham Head Suzannah Cryer explaining why they should be considered for the position.

Aided by her highly-respected senior leadership team, Mrs Cryer reviews each application, draws up a shortlist before interviewing the pupils. The entire staff team at Highfield and Brookham are also invited to share their support and thoughts on the candidates before a final decision is made, where one boy and one girl from the oldest year group in the school are selected for the coveted leadership roles, as well as their deputies.

Mrs Cryer said: “It is one of my most difficult jobs of the school year. Deciding which children should fill these important leadership roles is such an honour but also a huge responsibility. The process is testimony to the children’s desire to aim high and their wish to be the very best they can be.

“The quality of all of the applications shows that Highfield and Brookham is in very good hands indeed.”

As well as appointing the Head Girl and Head Boy, the school also named its Heads of Boarding, Heads of House and Senior Prefects.

The purpose of the pupil leadership team is to be role models for the school, to ensure that pupils’ voices are heard and to represent the school at events such as prizegiving and open mornings.

The full pupil leadership team is:

Heads of School: Genny Hogg and Jamie Wakeley

Deputy Heads of School: Honor Elvins and Theo Dunfield-Prayero

Heads of Boarding: Sasha Samsin and Imi Wright

Deputy Heads of Boarding: Gabriel Church and Samantha Manning

Heads of House: Albie Black, Ines Borwick, Dougie Hogg, Daisy Wren, Coco Bendon and Hugo Mendes

Deputy Heads of House: Imogen Knight, Ian Linnell, Jemima Goldsmith, Rory Lett, Iris Greenslade and Barnabas Lloyd

Senior Prefects: Daisy Apps, Henry Fisher, Shona O’Neill, Amelie Davies, Lydia Warr, Amelie Kitchen, Theo Kauntze, Charlotte Law, Rafe Jenkins, Polina Dolhykh and Sandy Game

The continuing commitment to the wellbeing of our children has been recognised for a second time this year by a national school award.

Highfield and Brookham Schools have been shortlisted in the ‘Student Wellbeing’ category of the Independent School of the Year Awards. These awards are run by Independent School Parent magazine and finalists will be unveiled in early September.

“The value of nurturing good mental health is a fundamental part of school life at Highfield and Brookham,” said Head, Suzannah Cryer.

“Our excellent pastoral care has been highlighted in our November 2022 Independent Schools Inspectorate report which deemed the school “excellent” in all areas.”

During this past academic year, the schools have created space in the children’s busy days to allow time dedicated to their mental health – in the form of ‘Weekly Wellbeing Workshops’.

Across Nursery, Pre-prep and Prep there is a full programme of activities such as ‘Journaling and Scrapbooking’, ‘Cards and Board Games’ and ‘Lego and Chill’. ‘Be With the Boys’ and ‘Go With the Girls’ are run by our Peer Listeners – a group of trained and compassionate Year 8 children who offer younger children a friendly face or a kindly listening ear.

Highfield and Brookham being shortlisted in the Independent Schools of the Year Awards comes hot on the heels of the school being named a finalist in the ‘Raising Awareness About Pastoral Care’ category of this year’s National Awards for Pastoral Care in Education.

Mrs Cryer said: “We could not be prouder to be acknowledged by two such prestigious awards for our work on pastoral care. Our key objective for pastoral care centres on the emotional and physical welfare of our children and for this to be recognised national is truly amazing.”

Highfield and Brookham Schools has been named a finalist in the Environmental Practice category of this year’s national Education Business Awards.

We are one of five schools with big plans and strong green credentials to be shortlisted. We are no stranger to environmental initiatives and has long championed a greener and more eco-friendly way of life, we aim to be carbon neutral by 2030.

Highfield and Brookham has an enviable reputation concerning renewable energy and our carbon neutral woodchip-burning biomass boiler provides 85% of the energy required to heat the school and our indoor swimming pool. The wood itself comes from the school’s vast estate, primarily through chestnut coppicing as chestnut is a naturally self-replenishing variety of tree which requires little or no replanting.

Other ongoing initiatives include a big drive on renewable energy in the form of solar panels on the roofs of on-site cottages and the pool, replacing paper towels in the toilet blocks with low-energy hand driers, creating wildlife habitats, a regular tree-planting programme, recycling, and tending our own vegetable plots.

The Environmental Practice Award recognises the school that goes above and beyond when it comes to minimising its impact on the environment, as well as providing quality environmental education to its pupils.

The winner will be announced at an awards ceremony in London on Wednesday 14th June.

Suzannah Cryer, Head of Highfield, said: “We’re incredibly proud of the work that we do as a school in order to help protect the environment and the planet for future generations, so to have that work recognised is a wonderful feeling and hopefully shows that we are moving in the right direction.”