Don't Call Us Girls - School Name Change
The students at the high performing grammar school ‘High School for Girls’ in Gloucester have returned to school this January as students of ‘Denmark Road High School’.
The name change at the prestigious girls’ school reflects the school’s new vision following the arrival of Claire Giblin as headteacher in January 2018.
It also reflects what many students feel is an outmoded school name. “We don’t want to be known as girls.” Lana Slade, a student in Y12, said. “We’re proud to be female but we want to be known for what we achieve and will achieve”.
Headteacher Claire Giblin agreed; “In the age of the #MeToo movement and more enlightened ideas on gender identity, we felt it is important that our students are not labelled ‘girls’. They are independent, talented, intelligent young women. They are our future leaders; our next generation of doctors, lawyers and entrepreneurs. It is an amazing responsibility which rests on their shoulders. Denmark Road will prepare them to change the world irrespective of their gender”.
Denmark Road High School remains committed to single sex education although proudly welcomes male students into Denmark Road Sixth Form. “I’ve always felt welcomed at Denmark Road” said Derryn Allinson who joined the school in September. “I’m excited that the new name finally reflects the inclusiveness that is a feature of our sixth form. It’s not about girls and boys. It’s the family I study with.”
Denmark Road High School is ranked 53rd amongst all state schools in the UK with 70% of all grades achieved at GCSE being 9-7 or A*/A. It has been recognised as the best secondary school in Gloucestershire for the second year running according to the Real Schools Guide which ranks schools according to 51 different measures.
Headteacher Claire Giblin sees the change of name as a critical step in moving the school in line with its core values. “We have been working towards this name change for twelve months. It was hugely important to have a name, and values, that came from consultation with the student body, our parents and our staff.” Denmark Road High School recognises more than academic performance: “I am extremely proud to lead a school that is committed to our community, that nurtures confidence and resilience in our students and empowers our staff to achieve the best outcomes and well-being for all.”
Denmark Road High School will be celebrating their new identity with a series of events over the course of this academic term. Each event will focus on one of the four key values of the school: ‘Discover’, ‘Realise’, ‘Honour’ and ‘Shape’. Amongst the events will be a showcase of the community work students undertake, the re-launch of the alumni association and the ‘Help Us Grow’ fundraising campaign.