To further support and embed our family ethos we have a lateral grouping throughout the school whereby the girls are formed into 12 small families called ‘Trees’. This alongside our House System enables the pupils to mix across the age range and interact in a structured but natural way, as you would expect in any family. Unlike the House System there is no competitive element.
The families have been created so that there is at least one girl per year in each group and all members will be from the same House. The groups are named after British Trees and meet at regular intervals throughout the term. Girls from Reception to Year 9 will be known as ‘Little Sisters’, the Year 10 pupils will be the ‘Parent’ and the Year 11 girls will be the ‘Grandparents’ (essentially the head of the family) who have responsibility for running and leading the meetings.
Various activities are set up, the first meeting each year is usually a ‘getting to know you session’ and to welcome new members. The girls usually suggest their own activities though each family will enjoy the same activity on any set family sessions. It is frequently observed that the pupils enjoy collaborative sessions where they have lively discussions, under the pride of their family crest. They are able to support each other with problems or simply just enjoy an alternative blend of age and company.
This is a good way for the girls to have a group of people that they can readily rely on in school and enable those that are less confident to feel supported. Since this is to a student led initiative, we can only but wait and see what lies in store each term.