Helen Wright

Author's posts

The power of networks

A CEO I was working with last week paused for a moment and said, with slight bewilderment, ‘You seem to know everyone … how?’. My immediate answer was ‘well, I do a lot of things, in a wide range of spheres, across the world – you come to know a lot of people when you …

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Safeguarding is for Life, not just for Children … why all company directors should be trained in safeguarding

I slipped up in a recent interview with Robin Fletcher, CEO of the Boarding Schools’ Association, when I was quizzing him about the work of SACPA, the Safeguarding and Child Protection Association, which is part of the BSA Group. I linked ‘safeguarding’ and ‘children’ in a question, and he quite rightly picked me up on …

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On turning 50 …

1.50am on Saturday 22 August was a momentous occasion for me, as I crossed the threshold from the age of 49 to that of 50. I had been looking forward with great eagerness, anticipation and enthusiasm for weeks to that precise moment, as I awaited the descent of omniscience and wisdom, in a Damascene-like moment …

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School Boards … keep a clear head

If school leaders and Boards are honest, there is a little corner of their minds which wants to say ‘please, just make all of this go away …’. The stresses on school enrolment, the spiralling costs – in time as well as in money – of measures to protect against Covid-19, the uncertainties of the …

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‘Hiding behind unconscious bias’: a huge challenge for NEDs from Romeo Effs

I was brought up short while listening into a Changing the Chemistry Graduate Group Meeting last week. These meetings are regular member-only events, intended for existing non-executive directors and trustees, and they deal with topical issues, with the aim of supporting boards to ensure ever better governance. This month, the topic was ‘Increasing diversity on …

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The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse – and the art of savouring reading

When I studied French at school, one of the books we read was the classic Le Petit Prince, by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, and I remember still my slight feeling of perplexment about why we were reading what seemed, to all intents and purposes, a simple children’s book. I was an avid reader as a child, …

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The best kind of pride – pride in others

I have had a week of feeling proud – proud of so many school leaders I know, who have risen with grit and resilience to the challenges they have faced, proud of my executive leadership coachees who have reached the end of their programmes and who are evidently stronger and more focused … proud – …

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A call to action: become a school governor

I was delighted to see Julie Robinson’s call to action last week, encouraging people to apply to become school governors, and I urge you to watch it. Julie is the CEO of the UK Independent Schools’ Council, representing the organisations which support the vast majority of independent schools throughout the country, and she is also …

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Resilience and belonging. Ensuring #blacklivesmatter

Last week, a fellow Light Up Learning Board member came across this 2016 article from The Atlantic, and I thought it was particularly apt at this moment to share it in our history, as we all try to work out how to move definitively away from systemic, ingrained racism in our world. Written by Paul …

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A tale of root ginger, hope and determination

Once Upon A Time, roughly 9 weeks ago, when everyone in the UK was instructed to stay at home, there was a mini (but nonetheless confronting) crisis in Edinburgh, when root ginger for purchase was nowhere to be found. ‘Sorry, not available’ were the words stamped across online orders, and even kind neighbours who ventured …

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