Category: inclusiveness

Women in Tech – the power of networks

Completely by chance – really! – I found myself on Saturday morning in a roomful of students from the University of Edinburgh, listening to Kate Ho speaking about her career in technology, as part of the university’s International Women’s Day celebrations. Kate – a former Edinburgh undergraduate, with a subsequent career in games design, software …

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A new decade: a renewed hope

Stratford-upon-Avon has 4 million visitors a year, according to the taxi driver who took me (and my daughter) back to the railway station after a short post-Christmas break indulging in culture in the town of Shakespeare’s birth. It was, I must say, a fabulous trip; we had a great time visiting various sites associated with …

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Democracy in action in Edinburgh, challenging autocracy, and the fight to save the City of Edinburgh Music School

Sub-text: the vital importance of teaching young people how to engage effectively with politics … Are you sitting comfortably? If you have a spare 2 hours (I know, I know … who does? But this will be worth it!), then watch this hot-off-the-press webcast of the Edinburgh City Council Finance and Resources Committee meeting on …

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Bailey Matthews and the power of joy

Bailey Matthews is clearly loving life at the moment. If you did not watch the UK’s BBC TV’s Sports Personality of the Year (SPOTY) Awards on Sunday night, or are not one of the 80 million plus people who have viewed the video online showing Bailey completing a triathlon earlier this year, then you need …

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Understanding the quiet children: a book review

I was recently sent for review an advance copy of a new book on introverted children, Quiet Kids, by Christine Fonseca, and I found it a fascinating read. Written by an introverted adult, with a self-confessed “need for silence”, Quiet Kids gives an insight into the world of introversion which is experienced by approximately a …

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Children “too embarrassed” to read

A very worrying report was published last week by the National Literacy Trust and reported in the Daily Telegraph. The survey, of 21,000 children in primary and secondary education over the past few years, revealed a steady and concerning drop in the number of pupils reading in their spare time – from 38.1% in 2005 …

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Beauty and the beast – why we should just ban beauty pageants for children

Tuesday’s report in the Daily Mail of a beauty pageant in Lincolnshire has – quite understandably – created a storm online. Beauty pageants as a formalised concept seem somehow entirely outdated these days – parades of women marked out of ten for their looks and physical appearance, with barely a nod to their ‘personality’. These …

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Back to school …

This poem brought a little lump to my throat, but a big smile to my face when I found it recently: WHOSE CHILD IS THIS? Author Unknown “Whose child is this?” I asked one day Seeing a little one out at play “Mine”, said the parent with a tender smile “Mine to keep a little …

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The deep horrors of motherhood. We Need to Talk About Kevin

I recently read – in one intensive, all-encompassing go – We Need to Talk About Kevin. I know that Lionel Shriver wrote it in 2003, and we are now almost a decade on, in 2012; I know too that it was made into a film last year, so I am well aware that I am …

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The preciousness of life

I have just returned from the annual UK Boarding Schools Association Heads’ Conference in Bristol – conveniently close to home, although it was a delight to meet two of my new Australian fellow Heads, for whom it was not particularly close, but who had made the effort to come and connect. The opening speaker was …

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