I would like to say a huge thank you to many of you who volunteered to support us during the 4+ assessment days over the last fortnight by speaking to prospective parents whilst they waited for their daughters. This is a fantastic opportunity for these parents to find out more about what happens behind the school gates. Planning for these assessments, or playdates as we like to call them, prompts me to reflect on what defines a Channing girl and the qualities we seek in those who thrive within our community.
Our overarching vision, Girls Enjoying Success from ages 4 to 18, encapsulates our commitment to nurturing individual growth without undue pressure. Recognising that success is unique to each girl, we focus on them as individuals, aiming to help each one realise her full potential and become the best version of herself.
Channing is an academic school, where we provide a holistic, broad, and balanced educational experience within a supportive and purposeful environment. Our goal is to develop each girl individually, fostering her talents, interests, and helping her achieve her goals.
Central to our approach are the eight Channing Characters: Resilience Robin, Perseverance Squirrel, Empathy Rabbit, Responsibility Badger, Bravery Mole, Independence Owl, Respectfulness Hedgehog and Curiosity Fox. Co-created by both girls and staff, these characters instil the confidence needed to navigate life effectively and happily.
As a Unitarian school, our ethos of kindness, tolerance, respect and inclusivity permeates every aspect of the school experience. The Channing Promise, created by pupils across the Junior and Senior School, articulates our core values to which every member of the school community commits.
We prioritise pastoral care, believing that happy children learn best. Our safe and supportive environment fosters a strong sense of community, where every staff member, from teachers to caretakers, knows each girl by name. This includes me; I place great importance on getting to know all of the girls and I enjoy watching each and every one of them as they move through the Junior School and beyond. Encouraging a sense of ownership, girls actively participate in various roles of responsibility, such as School Council, Form Captains, Head Girls, Sustainability Team, Digital Leaders and Channing Character Champions.
Our approach to teaching and learning is dynamic. Our skilled practitioners employ adaptive teaching methods, eschewing grouping by academic attainment within classrooms. We emphasise high expectations and questioning to support and stretch and challenge all pupils. Technology plays a crucial role with the use of the Google Suite for Education, iPads and Chromebooks in Computing lessons and across the curriculum.
A hallmark of our school is the wide range of co- and extra-curricular experiences we offer. Workshops and trips enrich our curriculum. Recent excursions include visits to Kew Gardens, The Florence Nightingale Museum, Lords Cricket Ground, the RAF Museum, and the Royal Festival Hall. Special weeks focusing on areas such as ‘Healthy Schools’, ‘Around the World’, and ‘Inspirational Women’ complement our curriculum. The girls – and staff – eagerly embrace opportunities to dress up for these special occasions. Additionally, we organise residential trips for Key Stage 2 pupils (Year 3-6).
Furthermore, we boast an exciting range of over 100 extra-curricular clubs before school, at break time, lunchtime and after-school. This term’s offerings include: yoga, ballet, chess, karate, coding, orchestra, virtual reality, science, cooking, gardening, debating and cheerleading. Our commitment to providing a diverse range of clubs ensures every girl has the chance to explore new interests or pursue existing passions, promoting a well-rounded education.
Thank you for entrusting us with the education and wellbeing of your daughters. We look forward to another year of shared successes at the Junior School.
With warm wishes
Miss Dina Hamalis
Head of the Junior School