On Monday 6 February, students, staff and governors joined engineers and architects for the ‘Topping Out’ of the new Redland Hall.
Headmistress Mrs Isabel Tobias, Chair of Governors Mrs Jane MacFarlane and Honorary President Mrs Carol Lear were joined by representatives of the architects, building contractors and others to sign the final beam to be placed onto the roof of the building. Four students from both Westbury and Redland sites, all of whom have an interest in engineering and construction, then ascended the scaffolding to ‘top out’ the structure, symbolically completing the roof.
The previous assembly building was demolished last summer and work on the replacement Redland Hall is making good progress. This exciting new building, to be completed by September 2017, will house a state-of-the-art auditorium as well as further classrooms and offices.
Mrs Lear said, “It is an honour to be here for this milestone in the development of Redmaids’ High School. Redland Hall has a modern and future facing design to best aid the progression of our girls, whilst also housing items showcasing the heritage of both Redland High and Red Maids’.”
The redevelopment of Redland Hall, as well as improvements to the Junior School facilities including new classrooms and a new playground, has in part been made possible by the sale of the Redland High site.
Mrs MacFarlane commented: “These transactions, alongside generous gifts from a number of donors, are helping to accelerate these important current developments and will enable us to continue to invest in our facilities and in our bursary programmes for the long term.”
She added: “Coupled with our dedicated and experienced staff, this puts us in the strongest position to fulfil our vision to be the leading school for girls of academic ability in the South West. An education at Redmaids’ High School will prepare girls to make a real difference in the world and have a truly cosmopolitan and international outlook.”
“At the end of January, the girls in Year 9 at the Westbury site and the Redland site joined together for a Careers Day. It was exciting to work together for the whole day and to have staff from both sites working together with us.
“In the morning we heard more about our possible choices for GCSEs and were given some useful information on which ones to pick. We were quite excited by some of the brand new subjects, such as Business Studies and Dance.
“The day progressed with each of us completing a test to show our personality and learning characteristics. The information from this was used to put us into work groups of people with a similar approach. This began the main part of the day.
“Later on we were given the task of creating a new app. We had to state why this app was needed and what kind of person it would appeal to. The apps ranged from food apps to apps that help you revise for your GCSEs.
“The day ended with awards being given out to the three groups. This was a very enjoyable day. We all thought hard about our GCSE options and got to know each other better. People who were feeling a bit shy at the beginning of the day were much more relaxed by the time we said goodbye. We are looking forward to the next things we do together.”
Report by Ellen and Gina, Year 9, Redland site.
Redmaids’ High has announced plans to provide Infant School education alongside its Junior and Senior schools in Westbury-on-Trym.
The proposal will bring all-through, independent education for girls aged 4 to 18 for the first time to the Westbury-on-Trym site.
Headmistress Isabel Tobias said,
We believe that the offer of all-through, independent education for girls on one Redmaids’ High site will be of greatest value to our current parents and the local community.
It will, however, bring to a close the co-educational Infants arrangement with QEH boys’ school that has been in place for the past two years.
Mrs Tobias said,
We are committed to all of our existing pupils, and are keen for as many as possible to stay with us in the transition from Redland to Westbury, including the infant boys who are already part of our family. But going forward, we will remain a single-sex school.
Furthermore, with changes to the Government Childcare Scheme which has led to a national downturn in demand for independent nursery places, it is also proposed that the existing Redland High Nursery, which accepts children from the age of three, is closed.
In another proposed development, Redland High’s Junior School girls from Years 3, 4 and 5 will move to the Westbury site in April 2017. They will follow their Year 6 peers who relocated this autumn and have already settled into their new surroundings.
Redmaids’ High Junior School Headteacher, Mrs Brown says,
We are delighted that the Year 6 girls have mixed seamlessly into the school and feel that their younger counterparts will benefit likewise from joining us earlier than expected.
Our new Junior School classrooms are due to be completed early so we can welcome the remaining Redland High Junior girls sooner than anticipated. This will allow them to bond and forge friendships ahead of the new school year.
Last weekend, six girls from the Redmaids’ High Orienteering Club entered the British Schools’ Orienteering Championships in Sutton Park, Birmingham. The girls were competing against runners from across the country and for some it was their first ever orienteering competition.
We are delighted to report that all of the girls completed the course and achieved some incredible times! A pairing of Lillya and Malak finished 14th in Year 6 followed by Lara (running solo, and just 14 seconds behind) who came 16th. Hannah and Daisy also did extremely well, finishing 28th.
In Year 5, Matilda performed fantastically, finishing 21st out of 43 competitors.
Overall, we feel extremely proud that such a new team could perform so well. It really bodes really well for the rest of the season and for the future of orienteering at Redmaids’ High School.
Please see the Red Maids’ School’s Facebook page for more images from the day:
Author Simon Packham has written a number of young adult books including Only we Know, Trust Games and Firewallers, all of which address being a teenager in the twenty-first century.
During a recent visit, he gave an entertaining talk to Year 10 students from Red Maids’ and Redland High about the process of writing and editing.
He described how he uses notebooks to continually jot down random thoughts and ideas. He also said that regular swimming sessions help his creative process and also account for a number of drownings in his books!
The girls all thoroughly enjoyed spending time together and look forward to many more shared literary events.
“All Year 11, 12 and 13 textiles students from Redland High and Red Maids’ visited the Victoria and Albert Museum in London to see their current exhibition ‘Undressed: A Brief History of Underwear’. This helped us do some primary research into fashion and history and to gain inspiration for our current GCSE and A level projects. This trip also gave us the opportunity to see a range of incredible costumes and garments, and the construction details and decorative techniques used.
“It was useful to see the development of underwear from corsets and bustles through to the type of underwear we wear today. We saw how underwear has changed from only being worn below outer items to also being worn on top making that transition to visible outer wear in a relatively short period of time. This reflects how modesty and moral views have changed so rapidly since Victorian society.
“We saw many other collections at the museum, including fashion, architecture, jewellery, glass as well as theatre and performance which (much to our delight!) has a rather entertaining dressing-up section.
“We had the chance to make sketches and take photographs in the fashion section which we can now use to enhance our coursework. Overall, it was a great trip providing lots of inspiration and ideas for us all.”
Article written by Hebe and Nia (Year 13)
Redland High and Red Maids’ are already embracing being one, strong team.
As part of plans to bring the Redland High and Red Maids’ Schools fully together onto one site (with effect from September 2017), the staff and students are wasting no time in getting to know each other.
There are already plenty of shared initiatives in place, which include a number of Sports Festivals taking place this term. These give students from both schools, in Years 7 to 9, the chance to play sport as one group.
Speaking of this activity, Miss Maggs, Director of Sport at Red Maids’ said
It’s been fantastic seeing these girls bond as a group. They seem to be having a great time getting to know each other.
A day of team building, physical effort and fun was had by all Year 12 as an ice-breaker at the start of the new school year.
The girls – who like Year 6 were the first to bring together students from Red Maids’ and Redland High into one year group – spent a day at the Redwood Outdoor Centre in Gloucester.
Our Sixth Form also attracts new joiners from various other Bristol schools so the event serves an important but enjoyable purpose of helping the girls to get to know each other in a different environment.
The students threw themselves into a range of activities including raft building, orienteering and cooking their lunch over an open fire.
Their inventive cooking skills were particularly impressive – among other things they produced mini pizzas, herby potato wedges, ratatouille, flat breads and chocolate bananas – all from very basic ingredients and cooked over fire pits they had dug and lit themselves.
A fun start to the new school year.
Yesterday, girls in Year 10 at the Westbury site visited Year 10 at the Redland site for a Careers Day. Andrew and Jonathon from Inside Knowledge, an organisation that provides interactive skills based workshops for schools, spent the day working with our girls to improve their communication and team working abilities in preparation for future careers.
The girls participated in workshops where they learnt the importance of how you present yourself. The words you choose, the way you project your voice and how you position your body are all elements that give people an immediate impression about your professionalism and confidence. They received tips on how to be more engaging and the most effective ways to work successfully in a group.
The girls from Westbury and Redland worked together in groups to put into practise the skills they had learned and gave positive and well delivered presentations at the end of the day. It was a very valuable session for everyone and we are sure that the skills worked on will prove useful to the girls as they head into Year 11.
The merger between Red Maids’ School and Redland High School for Girls was formally completed earlier this week.
The two schools are now legally combined as one entity – Redmaids’ High School – although both schools will continue to operate under their existing names until the end of August 2017.