Wolverhampton Girls' High School
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|Motto||Latin: Ludus Supra Praemium
(Game Before the Prize)
|Headteacher||Mrs Trudi Young|
|Chairman of Governors||Professor Peter Ribbins PhD|
|DfE URN||140798 Tables|
|Ofsted||Reports Pre-academy reports|
|Houses||Audley, Ferrers, Paget and Stafford|
Red, Navy Blue, Black
WGHS Old Girls' Newsletter
|Former pupils||WGHS Old Girls|
Wolverhampton Girls' High School, founded in 1911, educates girls from the age of 11 to 18. The students are led by a headmistress along with a Board of Governors. There are some 741 girls enrolled,[when?] including about two hundred in the sixth form. It was previously awarded the status of Language College in the UK's Specialist Schools Programme, and converted to academy status on 1 April 2014.
Competition for entry is fierce as over 1000 girls apply each year. Applications range from all around the West Midlands, Shropshire and Staffordshire area. Entry to the school is via the Shropshire, Walsall and Wolverhampton Grammar Schools Consortium (Adams' Grammar, Newport Girls High, Queen Mary Grammar and High School and Wolverhampton Girls High School), testing Maths, English, verbal and non-verbal reasoning. These tests take place during Year 6 of primary education (in September). 11+ examinations must be taken in order to be enrolled in the school. Entrance is determined purely from entrance examination results (although the school does operate an appeals and waiting list system) but the chance is very slim, and each year only 145 pupils are awarded a place at the school. Entry after this point is very limited and does not fully open again until sixth form. Sixth form admission is then granted on the basis of a variety of factors such as GCSE predictions and results, as well as performance in an interview. Both internal and external pupils must achieve more than six A*–B grades (including Maths and English) in their GCSEs to pursue studies in the sixth form, as well as high grades in the options they propose to take.
There are four houses: Audley, Ferrers, Paget and Stafford. Each has its own colour (yellow, red, green and blue respectively), as well as its own Housemistress, who is also a member of staff, and team of house representatives chosen from Sixth Form students. House Captains and Vice Captains lead and oversee activities, while more specific duties are delegated through roles such as Drama Captain and Tennis Captain. First year students are often given appropriately coloured badges with which to display their allegiances during the first few weeks of their academic career at the school.
Throughout the year, house events are held in various formats. Sporting events take place according to season, with House Hockey and House Netball events taking place in winter months, while House Tennis takes place in summer. Non-sporting competitions such as House Debating also occur every year.
The largest inter-house competition is the House Arts Festival. All four houses prepare various routines and performances, often based on themes, to compete in the categories of Dance, Music, Drama and Choir. The event is often judged by actors and musicians, but has also been known to be judged by ex-teachers and other notable personalities related to the school.
Many members of the sixth form are prefects and are expected to perform duties. A smaller group of between 20 and 30 girls are chosen as Senior Prefects, selected through an application process involving a written letter of application accompanied by an application form, an interview with the headmistress or another senior member of staff, and a ballot of staff and peers. Through this system Senior Prefects are chosen for the following areas of school: Hospitality, Charity, Form, Peer Mentoring, Study Support, Music, Sport, Citizenship and Environment, Languages, and House Captains. These prefects organise the activities in school related to their job title, while the Head Girl and three Deputy Head Girls, (also chosen through the above system) in turn oversee the Senior Prefects.
Known as the Senior Team, the Head Girl and three Deputies have many privileges, such as that of speaking at school Speech Days and various presentation evenings; representing the school at official events; and contributing to important decisions about various aspects of school life.
Positions of office are held from the middle of summer term in Year 12 until students leave at the same time the following year, with the announcement of Senior Team positions being made by the headmistress in the last assembly of term before the Easter holiday.
School uniform is a significant aspect of the school, and is strictly enforced. Lower school students (Years 7–11) must wear:
- A knee-length navy blue straight skirt with red stripes and a split at the back, although the older girls are allowed to wear their old uniform: a knee-length navy blue straight herringbone skirt with a pleat in the back.
- A tailored light blue blouse with a butterfly collar.
- A school jumper, navy blue, with the original school crest in either red or navy.
- Plain black shoes with a small heel.
All school uniform except the blouse and school shoes must be purchased from the school shop.
Sixth Form students wear a variation on the original uniform:
- The lower school skirt is adapted to feature a split, rather than a pleat in the back and no pockets.
- White Shirts.
- Students are given the option to wear cardigans instead of jumpers.
The school is locally known for forbidding students' wearing of trousers, regardless of weather conditions, except in the occasion of snow, in which they are allowed to arrive in trousers, but must change immediately on arrival at the school. Trousers worn for religious or health reasons are allowed but must be worn beneath the skirt and a note must be given to the headmistress beforehand.
There used to be four forms according to which house a student belonged to, however the school now has five forms in each year. Subjects are taught in form groups in years 7 to 9 and then in option groups for the more senior years.
Girls take English and at least three foreign languages, religious studies, history, geography, mathematics, physics, biology, chemistry, technology, information technology, art, music and physical education. Foreign languages are chosen from French, German, Latin, Russian, Spanish, and Japanese. More recently, students have started to take one major European language and one language with a different writing system in year 7, then to begin Latin in year 8.
Visits by outside speakers and trips outside the school, including to foreign countries, are frequently organised to support learning and coursework.
The school has been producing high results for many years and has frequently been ranked within the top 10 state schools in the country for its performance at GCSE and A level. Over 80% of GCSE grades are either A or A*, with the majority of pupils gaining nine or more GCSEs at these grades.
The 2006 A-level results placed the school in fifth place in the performance league table for all maintained schools in the West Midlands.
In 2009, 100% of girls who sat GCSE examinations gained 5 or more A*–C GCSEs.
Notable former pupils
- Rachael Heyhoe-Flint OBE, captain of the England women's cricket team
- Helene Hayman, Baroness Hayman, Labour politician, first Lord Speaker of the House of Lords
- Pauline Perry, Baroness Perry of Southwark, Conservative politician and educationalist
- Narinder Dhami, author
- Caitlin Moran, author and journalist.
- Anne Rafferty, High Court judge
- Lindsay Ashford, author
- "League Tables - Secondary schools in Wolverhampton". BBC News. Retrieved 13 March 2012.