Back to School Day 2019
Proving that once you’re an LEH girl, you’re always an LEH girl, a group of our alumnae returned to their old classrooms for a Back To School Day this week.
Stella Stephens in a Chemistry lesson
From Stella Stephens who left LEH 70 years ago (before returning as a Biology teacher in the 1960s and 70s) to Victoria Wyatt, who left just five years ago, it was a welcome chance to walk the corridors, attend lessons and sample school lunch again.
The former pupils had a choice of which lessons they wanted to sit in on, including a Religious Studies session on Islam with Miss Lindsay and the IIIs, Ovid's Metamorphoses in Latin with Mrs Brown and the LVI, the function of neurons in Psychology (which involved an edible diagram of motor neurons made from digestive biscuits, marshmallows and jelly beans) with Miss Boland or A level kinetics in Chemistry with Mr James.
Some of the alumnae joined Mrs Bradshaw’s LVI History class to learn more about Napoleon, while others rolled up their sleeves and got stuck into making a ceramic tile with the U4s in Mrs White’s Art class.
Sheyi Martin-Allens (1995-2006) said: “I really enjoyed my day back at LEH. It was great to sit in on a lesson, and remind myself of what lessons used to be like all those years ago. The school has changed, but I still remembered my way round which was quite amazing. LEH is still as great as it always was, and I look forward to dropping in for a visit again soon!”
Many of the returners were struck by the major changes that have taken place over the years, not just with the addition of new wings like the Gateway Building and updated facilities to the school itself, but with a transformation of the ethos and approach to learning. “I thought the way they teach now was much more relaxed and friendly, not like in my day,” said Janet Lawrence, nee Gill-Hooton (1945-19540).
Jane Greening (1964-1971) agreed: “What an excellent rapport the teachers had with their pupils!”. She added: “It felt such a happy place, besides being incredibly smart and well equipped.”
A lunch of pulled pork, vegan salad bar and exotic fruit selection was far cry from most of their memories of school lunch, although most were delighted to see that apple crumble with custard was still on the menu!
After a chance to watch the dress rehearsal for the latest all-singing, all-dancing Middle School production of Beauty and The Beast, it was time for a cream tea and the final bell of the day.
“I really enjoyed every moment of my Back to School Day,” said Gillian Keller (1963-1970). “The lessons were fascinating - the teachers really brought the subjects to life, and the show was superb. I’d certainly love to come back again.”