Along with the current goals of both Student Council (StuCo) and the administration being to foster connections between all four grades in the High School through events such as the back to school bash in September, an additional initiative should be fostering connections between the international schools we play so often in sports.
Regardless of how often we compete against schools such as of ACS Cobham, ACS Egham, ACS Hillingdon or TASIS, we don’t have a connection with them outside of sports. ASL has a broad, informal version the American school system’s attempt to build uniformity by proximity, that largely revolves around athletic competition. It is time to take that relationship further between our High School and other international schools in London.
Think about this question: How many people do you know well outside of School in London?
From a personal account, I have played a sport outside of the school and built friendships through that. But for most people, whether it be through trips such as the ISTA Drama Festival, the music tour, and of course housing during ISSTs, how many of those friendships formed are to get through the week and how many actually last? The answer to the latter is likely very few.
The solution to this problem is rather simple. Instead of having a barbecue at Canons Park at the beginning of the year where we invite the High School, let’s open it up to other schools. When we have Battle of the Bands, allow other schools to participate and attend the show.
Our current situation with QK and Model United Nations is an example of how we can foster connections outside of just the High School. Though the end goal wasn’t achieved, in theory it was an idea that would have created further connections between two schools separated by a crossing.
The benefits for an arrangement such as this one would be beneficial in any student’s life. Being able to have friends that give you another perspective, while also enduring the same day-to-day struggles as you is invaluable. Being able to talk to people who share similar interests as you can actually lead to meaningful discussions while also hanging out and sharing interests outside of the regular 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. school day.
To me, the importance of having friends outside of the school has been quite significant. I’ve found people who share similar interests as me and most importantly, people I share a connection with.
We have a large international school community here in London (or just outside of London) in Cobham, Hillingdon, Egham and TASIS and, as of right now, we are connected solely through sports. We should unite, whether it be through schools connecting, or students connecting.
As of right now the High School is a bubble. We live within it and rarely venture out. This initiative would give us the ability to experience many new avenues while fostering connections with schools that share a similar ethos to us.