A Bit Of Yorkshire Grit
Independent School Parent|Spring 2017

A new element has been added to Charles Ellison’s Scarborough College curriculum – lessons in resilience and toughness

Charles Ellison

Departure from my native Yorkshire for university in a previous millennium was carried out with carefree abandon and led to a blessed career within educational roles across the UK and abroad, but never back home in God’s Own Country. The chance of a first headship on the Yorkshire coast at Scarborough College was therefore an enticing one.

Northern context

Over the years, assimilating with the professional and cultural nuances of diverse and contrasting locations, such as Madrid and Nairobi, or even Berkshire and Guildford, one begins to tune in a little more consciously to how the surroundings, local societal norms and customs, and above all attitudes, affect the ways in which children develop and learn.

Thus, as a product myself, I was immediately struck by the obvious differences within my new northern context and situation: parents seemed very straight-talking (brutally so, on occasion!), children seemed hardy, and materialism seemed a little less evident. There were plenty of exceptions to this rule but, on the whole, Left, girls attend boot camp classes. Above and below left, pupils train for their Duke of Edinburgh awards I could sense levels of natural resilience, toughness, geographical connection, strength of character and determination that I hadn’t experienced to the same degree elsewhere.

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