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DD been asked to be Head Girl, she doesn't want to.

(18 Posts)
Igloo100 Sun 03-Mar-13 19:38:27

DD is in year 5. All through primary she has never been the star child, she works quite hard, does some sport and is quite well mannered etc. she is also quiet, calm and content with life. I wouldn't say she massively lacks confidence though normally, she is quite happy to take on speaking parts in plays.

She said she just doesn't want to always have the spotlight on her and she just wants to be like everyone else. She has been asked to be head girl but is certain she doesn't want to do it. She has spent this evening writing this letter to her head teacher explaining why not. I thought she was ok but she just came and cried to me. I can't work out if it is confidence thing or just being happy as she is.

While she is (maybe I'm a biased mum ;)) a lovely and talented and popular girl, she just isn't the typical 'head girl' type who does every sport/music/drama activity and is super confident. Half of me thinks will she regret this but half of me thinks it is frankly ridiculous having head girl/boy of a primary school and pretty irrelevant!
I've tried encouraging her but she is adamant she just doesn't want to do it.

Dear Mr ... ,
Thank you for offering me the chance to be Head Girl, it is really kind that you think I would be a good pupil for the job. I have thought about it a lot over the weekend and decided I am not able to accept the job. I love ... Primary School and while representing the school would be an honor I feel I would rather have a smaller responsibility like being a school council rep or tuck shop monitor. I know there are lots of other Year 5 Girls who would love to be Head Girl and hope you will allow me to swap responsibilities with one of them.

Should I go and talk to the school and see if they agree she should be just listened to and her wishes respected?

scurryfunge Sun 03-Mar-13 19:40:31

Having a head pupil at primary age is just madness.

dontknowwhat2callmyself Sun 03-Mar-13 20:09:38

Yes - if I were you I would go and speak to the school. If your DD does not want such a responsibility I think her wishes should be respected. I think the letter she has written is very thoughtful and hopefully she can have a smaller but just as important role in her school community.

DeWe Sun 03-Mar-13 20:10:15

In all honesty I'd wonder if that's why they've chosen her. To bring her out and give her the opportunity to be able to gain confidence.

I would ask to go and discuss it. Take her letter with you, and ask why she has been chosen, and what her duties will be. I suspect if you can persuade her to do it then it would be good for her. See if you can work with the school and her to get a solution all are comfortable with-maybe she could agree to do it for the first term, and if she's then still uncomfortable they could swap round duties.

Also do others know? Just because round year 5 and 6 they can get very nastily competative. And if she is then (to other's eyes) demoted then it could potentially set off nasty rumours about what she had apparently done to deserve it.

At the juniors mine were at they have head girl/boy and deputy head girl and boy. I didn't like it really, particularly as the choice always seems a little random. But actually they did very very little. I think they modelled the school uniform on open evening and cut the leavers' cake at the leavers' do. The prefects did just as much as they did.

BooksandaCuppa Sun 03-Mar-13 20:13:32

I think the level of maturity and self-reflection she has shown in thinking this through is remarkable and I would be so proud of her for that, were she mine.

Now were it secondary school and something huge to go on her cv/ucas application, I might be encouraging her to rethink but as it's not, then I wouldn't.

She sounds adorable.

Igloo100 Sun 03-Mar-13 20:34:33

DeWe- her school is fab at recognising all children and they probably have given her the role because they think she needs a boost or is deserving. There is a group of very loud girls in DDs class who no doubt would be dying for the role. They really are the standard types who would be picked- they do loads of music, sports, drama, are super confident and appear brilliant at everything.. In some ways even I find one or two of them a little intimidating just watching them!
I do love her school for the way they manage the different personalities and really share everything out, right from the nativity it has been different children and quieter children who could do with a confidence boost are never forgotten at one side like at some schools.

DD doesn't think anyone else knows as she got a personal letter from the head on Friday and was asked to confirm she wanted the role at Monday breaktime with the him. She doesn't know which boy was chosen and so hopefully his letter was identical.

Euphemia Sun 03-Mar-13 21:59:39

At a school I worked in you had to apply to be head boy/girl, and have an interview! The children really enjoyed the process, and it meant that anyone who didn't want the role just didn't put themselves forward.

Saracen Sun 03-Mar-13 23:30:37

"I think the level of maturity and self-reflection she has shown in thinking this through is remarkable and I would be so proud of her for that, were she mine."

I agree completely. It is so easy to go through life doing what others expect, climbing various ladders because you can and because other people think you should want to. It's easy to accept the offer of a date from the good-looking boy all the other girls fancy (though you don't), or the offer of a job which anyone else would give their eyeteeth for (but which doesn't actually suit you).

Let her make her own decision, if you are sure she has thought it through carefully. She needs to be able to listen to herself and trust in her own judgement. Perhaps she will regret her choice, but that would not be the end of the world. A mistake would spur her on to make a different decision next time.

Pozzled Mon 04-Mar-13 07:44:33

OP your daughter sounds lovely, and very mature. I would have a quiet word with the headteacher if possible, just to make it clear that she has thought things through. From your description of the school I imagine they will respect her wishes.

TiredyCustards Mon 04-Mar-13 08:37:44

Sounds like she's made up het mind. Good for her.

I remember at secondary I went a bit emoin year 9 and one of the teachers said to me 'oh tiredy, you could have been head girl' and thinking, well thank god for that!

I think having prefects etc is awful anyway, and certainly doesn't belong in a primary school.

bangwhizz Mon 04-Mar-13 16:38:33

At our secondary school you have to apply and be interviewed for head girls and boy and deputyheads and prefects.
It is ridiculous and pointless in a primary school though- and also why are they appointing a HG iat this time of year?

tinytalker Mon 04-Mar-13 20:49:58

My dd sounds very similar to yours and she was also asked to be the Head Girl and didn't want to do it BUT she was happy to accept the position of Deputy! Which she did for her final year at primary and thoroughly enjoyed. Could this be a compromise for your daughter?

PassTheTwiglets Tue 05-Mar-13 10:15:06

This happened to me - I was asked to be Head but was too shy as I had to speak in front of the school. I asked if I could be Deputy instead and I was happy with that.

SavoyCabbage Tue 05-Mar-13 10:17:05

At ours you have to put yourself forward and then the year fives and sixes vote.

Timetoask Tue 05-Mar-13 10:27:07

I disagree with the other posters.
Sometimes in life we need to put ourselves outside of our comfort zone, at a job, socially, in our hobbies. She will have to do this in the future at some point, so why not try now in a safe environment which is her primary.
It sounds to me like she might be scared to fail? This will be an amazing opportunity for her to develop and discover what she is capable of.

Saracen Tue 05-Mar-13 10:34:37

Timetoask, I think that is an excellent point.

However, the OP says her daughter doesn't lack confidence, so it isn't as if she really needs to work on that. We do sometimes have to put ourselves outside our comfort zones, and that is well worth doing when there is a good reason to do so. There are plenty of opportunities to do that in life.

We don't have to put ourselves outside our comfort zones just for the sake of it, to do something we don't actually want to do when there is no particular reason to do it.

I mean, for example, it would be well outside my comfort zone to stand up in a crowded area preaching a religion which I don't believe in. That doesn't mean that I ought to practice doing so. On the other hand if there's a cause I do believe in and want to promote, it may be worthwhile for me to push myself to speak out publicly in favour of it even if that is difficult for me.

MissDuke Thu 07-Mar-13 08:05:14

Just wanted to agree that your dd sounds really lovely, you must be so proud of her x

allyfe Thu 07-Mar-13 11:50:11

I totally agree. I love her letter. It is a lovely letter. What ever happens, it sounds like you have a thoughtful, considerate and lovely daughter. If she is sure that she doesn't want to do it, then I think that should be respected. Could she be deputy head girl?

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