Headmistress of Bromley High School since September 2014, Angela Drew was previously Deputy Head Academic at Epsom College.
Who/what inspired you to become a teacher?
I had a teacher called Mrs Smears who taught me English in senior school and she used to perch on the edge of her desk and lean out into the classroom, exuding enthusiasm. It was she who first introduced me to Pride and Prejudice and Romeo and Juliet.
I think everyone should be eternally gratefully to anyone who introduces them to Austen or to Shakespeare because it’s just a permanent source of joy.
What achievement are you most proud of as Head?
As a head you take pride in what the girls do; all the kind of glittering prizes that you expect from a school like Bromley High, but in reality the greatest pride that anyone takes is from what the girls are, and the people they are growing up to be.
I think as a head the proudest moment in any week is to look across the assembly hall, and we have a huge assembly hall, and you see all those faces with their enthusiasm and their idealism and their generosity of spirit. It just makes you hugely proud to be at the school
What does a successful school look like to you?
Busy, buzzy. I think actually, with a girl’s school it’s not what it looks like; it is what it sounds like.
When girls love their lessons, when they are happy with each other’s company you hear the sound of chatter. You hear the sound of laughter very frequently in this school; it is the sound of girls building friendships and that is what is going to last them for life.
What is the most important quality you want every child to have when they leave your school? And why?
Resilience. It’s a tough world sometimes and everybody, however successful, however fortunate, is going to have ups and downs in life.
We want to teach the girls to develop a sense of balance; to balance their academic success with other things that will bring them joy, pleasure and relaxation; good friendships, a healthy sport.
Also a breadth of vision for charitable fundraising, for volunteering, for involvement in the local community. They need to live a balanced, resilient life because we all know as adults that life isn’t always easy.
Please give 5 words to describe the ethos of your school.
Exceptional, innovative, caring, friendly and happy.