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Manchester High School for Girls


This week sees Manchester High School for Girls call a halt to homework, replacing it with yoga, Pilates and skin care sessions for pupils. 

The move is part of our Balance Week (29 February to 4 March) which aims to promote a healthy work-life mix among its students.

While suspension of the homework system for an entire week may seem a strange move for an academically rigorous school such as Manchester High; which placed eighth in The Times’ rankings for the best A-level results nationwide; the School

believes a holistic approach to education is the way forward.

Finding balance with yoga

Helen Jeys, Deputy Head, explained: “Our girls are certainly ambitious; they want to secure the best marks possible in their studies and be involved in all the extra-curricular and after-school clubs we have on offer here.

Cake Off

“However, while this starts with the very best of intentions, it can sometimes lead to ‘overscheduled’ lives. We want our pupils to know the difference between when to push on with their work and when to take the foot firmly off the pedal to take care of their physical and mental health.  

Huge queues formed for beauty treatments

“That said; Balance Week is categorically not about shielding or mollycoddling our girls. Stress and anxiety are part of modern day life but this is about giving Manchester High students the tools to cope.  What universities and future employers are looking for is well-rounded individuals who have a healthy balance between work and play; not manically overscheduled, stressed-out beings.”

Writing poetry

Activities including Zumba, ‘The Big Sing’, knitting and baking will be available for all pupils throughout lunchtimes that week. Noticeably, it’s not just Manchester High’s students that will be taking the opportunity to de-stress. Teachers will also be treated to head, neck and shoulder massages and mini manicures.

Relaxing reading 

 “We’ll certainly have the most balanced teaching force in the whole of Greater Manchester!” commented Helen Jeys.

Zingy zumba dancing

You can view all the photos from this week's activities on our Flickr album