Head of Boarding Alexandra Cutmore joined Headington in U3 from a small independent prep school. She became a half-weekly boarder at the beginning of L6. An Academic Scholar, she is taking A Levels in English, Economics, French and Religious Studies. Alexandra is on the School Netball Team and is a Tae Kwondo black belt. She is also a keen musician, having achieved Grade 5 Piano and Grade 7 Cello and plays in the Symphony Orchestra. She also enjoys acting and took a key role in a recent production of Chicago. She loves writing and has written articles for school magazine Lexicon.
Headington means so much to me. It’s been the biggest part of my life and it’s more than just a school. I come here to do lessons but also to see my friends and to see my teachers, I come here for a chat and for toast at break, for lunches. It doesn’t just feel like a school, it’s not like it takes work or labour to come in every day, it makes me excited the thought of coming into school every day and to see everyone. What really attracted me and still attracts me to Headington is the atmosphere which is completely easy-going. There’s no part of the School that feel unwelcome. I can walk everywhere and there’s always a friendly face, whether it be a student or a teacher.
On Sixth Form
In the Sixth Form Centre, I feel like I know everyone and everyone knows me. It’s a great sense of belonging. Across the School grounds this is a place that wants me and I want it.
It’s that educational but social step up. Because you are in your own building, doing more advanced lessons, I feel like I am an adult. It’s a little microcosm of society and it does feel that I’m more mature and this is my world and I can use it to my advantage when I am going to lessons or to see a friend or leaving campus to have a coffee. I do feel it’s preparing me for university, it’s the right transition stage – and it’s a really enjoyable one.
I absolutely love it. It’s the highlight of my week, getting into the boarding house on Sunday and knowing I get to stay here for three more nights. It’s so much fun, it’s an eternal sleepover. I finish school and the time goes so quickly because I’m just talking to people for the rest of the day, go to sleep, get the marvellous breakfast then back to school again. I really, really enjoy it. I have the privilege of being in one of the Sixth Form boarding houses which is right in the middle of campus. I’ve stayed in three of the five houses having done flexi-boarding at various points, a week in Davenport, some time in Hillstow but the Sixth Form boarding has been my favourite. You’re literally still in the Sixth Form Centre with all your friends. It’s so enjoyable and I would seriously recommend it, especially if you are a student coming to Britain for the first time – everyone makes friends so quickly because it’s so welcoming.
On what she’s learned about herself
The most powerful lesson you can learn you have to authentically be yourself. There is no other way to live except to be yourself. I think Headington has really helped bring that out in me and bring that lesson out as soon and as genuinely as possible. It’s something everyone will learn at various stages but because of the atmosphere at Headington and the environment and all the options and extra-curriculars, it takes less time – you have everything available to you to be yourself so the only thing stopping you is you.
At the moment I am really interested in a course that involves French, perhaps Philosophy or Politics alongside it. I would love to take a year abroad to a French-speaking country just to immerse myself in a different culture and really get to grips with a foreign language. I have always admired writing in any form so that is something I’d like to pursue.