Mrs Chilton
Head of Student Wellbeing

One of the messages we regularly try to instil in the girls is the importance of making mistakes and learning from them. Sometimes we even refer to these as ‘miss-takes’—chances to have another go at something and try again. We learn from our mistakes, whether it be a missed note in an orchestra rehearsal, a dropped ball that costs the team the winning shot or forgetting to reference a key source in your History assessment. Every time we make a mistake, there is something to learn for the next time we tackle a task.

Making mistakes is not only reserved for the classroom and cocurricular program, however. At Meriden, we work hard at character formation. Sometimes this means that when girls get things wrong with their inter-personal relationships, their uniform, or their approach to their teachers, there are also consequences and opportunities to learn from these mistakes. When a girl forgets to wear her blazer again, after warnings, there is consequence. When friendships become challenging and girls are unkind to one another, there needs to be consequences, too. We want to teach the girls how to navigate these challenges and consequences well.

We live in a society that is quick to cancel people when they do the wrong thing and make a mistake. Quick to lay blame and judgement at the feet of other people when wronged.

But at Meriden, we believe in forgiveness and learning from our mistakes. We do not keep a ‘record’ of wrongs, or treat students differently based on a momentary lapse of judgement, unkindness, defiance, or forgetfulness. Every girl deserves a fresh start, a clean slate, a chance to try again. We want the best outcome for all our students. That means teaching them to learn to take more responsibility, be more accountable for their actions, or stop and think before they act.

Every mistake is an opportunity to learn. We hope you can help reinforce with your daughters that all mistakes are jumps and bumps along the road.

How we respond to our mistakes is often more important than the mistake itself.