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If there’s anything we can say about the future with any certainty, it’s that it will astound us. The 21st century has brought with it a world where the only constant is change, where innovation is part of everyday life, and it is likely that our children will have careers in fields that didn’t exist when they were born.

Humanity’s undoubted adaptability is being tested in ways that we could not have predicted 20 years ago, let alone when The Abbey was founded to offer education to women. Now, as then, it is the role of educators to fit our students for their future lives.

The skills needed for success in that future world will not be based on the straightforward regurgitation of factual knowledge. Instead, more subtle and less immediately tangible skills will be the cornerstones of achievement and fulfilment: interpretation, critical assessment of validity, intellectual curiosity, lateral thinking, social and self-awareness and imagination will all be highly valued.

At The Abbey we invest passionately in identifying those attributes that will prepare our students to lead happy and fulfilling lives. The result of an in-depth consultation which has encompassed subject and educational experts and, most importantly of all, our current students, is the Abbey Learner Profile.

It’s not what you think, but how you think...

The Abbey Learner profile brings together ten key attributes that we encourage students throughout the school to recognise and develop. It is not an inflexible framework, but instead drives deep connections which help girls to think creatively about what they are learning on academic, social and pastoral levels. So studying a Shakespeare sonnet can combine reflection, inquiry, creativity and communication, while organising a charity event evokes caring, independence and open-mindedness. The development of all ten attributes, including one of the most important – resilience – equips girls to seize the opportunities that life puts before them with intelligence, enthusiasm and perspective.


Reflective Takes time to consider and potentially challenge viewpoints Caring Shows concern for, and actively values, others
Balanced Sets her own priorities and is self aware Open-minded Willing to consider new ideas
Creative Comes up with new or different ways of doing something Communicator Challenges herself to communicate, listen actively and present ideas
Inquiring Is curious to explore new ways of thinking Informed Will embrace knowledge and apply it in a wider context
Independent Capable of thinking or acting for herself; will take an intellectual risk Resilient Being ready and willing to learn from all experiences whether or not they are successful