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Harriet, 8, takes over at Royal School for a day

PUBLISHED: 11:50 25 September 2008 | UPDATED: 15:25 07 September 2010

By Susanna Wilkey A HAMPSTEAD pupil swapped her school uniform for some glad-rags when she took charge and became headteacher for a day. Harriet Goldman-Thompson, normally a Year Four pupil at the Royal School Hampstead, left her fellow students in the cl

By Susanna Wilkey

A HAMPSTEAD pupil swapped her school uniform for some glad-rags when she took charge and became headteacher for a day.

Harriet Goldman-Thompson, normally a Year Four pupil at the Royal School Hampstead, left her fellow students in the classroom and spent her day patrolling the corridors and in the headteacher's office.

She held a meeting in the morning to brief staff on her plans for the day and spoke at assembly, as well as handing out music certificates.

She also organised a guest speaker for assembly, who spoke about the RNIB, a charity close to the new headteacher's heart.

Eight-year-old Harriet explained: "I was a little bit nervous about assembly, but it was good. I talked about the RNIB because my grandfather is completely blind and he is 98 and my mum also ran the marathon for the RNIB and wrote a book about a lady who is blind.

"I have been looking forward to this day since the beginning of the summer holidays. I was really excited to be headteacher for the day, so I could tell everyone what it was like. I also did playground duty and sorted out the playground antics - but that was about the worst thing.

"All the girls have been very respectful to me. They stand up and say hello when I go into the room. It was a very fun day.

"I also handed out stickers for good work and I asked the teachers how well the pupils had been doing and gave them stickers and they were really happy.

"When I gave stickers I took the Rugrat toys along and if people wanted to buy them for a pound the money went to charity. And then I did lunch duty, which was fun, and made sure people had good table manners.

"I wanted to look smart and I also brought a handbag. I loved the whole day."

Harriet said her ambitions up until now had been focused on becoming an inventor, but her day in charge at school has got her thinking about a career in education.

She won the novelty day in an auction at the end of the summer term, which raised £8,000 towards a new technology block for the school.

Real headteacher Jo Ebner said: "She has had a great day being headmistress. She organised a guest speaker from the charity of her choice, the RNIB, because her grandfather is blind, so it is something that is close to her heart.

"We took the guest speaker out for breakfast and the girls were really captivated and interested so it was very successful.

"Harriet did lunch duty patrolling the dining hall and making sure people ate healthy lunches. In the afternoon she wrote a letter to all the parents and staff to tell them how her day had gone and encourage them all to give a pound to the RNIB.

"She has spent time with the early years and the older girls as well. She came to the morning staff meeting to brief them on what she was doing all day and they asked questions. She simply loved it."

susanna.wilkey@hamhigh.co.uk

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