King’s has a rigorous leadership selection process - what is it like to be deputy head or head student?
I was one of the Deputy Head students for King’s College in 2016. Essentially, there are 6 people within what is colloquially termed the “top 6” that are the most senior prefects within the school. Made up of a Head Boy, Head Girl and four Deputies (historically it has always been 3 males and 1 female but this is subject to change in the future) each person within this group has a set role that they are given and a certain number of school prefects under them to assist them in that role.
The leadership process at King’s is somewhat convoluted but it is definitely rigorous. Students vote amongst their peers who they think would be suitable candidates to be in one of the 'Top 6" positions. Current school prefects also vote for candidates in the year below. Teachers are given the opportunity to nominate students for one of the roles and then from those three sources, a list of about 60 students is made. From those 60 students, there are 2 leadership camps, each held over a 5 day period. After those 2 camps have occurred, 10 students are given the opportunity to be interviewed by the senior members of staff and from those 10, 6 students are made the Heads/Deputies of the school.
I was in charge of “Public Relations” for the school and my two biggest jobs were to be in charge of the school’s discipline systems and the King’s College Supporter’s Club. The other Deputies split amongst themselves the responsibilities of public gatherings (assemblies, chapels etc), leading the Round Square programme, managing duties and the list goes on.
King’s puts a lot of responsibilities into the hands of the Head students and the role(s) are consequently quite time consuming and sometimes strenuous. In saying that, however, it is definitely a favourable and rewarding position to be put in because of the opportunities it offers students to grow as a leader and as a person. King’s College has over 1000 students and literally every single one of those students will know who the head prefects are and this puts you in a position where people will both look up to you and see you as a role model.