As you now know, Island School will be temporarily changing our House names from 7-20 March to those of exemplary yet under-recognised women. We are proud to announce that 634 of Islanders have chosen the following women as your new House figures:
Da Vinci is now Dangarembga, named after Tsitsi Dangarembga.
Dangarembga (pronounced “Dan-gah-rem-gah”), born in 1959, is a Zimbabwean novelist, playwright and filmmaker whose deeply influential debut novel was the first to be published in English by a Black Zimbabwean woman. Her films have also broken Zimbabwean box office records, and her most recent novel was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. She also advocates for freedom of speech.
Einstein is now Ebadi, named after Shirin Ebadi.
Ebadi (pronounced “Eh-baw-DEE”), born in 1947, is an Iranian political and human rights activist who founded the Defenders of Human Rights Centre in Iran. In 2003, she was the first Iranian and the first Muslim woman to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. As a lawyer, this woman also fought causes for mistreated women and children, criticising practices of repression in Iran and pushing for democracy.
Fleming is now Fry, named after Elizabeth Fry.
Fry, who lived between 1780 and 1845 and was known as the “Angel of Prisons”, was a white English prison reformer who played a significant role behind new legislation to make the treatment of prisoners more humane. She was also a Quaker and used her wide-reaching religious network to campaign for the abolition of the slave trade.
Nansen is now Nanny, named after Queen Nanny of the Maroons.
Queen Nanny, who lived between 1686 and 1755, was the Black Jamaican leader of the Jamaican Maroons that fought a guerrilla war over many years against British authorities in the Colony of Jamaica, ultimately freeing her community from slavery. In 1975, the government of Jamaica even declared her as their only female national hero, celebrating her significant success as a leader.
Rutherford is now Ride, named after Sally Ride.
Ride, who lived between 1951 and 2012, was a white American astronaut and physicist who became the first American woman and known LGBTQ+ person in space in 1983. She was the youngest American astronaut to have travelled to space until 2021. In addition, she made two shuttle flights, and later became a champion for science education.
Wilberforce is now Wai-sze, named after Sarah Lee Wai-sze.
Wai-sze (pronounced “Why-see”), born in 1987, is a Hong Kong professional track cyclist who won the bronze medal in the women’s keirin at the 2012 London Olympics, Hong Kong’s third-ever Olympic medal and first in cycling. She won a second Olympic bronze medal in the women’s sprint at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, making her the first and only Hong Kong athlete to win medals in two different Olympic Games.
Virtual backgrounds for use during Zoom lessons will be made available to you during Thrive next week (on 10 March). These have been meticulously designed by several of you students.
Let’s spread the word!