Alumnae and Development Policy


Name of Policy

Policy on Alumnae and Development

ISI Regulation6: Provision of Information

Reviewed by

Joanne Joyce, Rachel Brewster


Sept 2023

Date of next Review

Sept 2024

This policy applies to the whole school.

Overall aims

WHS is very proud of its history and heritage and all of our Development work reflects our commitment to the past as well as our hopes and ambitions for the future. Alumnae and development forms an integral part of our work in engaging with the WHS community whether this be parents, alumnae, former staff, governors or local stakeholders. Our aim is to develop a culture of philanthropy at the school and to provide a programme of activities, communications and events that inspire all our key stakeholders to be engaged with and involved in the life of the school.



All alumnae data is held on the GDST database, Bamboo. This database is managed centrally by GDST but updated locally at the school. The database can only be used by members of staff who have been trained in its use and who have a user name and password. Any data received manually is stored in the Alumnae and Development office which is in a locked office. If an alumna approaches the school wishing to get in contact another alumna, in line with the Data Protection Act we cannot provide any contact details but instead contact the second alumna ourselves and provide them with the necessary information to get in contact if they wish to.


Each year the school communicates with our alumnae in a variety of ways. By post they receive two mailings each year – the first being the GDST magazine GDST Life and the second a newsletter from our Old Girls Association (WHSU). In addition alumnae receive one or two e-newsletters each year and are able to access information on our Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn pages. All communications provide the option for alumnae to opt out of future communications. The WHSU committee (made up of a selection of alumnae, the Director of Development and the Head), meets two times a year.


Each year, the school organises reunion events for alumnae. These are ticketed and alumnae pay a nominal amount to attend, which covers the costs of the event. All data from events is stored on Bamboo. Payment is sent to the school and processed on site. Increasingly we are using online payment and booking products such as Trybooking for events. In addition, alumnae attend school events either as our guests or on a paying basis. They also attend careers events and speak to our girls about their plans for the future and share their own experiences with them.


Data and financial processing

As above, all data is stored on Bamboo or in a locked office. In addition to contact information in relation to Development, we also store all financial transactions on Bamboo. Donations are typically sent to the school either as a cheque or credit card payment. The banking of the donation is processed by GDST so all cheques are forwarded to them by post (recorded delivery). Donors also have the option of donating online or by bank transfer. GDST process all donations (as the registered charity for the GDST network of schools, charity registration no. 306983) and the school are responsible for acknowledging and thanking the donors and updating Bamboo with the relevant information. We aim to acknowledge all donations within 48 hours.

Due diligence

Before accepting any donation, the school is required to undertake a level of due diligence on every donor. If the donation is above £10,000 GDST are required to undertake (on our behalf) more detailed due diligence before accepting the gift to ensure we have the right checks in place when receiving funds from individuals and companies giving at this level. 

Donations can only be received with the assurance that it will not have any impact on decisions related to a prospective or current pupil.

Raising funds

Donations are secured through a variety of activities:

  • Mailings – each year we send a direct mail to parents (and occasionally alumnae) asking for their support for the school. The mailing includes a leaflet outlining the case for support, a donation form, return envelope and letter from the Head.
  • Events – at alumnae and parent events we promote our different funds: Projects Fund, Bursary Fund and Annual Fund and ask those attending to support them by completing a donation form at the event or after the event where appropriate. In addition we may organise specific events where we invite potential donors to attend based on their previous support for the school or other similar organisations.
  • Online giving – all our funds are advertised on our website.
  • Individual approaches – we work with a small number of trusts and foundations who support the school and steward our relationship with them through regular updates and meetings.

Capital Campaign - Project Ex Humilibus 

In February 2018 we began our fundraising campaign for a major re-development of our site known as Project Ex Humilibus. In September 2020 the STEAM Tower opened with £1.5M in pledged gifts secured. In September 2021 we launched the final and public phase of our fundraising campaign which sought the support of the whole school community to help us reach our fundraising target. In September 2022 we opened our new buildings (Sixth Form Centre, Auditorium and Playground in the Sky), with an event for donors and the wider community to celebrate their official opening held in November 2022.

Friends of Wimbledon High

Wimbledon High has an active PTA known as Friends of Wimbledon High (FoWHS). This is a parent led group who organise fundraising and social activities throughout the year in support of the school. FoWHS is a registered charity – donations are processed by FoWHS and then given to the school when requested for projects following a decision by the FoWHS Committee. 

WHS Boat Club 

Parents and staff fundraise separately for the Wimbledon High School Boat Club (WHSBC) through events such as an annual dinner, ergathon and Christmas races. The school assists with admin and promotion; fundraising is processed through a separate WHSBC bank account.