First of all I want to compliment and commend the staff and students who took part in another successful trip to the battlefields. Student feedback on the trip was very positive and powerful once again with a number of students able to visit the graves and memorials of distant members of their families across Flanders and the Somme area of France. L Yule and A Halliday took part in the commemoration ceremony at the Menin Gate, Ypres. They laid a wreath on behalf of our school and this was also personally poignant for them as they had relative’s names commemorated on the gate too. Having taught history and led such trips myself in previous schools, I know first-hand that the experiences and knowledge gained on this trip will really impact positively and powerfully on the rest of the coursework in history. I want to thank the staff who led this trip: Mrs Crosbie, Mrs Dobson, Mr Beattie and Mr Clarke.
This week we also had the Duke of Edinburgh Bronze celebration event when 18 students were awarded their badges, certificates and DoE hoodies. I enjoyed attending and thought the slides and the film-clip really showcased the experiences well. Many of the students now intend to continue with the Silver Award and preparations for this will begin soon. I also spoke with the DoE staff about training opportunities for parent volunteers who may be able to assist, as this is something we discussed at the last Parent Council. This would assist us and perhaps allow us to expand the numbers as currently demand exceeds our staff capacity, even though we have a high number of trained and committed staff. Mr MacArthur has co-ordinated the activities brilliantly this year. I also want to thank Mr Cheyne, Mr Higgins, Mr Jamieson, Ms Raines and Ms Grocott for their part in DoE and for supporting the event. The final words below come from one of the students who gained the award.
“I’m so thankful to have had this experience but I would not have been able to do it without the great people around me. Thank you, everyone.”
This week senior students led the five house assemblies and helped embed the five school values through a series of interactive and memorable activities – you might want to ask them about.
Next week the first of the three large S1 groups start the Venture trips to Benmore. We also have S1-3 activities planned for Maths Week Scotland next week and two middle school teams entered for the Enterprising Maths event at Murrayfield.
The Communications group visited Sky Academy yesterday with Mr Jardine (CL English) and produced a short video on the positive aspects of Social Media. The students got the opportunity to work as a team with industry standard equipment in a realistic studio setting. This will help them develop their skills and inform future projects this year.
Finally, two emails were sent to all parents today, one from myself asking for feedback related to our school improvement plan; and one from Mr Pye (DHT) with an update on a few areas, including reporting.
Have a good weekend.