School news 17th October 2008

Library Exhibition – Malawi
An exhibition of pictures and artefacts from Dr Caley’s visit to Malawi has been prepared by pupils and is now on display in the library. The librarian, Miss Hollenstein, has organised a selection of books about Africa to link in with this. We hope that members of the community, as well as pupils from the school, will take the opportunity to view the display.  Click here to see the display and photos of some of the pupils involved in setting it up.

Poolewe Mod
Ghabh am Mod Ionadail aite ann am Poll Iu air Dihaoine 26mh den t-Sultain. Chord e gu mor ris an fheadhainn a ghabh pairt. Bha na sgoilearan a leanas uile annd a’ chiad, an darna no an treas aite nan co-fharpaisean:
(The Local Mod took place in Poolewe on Friday, 26th September. Everyone who took part enjoyed it thoroughly. The following pupils all came in the first three places in their competitions:)

Morven MacRae, Charmayne Fraser, Anna Hulme, Kirsty Alexander, Alex Warren, Sophie Donald, Ross MacDonald and Conal McDonagh. Conal also picked up best overall performer at the event.  Well done all!  Photo here.

Iain Dall memorial
Piper Conal MacDonagh was invited to join  The Clan Mackenzie Society of Scotland & The UK  for Sunday lunch at The Old Inn after leading them up to the Iain Dall memorial in Flowerdale where he commemorated ‘The Blind Piper’ (who lost his sight in 1663 at the age of seven)  with Flowers of the Forest under a perfect autumn sky. Later, he piped-in Chief of the Clan, the Earl of Cromartie and his eldest son Colin, Viscount Tarbat, with Caberfeidh. Then  Members stood in memory of the late President, Peadair Mackenzie, who died in July as Conal sensitively matched the sadness of the occasion and greatly moved those present with his fine playing of a pibroch. Finally, to celebrate the presentation by the Society of a sgean ‘ban’ to Viscount Tarbat on his coming-of-age, Conal changed the mood with an infectious foot-tapping reel.

Inter House Rowing competition
More than three quarters of the school took part last week in the Interhouse Rowing competition, either as part of a house team or by completing an individual challenge, which also gained points for the house. After a thrilling regatta on Friday afternoon, the houses all had 605 points each. There can only be one winner of the trophy, so there will be a deciding race after the holiday. You can get some idea of the physical effort the pupils put into this and the amazing atmosphere that is generated by looking at the photos and video clip on the school website. Click here.

Jeans for Genes Day
Pupils and staff raised £220 for the privilege of wearing jeans and trainers to school on Friday 3rd October.

Baxter’s Inverness Races
Congratulations to the following who trained for and completed the Baxter’s Inverness 10K run last Sunday (times in brackets): Lyndsey Croal (1:07:27), Dan Fox ( 50:14), Calum Milner (51:50), Tom Hardman (49:11), Peter Macdonald (47:51), Mr Johnston (42:12) and Mrs Johnston (45:45). Well done to Meghann Richardson for running the 5K race. Everyone enjoyed the day and most have even said they want to do it again next year! Click here for photo.

Small Schools Football Competition
Gairloch sent two teams to the small schools North Qualifying Tournament in Ullapool.  One of the teams won their group but were beaten in the semi-finals.The other team performed well and both teams will have gained experience for future games. All involved were a credit to the school – well done!

Green Challenge Debate – Stornoway
On Monday 6th October, three S3 pupils, Kirsty Alexander, Bella Claydon and Anna Hulme, travelled to Stornoway for the first round of this debate hosted by the Nicolson Institute, the main secondary school on Lewis. The motion was ‘This house believes that renewable energy is bad for the environment’ and the Gairloch High team was speaking against the motion. Our team, two of whom have had a number of experiences at this type of event, put forward points of information and addressed the judges, speakers and audience with confidence. It was to their delight, then, that they were declared the winners of the round. They go on to the second round where their ability to think on their feet will be further tested. The pupils, accompanied by Mr Hulme, spent the night in Stornoway and had opportunity to see the town before returning on the ferry the following day. Their long journey was well worthwhile! Click here for photos.

Blythswood Appeal
This is probably a good time to remind pupils and parents about the Shoebox Appeal.  Please fill a shoebox and bring it in to school.  Blythswood will pick up these boxes on Monday 3rd November, so there is still time to make this a really successful appeal.

Study Club
Study Club will be starting up at the beginning of November for pupils from S4-S6. Parents will receive a letter about this after the October holiday. The purpose of Study Club is to give pupils the opportunity to complete their work in a calm, supervised study environment, whilst giving them access to teachers, computers, textbooks and other school resources. The aim of Study Club is to raise the individual attainment and ambition of pupils by encouraging them to take advantage of school facilities and to encourage the habit, discipline and technique of study.

Study club usually operates on a Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday after school from 3.30 to 5.00pm. In November, most sessions are aimed at pupils in S4 preparing for their Prelims. Similarly in January, most sessions are aimed at pupils in S5 & S6 prior to their Prelims. However, in some subjects, sessions are open to pupils at all levels. In addition to subject-specific sessions, pupils may also undertake General Study in school when other sessions are running. This gives the opportunity to work individually in a quiet, supervised environment with access to school facilities.  Please support your son/daughter by encouraging them to take advantage of this opportunity as they prepare for their exams.

School Website
The latest addition to the website is an area for former pupils.  Anytime we note some information regarding former pupils we plan to add it into this part of the site.  We are also happy to accept information from parents, members of the community and former pupils themselves.  It is hoped that this part of the website will be of interest. Click here to have a look.

We have also added many photos of recent events such as the Gold Kayaking assessment, more outdoor education photos, Futurechef and pictures taken during the rowing event.  We are also starting to put video clips on the site.

Pupils return to school on Wednesday 29th October.

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