School news 12th December 2008

Staffing – Mrs. Marie Tippett achieved 25 years service feeding the youth of Gairloch last week! A job well done and long may she continue her work in the school canteen!

Mrs. Sylvia MacKay started working part time in the office in December 1999 and she has decided to retire from that post on 19th December. We are grateful for her years of service and glad to know that she will continue her work in the Library.

Mr. Dave Caddell leaves at the end of this term. He started in Gairloch High in 1985 as a PE teacher later also becoming Assistant PT Guidance. He retires as Head of Pupil Support and we wish him all the best for the future and thank him for his many years of service!

S4 Prelims – Pupils finished their exams this week and our thanks go to Nicky Hayes, our Chief Invigilator, for ensuring every detail was attended to successfully. Thanks also to the Church of Scotland for allowing us to use their premises and to the Community Hall Committee, especially Lyn Mackenzie, for their support.

S5/6 Prelims – Pupils in S5/6 have been working with their teachers preparing and planning for their exams, which start at the end of January. They have been given appropriate materials for their subjects and advised about the steps they need to take to achieve their best grades. We would ask that parents support pupils in preparation for these important exams.

Musical Success – Conal McDonagh and Sophie Donald took part in the regional music groups’ gala performance in Aviemore on 15th November. Sophie in the string orchestra and Conal in ‘snas(the ceildih band). Conal also recently competed in the Nairn Young Piper of the Year competition. He was placed in a couple of the competitions, but won the Piobaireachd! Well done to these two musical stars.

Debating – Third Year pupils Kirsty Alexander, Isabella Claydon and Anna Hulme have been successful in gaining a place in the grand final of the HIEnergy’s Big Green Challenge Debate in February. The first prize is a 4-day trip to Iceland to see first hand how renewable energies are effectively used; runners up will win a trip to the Eden Project. Well done girls!

The National Gaelic Debate – Anna Hulme reports the following: Kirsty, Mr. Cumming and I travelled to Stornoway for Scotland’s BT Debate. In the first round we were debating about tourism, against us was a team from Harris. The motion was “The world would be better off without tourism.” When we finished the debate, the judges announced that we were through to the second round! This took place the next day and we had a lot of work and research to do about our subject. The motion was “We should support stem cell research” and this time we were for the motion. At the start of the week we didn’t have any idea what stem cells were, but we worked hard. We took a trip around Stornoway looking for a rat as a prop. We eventually found one, but unfortunately, it wasn’t good enough to get us through to the semi-finals! Click here and here for photos of the event.

An Deasbad Naiseanta Gaidhlig – Chaidh mise, Kirsty agus Mgr Cuimeanach gu Steornabhagh airson Deasbad BT Alba. ‘S a chiad cuairt bha sinn a’ deasbad mu dheidhinn tursachd, an aghaidh sgioba bhon Hearradh. ‘S e “bhiodh an t-saoghail na b’fhearr gun turasachd” am moladh a bh’againn. As deidh dhuinn an deasbad a chriochnachadh, thug na britheamhan comharra dhuinn, agus dhan sgioba eile, agus bha sinn gu math toilichte faicinn gun d’fhuair sinn dhan darna cuairt!

Ach ‘s ann an ath latha a bha an ath chuairt agus bha tòrr obrach agus rannsachaidh ri dheanamh mu dheidhinn an cuspair a bh’againn. ‘S e “Bu choir taic a thoirt gu bun-cheallan” an moladh agus an turas seo bha sinn airson a’ mholaidh. Aig toiseach na seachdain cha robh cail a dh’fhios againn dè bh’ann an bun-cheallan, ach rinn sinn uile obair chruaidh ach chan urrainn dhuinn a radh gu bheil sinn aineolach a-nis! Dh’fhalbh sinn cuideachd air turas mun cuairt Steornabhagh a shealltainn airson radan airson ‘prop’! Lorg sinn radan ach, gu mi-fhortanach, cha robh sin math gu leòr gus ar cur a-steach dha na h-iar chuairtean dheireannach.

Higher Modern Studies Conference on the Teaching of China in Scottish schools – Four Higher Modern Studies pupils travelled with Ms Velt to Strathclyde University, Glasgow, where they attended a conference.

Head boy, Calum Milner also came along. He has a special interest in China, as he will be heading there next year with the Project Trust, to undertake voluntary work and teaching. Calum was a bit taken aback when the Principal of Strathclyde University announced Calum’s presence in his opening speech and asked him to identify himself. Calum was then invited to explain his gap year plan to the whole of the conference!

The Modern Studies pupils attended various interesting workshops. The SQA principal assessor for Modern Studies presented one useful workshop and gave some very good tips on how to write exam essays. Our pupils were keen note-takers during this workshop and hopefully this will be reflected in their final grades! Elizabeth Proudfoot, Amy French, Ross Lister, Lyndsey Croal and Calum were great ambassadors for the school. Thanks to Ms Velt for organising and supervising this trip.

Oliver DVD now available – We are lucky to have a permanent record of the show “Oliver” available. Our thanks go to Sandi Urquhart for filming, editing and copying it for us – many hours of work, and much appreciated. The DVD is coming out in time for Christmas and available from the school for £5.00.

School Calendar now available – We have again found a good range of interesting pupils’ artwork to brighten your homes over the next twelve months. The cost of each calendar remains £5.00. Copies will be available at outlets around the village but you may prefer to pay and collect from the school office. Ms. Gulliver would like to thank the Parent Council and all those local business involved in supporting this venture now in its fourth year.

Charity Fashion Show & Malawi Lecture – raised £511 from ticket sales, £25.40 from FairTrade sales and £171.20 from the Parent Council raffle. Thank you again to everyone for supporting this enjoyable event! £300 has been donated to Clic Sargeant. See the photos here.

Important dates
Christmas Music & Drama Evening – A joint venture with Gairloch Primary! All welcome 6.30pm Mon 15th Dec.

S1/2 Christmas Service – 16th December

Dance – evening of 16th December

Whole School Quiz all day 18th December

School closes at 1.30pm on the 19th December

re-opening on Monday 5th January 2009.

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year from the staff and pupils of Gairloch High School!