School news 13th November 2009

Project Trust – Two more of our S6 pupils, Roxanne Ramsay and Briony Young have been successful in gaining places abroad with Project Trust next year.

Calum Milner is currently in China working with the Trust.  Amy French was selected some time ago and is currently raising funds for next year.  Briony and Roxanne were away over the holidays taking part in separate selection courses on the Isle of Coll.  Briony now looks destined for China and Roxanne for Guyana.  Well done to both girls!

Focus Environment Photographic Competition – S5 pupil Katrina Port has been awarded 2nd Prize this year in this national schools competition.  Last year she received a commendation for her entry in the My Environment section.  This year her success is in the category Nature’s Moods.  Katrina will receive her award at a ceremony held at Dynamic Earth, Edinburgh, on the 16th December.

National Gaelic DebateGhabh Anna Hulme agus Ciorstaidh NicAlasdair pàirt ann an Deasbad Nàiseanta na Gàidhlig ann an Steòrnabhagh Dimàirt 3mh agus Diciadaoin 4mh den t-Samhainn. Bha sia sgiobaidhean deug anns a’ cho-fharpais agus fhuair Anna agus Ciorstaidh a-steach dhan darna cuairt (na deich sgiobaidhean mu dheireadh). ‘S e cothrom fìor mhath a bha seo a bhith a’ cleachdadh an cuid Gàidhlig ann an suidheachadh foirmeil agus a bhith a’ coinneachadh ri Gàidheil òga às gach ceàrnaidh de dh’Alba. Airson tuilleadh fiosrachaidh mun Deasbad, faic

Anna Hulme and Kirsty Alexander took part in the National Gaelic Debate on the 3rd and 4th of November in Stornoway.  There were sixteen teams in the competition and Anna and Kirsty reached the second round (the last ten teams).  This was an excellent opportunity for them to use their Gaelic in a formal situation and to meet young Gaelic speakers from all over Scotland.  For further information about the Debate, click here:

North of Scotland Debating Competition – Although they did not make it through to the final of this competition this year, Storm Lawson and Amy French did well at Inverness Royal Academy on 5th November in proposing a difficult motion – This House would introduce compulsory retirement at 60.  A lot was learned by all in this well supported competition!

A’Chraobh – S1 have been busy investigating local stories for the A’ Chraobh Project.  You can follow their project as it unfolds on  Helen Scott-Danter, drama worker, ran a workshop with S1 on the 4th November, showing pupils how to bring alive an imaginative story created by the entire group, so they’re more than ready to recreate the stories they’ve gathered.

Charities UpdateJeans for Genes Day took place on the 9th October. Jeans for Genes is a charity that aims to improve the lives of children with genetic disorders, care for their families and invest in research.  Pupils (and staff) had the opportunity to wear their jeans to school in return for a contribution towards this worthwhile cause. A total of £200.15 was raised. The school once again supported The Blythswood Shoebox Appeal.  We prepared 37 boxes and these were collected last week.  Thanks to everyone who supported both these worthwhile causes.

Former Pupil Success Steven MacIver won the prestigious Gold Medal at the Royal National Mod in Oban (October 2009).  Any individual can only win the medal once in a lifetime.

Steven, a production co-ordinator in the Gaelic department of STV, was quoted in the press as saying: “This is my fifth time in the Gold Medal competition. I have been in second place a couple of times.  I was determined to win it eventually – I am really happy to have won.”

Well done Steven – This kind of determination is admirable.  Steven has been added to the former pupil website.  If you have any infornmation about former pupils please contact the school.

Forensic PSHE – S5 and S6 had an eye-opening talk from Prof Barclay on 29th October.  Prof. Barclay worked for many years as a forensic scientist and has dealt with many high profile cases.  Although the cases are by nature often very disturbing, he gave pupils a realistic glimpse into the area of forensics that is currently glamorised on TV.  Describing how different types of evidence are put together to draw conclusions, he showed how the police, with help from science, identify those responsible for a crime.  One pupil commented afterwards “It was a privilege for us to have someone with so much expertise to take the time to give us an insight into forensics.”  This aspect of PSHE supports our efforts to raise awareness of personal safety for young adults.

ThinkUKnow Training – On Thursday 5th of November S2 pupils received the ThinkUKnow training on Internet safety. ThinkUKnow is an initiative that looks to promote responsible and safe use of the Internet for children between ages 3 and 16.

The pupils were asked to show their parents / carers the website and explain what they had learned from the training at home.  For more information on the initiative anyone can visit, which has lots of useful information.

Scottish Opera – P7 and S1 pupils worked intensively, for a week, with professional staff from Scottish Opera culminating in a public performance the 6th November.  “The Tale o’ Tam”, based on Robert Burns’ epic poem Tam o’ Shanter was performed with energy and style by all involved.  We are grateful to all involved from the opera and schools, particularly Beth Hunter and Trish McDonald, who helped prepare the pupils to put on a very professional performance.  Over £300 was collected on the door for the Earl Haig Poppy Fund.  See photos by clicking here…

Adverse Weather Guidelines All pupils have been issued with guidelines for parents outlining school procedures during bad weather or problems with transport.  The details are also available by clicking here.  Disruption is normally a result of poor road conditions and we make use of local radio, Internet and a special 0870 telephone messaging service to provide up to date information.

Important DatesClick here…


Old computers – Does anyone have any old computers they could donate?  We want to show Technology pupils how to take them apart and rebuild them!

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