School news 26th November 2010

Remembrance 2010 – It was an honour and a privilege to see so many of our pupils involved in the Remembrance Ceremonies in Poolewe, Aultbea and Gairloch.  As members of the ATC they showed that the commitment and sacrifice of our Armed Forces is not forgotten.  At the Gairloch Memorial senior pupils Anna Hulme and Jennifer Leonard played the bagpipes to great effect for all present.  View press photos here.

Remembrance 2010

Homework Policy – All pupils have taken home for parents and carers an updated summary of the new Homework Policy.  This was developed and agreed by all staff in the school.  Copies are available here on the school website.

Crofting Connections visit to Parliament – Gairloch High School has joined the second year of the Crofting Connections programme and to celebrate this event, Mr. Milner was invited with two pupils from S1 to Holyrood.  This was a celebration of Crofting Connections so far, including produce from school gardens and local crofts.  There was also an impressive range of products bearing the Scottish Crofting Produce Mark.

Crofting Connections

After travelling down by train on Tuesday, the three met pupils and staff from all over the Highlands and Islands at the Central Youth Hostel in Edinburgh.  96 pupils from 48 schools!  The next morning, Wednesday 10th November, Alasdair and Calum were given a tour of the Scottish Parliament building. In the afternoon they visited Dynamic Earth.

The evening reception at Holyrood allowed an opportunity to meet MSP’s and to learn a little more about Crofting Connections from the other pupils and invited crofters.

We now need the support of our local crofters to develop this in school so if you have the time, and you fancy sharing your knowledge to S1 pupils, we want to hear from you!  If you have a spare piece of land, close to the school, we could use it.  If you have a spare hen hut – we need one!  Click here to see more photos.

Interview Skills Day – This event took place on Thursday 18th November.  All S6 pupils along with any younger pupils known to be leaving were asked to complete an application, which was submitted to interviewers prior to the day. Each applicant received a half hour vetting from 2 interviewers.  Pupils were scored on their application and personal qualities, such as appearance, confidence and manner.  At the interview they were assessed on their eye contact, communication skills and the quality of their answers.

Mr. Port thanks members of the Dingwall Rotary Club and consultants from Skills Development Scotland along with locals Marylynn Burbridge and Sue Morrissey for bringing their experience to the benefit of the interviewees.

Feedback from the interviewers and the pupils suggest that this continues to be a valuable exercise.  A gentleman from the Dingwall Rotary remarked that in Gairloch they had the pleasure of meeting young adults rounded in character and full of ambition.  Well done to those who took part!

Pupil Success – Peter Banks (S3) travels to Inverness with his parents 6 days a week.  This is a massive commitment from Peter who still has a week of school to fit around this training.  Recently Peter competed in the 100m Breast Stroke and 200m Breast Stroke at the Highland Schools Swimming competition.  He won Silver in both races.  Congratulations Peter!

Tapadh Leibh – the CD currently available and raising funds for the Highland Hospice and 2 Lochs Radio has some Gairloch High pupils participating.  Ainslie MacKenzie, Ciaran Alexander, Kenny MacKenzie, Callum MacKenzie, Ruan Urquhart, Jamie MacDonald, Alasdair MacDonald & Chloe Allengame all sing on the CD.

The first 4 pupils took the time to learn the songs, attend a recording session after school and also supported the ceilidh to launch the CD.  Our first year pupils recorded their songs while still in Primary but both Ruan and Jamie came along to the ceilidh as High School pupils to support it.  Trish MacDonald (on behalf of the Loch Ewe Area Group) passed on thanks to all of the pupils.  It is always a pleasure to hear of pupils getting involved in community ventures like this.  Well done to each of them!

Duke of Edinburgh’s Award – Anna Hulme and Ella McDonagh received their Silver Award at assembly recently.  Sarah MacKenzie, Rhoda Tippett, Rachel Mackenzie, Margaret Matheson, Keith Robertson and Gemma Urquhart all received their Bronze Award.  Well done to each of these pupils!

Association of British Riding Schools – Kim and Jade Watson in S6 have received Teacher’s Assistant Certificates.

Comenius trip to Latvia – A report on the recent trip is available here..

iDiscover Day 4 – The Happy Puzzle Experience – All S1 and S2 pupils were involved in a single event on Wednesday 17th November.  Accompanied by Mrs. Whall the pupils took part in the event in the Community Hall.  The programme began with a puzzle solved by the entire group through brainstorming.  The intention of the day was to demonstrate how, by looking at information from different perspectives it is possible to solve problems, with perseverance, which previously may not have appeared possible.

Climbing Wall – Last Saturday the new wall was officially opened by Councillor Richard Greene.  Around 300 people including guests and sponsors turned up to take part in a fun day to celebrate the completion and opening of the wall.  This new facility is now available for use by the school pupils, members of the community and visitors.  Photographs and details of the event are available on the school website.  BBC Alba filmed the event and recorded interviews in English and Gaelic for use in their news programme.

Thanks to the Parent Council for helping with tea and cakes throughout the day.  Many parents contributed to the wonderful spread and guests took the time to point out how very impressed they were with this indication of parental support.  Many staff were on hand along with members of the local mountain rescue teams to help Leisure staff run and organize the events on the wall, on the spin bikes and the indoor rowing machines throughout the day.  The coastguard also had a presence along with various other stands in the hall.  We showed climbing films throughout the day however the highlight was the large number of children and adults who put harnesses and ropes on.  Many present on the day took part in the climbing and there was a very healthy buzz of activity.

Anyone in the community wishing to access the new wall should contact the Leisure Centre for further information.

Opening Ceremony

Parent Council AGM – This event was held in the school on the evening of Monday 15th November.  The Council for the coming year was elected and parents heard updates from senior staff.  Viv Caird from the Alcohol and Addictions Counselling Service gave a presentation that was very well received.  Details are available here on the Parent Council area of the website.

Climbing Wall Opening

The new wall was officially opened today by Councillor Richard Greene. Around 300 people including guests and sponsors turned up to take part in a fun day to celebrate the completion and opening of the wall. This new facility will be available for use by the school pupils, members of the community and visitors. Photographs and details of the event will follow shortly.  BBC Alba were filming the event and we expect that a report may appear on the station Monday 22nd November as part of the 8pm news.

Read the Highland Council Press release.

Remembrance 2010


Pupils from Gairloch High School were represented at the Service of Remembrance at the Gairloch War Memorial on Sunday 14th November 2010.  Wreaths were placed at the Memorial by representatives of the Community Council, the ATC and the Highland Council.  Photograph courtesy of Colin Roy.

School news 12th November 2010

Medical Careers Presentation – On Monday 1st Nov, former pupil, now Dr. Abbey Gray, made the time to come into school to talk about Medicine as a career.  Dr. Gray’s commented: Thanks for inviting me in to talk to the pupils.  I think there were about 40 pupils in the end, and it was a lively afternoon! I was very impressed at their behaviour; they remained quiet and attentive for the most part, but spoke out when required.

I tried to teach them a few medical facts along the way, and when I tested them at the end I was amazed that they all remembered all of the answers – they were certainly a credit to the school.

Abbey’s presentation was excellent and the pupils who volunteered to go along have all been very complimentary.  If you are a former pupil and feel you have information that would be worth telling our pupils -careers, training, travel, apprenticeships, work etc. then please get in touch with Mr. Milner.

Sgrìobhadh san SgìreChaidh bùth-obrach sgrìobhaidh chruthachail a chumail air a’ chiad latha dhen t-Samhainn airson nam fileantach air a’ chiad, an dàrna, an treas agus an còigeamh bliadhna. Bha sinn fortanach gur e Iain F. MacLeòid, sgrìobhadair ainmeil ann an Gàidhlig ’s Beurla, a bha a’ stiùireadh na bùtha-obrach. Dh’ionnsaich na sgoilearan a bha a’ gabhail pàirt innleachdan cuideachail gus sgeulachd ghoirid a chruthachadh. Bidh Iain F. MacLeòid a’ tilleadh chun na sgoile tràth an ath bhliadhna gus am faic e na sgeulachdan a tha na sgoilearan air sgrìobhadh anns an eadar-àma.

Gaelic Writing Workshop A creative writing workshop was held on 1st November for the fluent speakers in first, second, third and fifth year. We were fortunate that Iain F. MacLeod, a famous writer in Gaelic and English, was leading this workshop. The pupils learned various useful strategies to create a short story. Iain F. MacLeod will return early next year to see the stories created by the pupils as a result of this workshop.

Charities – Jeans for Genes Day took place on Friday 29th 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) wear their jeans to school in return for a contribution towards this worthwhile cause. A total of £180.90 was raised. The Blythswood Shoebox Appeal picked up 39 boxes.  Thanks to everyone who supported both these worthwhile causes.

Highland Small Schools’ 7 aside Football League – Two senior boys’ teams travelled to Dornoch on Saturday October 30th for the North Qualifying section of the Small Schools’ 7 aside Football League.  The two Gairloch teams played each other in the opening fixture with the score being 0-0.

The Gairloch A team narrowly lost their other three fixtures against Ullapool, Dornoch A and B while the Gairloch B team won their remaining games convincingly, scoring eight and only conceding one. The scorers were Nicholas Stein (4), David Gorman (3) and Roddy MacLennan (1).

Gairloch B topped the league at the end of the fixtures and has progressed to the semi-finals.  They will play the runners up of the South Qualifying section for a place in the final.

Thanks to Mr. Johnston and Mr. Cumming for organising Gairloch’s participation in the event.  Photos on the website!

The S2 Boys football team has now joined the senior team in the finals at the end of the month.  They won four out of their five games winning against Ullapool, Farr and Dornoch.  An excellent team performance and a credit to the school.

Art Trip to Inverness – On Friday 29th October, various S5/6 pupils accompanied Ms. Gulliver to Millburn Academy where tutors from Duncan of Jordanstone, the Art College in Dundee, had displayed a selection of last year’s successful portfolios for school pupils and staff to view.  A couple of the tutors spoke about the college, the courses, the application procedures and the different approaches of the four major Scottish Art Schools.

We also visited an exhibition at the Inverness Art Gallery.  The gallery is currently part of a network across the UK that are participating in the ‘Artist Rooms’ scheme.   This has enabled the work of notable artists to be viewed in remote areas.  Currently, in Inverness, the work of Ed Ruscha can be seen – an American artist linked with the Pop, Conceptual and Minimalist movements.  Ruscha draws inspiration from cinema and film, the flat, featureless landscapes of the American West, the visual noise of the city, and the power of typography.

At the gallery there was also a photography exhibition of work by Patricia and Angus MacDonald.  ‘The Edge’ contains large, dramatic aerial photographs portraying the archipelago of the Hebrides, combining Boreal (northern) and Atlantic (western) qualities of climate and ecology.

Basketball – On Wednesday 4th November, the S1 basketball team played their first game in the National Schools’ Cup competition, away against Alness Academy. They won 48 – 6. All their practice is paying off – this was a really encouraging team performance. Well done! Next game is home against Fortrose, 3:30 PM on Wednesday 17th November.  View photos of the team in action and the new strip here…

Hockey – A mixed hockey team travelled to Inverness on Saturday, 30th October, to compete in the competition for the InverRoss cup.  This was the first time the team had played competitively. They got off to a fairly nervous start, playing Inverness High A team, and lost 4:2. However, by the day’s finish Inverness High had made the finals and Gairloch was the only team to score against them in the qualifying rounds.  In their second game, (against Millburn B) the Gairloch team began to relax and started to play well, both individually and as a team.  Unfortunate to lose this game 2:1 they drew with Glenurquhart in the next.  By their fourth match, they were playing extremely well together and they won a very convincingly 3:0.  The play-off for seventh spot in the competition, against Millburn A team, was hard fought but Gairloch deserved their 3:2 win.  Well done to the team of 7 boys and 3 girls, from S2 and S3: their performance against teams from larger schools who play regularly was excellent.  Thanks to Kim Watson (S6) for her support and encouragement on the day and Mrs Hildrey for her coaching.

The Marriage of Figaro – The new ‘Culture Club’ visited Eden Court on the 4th November to see an evening performance by Scottish Opera.  Everyone involved enjoyed the spectacle – thanks to Ms Gulliver for arranging this thrilling evening.

Important DatesClick here.

Malawi Report – The report by Mr Hulme of his visit to Malawi with Dr Caley to visit our link school in Dedza is available here on our new GLOBAL LINK area of the website.

Grand Opening of the new Community Climbing Wall – this Saturday in the Leisure Centre 11am onwards!  Official opening at 12noon.  See how it has come along by watching the slide show here…