Kilmarnock Academy

Keeping you up to date with information and events in Kilmarnock Academy

by Mrs McMurtrie


Four students – Rowan Taylor , Callan Duncan, Natalia Polonowska and Ruby Whitaker – along with two members of staff – Ms E Walker and Ms M Fullerton – took part in a visit to EPA Carvalhais a fantastic school in North East Portugal as part of our Erasmus + project, ‘Sharing European values using Film and Cinema’.



EPA Carvalhais is a very unusual school. Not only does it teach young people the usual school subjects like Maths, Languages, Science and so on but also teaches young people agricultural skills and animal husbandry. Students at EPA can learn to be vintners, cheese makers or olive oil producers. The school rears their own sheep and goats, keeps horses as well as making their own cheese, olive oil and wine all of which they sell in a school shop to the local community.

 Our group were lucky enough to have time to spend exploring Porto for a couple of days before travelling on to the school to meet up with our Erasmus partners. We visited FC Porto football ground and museum, climbed the 240 steps to the top of the Clerigos Tower, wandered along the banks of the Douro River and crossed the iconic Dom Luis Bridge.


We had a fabulous week once we met up with our Erasmus partners from Portugal, Italy, Turkey and Lithuania at the Portuguese school. There was time in the programme to share the work we had been doing at home making the video looking at the social and economic background of our students and the community they live in. Our students had worked with their classmates to research, find data and produce graphs to display the information which they incorporated into their video along with an interview with our head teacher, Mr D Rose.

Our students were involved in Portuguese lessons, sports, dancing and tasting traditional food like ‘Francesinha’. They tried horse riding, cheese making and learnt all about olive oil production.


There was also the opportunity for sightseeing. We visited the beautiful communitarian village, Rio de Onor on the border with Spain, experienced a boat tour along the Douro River to see the wonderful terraced vineyards and visited Braganca Castle and museum.

We also had the great honour of meeting the Mayor of Mirandella, Mr Antonio Branco during our tour of the town. At the Town Hall we were granted permission to take in the view from the mayor’s balcony.


We had a great time in Mirandella, made good friends with our Erasmus partners and are now looking forward to our next opportunity to meet up and share our work in Lithuania in October.

Muito obrigado EPA Carvalhais para sua maravilhosa hospitalidade




by Mrs McMurtrie

Congratulations Mr Neilson-Bell

Great news!

You will want to join me in congratulating Mr Neilson-Bell who was awarded the ‘Excellent Outdoor Teacher Award’ at the East Ayrshire Council O’Factor.

This is due recognition for the commitment he has shown to our young people this session.

I am sure you will agree this is well deserved!

Well done Mr Neilson-Bell!!

Thanks also to Chris Kleppe for accepting the award on Mr Neilson-Bell’s behalf and for representing the school at the event.

by Mrs McMurtrie


Click on the link below to view the May edition of the EALC Kilmarnock Newsletter from Kier Construction with a update on the William Mcllvanney Campus.

EALC MAY EALC Construction Project Community Update

by Mrs McMurtrie


S3, S4 and S5 PUPILS may find this invaluable.

200 healthcare professionals from across Scotland will be volunteering to present and network with students who are interested in:
• Medicine
• Veterinary Medicine
• Nursing & Midwifery
• Dentistry
• Pharmacy
• Biomedical Sciences
• Psychology
at National Medic Mentor Weekend on the 17th and 18th of June taking place at the University of Stirling: 7 different healthcare conferences at the same venue happening on the same day!

Please note that these events are likely to fill up quickly!

It is a highly valuable opportunity for students to network with a variety of healthcare professions, learn about work experience opportunities and how to make a successful application.

Registration is £25 for the Saturday conference and there is an optional UCAS lecture available on Sunday for each specialty. Students can register on the Medic Mentor website and find out more about the events:

All proceeds from the weekend will be used to support our UK’s healthcare students with scholarships, elective bursaries, free training and educational initiatives

National Weekend Scotland Flyer DIversified

by Mrs McMurtrie


Dear Parent/Carer,

As always term two has been an exceptionally busy period for all connected with Kilmarnock Academy. There have been a number of really well attended parental engagement events for both progress feedback and to assist with choices around progression pathways. Our young people have been involved in many curricular and extra-curricular experiences, some of which are included in the newsletter. The Senior Phase pupils in particular have had important preliminary examinations and have been working exceptionally hard, during and after school, in preparing for their SQA examinations. The staff at Kilmarnock Academy have continued to drive forward the school’s improvement agenda whilst supporting every young person in fulfilling their potential. It has been a exhausting but very rewarding term for all.

We continue to develop our partnership with local businesses. This term several S5 pupils have benefitted from a 1-1 business mentor who has acted as an inspiration to the young people to go on and realise their dreams. This has been an excellent initiative which has had fantastic benefits to the young people with some even securing apprenticeships and work experience as a result. In addition, we had over 15 business partners support the S3 Business Awareness Day which was a huge success. Many also assisted in the inter- school Mock Interview programme with several Kilmarnock Academy students finding success. I would like to thank our partners for giving freely of their time and expertise to benefit the young people in our school, it is very much appreciated and we look forward to strengthening our relationship next term.

At Kilmarnock Academy we continue to engage with a range of partners such as Centrestage, YiP World and many more. Vibrant Communities engaged with our young would be voters recently via a series of workshops. This involved all pupils eligible to vote in the forthcoming Scottish Local Elections. The elections are due to take place on the 4th May which as a reminder is an in-service day for staff and day off for those attending school. Please note the school is still open and SQA exams will run as planned.

As ever at this time of year our senior phase pupils are working hard preparing for their National Qualifications. We have provided individualised targeted Supported Study timetables for all pupils as well as individualised Easter School timetables. Pupils continue to be mentored by Guidance staff, as appropriate, and we also aim to run ‘masterclasses’ prior to exams throughout May. There will be a number of exam stress workshops coming up and S4 pupils have benefitted from the Tree of Knowledge motivational sessions recently. If there is any other way you feel we could support your son/ daughter please do not hesitate to get in touch.

Study Leave will start on Monday 1st May with S4 and S5 returning on Monday 5th June. Please note that pupils MUST wear full school uniform when attending school for support and to sit exams – this is for security purposes. All pupils are very welcome to use the school as a place to study should they wish. We wish all our senior phase students the very best of luck.

Broad General Education pupils (S1-3) will change timetable on 2nd May. A reminder that on this date, the school will have no registration therefore placing an added responsibility for young people to attend school on time at 8.50am to avoid disruption to lessons. I look forward to your support with this change which is necessary to prepare us for moving into the new Kilmarnock Academy in 2018.

Finally there are a couple of key staff changes. Mrs Snodgrass has now taken up post as Acting Principal Teacher of Guidance for Scott house and we aim to start a new teacher of Music in May, Miss McKinlay who will take over from Mrs Campbell who will soon start her maternity leave. We are also delighted to inform you that Mr Oates will be continuing with us for the remainder of the session and throughout next year, covering for Mrs Black who is on maternity leave.

All that remains is for me to thank you all for your continued support and wish you an enjoyable Spring break.

David Rose, Head Teacher

by Mrs McMurtrie


Study leave commences at 2.45pm on Friday 28th April. Students should return on Monday 5th June. S4/5 must return on this date as the new timetable will be introduced and the new times of the school day which commences at 8.50 am. Pupils must check class lists which will be displayed on L4 windows to find out where your first period class will be and new timetable will be issued at this class.

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