Lessons From Auschwitz Programme

Two of our S6 pupils, Florence-Rose Cairns and Lauren McCarthy are travelling to Poland today to represent the school as part of the Lessons from Auschwitz programme. The will visit the site of two WW2 Nazi concentration camps with pupils from schools across Scotland. They will share their experience with their fellow pupils on their return.

Wishing them a safe journey and a thought provoking experience.

Numeracy and Mathematics Glossary

http://i.emlfiles1.com/cmpimg/6/6/1/8/2/files/5396162_parentzone_full_colour4.pngThis glossary has been developed for parents and carers of children and young people in the broad general education in Scottish schools. This includes early learning and childcare through to 3rd year in secondary schools. It provides clear definitions of some of the commonly used terms in numeracy and mathematics. It is organised according to Curriculum for Excellence and includes images and diagrams to support the definitions. To access the glossary, please click here.
For news of similar support materials follow us on Twitter and sign up for the our e-bulletins.

Khadija Sarguroh

Many congratulations to Khadija Sarguroh (last year’s S6) who achieved the top marks in Advanced Higher Graphics throughout the whole of Scotland. In recognition of this incredible achievement, the Technology Teachers’ Association have an award to present to Khadija at this years’ annual conference.

S6 Pupil Voluntary Opportunity

Chest Heart and Boutique on Fenwick Road Giffnock is looking for a St Ninian’s S6 volunteer who will volunteer for one year. As well as volunteering the pupils will be trained in working in retail, creating displays, cash handling and meeting targets. As a volunteer pupils will gain a range of skills  that will help them if going on to apply for a job in retail even if this is a part time post while studying at university. For the first 3 to 6 months pupils will learn shop floor, customer service, cash handling, stock replenishment, and then in the latter 6 months pupils will become more involved in the stockroom, and targets, cashing up, and admin. All hours worked voluntary can be submitted for a Saltire award.

Please see Mr Macdonald if you are interested.

School Calendar 2016-17

The School Calendar has been updated to include the following changes:

Duke of Edinburgh Information Evening is now being held on Wednesday 5th October 2016 and not as previously advertised on Tuesday 4th October 2016.

Parent Council Meetings are now being held on Monday 3rd October 2016, Monday 7th November 2016 and Monday5th December 2016.

Parental Involvement – Opportunity to Comment

Review of the Scottish Schools (Parental Involvement) Act 2006
Ten years ago the Scottish Parliament passed a law to ensure that parents can be fully involved in their children’s schooling.  This was to help parents be involved with their child’s education and learning, feel welcomed to take part in the life of the school, and to be encouraged to express their views, on their school and working together with the school.

This review asks for your opinion on the impact, successes and shortfalls of the Scottish Schools (Parental Involvement) Act 2006.  This includes looking at how well schools involve parents in what they do, and finding ideas to develop ways to better involve parents in the life and work of their schools. It is also hoped that it will inspire everyone to look at the most effective way of helping parents support children in Scottish schools.

Today we are launching our Call for Evidence.  A ‘Call for Evidence’ is a way to ask the public what they think,  gather information on what issues exist, and suggest ways of dealing with them.   This call for evidence asks for your views as a parent.  It asks for your opinion on the impact, successes and failings of the Scottish Schools (Parental Involvement) Act 2006.  This includes looking at how well schools involve parents in what they do, and finding ideas to develop ways to better involve parents in the life and work of their schools.

All of the information, including a link to the online survey, and downloadable paper copies can be found here.  The survey will close on October 31st.

If you are a member of your school’s parent council, you can find   designated parent council information and survey here .

You can contact the NPFS on 0131 313 8842 or by emailingreviewteam@npfs.org.uk
If you would like to return your paper copy to us please send them to Review Team, NPFS,  Rosebery House, 9 Haymarket Terrace, Edinburgh, EH12 5EZ
If you would like help completing the questionnaire please get in touch.

copyright © 2014 The National Parent Forum of Scotland, all rights reserved.

Scottish Government Governance Review

Dear Parents & Carers
As you will be aware the Scottish Government launched their Governance Review last week:
Empowering teachers, parents and communities to achieve excellence and equity in education – A governance Review.
This extensive consultation is seeking the views of all involved in Scottish education.   If you wish to respond to the Review then details are attached.
Kind regards
John Docherty

S1 Information Evening

A First Year Information Evening is due to be held on Thursday 29 September 2016. The evening will take the format of a presentation in the forum focussing on the excellent progress of First Year in settling into life in St Ninian’s. This will be followed by individual class presentations from Pastoral Teachers who will focus on a number of areas offering advice on how to support your son/daughter with their studies. The evening concludes with refreshments in the street area as well as an opportunity to attend Eucharistic adoration.

We look forward to welcoming you to this important event.


Year of Mercy

Thank you to Miss Maria McLuskey for coordinating the volunteering programme of S6 pupils and staff offering support for the Glasgow Legion of Mary Wayside Club and Day Centre.

The Centre provides invaluable spiritual and material support for people affected by homelessness or social exclusion. Warm snacks and tea/coffee are provided free. Those attending are offered warm food and non alcoholic drinks. Shaving, showering and foot baths are available and even a free game of Bingo is the own in for some light relief. An Oratory, library and first aid room are also available.

Tuesday 27th September is the Feast of St. Vincent De Paul who gave his life in service to the poor.

May we as a school continue to offer our service to those most in need, particularly during this Year of Mercy.

I have attached an article from Thinking Faith on ‘Jesus and the Homeless’.


Extra-Curricular Programme 2016-17

In St Ninian’s High School we know that friendships that last a lifetime are born on the football field, rehearsing for the school show or celebrating Mass together.  Taking part in extra-curricular activities can also help our young people develop confidence and commitment as well as the skills that they learn.

St Ninian’s provides a first class extra-curricular programme which offers a wide variety of opportunities in areas such as faith, sport, music,  science, languages and volunteering.

In St Ninian’s there is also a culture of promoting leadership in all aspects of school life; often, older pupils leading younger pupils in various activities.  This in turn gives our younger students aspirations to become leaders themselves. Very often pupils’ first experience of leadership is through clubs and trips and these skills will be enhanced and developed throughout their school career.

These opportunities promote the development of the whole child and give our pupils the broadest education possible.

Please see our programme below for this session.

Extra-Curricular Programme 2016-17

New clubs often start throughout the year so keep checking the website and the school Twitter (www.twitter.com/stninianshigh).

Any updates or amendments will be notified on the school website. A permanent copy of the programme can be found on the sidebar on the front page of the website.

UCAS Information Evening (Tuesday 20 September)

UCAS Information Evening
Tuesday 20 September, 7pm in the Lecture Theatre
A UCAS Information Evening will be held on Tuesday 20 September for the parents and pupils who are intending to apply for entry to University this session.
The purpose of this evening is to raise parental awareness of issues linked to the UCAS application and provide some helpful advice regarding the Personal Statement.
The Pastoral Team will work with students to assist their preparation for UCAS.  Parental support and involvement is an essential part of the UCAS Application exercise.
It is vital that parents are made aware of completion deadlines for the different parts of the application process and of the potential mistakes that must be avoided.
At the end of the evening we hope that parents will be in an informed position to help their son or daughter complete their application to the best of their ability, thus improving their chances of a successful offer of a university placement.

Good Advice on Preparing Your Personal Statement

Yet another excellent evening where a number of our parents and former students provided valuable advice to our young people who are considering applying to university to study medicine or dentistry.

One of the key distinguishing features within the application process is the personal statement.

The Sutton Trust is an organisation that promotes social mobility and whose aim is to ensure the most able and disadvantaged young people have access to the best educational and career opportunities.

A particular focus of their work has been to offer valuable guidance to students, parents and teachers, about the personal statement and I have listed 3 recent articles providing advice.

I’m sure you will find them of great value.

Please log on to the Sutton Trust website for further advice


Posted on January 28, 2016

Teachers’ views on what makes a good personal statement can be very different from those of Russell Group university admissions tutors, meaning many young people may not be receiving the advice and guidance they need, according to Making a statement, a new research brief published today by the Sutton Trust. … Read more »

How to write your personal statement

Author: The Guardian

Posted on: June 25, 2016

Liz Lightfoot covered our ‘Making a Statement’ report in a Guardian feature.

Read the full Guardian report here.

The Personal Statement

A report by Dr Steven Jones, University of Manchester, on what students from different social backgrounds put in their UCAS statements. Executive Summary The UCAS personal statement is an important non-academic indicator that many UK universities use as an integral part of their admissions processes. Up to half a million personal statements are written every… Read more »

Once again my deepest thanks to the parents and former students who offered their time, knowledge and experience, providing very helpful and practicable assistance supporting our young people in their application to university.

Saturday Sports Club – 29 October to 10 December 2016

The next block of Saturday Sports Club for Primary 1 to Primary 7 pupils is now available to book.  This is attended by over 100 children every Saturday.

The cost is £50 for a 8 week block. It starts at 9:30am and finishes at 12:00pm.

This is a great opportunity to try a wide variety of sports; improving and developing new skills as well as having lots of fun!  It is also a fantastic induction for the pupils who will eventually attend St Ninian’s High School as pupils.  Though friends who attend other schools are also welcome.

All coaching sessions are run by fully qualified coaches and Physical Education teachers who will provide the ideal environment for children to learn and enjoy themselves safely.

Full details are on the form below which will be delivered to associated primary schools.  You can also print off, complete and send/hand in to the St Ninian’s school office where there will also be copies available for completion.

Saturday Sports Club – October to December 2016

If you have any questions regarding these please contact Mr Fuchs.

Please book early to avoid disappointment!

St Ninian’s October Sports Camp 2016

The fantastic St Ninian’s Sports Camp for P1 to P7 pupils is now running this October holidays!

W/B 17 October 2016. Cost £40 for P1-P3 Camp (10am – 12 noon) and £60 for P4-P7 Camp (10am – 3pm).

This is a great opportunity to try a wide variety of sports; improving and developing new skills as well as having lots of fun!  It is also a fantastic induction for the pupils who will eventually attend St Ninian’s High School as pupils.  Though friends who attend other schools are also welcome.

All coaching sessions are run by fully qualified coaches and Physical Education teachers who will provide the ideal environment for children to learn and enjoy themselves safely. Full details are on the attached leaflet.

St Ninian’s October Sports Camp 2016

Copies of these are also available in the school office and can be filled out in person.

Please book early to avoid disappointment!

If you have any questions regarding these please contact Mr Fuchs (fuchsj1@st-ninians.e-renfrew.sch.uk)

The jobs of the future – and skills you need to get them

Could a robot do your job? Millions of people who didn’t see automation coming will soon find out the painful way. The answer is a resounding yes.

The World Economic Forum’s Future of Jobs study predicts that 5 million jobs will be lost before 2020 as artificial intelligence, robotics, nanotechnology and other socio-economic factors replace the need for human workers.

The good news is that those same technological advances will also create 2.1 million new jobs. But the manual and clerical workers who find themselves out of work are unlikely to have the required skills to compete for the new roles. Most new jobs will be in more specialized areas such as computing, mathematics, architecture and engineering.

New skills for new economies

So what skills should workers be acquiring to make sure they have value as the Fourth Industrial Revolution gathers pace – soft skills like sharing and negotiating will be crucial, social skills such as empathy and cooperation, along with those soft skills, mathematical ability will be enormously beneficial.

Last night we heard this very same message from Margie Taylor, Scotland’s Chief Dental Officer, in a talk she gave to pupils, parents and staff.

This afternoon we heard the same themes from Claire Herriot, producer for Sky Television, on the professional skills and personal qualities required to thrive in today’s workplace.

It was a great pleasure for our young people to hear from two highly talented, enthusiastic, and dedicated professionals working in such demanding work environments. Both illustrated these very skills and qualities in their interaction with our young people.

My thanks to both speakers for taking time out of their very busy schedules to meet our young people and inspire them in their ambition for the future.

S1 Skipathon

The annual S1 Skipathon will take place on Wednesday 21 September. All S1 pupils will participate in the event at the following times:

1A6 – 1A10:  Periods 1, 2 and 3

1A1 – 1A5:  Periods 4, 5 and 6

Good luck to all of the pupils!

Annual Walk For Life

The Life Group’s annual sponsored walk will be taking place on Wednesday 21 September. Funds raised will be used to purchase items for layettes which will be donated to the Life charity.

Participants in this event will be leaving from the forum at the end of the school day and will return to the school for approximately 4.30pm. After the walk there will be a social event for the group involving pizza in the street area and a film in the lecture theatre. This will last until 7.30pm.

Health and Wellbeing Lecture – Thursday 15 September

On Thursday 15 September we held our second Health and Wellbeing Lecture.  We were honoured to have Margie Taylor (Chief Dental Officer for Scotland) be our keynote speaker.

Margie Taylor CBE MSc MBA FDSRCSEd FDSRCPS(Glasg) FFGDP(UK) told how she decided on a career in dentistry having had a terrible fear of the dentist as a young girl and that she was advised to become a librarian as her “handwriting was neat”.  The moral was that all experiences were good, even the bad ones.

She went onto discuss numerous experiences as a young dentist, citing how social deprivation and modern life impacts on the populations oral health and general health.   This led her to complete a business degree and become involved in public health work.  Thanks to Margie’s work tooth decay in children has been on the decline since 2004.

She also answered questions from the audience, some of whom are aspiring dentists.  This gave them the opportunity to learn directly from the leading dentist in the country.

Feedback from parents and pupils was excellent with comments such as “it was inspiring, thank you” and “was very realistic, great speaker.”

Margie using Twitter account @cdo_scotland tweeting this morning “Thank you for the invitation @stninianshigh a truly inspirational school.”

We cannot thank Margie enough for this and she is always welcome at St Ninian’s High School.

You can view Margie’s presentation here:

Margie Taylor Chief Dental Officer Presentation 15.9.16

The Feast of Saint Ninian

Today is the Feast of Saint Ninian, our patronal saint.

Gospel Matthew 9:35-37

Reflection – Courage

Today marks the fifth anniversary of Pope Benedict’s visit to Scotland. When he was with us, the Pope suggested that we look to Saint Ninian for inspiration in living out our faith in the here and now.


Ninian courageously preached the Gospel and his mission church in Galloway became a centre for the first evangelization of this country. That work was later taken up by Saint Mungo, Saint Mirin, Saint Columba and Saint Margaret. Inspired by them, many men and women have laboured over many centuries to hand down the faith to us. At Bellahouston, the Pope encouraged us to be worthy of this great tradition and to allow the exhortation of Saint Paul in the first reading to be our constant inspiration: “Do not lag in zeal, be ardent in spirit, and serve the Lord. Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering and persevere in prayer” (cf. Rom 12:11-12).


Talking about Vocations

Ninian answered God’s call. What holds us back from following that same call? Do we encourage others to follow God’s call in their lives? If not, why not?

Prayer of Intercession

That the Lord of the Harvest may open the hearts of our young people to the possibility of a life in priesthood or religious life.


May all members of our school community – pupils, staff, parents, carers and friends -have a very joyful feast day.

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