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Head Teacher Blog

We’ve reached the end of another exceptionally busy term in the life of the school and pupils have been busy working on a whole range of classroom based and extra curricular activities.  As ever, for senior pupils in the lead up to the national diet of SQA exams, a considerable amount of time has been devoted to internal assessment and assignment elements of courses and staff and young people are to be commended for their commitment in the preparation for examinations.  This year once again we are running an ‘Easter School’ and we have had 133 pupils sign up for a range of classes.  Timetables have been published on the website and on the school app and any pupil not registered yet will still be eligible to attend.

This year our spring break falls outwith the Easter weekend and as such the return to school on Monday 15 April will see us finish on Thursday 18 April and return Tuesday 23 April.

I hope you enjoy reading about some of our activities and achievements this term.

Kind Regards

Head Teacher
Primary Cluster work
Our anticipated transfer roll from primaries this year for August 2019 is 256.  For our cluster schools, there have been a variety of activities over the course of this term including the Maths Challenge, K’Nex challenge and Science Fair as well as a range of sporting activities and events organised by our team of Sports Ambassadors.  All P7 pupils enrolled to transfer to Greenfaulds will be invited along for the 2 day visit scheduled for   Letters have been prepared for all P7s inviting them to the 2 day visit, which this session is scheduled for Thursday 30 and Friday 31 May.  As in previous years, a school meal will be provided for each pupil free of charge, funded by the local authority.
SQA Exams
The official diet of exams for 201 begins on Thursday 25 April.  Those pupils eligible for study leave – ie S4-S6 pupils who have at least one external exam paper – will finish school on Wednesday 24 April and return to school on Monday.  The period of study leave extends until Monday 3 June when the new timetable begins.  Those pupils in S4 who are currently not involved in any external exams have the opportunity to undertake work experience or taster sessions in a whole range of subjects at college.
Sporting Achievements
We are immensely proud of the range of sporting activities, both as part of the school and as individual external opportunities, which our young people take part in.  The PE department actively encourage young people to share successes through the departments Instagram page, which is then re-tweeted through the school’s Twitter account.  An impressive list this session – though by no means exhaustive is:

Giant Heptathlon

S1 team. 3rd in NLC Championships

S2 team. 1st in NLC Championships

S2 team winners of regional heat.

S2 team 3rd overall nationally

Volleyball

S1 boys’ team 2nd in regional festival

Aiden Peebles (S5) & Alyesha Akhtar (S4) invited-to train with Scotland young senior team

Gymnastics

Ethan Cunningham            1st in Scottish Tumble Championships.

Ms Davidson                         2 gold a silver & a bronze at the adult British                                                            championships (teacher success too!)

Athletics

Hannah Wallace      Bronze in hurdles (indoor championships)

Amy Kennedy           Silver in shot put

Ethan Cunningham            Bronze in hurdles

Tae Kwon Do

Iona Masterson        Silver in sparring

Sian Sinclair                Gold in sparring & Bronze for patterns

Stephen Marshall    Bronze in sparring                                                                          (All at a competition held in Poland)

Eco-School activities – COP24.5 Climate Change Conference

On Wednesday 20th March Greenfaulds hosted a UN style climate change conference simulation named ‘COP24.5’ (after 2018’s ‘COP24’ global climate summit in Poland). The conference was run by Eco Schools Scotland, Keep Scotland Beautiful and the Royal Meteorological Society and involved Eco School groups from across Scotland including Hillhead HS, Strathallan School, Lornshill HS, St Andrews RC Secondary, Carntyne and our own Greenfaulds Eco Group.

Our Eco Captains Fraser Menzies and Diane Tennant, S6, kicked off the conference by sharing the vision and activities of the GHS Eco Group so far this year with the other delegates. Activities have included a whole school Environmental Photography competition (won by the very talented Hannah Russell in S3); the setting up of social media accounts to raise our profile; the completion of our Environmental Review and Target setting; beginning our Eco noticeboard; completion of a Carbon Literacy Workshop; negotiations with the canteen to begin a Meatless Monday campaign; and our Carpool Karaoke initiative! The other delegates particularly enjoyed Mr Bowie and Mr Kielty’s rendition of ‘I Wish it Could be Christmas!’ which received a round of applause!

Following this, climate change negotiations began with pupils representing various countries that contribute to and/or are affected by climate change. Pupils were provided with data sets, facts and figures about their country – such as it’s economy, it’s environment, climate and hazards and it’s population – in order to inform their pledges to reduce climate change to 2 degrees by 2050 and help them negotiate pledges with the other countries. The negotiations transpired into a bit of a heated debate and much like real world politics, an agreement that satisfied everyone could not be met. The US, Russia and China wouldn’t budge on their pledges much to the dismay of the other countries that were trying to convince them to do so. All pupils performed brilliantly!

 Musical Successes

 Battle of the Bands

Our entry in this year’s NLC Battle of the Bands competition was ‘Bright Ideas’, comprising:

Jack Hamilton – Vocals

Harry Govan – Drum Kit

Owen Breingan – Guitar

Finlay Hutchison – Guitar

Lewis Brooks – Bass Guitar

One of fourteen bands competing from across all of NLC secondary schools, the band’s performance on the night was first class. Although not on the prize list this time, I suspect we’ll be hearing very much more of them in the future!

NLC Music Groups

Twenty two young musicians from Greenfaulds took park in the annual spring concert covering all ranges of music available in NLC schools.  The concert this year was attended by John Swinney, Deputy First Minister, and the standard of performances on the evening was amazing.  A huge congratulations to the young people who took part – the standards clearly testament to the commitment and talent of our young people.

NLC Schools’ Pipe Band

William Paul, S5 will be part of the pipe band trip to New York, where they have been invited to play in the Tartan Day parade.  We wish William well and are delighted he is flying the flag for Greenfaulds in this experience of a lifetime.  The parade takes place on Saturday 6 April and this year’s Grand Marshal leader of the parade is none other than Billy Connolly!

Youth Philanthropy Initiative (YPI)

Our annual YPI event is up and running with all of S2 becoming involved in finding out about local charities and working with them in the hope of securing the £3000 prize fund for the chosen charity.  Each class will nominate a group to go through to the finals, held here in Greenfaulds at the beginning of June.  Good luck to all of our pupils and may the best presentation win!

Art work unveiling at the General Teaching Council for Scotland

We were delighted to attend the official unveiling of the Art Work produced by our young people commissioned by the General Teaching Council for Scotland.  The work was created in 2016, but due to major refurbishment works at GTCS headquarters in Edinburgh, the work is only now on display.  The pupils and staff were invited through to see the artwork as a feature on the wall in the main foyer of the building.  The values of the GTCS –

Trust and Respect

Sustainability

Professionalism

Integrity

Fairness

were the only design brief presented to our young designers, and using a range of techniques and materials, the plaque was created.  Pupils were also treated to a tour of the building and an information session on the work of the GTCS.

Uniform

As expected over the winter months, a significant number of young people abandoned blazers in favour of heavy outdoor jackets, and unfortunately with that the overall standard of dress has slipped.  We look forward to welcoming the return of full school uniform after the spring break.  Uniform sales for next session have been organised with our new supplier Scotcrest. Scotcrest has a shop based in Airdrie, which should make  it easier for parents who cannot attend the in-school uniform sales night to buy directly from the supplier.

 Greenfaulds Awards Ceremony 2019

This year, building on the success of last session’s first whole school awards ceremony, the event will be held again in St Mungo’s Church in the town centre on Tuesday 11 June.  Further details regarding arrangements will follow nearer the time.

Dates for your Diary

Monday 15 April School returns – 8.55am
Friday 19 April Good Friday Holiday
Monday 22 April Easter Monday Holiday
Thursday 25 April First day of SQA exams
Monday 6 May May Day Holiday
Tuesday 7 May In-service Day
Friday 24 May Bank Holiday weekend
Monday 27 May Bank Holiday weekend
Thursday 30 May P7 Visit
Friday 31 May P7 Visit
 

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