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HT Blog – 20 November 2019

The 1st of November was the Feast of All Saints and Fr Ness was in the school to celebrate two Masses for us. This also marked the start of the month when we remember those who have gone before us and we have been very fortunate that Fr Ness has been undertaking a number of November Services with some of our classes.

Our Social Subjects department organised a trip for about half of our S2 pupils to Bannockburn. There were presentations, visits to the battle room, Bruce Monument and even a bit of dressing up. This was a very successful trip enjoyed by the pupils.

Our performing Arts department went on their annual trip to London recently. They packed loads into their short stay with activities including ice skating, visits to Harrods, the Natural History Museum, Madam Tussaud’s, the London Eye and they also went to see the show ‘School of Rock’. Another very successful trip!

The work on our 3G Pitch is now underway and it is great to see progress being made daily. The target date for completion is Friday 6th March 2020 (weather depending!)

As part of staff health and wellbeing we were visited recently by a ‘Know Your Numbers’ bus where staff had the opportunity to get pulse, blood pressure and cholesterol checked. Lots of staff took this opportunity to get checked and as far as I know we are all a fairly health bunch!

11th November was Armisitice Day and we marked this with a 2 minute silence in the school at 11am, followed by a short prayer.

The S3 pupils recently set up a Micro tyco trade Fayre. They worked in groups preparing and setting up their stalls and had a great time. They managed to raise about £430 for the charity Wild Hearts who try to support social change throughout the world. One of their main projects is to provide start up loans to small businesses. Hopefully the 6 weeks spent by the pupils learning about Wild Hearts and planning their business venture, they have also developed an understanding that business can be a force for positive social change. (Below is a small selection of the many groups that took part)

 

A reminder that our Christmas Fair takes place on Wednesday 27th November 5.30-8.30pm. We have lots of stalls so please come along and support this this year.

Forthcoming Events

  • 16th – 30th November – Catholic Education fortnight
  • Thursday 21st November – S1 Parents’ Evening
  • Tuesday 26th November – Annual Education Mass
  • Wednesday 27th November – OLHS Christmas Fair
  • Thursday 28th November – Annual OLHS War Memorial Mass
  • Thursday 5th December – S5/6 Parents’ Evening
  • Friday 6th December – start of the S4 Prelims
  • Monday 9th and Tuesday 10th December – NLC Schools’ Music Groups Concert
  • Wednesday 11th December – OLHS Christmas Concert
  • Thursday 12th December – Senior Citizens’ Party
  • Monday 16th December – S1 – 3 Ceilidh
  • Tuesday 17th December – S4 – 6 Ceilidh
  • Thursday 19th December – School closes at 2.30pm for Christmas break
  • Monday 6th January – School reopens.

HT Blog – 31st October 2019

OLHS Mission: Growing together, achieving together with Christ at our centre

Before the October beak all S1 pupils were involved in a relay race in the hall. They had a great time and it was so good to see the pupils so enthusiastic doing their Maths tasks.


Once again this year we have a number of S6 pupils taking part in the Caritas Award. They recently joined other Caritas participants from across the diocese at a Commissioning Service in the Cathedral. This is a fantastic award and as part of it pupils will be doing volunteer hours both in the school and in their parishes.


Before and after the October week groups of S4 pupils were out on work experience. The pupils I have spoken to had a great time and the reports back from employers have been overwhelmingly positive. This is a great opportunity for the pupils and I have to offer a huge thanks to Mr Smith for coordinating all the work experience. And thank you all those employers who took our young people in and looked after them so well.

At a recent staff meeting we spent some time talking about the document’ How good is OUR school’. This document will help us involve the pupils in self-evaluation and school improvement in the school and ensure their voice is being heard.


We have a great transition programme in the school for pupils who will be coming to Our Lady’s. The latest part of that programme involved the Primary 7 pupils visiting us for the day and following a timetable. The pupils had a great time and they are looking forward to coming back for their two induction days in May and then starting with us in August 2020.


Each year we are lucky to have someone visit the school from the Gideons to talk to the S1 pupils. They will give an insight into the work of the Gideons and every pupil is presented with their own Gideon Bible.


This week the Maths and the English department organised an information evening for the parents of S1 pupil, ‘Support your child in High School’. The evening consisted of a short introduction followed by 4 workshops on literacy and numeracy, explaining what the school is doing, how tasks are completed and how they can help. It was great evening and parents seemed to get a great deal out of it.


Each year S6 pupils organise Halloween Disco for our S1 pupils. This took place once again this year, thanks to our S6 pupils who not only organised it but rallied round and ensured enough tickets were sold when there was a threat that it may not run due to numbers. It was a great night and pupils thoroughly enjoyed themselves. They were all looking fantastic and had obviously made a great effort with their costumes.


We continue to promote our new Mission, Values and Aims in the school. We now have the values added to our front doors for everyone to see when they come in. We also have boards to be put up around the school to promote these – pictures to follow once they are put up!

Just a reminder that the Christmas Fayre will take place from 5.30 – 8.30pm on Wednesday 27th November. Please come along and support this event.

Forthcoming Event

  • Friday 1st November – Feast of All Saints
  • Monday 4th November – Parent Council meeting
  • Tuesday 5th November – S2 Bannockburn Trip
  • 16th – 30th November – Catholic Education fortnight
  • 18th & 19th November – Inservice Days (Pupil Holidays)
  • Thursday 21st November – S1 Parents’ Evening
  • Tuesday 26th November – Annual Education Mass
  • Wednesday 27th November – OLHS Christmas Fayre
  • Thursday 28th November – Annual OLHS War Memorial Mass
  • Thursday 5th December – S5/6 Parents’ Evening
  • Friday 6th December – start of the S4 Prelims

HT Blog – 9th October 2019

As part of the fundraising efforts in the school, we support St Andrew’s Hospice in various events throughout the year. Recently some staff and a number of pupils took part in the annual 6K school race round Strathclyde Park. It is wonderful to be part of such a great event and to be able to raise money for such a worthy cause at the same time.

Other fundraising activities so far this year have included a ‘Soak the Sixth Year’ and ‘Soak the Teacher’. For some strange reason, the ‘Soak the Teacher’ managed to bring in a lot more interest! Many thanks to the the pupils who organised these events and for those who braved the cold and the water to take part in the events.

As you know last year we did a fair amount of work in re-visiting our Mission, Values and Aims. This year our focus is to raise the awareness of these both through the physical environment of the school and through assemblies. We have a new banner for the front of the school with our Mission, Values and aims displayed and we are in the process of getting other displays for around the school. Our assemblies recently focused on one of our values, ‘Promote the Common Good’. We will continue to have a focus on each of the values as we gather at assemblies.

Following the publicity before the summer holidays about an upgrade to our pitch we are delighted to hear that things are starting to move along with this, with a start of the start of been given November for the work to begin. We are really forward to having this facility for both activities in the PE department and after school teams and extra-curricular activities. The PE department continue to offer clubs at lunchtime and after school (see photo) and it is great to see many of our young people taking part. We also have many teams representing the schools at football and netball and we hope that when the new pitch opens this will be utilised fully for the benefit of many pupils.

 

As part of the North Lanarkshire’s Read to Succeed initiative we had an author, Danny Weston, visit several weeks ago and speak to all of S1. An author visit like this happened across all schools in North Lanarkshire and the follow up to this was a visit to St Ambrose HS by 10 pupils in S1 along with many across the authority, for a session which included an inspirational talk by author Dan Freedman.

We recently had our Parent Council AGM and were delighted to see so many come along to support the work of our school. Our S4 pupils are out on work experience either this week or the week after the October break. Thanks to Mr Smith for coordinating this and to those families, friends, businesses and members of the wider community who have supported the young people in their pursuit of a suitable placement. Mr Lang and I have been out recently to visit the parents and pupils of our P7 pupils in order to give them information about the school and the transition process in particular. We look forward to welcoming the pupils to the school on 24th October for the next part of that transition programme.

As October week approaches, I would like to thank you all for your support of the school in those 9 weeks since we came back after the summer.

Forthcoming Events


Monday 14th – 18th October – October Week Holiday
Monday 21st – Friday 25th October – 4M & 4S Work Experience
Thursday 24th October – P7 Transition Day
Wednesday 30th October – S1 & S6 Halloween Disco
Friday 1st November – Feast of All Saints
Monday 4th November – Parent Council meeting
Tuesday 5th November – S2 Bannockburn Trip
16th – 30th November – Catholic Education fortnight
Thursday 21st November – S1 Parents’ Evening
Tuesday 26th November – Annual Education Mass
Wednesday 27th November – OLHS Christmas Fayre
Thursday 28th November – Annual OLHS War Memorial Mass

HT Blog – 13th September 2019

OLHS Mission: Growing together, achieving together with Christ at our centre

Our UCAS Information evening took place for parents of S5/6 pupils looking to apply for University entry in September 2020. Mr McVeagh led the evening, which was to give information on the process in the school and key information about the application process and expectations of, for example, a personal statement.


Our Feast Day is now celebrated around the time of Our Lady’s Birthday (8th September). Therefore, all the pupils were off timetable last Friday to mark this wonderful occasion. It started off with a lesson and this was then followed by Mass celebrated by Bishop Toal and concelebrated by some of our local priests. We were also joined by a number of invited guests. In the afternoon S1 enjoyed activities in the PE department and there was a film or a Talent Show for the other pupils. It was a great day and my thanks goes to those staff and pupils who helped organise the various events throughout the day.


As part of the authority’s Read to Succeed initiative we were delighted to welcome author Philip aveney (aka Danny Weston) to the school to speak with the S1 pupils.  Pupils had a great afternoon and were all keen to get an autograph afterwards.


Another great event in the school’s calendar took place with the Senior Awards Ceremony. This is a lovely event to celebrate the successes of last year’s S4/5/6 pupils. We were delighted to welcome former pupil Rosemary Guinnane QC as our guest speaker and thank her for coming along to speak to our young people and present the awards.

We have a group in the school already working hard to organise the Christmas Fayre. This will take place in the school on Wednesday 27th November from 5.30 – 8.30pm. Get the date in the diary!

I would like to draw your attention to the National Parent Gathering on Saturday 21st September 2019. This event is the only national event for parents with children in Catholic schools and aims to support them as the first educators of their children. The day will include activities for children, so that child care is not an obstacle to attending. The event will take place from 9.30-3pm in St Francis Xavier Primary School in Falkirk. Lunch will be provided. Places are free but need to be booked by phoning 0141 556 4727.

Forthcoming Events

 

 

 

 

Friday 27th & Monday 30th September – September weekend holidays.
Tuesday 1st October – P7 Information Evening in St Bernadette’s PS, 6pm.
Monday 7th October – Parent Council AGM, 7pm.
Tuesday 8th October – P7 Information Evening in Cathedral PS, 6pm.
Wednesday 9th October – P7 Information Evening in St Brendan’s, 6pm.
Thursday 10th October – Caritas Commissioning Service in Cathedral, 7pm.
Monday 7th – Friday 11th October – 4A & 4C Work Experience
Monday 14th – 18th October – October Week Holiday
Monday 21st – Friday 25th October – 4M & 4S Work Experience

HT Blog – 27 August 2019

Welcome to the first blog of session 2019/20. It has been a smooth start to term and we are delighted with the way that pupils have settled back into school life so quickly. A particular welcome to our new S1 pupils who have also settled in well and making a good impression on their teachers.

On 6th August pupils from last year’s S4/5/6 received their SQA results. Congratulations go to so many of them who performed really well. Once again, as a school, we were delighted with how well the pupils got on and I would like to take this opportunity to thank the parents and teachers who supported and challenged them throughout the year. Following the results a large number of pupils came to the school to review their options for the session and had a chance to do this with members of the Senior Leadership Team who took the time to come in during the holidays – many thanks to them.

For the first time in a few years we were back at school with the pupils to celebrate the Feast of the Assumption. Thanks to Fr Ness who came along and celebrated two Masses in the school for us. Again the pupils conducted themselves in an exemplary manner.

We held our first assemblies of the year last week and one of the focuses for these were the new Mission, Values and Aims. These were created last session by a group of staff led by Mr Lang and in consultation with pupils, parents and other partners of the school.

Mission:
* Growing together, achieving together with Christ at our centre

Values:
* Promote the Common Good
* Foster Relationships
* Leaders of Faith
* Love in all things

Aims:
* To embed the Catholic faith across all aspects of the school community, allowing opportunities for faith into action.
* To foster a community where everyone’s values, views and diversity are respected in a supportive and positively challenging environment.
* To provide the highest possible quality of learning and teaching where we foster high aspirations and determination in our students, and encourage them to be high achievers in all aspects of their learning.
* To build a sense of achievement where pupils will learn the lifelong skills to help them both now and for the future, to assist with the transition to an appropriate and positive destination.
* To help our pupils realise the dignity of work, that work is integral to our human nature and should be for the benefit of all, not the few.
* To recognise and promote the talents of all our pupils and provide a curriculum that meets the needs of all our learners.
* To promote and sustain the wellbeing of all members of our community.

We will continue to promote the new Mission, Values and Aims of the school in the community throughout the year.

Only two weeks in and we had our first group of pupils out on a trip. Our librarian Ms MacFadyen and former PT English Mrs Millar took pupils to the Book Festival taking place in Edinburgh. This was a very successful trip and thoroughly enjoyed by those lucky enough to go along.

The annual Vocations Mass for Motherwell Diocese took place on Monday 26th August. This was a lovely Mass and staff and a number of Caritas pupils from Our Lady’s joined many other staff, pupils and others from across the diocese. We have almost 30 pupils embarking on the Caritas Awards this year and we look forward to working with them on what has always been a great experience.

There has been an update to the school app recently. If you already have this downloaded you will be prompted to update this next time you go in. If you do not have the app yet, search for ‘School App for Parents’ in the App Store and once downloaded, do a search for Our Lady’s High School, Motherwell. If you turn the notifications on then you will receive a notification if we send out messages about events that are coming up or other issues, eg. School closures due to snow (hopefully not!)

Finally, our first Parent Council meeting of the year takes place at 7pm on Monday 2nd September in the school. We are always happy for new members so please come along and join us.

Forthcoming Events

  • Thursday 29th August – UCAS Information Evening.
  • Friday 30th August – Mass for the reception of the relics of St Therese of Lisieux.
  • Monday 2nd September – Parent Council Meeting 7pm.
  • Friday 6th September – Patronal Feast Day Celebrations.
  • Monday 9th September – HT meetings with PTs begin.
  • Monday 9th, Tuesday 10th & Wednesday 11th September – School Photographs.
  • Thursday 12th September – Senior awards Ceremony, 7pm.
  • Friday 27th & Monday 30th September – September weekend holidays.

HT Blog – 25 June 2019

Welcome to the final blog of session 2018/19.  There have been a number of activities over the last month which has kept both pupils and staff very busy.

Sports day took place for S1-3 pupils. It was a bit different to our usual day this year with activities such as Football, Netball/Basketball, Dodgeball, Softball and Dance all being included. Fantastic effort by all who competed and helped their teams!  We hope to be able to go back to our usual sports day athletics activities next year.

The annual trip to York took place again recently with up to 40 pupils taking part in what was once again a very successful trip. Amongst other things there was a bus tour, visits to York Minster, Flamingo Land, York Dungeon and a ghost walk. Plenty to keep everyone busy!


This year we had around 30 pupils achieve their Caritas award which involved pupils volunteered to serve their local communities particularly in local parishes. This was recognised in a ceremony in the Hydro in Glasgow with many of the Bishops in Scotland present and this year with Depute First Minister John Swinney as guest speaker. Congratulation to all our pupils!

We have recently got a new chaplain in the school as Fr McPhail has moved on at the monument to take care of a Parish in Airdrie. We welcomed Fr Owen Ness to the school and were delighted that he had the opportunity to say Mass for all our S1/2/3 pupils so early after starting, to celebrate Ascension Thursday.

Both S1 and senior pupils have been involved in fundraising for St Andrew’s Hospice. S1 pupils took part in their annual walk up Tinto Hill while some of our senior pupils had a bit further to walk as they took on Ben Nevis. Well done to all the staff and pupils who took part and thanks to all of you who have supported them with sponsorship to raise money for a very worthy cause.

We are now in the process of getting a new sports pitch which will really enhance the outdoor facilities we have in the school. The decision was made for the pitch to be named after former pupil Billy McNeill who sadly passed away recently. We were delighted to get a bit of publicity with this when we were joined by Billy’s wife and daughter to mark the start of this project. The plan is for the pitch to be completed before the end of the year.  Many thanks to the parent Council who have been campaigning to get these facilities upgraded long before I arrived in the school.

As we get to the end of the year we also get to the end of the transition programme for our P7 pupils who will be starting with is in August. It was lovely to welcome so many of the pupils along with their families to our Welcome Mass that took place before they joined us for two transition days where they followed their timetables that will be in place in August. They were very successful days wand we look forward to the pupils joining us in August.

Over 30 pupils and staff enjoyed a very emotional trip to the battlefields in Belgium and France recently. Part of their trip involved visiting graves and memorials of some of their own relatives. The pupils. They all took part in the ceremony at the men in gate and three of the pupils had the opportunity to lay the wreath for Our Lady’s HS as part of that ceremony.


The S6 prom took place recently at Hamilton Race Course and it was a very successful event. The pupils had put a lot of preparation into this event both beforehand and on the day of the Prom. The high number of staff attending is a great testament to the year group. Well done everyone!


Last week we had 4 excellent performances of the school show ‘Back to the 80s’. The pupils were fantastic and the work and effort put into preparing for this from them as well as the staff has been second to none. It was yet another opportunity to showcase the wonderful talent we have in the school.




We enjoyed our final evening of the year with our Junior Awards Ceremony where we recognised many pupils in S1 – 3 for their outstanding work over the last year.  We were delighted to be joined my Mr Raymond Lunny (former pupil and Assistant Head Teacher in OLHS) and his wife Mary to present the awards to the pupils.  It was a great evening with a fantastic turnout from family and friends as well as staff.  Congratulations to all those pupils receiving awards!

Staffing

We have a number of staff leaving us at the end of the month and some starting with us in August.
Mrs Elaine Miller (PT English) is retiring. Many thanks to Mrs Miller for 22  years in Our Lady’s.

Mr Joe Allan (PT Technical) is also retiring and we also thank him for 19 years service to the school.

Ms Shirras Moir (Geography) is returning to her hometown of St Andrew’s and so will be leaving us at the end of the month.

Mr Danny Hale (Maths) is moving to a post in St. Ninian’s HS in Kirkintilloch.

Mr Alan Shepherd (Chemistry/Science) finishes with after a year covering for Ms Walmsley in the Science department, moving to St Ambrose HS.

New Staff/Appointments
Ms Julie Ann McGhee has been appointed as PT English.

Mrs Nadia Mulrooney has been appointed as PT Technical (presently in Chryston HS).

Ms Jenna Grenhill will joint the Science department (job share with Ms Walmsley).

Ms. Angela McGavin will join the Geography department (job share with Ms Harley)

Ms Nicole McCormack will join the English department as a probationer.

Mr Laurence Cavanagh will join the English to cover a vacancy.

Ms. Katherine O’Donovan will join the Social Subjects department covering for Mrs Woolley.

Mr Hugh McNeill will join the Technical department to cover a vacancy.

Forthcoming Events

  • Friday 28th June – School closes for the summer holidays at 1pm.
  • Tuesday 6th August – Pupils receive SQA results
  • Wednesday 7th August – Opportunity for S5/6 pupils to change options following results
  • Monday 12th & Tuesday 13th August – Staff Inservice Days
  • Tuesday 14th August – Pupils return.

The app has been updated now with most of the important dates for 2019/20. Please download the app where you can access these dates as well as other updates.

I would like to finish by thanking you all for your support of the school over the last year. Once again it has been a very successful and eventful year where, along with day to day teaching and learning, pupils are offered so many different opportunities to engage in other activities. For that I have to thank staff who are so keen to try and give the pupils the best experience they can here in Our Lady’s.

I wish you all a very happy summer with your families.

HT Blog – 20th May 2019

We recently had our uniform evenings in the school where a large number of our P7 and present pupils came along to be fitted for a blazer. We are now using BE Schoolwear and uniform can be ordered online (https://www.border-embroideries.co.uk/schools/our-ladys-high-school.html) or in the shop which is at 304 Main Street in Wishaw.

Well done to our Dance Club who finished overall 3rd in the North Lanarkshire Dance Competition. Special thanks to Olivia and Amy in S6 who put in a huge amount of work preparing the group for the competition. It is fantastic to see our young people taking on leadership roles like this in the school. One of their dances was ‘Battlescars’ which told a story of mental health. They organised for t-shirts to be made naming a different type of mental illness on the front with a helpline phone number on the back. Such a great way of raising awareness of mental health issues at a time when so many are going through these issues. Well done Olivia, Amy and the team.

We were recently visited by the authority for a Validated Self Evaluation (VSE) visit. The team included members of the authority, 2 Secondary HTs and 2 Primary HTs. There were visits to classes and meetings with groups of pupils, staff and parents. The feedback was very positive and any next steps for improvement that were identified are included in our School Improvement Plan for next session. The one thing that was commented on throughout the visit was how impressed they were with the pupils – their uniform, manners, behaviour and the obvious pride they take in the school. Well done – an absolute credit to their families.

On Friday afternoon the annual Champions League Tournament organised by Mrs McNeish and the PE department took place. Once again we were blessed with good weather and a great time was had by all, players and spectators alike. In the end Porto were the team who come out victorious.

Hugh Jackman performed recently in Glasgow and as part of the performance the talented choir Soundsational joined the superstar on stage. Lucy in S4 and our Home School Partnership officer are both part of the choir and had an amazing experience being part of concert at the Hydro. Well done!

Some of our S4 pupils have been busy over the last few weeks taking part in the Titanic project with lots of input form a number of different departments and various visits. They have been to Liberty Steel, Denny Tank Museum and also Mount Stuart House.


Forthcoming Events

Monday 20th May – New Timetable for new S2/3/4
Thursday 23rd May – Sports Day
Friday 24th & Monday 27th May – Holidays
Tuesday 28th May – Caritas awards Ceremony
Tuesday 28th May – York Trip departs
Thursday 30th May – Ascension Thursday
Friday 31st May – Induction day for new S5/6
Saturday 1st June – Battlefield Trip departs
Monday 3rd June – S5/6 timetable begins
Monday 3rd June – Mass of Welcome for P7 pupils
Tuesday 4th & Wednesday 5th June – P7 Induction days
Friday 7th June – S6 Prom (Hamilton Racecourse)
Tuesday 18th – Friday 21st June – School Show, ‘Back to the 80s’
Monday 24th June – Junior Awards Ceremony
Friday 28th June – School closes at 1pm.

HT Blog – 30th April 2019

I hope you all enjoyed a good break and had a Happy and Holy Easter.

We are now back into a routine and SQA exams are well under way. Last Wednesday was the last day for our S4/5/6 pupils before the start of the exams and marked the last day for our S6 pupils. We had the usual shirt signing at the start off the day and then a lovely Mass along with families and and friends celebrated by Fr McPhail. This was followed by a buffet. It was a great end to their time in the school for the pupils and we will certainly miss them about the place. Once the exams are out the way, just the prom to look forward to!


Before the holidays we had a number of pupils take part in the North Lanarkshire Schools Concert in the Glasgow Concert Hall. Once again this was a fabulous evening with so much talent on display. Performing at the concert was the NL Schools Pipe Band who then went on to perform in New York and went viral with a performance in Grand Central station. We were very proud to see two of our own pupils as part of that – Ewan and Mollie. Well done!

On Holy Thursday some S6 pupils joined many parishioners from across the diocese for the Chrism Mass in the Cathedral. We also had 8 of our pupils taking an active role by serving at this Mass.

A number of pupils recently had a great opportunity to head to Manchester for a tour of Old Trafford and to watch the Manchester United vs Manchester City derby. The had a great day and got to watch an exciting game with City beating their rivals 2-0.

Forthcoming Events
Monday 6th May – Holiday
Tuesday 7th May – Inservice day (Holiday for pupils)
Wednesday 8th & Thursday 9th May – Uniform Evenings
Monday 20th May – New Timetable for new S2/3/4
Thursday 23rd May – Sports Day
Friday 24th & Monday 27th May – Holidays
Tuesday 28th May – Caritas awards Ceremony
Tuesday 28th May – York Trip departs
Thursday 30th May – Ascension Thursday
Friday 31st May – Induction day for new S5/6
Saturday 1st June – Battlefield Trip departs
Monday 3rd June – S5/6 timetable begins
Monday 3rd June – Mass of Welcome for P7 pupils
Tuesday 4th & Wednesday 5th June – P7 Induction days
Friday 7th June – S6 Prom (Hamilton Racecourse)
Tuesday 18th – Friday 21st June – School Show, ‘Back to the 80s’
Monday 24th June – Junior Awards Ceremony
Friday 28th June – School closes at 1pm.

HT Blog – 25th March 2019

The 6th March was Ash Wednesday, the start of Lent and Fr McPhail had offered to come into the school and celebrated 3 Masses for all our pupils. Thanks are due to the Caritas pupils who were involved in the distribution of ashes on this day. Thanks also to Fr McPhail who has offered to say Mass daily throughout Lent. The turnout has been excellent and we have been delighted to see some parents and other members of the community present.

Congratulations to Michael in S6 who was recently runner up in in this year’s National Youth Awards in the Youth Worker volunteer of the year category. Well done Michael!

Our Personal Development class in S5/6 led by Mrs Zambonini organised a Careers Fayre for the whole school recently. We had a number of employers, colleges, universities and other providers in attendance and all pupils in the school had the opportunity to come along. Well done to the pupils for a well-organised and interesting event.

Last week was Autism Awareness week and Mrs Maguire organised a number of activities alongside Bothwellpark HS. There was a coffee morning to start of the week, which pupils from Bothwellpark hosted, and visits to PSHE, Science, and PE classes. As always, the highlight of the week was the joint Karaoke that took place on the Wednesday afternoon, with all S1 pupils attending. This was a great afternoon enjoyed by all. Thanks to all those involved in marking this important week.

As part of our School Improvement Plan this year Mrs Wooley has been working hard to ensure the school achieved the Silver Rights Respecting Schools Award. The visit for this took place last Thursday morning and included meetings with some of the SLT, pupils, staff and parents, as well as a tour of the school. We were delighted that at the end of the visit to find out that we received the Silver award. Thanks to all those involved in this process, particularly Mrs Wooley who has been driving this in the school for over a year now.

Despite everything else that is going in the school at the moment all credit is due to the Performing Arts department for pulling together an excellent school concert. Many pupils were involved in entertaining a larger number of parents and families and demonstrating once again the extent of the talent that we have here in Our Lady’s. The next big event will be the show  ‘Back to the 80s’, taking place from 18th – 21st June.

We have had a fair bit of work completed in the school recently. The whole school has been rewired. Corridors and staircases have been painted. A renovation of a set of the pupil toilets is now nearing completion. And hopefully, by the end of 2019, we will have a new 3G pitch. All of these help make the school a better environment for pupils and staff.

Our final Parents’ Evening of 2018/19 took place and we are grateful to the number of S2 parents who came along recently to speak with teachers. Once again, the feedback from parents was very positive.

The SQA exams will be in on 25th April.  Mr McQuillan has been organising arrangements for these and all the exams and timers can be found in our school app.

As we head toward the holidays, I would like to thank you once again for your support of the school. It has been another excellent and very busy term in which pupils and staff have worked hard. Everyone is in need of a break and will hopefully come back refreshed and ready for the final term of session 2018/19.

Forthcoming Events

Friday 29th March – School closes at 2.30pm for the holidays
Monday 15th April  – School reopens.
Friday 19th April & Monday 22nd April  (Good Friday and Easter Monday Holidays)
Wednesday 24th April  – Last day for S4/5/6 before exam leave.
Wednesday 24th April – S6 Leavers Mass
Thursday 25th April  – SQA exams begin.
Monday 29th April – Parent Council meeting
Monday 6th May – Holiday
Tuesday 7th May – Inservice day (Holiday for pupils)
8th & 9th May – Uniform Evenings
20th May – Proposed date for new timetable
Thursday 23rd May – Sports Day
24th & 27th May – Holidays

HT Blog – 5th March 2019

Preparation continues in the school for the SQA exams with only about 7 weeks until the first exams takes place. Over the next few weeks practical exams are taking place in Music, Drama and Hospitality and there are write ups taking place in Social Subjects and Admin & IT. It’s a busy time but the pupils are doing really well so far.

In order to help with the preparation Mr Smith has organised a stress relief programme during S4/5 PSHE over the next few weeks to help pupils relax – these include Yoga, metafit, relaxation in the Nurture room, scavenger hunt in Dalziel Estate, etc… It’s important that pupils get the work/life balance correct at what can be a stressful time and so we are delighted to offer this programme this year.

This is also a busy time when we start to prepare the timetable for the next session, 2019/20. In order to do this we have a number of year groups making Options for the following year. We had an Options information Evening for parents recently to let everyone know what was involved in the process and we were delighted with the numbers that came out on the evening. S2 also had an opportunity to sit down with a careers adviser from SDS to have a discussion about their ideas for the future and the implications that this may have on their choices. Options interviews are well under way now with Pupils Support and SLT meeting individually with pupils.

There are a number of pupils undertaking the Sports Leader award in S5/6, which involves coaching groups of younger pupils. They have recently been involved in working with an S1 class. Well done to all those involved!

We are extremely lucky to have a Library in the school and also a full time librarian. Mrs Macfadyen not only spends a great deal of time working with pupils during interval and lunchtimes but also working with departments across the school. Recent examples of this include:

All S1 Art classes have visited the Library to learn about the World Book Day book token competition, discuss eye catching design and gain inspiration from the fabulous covers on the books around them.

Mrs Millar / Mr Maxwell’s S2 English class are completing their blogs on homelessness: proofreading, adding images, hyperlinks, tags and sources.

Mrs Letham’s S2 Social Subjects class investigated potential suspects in the assassination of President Kennedy and prepared to present their conclusions.

This is an excellent resource in the school and we are grateful to Ms Macfadyen for her support and enthusiasm.

As we move into Lent Fr McPhail our school chaplain has offered to celebrate Mass each day throughout this period of time.  Mass will begin at 8.35am and will be finished for the pupils starting class at 8.55am.  Pupils are encouraged to come along and parents or anyone else in the community are also invited to join us any day they can manage.

Forthcoming Events:

Wednesday 6th March – Ash Wednesday (Masses will be celebrated for all pupils and staff)
Tuesday 12th March – S2 Parents’ Evening (4 – 6pm)
Tuesday 19th March – P7 Open Evening (7pm)
Wednesday 20th March – Careers Fayre (all pupils will have an opportunity to attend this event in the school)
Thursday 21st March – Spring Concert (tickets are on sale from the Performing Arts Department)
Wednesday 27th March – NLC Concert in the Royal Concert Hall
Friday 29th March – School closes at 2.30pm for the Easter break.
Monday 15th April – School reopens.
Friday 19th April & Monday 22nd April (Good Friday and Easter Monday Holidays)
Wednesday 24th April – Last day for S4/5/6 before exam leave.
Thursday 25th April – SQA exams begin.