Whalsay School

April 17, 2024
by Mrs Irvine

Whalsay School ELC Duty of Candour Report 2023-24

Whalsay School Early Learning & Childcare Duty of Candour Report 2023-24

 All health and social care services in Scotland have a duty of candour. This is a legal requirement which means that when things go wrong and mistakes happen, the people affected understand what has happened, receive an apology, and that organisations learn how to improve for the future.

An important part of this duty is that we provide an annual report about the duty of candour in our services. This short report describes how Whalsay School has operated the duty of candour during the time between 1 April 2023 and 31 March 2024. We hope you find this report useful.

  1. About Whalsay School ELC

Whalsay School ELC is a local authority provided day-care service for children based in Whalsay.  The setting offers 1140 hours per annum to our users during school term time.

  1. How many incidents happened to which the duty of candour applies?

In the last year, there have been no incidents to which the duty of candour applied.

  1. Information about our policies and procedures

Where something has happened that triggers the Duty of Candour, our staff would report this to the Head Teacher, who has responsibility for ensuring that the Duty of Candour procedure is followed. The Head Teacher records the incident and reports as necessary to the Care Inspectorate. Should an incident happen, the Head Teacher and staff would set up a learning review, allowing all staff involved to review what happened and identify learning outcomes and changes for the future.

In any instance of a severe incident we will seek occupational welfare support to help any member of staff who has been affected by a Duty of Candour incident.

In any instance where parents/carers, children or other service users are affected by the duty of candour we have arrangements in place to provide welfare support as necessary.

  1. Other information

If you would like more information about the Duty of Candour please do not hesitate to contact us.

March 19, 2024
by gw19patersonelizabet@glow

Shetland Youth Music Festival 2024

On Monday Primary 6/7 travelled to Lerwick to take part in the Shetland Youth Music Festival.

The children have been preparing two pieces for performance, ‘Patrick’s Reel’ and ‘ Ye Banks and Braes’. The children gave a confident performance and if they were nervous it didn’t show.

Use the link below to see their performance.

Our fiddle players were up next with a group performance of ‘Gunners March’ and ‘Mam Tamar’s Hymn’. A snippet of which can be viewed using the links below.

The piano players were then able to perform their pieces to their judges in the afternoon.

In the afternoon the children got the opportunity to take part in various workshops, such as drumming, scandi fiddle, and electric drums.

The children had a fantastic time and were a credit to the school.

Well done boys and girls.

March 18, 2024
by Mrs Hughson

NHS Shetland Workshop

We were lucky to have a group of nursing and midwifery staff visit today, to promote possible careers in the NHS and provide our S2 and S3 pupils with interactive activities to demonstrate some of the skills and tasks performed regularly by Nursing staff in the Gilbert Bain Hospital

After an introduction about nursing as a possible career pathway, and an outline from each of the nurses on their personal nursing journey , small groups of pupils then rotated around 6 stations where they had the opportunity to try inserting a canula needle , injecting  an eye( into a fake arm and eye !), diabetes monitoring, CPR and checking  blood pressure.

It was especially fine to welcome three of our former pupils back into the school, all now fully qualified nurses.

Thank you to the NHS staff and Emily and Nina from Developing the Young Workforce who organised the event for us.

March 8, 2024
by Miss Irvine

Dynamic Earth

This week Whalsay School welcomed James and Toni from Dynamic Earth. Pupils from P1 to S4 all spent time inside the inflatable Planetarium exploring our Solar System and beyond…

They took their show from Dynamic Earth in Edinburgh sharing interesting facts and amazing images of our planet and the universe.

Teachers also took advantage of their valuable expertise at an after school workshop to get ideas for future collaborative projects in school.

It was a fantastic show and all staff and pupils really enjoyed their visit. Please see some pupil feedback below and photos from the day

Quotes from Secondary pupils:

“It was cool ,exciting and exhilarating. I liked how it related to Shetland … It was very well explained and I wish it could’ve lasted longer … Please come again.”

“We loved it! We found it fascinating, interesting and amazing! … It was space-tastic!”

“It was cool … spectacular … amazing … interesting … The pictures from the James Webb telescope were very clear and fascinating.”

“Learning about all space related things is very interesting … I liked looking at the stars”

“It was really cool, it was fun”

“It was really good”

“Definitely worth them coming all this way”

“I feel like I want to go to the planetarium when I’m sooth now”

“My Favourite bit was the Constellations and Aurora”

“The moving satellites were amazing”

“I loved it when the clouds cleared”

“Amazing pictures from the James Webb telescope”

”It was SO cool, they should definitely come back”

”I found it really interesting and relaxing”

”I really liked the pictures taken from the fancy telescope”

“I really liked when she pressed the button and the clouds cleared from the sky”

“My favourite bit was the dome itself and the really cool door”

“We learned lots of new stuff: eg that its oxygen and nitrogen that gives the different colours in the Aurora”




March 8, 2024
by Miss Irvine

World Book Day

Whalsay School celebrated World Book day yesterday. Nursey and Primary pupils and staff came to school dressed as characters from books. To celebrate we had an assembly in the morning and some classes took part in the BBC Live lesson. We also organised some paired reading sessions between secondary and nursery and lower primary classes for this week and next.



February 22, 2024
by Leona Sandison

Scholastic Book Club 📚

Our new Scholastic Book Club is up and running!

Book Club leaflets have been sent home with Primary pupils they can choose from the latest exciting selection of books.

Go to https://schools.scholastic.co.uk/whalsay/digital-book-club to browse the latest books and order online. For every £1 you spend on this month’s Book Club, our school will earn 20p in Scholastic Rewards.

Please place your order online by Friday 8th March 2024.

Please note – orders are online only, we no longer accept paper orders.

December 22, 2023
by Miss Irvine

End of term

It turned out to be a rather hectic last few days of term!

On Wednesday, Ms Simpson and the primary Christmas choir of 37 pupils went to sing songs to the residents at Fernlea.
We make plans every year to visit Fernlea at Christmas time and this is the first year in a long time that all visits took place.
The bairns sang beautifully and their concert of songs was enjoyed by all. Thank you to Ms Simpson for all her hard work this term in music, it’s been lovely to see and hear the bairns sing this term. Thank you to the Fernlea staff for making us feel so welcome on all of our visits and to Peter for driving the bus.







Thankfully the school was back open today, we didn’t have a dinner last year with the snow closures so pupils and staff have been looking forward to Christmas dinner for a long time! The delicious meal was served by staff to pupils and at the end Robbie from S4 kindly spoke on the pupil’s behalf to thank the staff and most importantly the cooks.

Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas 🎄


December 12, 2023
by Miss Irvine

Visits to Fernlea

Last week a group from the PeerieMakkers went to Fernlea with their ‘socks’ to visit Daycare. The group were escorted by knitting instructors Joan, Anna-Marie and Anne and the bairns spent a short while in morning knitting with the clients. The PeerieMakkers meet on a Tuesday after school and this year have a very healthy 15 members.









Yesterday, Ms Henderson accompanied a number of her fiddle pupils to Fernlea to play some tunes to the residents. The pupils played really well and their performances were enjoyed by all.















We are delighted that we have been able to visit Fernlea this Christmas with pupil groups and thankful to Eunice, Joan, Anne and Anna-Marie for supporting and accompanying the pupils.

To round up our visits to Fernlea this year, Ms Simpson and a Primary choir are planning to visit next Wednesday morning to sing some Christmas songs.


December 12, 2023
by Miss Irvine

Christmas Fair

For Friday Fun this term, parent helpers and a group of secondary pupils from Wider Achievement helped primary classes make Christmas craft items to sell at our Christmas Fair. Pupils made a wide range of items including various tree decorations, tealight lanterns, reindeer dust and hot chocolate cones.

The Christmas Fair took place on Friday 1st December and was very well supported by our parents. We raised over £300 and will go towards buying resources for Friday Fun activities. We would like to thank the parent volunteers, Secondary pupils and everyone who attended the fair.

We will be selling items at the school concerts if anyone wants to buy items there.

November 29, 2023
by Mrs Kerr

Bright sparks enjoy hair-raising topic!

S1 have started their new topic on Electrical Energy.

They explored static electricity by rubbing rods of differing materials using a cloth and seeing what happens when the bring them close to each other.

They also learned how static electricity can make objects move by holding the charged rods to running water, bits of paper, and people’s hair.

There was a hair-raising experience using the Van de Graaff Generator, which we also used to send some foil pastry cases flying!


Exploring the Plasma ball to appreciate Nikola Tesla’s contribution to Electricity!


These rods are made from the same material so the charged rod would spin away from the other charged rod when it was brought close to it.


A hair-raising experience as strands of hair became positively charged when holding onto the Van de Graaff Generator!


Re-enacting the “Wingardium Leviosa” spell from Harry Potter to make the paper levitate using static electricity.


Exploring the effect of static electricity on running water and paper.


Bending a running water stream using static electricity.


Working together to ‘bend’ the water stream in opposite directions.

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