The run up to Christmas provided the opportunity for the school to come together and celebrate the festive season. This included our annual school concert, S1 and S2 parties, S5/6 Ceilidh along with our informal assembly programme on 19th December. There was also a time for reflection provided by Gaye Taylor and senior students at our “Light” assembly on 17th December.
This term is a hard working term for our students as they make final preparation for the end of year examinations. Our prelims have taken place (12-23rd January), and all year groups receive reports on their progress before the February holidays.
A highly successful snow sports tour has returned from Italy and we are enjoyed our S6 social event, the Scots Evening, which took place on 10.2.15.
The Inservice Day on 5.1.15 provided an opportunity for us to work on some of our priorities:
1. Supporting pupils through group tutor.
2. Behaviour management.
3. Learning and teaching.
4. Curriculum development for the new qualifications.
We have developed a preferred model for the school week following consultation with staff and the Parent Council. The next stage is parental consultation which will take place in the spring term.
We have recently been experiencing some difficulties with regards to heating in the Tower block. Our building provider, Amey, has been working with us to resolve the situation. Actions have been taken to improve the situation, and I have been pleased with the customer focused approach that Amey has taken.
The City of Edinburgh Council has continued to develop proposals for a reorganisation of the way in which services are delivered, with the City being organised into four localities. Each locality will have ownership for all of the services within it and there will be a small team at Directorship level. The initial implementation date is April 2016.
The CATS review (Community Access to Schools) is moving to implementation stage. Next year (2015 – 2016) will be interim year as the management of facilities will move to a community team who will be responsible for the booking of our facilities. There will be consistent charging for facilities across the City and an alignment with the new localities management model.
Lauren Anderson has joined us in Chemistry and we wish Sam Karpa every happiness in her role as full time music teacher at Portobello High School. We are currently recruiting to fill this vacancy along with teachers in Maths and English to cover the maternity leave of Lynsay Sweeney and Kristyn Sharp.
Cath Thomson and Katrina Harris have been appointed as permanent members of staff (Admin and Art/CDT Support). Lyndsay Crawford will be joining the admin team as a permanent member of staff in February and Raymond Mulligan is returning to Firrhill over the coming weeks.
The school was last inspected in 2006 and HMIe will visit during the week 2.3.15 – 6.2.15. We expect to receive our report in April/May.