S3 Online Parents’ Evening

The S3 Online Parents’ Evening will take place on Wednesday 26th January. A letter with information on how to book appointments was emailed out to parents earlier today, and a paper copy issued to pupils at registration. The system opens for bookings tomorrow – Friday 14th January –  at 6pm, and closes for bookings on Tuesday 25th January at 6pm. Please contact us if you have any queries about this.

Prelim Study Leave

Yesterday afternoon Highland Council advised secondary schools that this year schools can “consider offering study leave to senior phase pupils around the time of the prelim/mock exams”. This helps address the anxiety young people have about how transmittable Omicron is and the associated risk of testing positive during our Prelim diet. It also helps address concerns Head Teachers have about likely staff absence and possible school closures. Based on this, between the 10th and 28th January I am happy to support this opportunity for pupils with Prelim exams who believe it would support their learning and achievement. In reaching your own decision with your child please consider all the following factors:

  • Practical subjects like Music, Art, Drama, Admin and IT, HFT, all Technical subjects, Electronics and Photography really need time with you and the materials of the course and so would very much like you to attend class as often as possible during this three week period.
  • N4 courses do not have a Prelim and will therefore run as usual.
  • ‘Non-practical’ subjects will have online or revision materials available to support your revision and learning.
  • If studying at home you can still email your teacher for support or advice. This is not the same as the remote learning but staff are keen to support your Prelim preparations.
  • If you are in school you are either in an exam or following your timetable.
  • If very few pupils attend a non-practical class on any given day, the teacher may be taken to cover for another absent teacher.
  • This is not an “all or nothing” offer- you can attend school some days, attend for exams some days and work from home other days.

In order to support this opportunity, online registration will be available to S4-6 pupils. If you wish to study from home then please complete the online registration through your Year Group Google Classroom by 9.00 each day. Pupils will receive or have recently received an invitation to this classroom through their school email account.

New Term – January 2022

Please see the letter below for parents, carers and pupils, outlining arrangements for the start of the new term on 6th January 2022.

Email from Dr Vance, Head Teacher

Dr Vance has emailed all parents / carers this morning with an important update, as below:

I wish you and yours all the best for the festive season- stay warm, stay safe please. I was planning an end of term update but that seems foolhardy at the minute with a rapidly changing picture. Instead what I can say is that from this afternoon I am going to take a break until after Hogmanay but will be back at work ahead of the new term and will confirm arrangements for the coming term via email and the website by 5th January. The only thing that I do want to confirm at this stage is that if schools reopen in January we will be going ahead with our Prelim diet for S4-6 pupils which is due to start on 10th January. All pupils have their timetable and we are currently revising the rooming arrangements in light of the recent guidance so will publish the final version on the first day pupils return to school- Thursday 6th January. We also have a contingency plan in case the return to school is delayed.

Today came very close to being a partial or total school closure and when we were taking a decision about whether to open or in what form I did realise that we have not been very public about how difficult it has been some days with high staff absence. So far there has only been one day when we had to close to S4-6 but if the current predicted levels come to pass in January and the Scottish Government’s commitment to schools being open remains, there will be more days like this in January and February. If we can open for some pupils I will alternate between S1-3 pupils and S4-6 pupils attending and advise parents via email and website the afternoon before. Should this happen during the prelims, pupils scheduled to have an exam will still be allowed to attend.

Please accept my thanks for all your support this session- the return of Parents’ Evenings has been a boost for staff and I believe parents and we look forward to meeting with S3-6 parents over the course of January and February- details will be emailed out in good time.

Dr J Vance

S1 and S2 Online Parents’ Evenings

S1 and S2 parents / carers should by now have received an email with a link to a Google form asking for feedback on the recent S1 and S2 Online Parents’ Evenings. The form can also be accessed below.

Lateral Flow Testing for Covid-19

In order to support the Government’s wish that we all test more often over the festive season we are giving all pupils the opportunity to collect COVID-19 test kits. I have enough to give every pupil one of the new style of test kits but I also have enough stock to offer pupils some of the test kits currently in use.

I am aware that many of you may have your own supplies and in that case please advise your child that they need take no action. However, if it would be helpful for your child to have a supply for the holidays and the return to school in January, these will be available on Thursday of this week.

The arrangements are as follows and pupils will be reminded by class teachers on the day. Pupils have been advised of the specific location and timing.

Block 1- any S3 pupil who wishes to collect kits will be invited to do so.

Block 2- any S4 pupil who wishes to collect kits will be invited to do so.

Block 3- any S5/6 pupil who wishes to collect kits will be invited to do so.

Block 6 (after lunch)- any S1 pupil who wishes to collect kits will be invited to do so.

Block 7 – any S2 pupil who wishes to collect kits will be invited to do so.

As you can see in the attached parental letter, the Government have reduced the need for formal consent and it is implied if a young person collects kits that consent has been given- please discuss this with your child ahead of Thursday.

Celebrating Achievements

As part of our Promoting Positive Relationships policy, we are always keen to celebrate pupil achievements both within and out with school. If your child is involved in an extra-curricular activity out of school, or they are a volunteer, we would like to hear about it and acknowledge this. Sometimes these achievements can contribute to qualifications too. Please email us using the schools’ generic email. Thank you.

Not only does celebrating success feel good, but it sets us up for future success.

Prelims 2022

Prelims for pupils in S4, S5 and S6 begin on January 10th 2022 and will run until Friday 28th January. Pupils and parents/carers can download the prelim timetable below.

Adverse Weather Guidance

The letter below outlines the schools’ arrangements during adverse weather. It is the responsibility of parents or carers to decide if a pupil should attempt to travel to school, by transport or on foot, in adverse weather conditions.