HT Weekly Update: Week-ending Friday 19th April 2024

Friday 19th April 2024

This concise weekly HT Update is generally published every Friday afternoon.   It’s a simple opportunity for you to also feedback/ask questions via the link at the bottom of each Update.  Feedback received, where appropriate, will be responded to and published each Monday on the school website.  

Key messages from this week  

Calendar:  It was lovely to welcome the students back on Tuesday, I hope families enjoyed their time together over the Easter Break.  Significant calendar events next week;  on Monday the 2024 SQA Exam Diet begins;  on Wednesday and Thursday we have Duke of Edinburgh Bronze Award Practice Expeditions;  Friday is our April Dress Down Day.

Staffing:   Goodbye and best wishes to Neil Stewart who leaves us for Newbattle HS next Friday and to Yvonne Chan who leaves us for Saltersgate School on Thursday. We are also delighted to announce the birth of Caroline Brown’s baby: Ruaridh Alistair Brown was on 12th April weighing 8lb 13oz. Mum and baby are both doing well.

SQA 2024:  A number of our students opt to type rather than write their responses during their exams.  A video is available on S4-6 Google Year Group Classrooms showing how to use a digital answer booklet. Students who are typing in exams should watch this to familiarise themselves with the format and how to avoid common problems and issues. Parents/carers can click here if they’d like to view the video.

SQA 2024:  Early next week a timetable of Grade Booster sessions will be shared on Google Classrooms and posted on our website. These will be hosted virtually through subject Google Classrooms and give students the chance to ask last minute questions, get additional feedback or reassurance ahead of exams. Subjects with exams before the official start of study leave, on Monday 29th April,  will organise these opportunities during timetabled classes. 

SQA 2024:  As SQA exams start next week, rooming across the school will be exceptionally tight.  This is to accommodate those students who we can’t fit into the hall or who have bespoke arrangements.  It means some S1/2/3 classes are moved to new rooms.   This will be particularly true next week as students are not yet on exam leave. Today we held Assemblies with S1/2/3 students stressing the importance of responsible behaviours and a mature attitude during this exam period.  Please ask your child about their Assembly and encourage them to show a high level of maturity as they move around the school and patience if their class is not in their normal room.

Fire safety: Due to fire safety regulations and the construction of our new POD outdoor grounds, we have relocated the assembly points for S1 students. Henceforth, the designated assembly points, if the school has a fire/emergency evacuation, will now be situated on the grass near the astro-pitch. 

School Leavers:  Any S4-6 student who is leaving in June needs to return their Chromebook.  They can retain them for the exam period and we understand many will want to do that. After that students need to return their Chromebook to school. Students can bring them in at any time but we’ll have a dedicated return slot on Friday 31 May from 9:30 -11:30am as well. We’ll send a reminders about this. There’s a poster click here to support students in preparing their Chromebook for return.

Lasswade Book Day:  Our Book Day will be held on Thursday 23rd May, save the date.  Last year was a huge success, with staff and students participating in quizzes and treasure hunts, prizes and lots of dressing up!   We are currently planning for more of the same this year. Staff and students are invited to dress up as a character from a book that day, and there will also be activities to participate in both in and out of class. Details to follow over the next few weeks. 

Midlothian School Session Dates, 2025/26 and 2026/27:  Midlothian wants to hear the views of parents/carers on the proposed Midlothian School Session Dates for 2025/26 and 2026/27. Please follow this link to comment on the proposed school sessions dates: click here – and we would welcome your comments on this proposal.  I believe this consultation may be closing on Monday so a weekend activity.   Apologies.  A report on the consultation and the session dates will go to a meeting of the full Council for approval. Once agreed, the final dates will be on Midlothian  website.

Parent/Carer Survey:  Thank you to the almost 300 parents/carers who have completed our survey.  Please click here to access the summary of the responses from our most recent parent/carer survey.  You’ll see, and be able to compare results with two earlier surveys.  We are looking to see greens and yellows in the ‘Positive’ column, and that seems to be the trend when we compare years.   Although the numbers of respondents have declined over the 3 surveys, the response rate is still statistically valid.  Questions 16, 26 and 27 are low due to these often not being relevant. for many parents.  We’ll reflect further through this term as we complete more analysis, including looking at the comments.  We’ll also delve deeper at our next parent Council Meeting

Friday Youth Club:  This poster click here has been placed in all Year Group Google Classrooms 

S1 Social Time: As of Monday it has been agreed that S1 will be allowed to go out in the community during break and lunchtimes. Expectations of them during this time will be reinforced at today’s assembly.

School Uniform:  Please click here to access a leaflet from Borders re their upcoming 20% discount off uniform which opens Monday 22nd April and closes Sunday 19th May.  

If you have any feedback/questions relating to this update please submit them via the link below

Feedback here

Take Care

Campbell Hornell,  Head Teacher

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