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16 February 2016 – Focus on Secondary

Dear Parents/Carers

As we move towards our February break, we are celebrating our Day for Change with a superhero twist! Our Heroes for Change have been learning about the 2030 Global Goals – the biggest attempt in the history of the human race to make the world a better place. The nursery and primary pupils have really embraced this opportunity to dress up – and many of our secondary pupils have demonstrated superhuman bravery with some extraordinary outfits! Well done to all!

Looking back

  • S6 pupils led a successful Burns Supper evening in St John’s hall at the end of the January.  This was held in aid of our ‘Playing Successfully Together’ initiative – we are planning to improve our primary playground and the playground of the Recuperare Clinic, Romania.  Thanks to fundraising (and an extremely generous donor) this event raised over £2200.  Thanks to all, especially Mrs Ward for supporting our young people (and Mrs May who made a welcome guest appearance!)
  • Lent has begun – and we were able to mark the start of Lent this year as a whole school community. Many thanks to Mgr Martin, Fr Bogdan and Deacon Len for ensuring that all the children and young people had the opportunity to reflect and receive ashes.
  • Our annual course choice exercise is well underway, with the S2 into S3 choices complete and S4 and S5 pupils currently making their choices.
  • The S2 girls sports comprehensive basketball team (a combination of St John’s and Perth Grammar pupils) played Braes High School in Falkirk in the second stage of the U15 Scottish Cup on Wednesday, 10th of February. The girls beat Braes 31-18 which is a fantastic achievement, especially given that they are an S2 team playing in an S3 league. This takes the girls through to the quarter final of the U15 Scottish Cup and they face Arbroath High School on Wednesday the 16th of March in Arbroath. Best of luck to the team!
  • Skills Development Scotland (you might know them better as the Careers Service) were inspected at St John’s Academy and in other schools a couple of weeks ago. I’m very pleased to say that they received some very positive feedback, and we look forward to reading the full report when it is published.

Looking Ahead

  • We will hold our first Science Festival next week with the support of the Strathearn Festival.  On Monday 22 February and Friday 26 February, the Glasgow Science Centre will be delivering presentations to our pupils. On Monday, S2 pupils will be watching a Body Vision 3D show, P6-7 will be learning about Disgusting Digestion, whilst S3 will be finding out about Zombie Science: the Worst Case Scenario. Senior Science pupils will be invited along to Zombie Science: Genes of the Damned at 7.00pm – this is a community event and admission is free (although space is limited).  On Friday our S1 pupils will be learning about Shape with a Difference, while P4-5 will learn about planets.  There will also be a Royal Society of Biology photographic exhibition in our community library all week.  Thanks to Mrs Kettle and the science department for organising this exciting programme.
  • S5/6 reports will be sent home on Friday 26th February.
  • The S3 into S4 choices take place in March, with the information evening at 5pm on Tuesday 15 March. We look forward to seeing you there.
  • S6 are planning to hold a 24 hour fast on 17 March – they will be giving up all food and staying in the school overnight for SCIAF.  A unique way to celebrate St Patrick’s Day!  We wish them the luck of the Irish – and we hope family and friends will be generous in sponsoring them to complete a very challenging task.
  • The Parents’ Council will be hosting our Easter Fayre on 19 March (10am-1pm) and are looking for help as well as lots of support on the day.  More information can be found here.

Other useful information

  • We have our annual parent questionnaire open until the end of the month. Please take five minutes (honest!) to share your views with us.
  • As we battle with the winter weather, please remember that all pupils should use their lockers for outdoor clothing/footwear and have full uniform during the school day within the building.  If there are any difficulties with this, please contact your child’s Guidance Teacher.
  • We continue to ask parents and carers to drive and park responsibly around the campus.  Please do not drop off and/or collect your child within the turning circle. We also ask for your support around litter which remains a significant issue.  Many of our S1-4 pupils are not playing their part in keeping our environment clean and tidy for everyone to enjoy.  Please encourage your child to be responsible in this.

I hope you enjoy the short break and manage to find some quality time to spend together with your family.  I look forward to seeing everyone again on Monday.

With every good wish,

Seán P Hagney

Headteacher and Campus Leader