The school had a somewhat spooky feel to it as the pupils returned from the October break on Tuesday – the reception area and School Hall have been transformed with a Hallowe’en theme, thanks to our creative team in the art department. Our assemblies this week have focused on one of Knox Academy’s core values: respect. Mr Illingworth outlined the key points in the new East Lothian Anti-Bullying Policy, emphasising the importance of Respect For All. It is important that all members of the school community have a say in what our shared values should be. To that end, we will shortly be carrying out a consultation on our values and we will be asking what really matters to us here at Knox Academy. I do hope many of you will take the opportunity to share your views. This week was an important one for us in terms of the way forward for the school. On Wednesday and Thursday, we had a review visit from members of East Lothian’s Quality Improvement team. The team met with groups of pupils and staff and also observed classes across every faculty. I am delighted to say that we’ve had positive feedback about the direction of travel for the school, testament to the hard work, enthusiasm and commitment of staff and pupils. In the feedback session, my proudest moment was hearing how impressed the review team was with our pupils: the quality of dialogue with our Pupil Learning Team and our S6 Senior Team was excellent. We are certainly privileged to work with such wonderful young people here at Knox Academy. Next week is an unusual week for me as I will be out of school for most of the week. I have been given the opportunity to take part in the Columba 1400 Head Teachers’ Leadership Academy on Skye. The focus of the course is values-based leadership and I am sure what I learn throughout the week will be of great benefit as we begin to explore the Knox Academy values with the school community. I look forward to having time to reflect on my own values, and on my leadership, in the beautiful setting of Staffin in the north of Skye. I will be thinking of everyone back at Knox, though!