June 2021

Published: 25 June 2021

It has been a busy week with the issuing of SQA provisional results to all of our senior pupils. We have also had our Youth and Philanthropy Initiative Final (YPI) and our Head Pupils’ Elections.

We have now reached the final day of term and celebrated this with all of our young people dressing up for the end of our Pride month. Great to see so many colourful outfits around the school!

Our pupils at Knox Academy have been absolutely amazing throughout this turbulent year and we are so glad that we have managed through to the summer term with very little disruption to teaching and learning during Covid-19. All staff and pupils have to be thanked for following the protocols we have had in place to keep the school functioning safely.  Everyone has very much earned their holidays and staff and pupils alike need time away from screens and to spend time with friends and family, socialising again – something we have all very much missed but can enjoy over the coming weeks.

Covid-19 – Summer Holidays

Please note, that even though the school is not open for pupils during the holidays, please report positive cases during this time to covidinschools@eastlothian.gov.uk or if you do not have access to email, telephone 01875 613921. For those young people who have consented to LFD testing, they should continue to do this over the summer and prior to returning to school. Thank you.

Covid-19 Mitigations in Schools

Current news is that all mitigations will remain in place for the start of the new term until we receive further advice from the Scottish Gvt – which should happen during the summer.  I will update the risk assessment for the school at that point and let parents/carers and pupils know any changes to these mitigations prior to starting back on Wednesday 18 August 2021.

Staffing

We are currently advertising for temporary full-time positions in Biology; Pupil Support Worker and ASN Auxiliary.

A very happy retirement to Marion Goodfellow and Hilary Turbayne – our two music instructors who are retiring this year. The very best to you both and thank you very much for many years of service at Knox Academy - teaching our young people and also your commitment to all our musical concerts at school and across ELC.

Howard Barnhurst – History – leaves us to a take up a position at Edinburgh Academy. Howard was one of our amazing NQTS two years ago and was funded this year, to stay on at Knox, by the Scottish Gvt.

A huge thank you to all our amazing probationers:

Sarah Gillies - PE

Jo Donald – HE (staying at Knox Academy as appointed recently to our HE Post)

Claire Williamson – Biology (now moving on to a full-time position at Ross High School)

Aimee Kavak – English – who takes up a permanent post at St Thomas Aquinas in Edinburgh.

All the very best to Montserrat Gomez, at Meadowpark, as she heads back to Spain.

We will be welcoming three new probationers to the school in August in English (Mr Welsh), Psychology (Ms Tkacz) and Ms Fletcher (French).

Parents/Carers Information

Following this week’s manifestos, live question time and voting, the results are in!

Head Pupils - Kaci Smith and Bethany Ross; Depute Head Pupils: Amelia Hockey, Katie Moore and Tom Riddell

We are very proud of all candidates having gone through a rigorous election process which included making campaign videos, writing a manifesto, participating in an interview and the whole school vote. We look forward to seeing the policies that all candidates put forward being put in place next year. Thank you to all of the inspiring candidates and staff who supported the process.

YPI Final

The delayed Knox Academy 2020 YPI Final took place virtually on Tuesday afternoon. YPI is the Youth and Philanthropy Initiative – a programme that allows pupils across Scotland the chance to find out about and get involved in the work of local charities. Every group in S5 took part in a class presentation and the winners of those class finals competed in the final. The charities represented in the final were LGBTYS – Livvie Matthews, Ailsa McCall, Niamh Robertson, Katelyn Scott and Shannon Robertson; Thistle Foundation – Maya Lavender, Heather Mackinnon, Katie Moore and Bethany Ross; Our Community Kitchen – Kirsty Booth, Jen Bagley, Bonnie Barclay and Nina Liddle; Barnardos – Melissa Cuthbertson and Sally Greenshields. The judges on the day were Sue Beattie from YPI, Ms Cook, Craig Hoy, local councillor and MSP, Hannah Wylie, S6 and Hannah Niven, S3. After much discussion, the winning charity was announced as the Thistle Foundation. The winning team will be given a £3,000 grant from YPI to donate to their chosen charity. Well done to everyone who took part.

When the team contacted the Thistle Foundation to let them know they had won the YPI Final and were going to be donating the £3,000 to them, a representative said, “Your team and your school has demonstrated how much you care and that you want to make a difference to the social issues you are passionate about.  £3,000 will go such a long way in doing that with Thistle.  Your efforts will help people living with sometimes some very difficult diagnosis know they will be listened to and supported.  Our support can be life changing in some very desperate times for people – you are making it possible by being interested and donating this incredible amount of money.” (by Robert Flood)

SQA Update/ Appeals

A printed copy of provisional results was provided to pupils on Tuesday 22 June. If pupils were not in school, these have been posted home. This printed copy shows provisional results for any National, Higher and Advanced Higher courses that young people have completed this session. These are the results that young people should expect to find on their SQA certificate on Tuesday 10 August. Only results of completed qualifications will show on the final certificate (those graded on the school report issued on Tuesday). The SQA certificate will also include any unit passes gained, even when pupils have not gained the full qualification. Please note that SQA will only make changes to the provisional result submitted at this stage if there are administrative errors identified.

The provisional results are based on demonstrated attainment through a variety of assessment evidence that has been gathered throughout the year. All provisional results have undergone robust quality assurance processes at school, local authority and national level.   

If young people feel that any of their provisional results are not correct, they can register to appeal directly through the SQA. The registration service will open today (Friday 25 June) and will close on Thursday 12 August. Any appeal registrations and further information can be found by visiting the SQA website.  If young people wish to appeal after this date this can be done through the school - before the 24 August (for priority appeals) and by 27 August, at latest, for all other appeals.

New Timetable

Thank you to staff and pupils for their patience, understanding and cooperation with the switch to the new timetable. There are always some issues with the timetable architecture itself, which is one of the reasons for switching before August, in the hope that these can be ironed out.

There have been a significant number of requests for subject changes. PSLs and DHTs have been working very hard to accommodate as many of these as possible. Not all requests are possible. We would now ask that no further requests are made as we need to have the opportunity for the classes to ‘settle down’ in terms of numbers etc. As a consequence the Google Form that was shared with pupils will not accept any further response at this time.

Any issues that remain in August/ September will be dealt with then (By David Russell, DHT)

Computing Department news

We are delighted to announce that the Computing Science department has been successful in securing funding from Digital Xtra. The project outline is to support our fantastic Computing for Girls+ club to plan, organise and run a robotics transition project for P7 pupils and support the young people at Meadowpark. The funding allows us to purchase Spheros and Marty the Robot which is very exciting indeed and supports the aims of Digital Xtra to Inspire, Enable and Engage.

We have also recently received more exciting news as two of our S6 pupils, Louise and Marilyn, have made it to the finals of the BAFTA young games designers award with their game ‘To Be and Not To Be’. You can find out more about their game and even download it to have a go yourself! Both Louise and Marilyn were instrumental in the Computing for Girls+ club and are also going onto University to study Computing Science, so we are very proud of them both.

Knox Academy's Pride Month LGBT+ Inclusion Celebrations

Craig Hoy, MSP, raised the following motion in the Scottish Parliament: That the Parliament congratulates Knox Academy pupils in Haddington on their Pride Month LGBT+ celebrations; welcomes the efforts by Head Teacher, Sue Cook, teachers, staff and pupils to institute a programme of Pride related activities; further welcomes efforts to promote LGBT+ inclusion in schools, and wishes the school well on its efforts in working towards the silver LGBT Charter.

Huge thank you to Nicola Stobie and LGBT Allies group for leading on this at Knox Academy. Great to have our work in this area recognised at Parliamentary level.

School Uniform

To help parents/carers with planning ahead over the summer for school uniform, please see our updated letter. Senior Uniform (Badges and Blazers) - Blazers are available to order directly from Border Embroideries. Our updated school badge has been commissioned and will be available to order online shortly. (Estimated cost £3.95 per badge).

Get into Summer East Lothian!

Sports, play and free swims… it’s officially time to ‘Get into Summer’ in East Lothian! There are lots of projects running throughout the holiday period giving children and young people the chance to be active, connect with others and enjoy the best that East Lothian has to offer. Examples include football, tennis, rugby and gymnastics events, pop-up play activities, computing camps and free swimming at enjoyLeisure pools.

Find out more about the activities on offer (including eligibility and booking information where appropriate) at:

Dates for you diary:

Monday 16/Tuesday 17 August - School staff resume

Wednesday 18 August - Start of the new term for all pupils (8.25am)

Finally, on behalf of myself and all staff here at Knox Academy, we would like to wish you all a safe, fun and relaxing holiday.  Thank you all very much for your unconditional support throughout the session – a real community approach. You have all been amazing and we are so lucky to have such supportive parents/carers and pupils. Enjoy your time together over the coming weeks and we will very much look forward to seeing all our young people, including our new S1s, back at school on Wednesday 18 August, bright eyed and bushy tailed and ready for learning.

Best wishes

Sue Cook

Please also remember to follow us at: www.ka-net.org.uk for the latest information and updates

Published: 17 June 2021

On Monday 14 June we held a virtual meeting with our P7 Parents/Carers to give them some more information about the school and transition. It was lovely to meet with them all and the young people who tuned in too. We are so looking forward to welcoming all our new S1 pupils in August. Mr Illingworth is producing a FAQs sheet as a result of the meeting and this will be sent to parents/carers and primary schools soon.

Our new timetable started this week and pupils have seemed really enthusiastic and engaged in their new classes and have enjoyed moving up a year group.  These two weeks should allow all pupils to settle in to their new subjects, classes and meet their new teachers prior to the summer holidays. This should make for a smooth start to the new term in August.

Covid-19 Mitigations in Schools (post summer) – there will be an update from the Scottish Government during the summer for the return of schools in August. Any changes to health and safety mitigations for this return will be communicated to parents/carers and pupils prior to starting back on 18 August.

Staffing

We will be welcoming three new probationers to the school in August in English (Mr Welsh), Psychology (Ms Tkacz) and Ms Fletcher (French).

We are also advertising for a temporary position in Biology for session 2021-22.

Pride

On the last day of term, we are going to have a PRIDE dress down day to raise awareness and celebrate the LGBT+ community at Knox and in our community. We are asking each registration class to dress up in the colours of the LGBT+ flag. There will be a prize for the best class. The school has come a long way in being more inclusive and next year we will be working towards the Silver LGBT Charter.

Parents/Carers Information

School Improvement Plan

The full version of our School Improvement Plan is now on our website. 

School Trips and Excursions Session 2021/22

Based on the evidence currently available and lessons learned from the impact of the pandemic on residential school trips, the Council Management Team have taken the decision that no international school visits will be undertaken by ELC schools in the session 2021/2022.  The uncertainty around international travel and public safety; the short term nature of government advice; the inability to arrange pandemic cancellation insurance; and the financial risk to parents given schools need to book so far in advance to make the trips affordable are all factors in this decision.

School Uniform

To help parents/carers with planning ahead over the summer for school uniform, please see our updated letter. Please can I ask parents/carers to support us by not purchasing hooded tops for school, as we have had a no hooded top policy for two years now (see details in the letter). If anyone does need support with kitting our their young person in uniform, we have lots of uniform in school, so please contact your young person’s Pupil Support Leader (Guidance teacher) who can support this. We are keen that all of our young people have an identity with the school. Wearing a uniform also prevents parents/carers having to purchase clothes for their young people that are often very expensive and about keeping up with the latest fashions. We want our uniform to be smart and functional and ‘leisure gear’ to be changed in to after school. Beyond the tie, the uniform can be purchased from anywhere, and this also allows pupils to decide on the style of it. Thank you for your support with this and supporting our approaches to equity too.

Seniors’ Blazers/ Badges

Blazers are available to order directly from Border Embroideries.

Badges are currently being re ordered with the updated Knox Crest- these will be available in the next school session. Further details will follow on this page once we have a clear time line of delivery and costing.

We have a small stock of previously used Blazers (all washed and laundered to reflect COVID safety) but urgently are looking for Girls school blazers if anyone would like to donate they would be greatly appreciated (by Mrs Fraser)

SQA Update/ Appeals and issuing of provision grades

S4-S6 pupils will be issued with a copy of their provisional grades on the afternoon of Tuesday 22 June. Those young people in S6, who have now left school, should pick these up from the office window, in the school vestibule, between 2pm and 4pm on this date, whilst maintaining 2M physical distancing if there is a queue.  Any not collected on this date will be posted home.

By notifying pupils on 22 June of their provisional results, the school is providing them with time to discuss any queries with us before the final submission of their provisional results on Friday 25 June 2021. The provisional results we are giving them is what they should expect to find on their SQA certificate on 10 August. SQA will not change the provisional result we submit and will only check for administrative errors and will resolve these with school if they find any.

Should pupils have any queries regarding their provisional results shared with them today, or wish to appeal any of them, they should arrange to speak to their class teacher for that subject(s) as soon as possible, and before Friday 25 June 2021, when these results will be submitted to SQA.

Head Pupils’ Elections

We have begun the process of electing our pupil leadership team for the 2021/22 session. Our pupil leadership teams have always been great ambassadors for Knox Academy and provided incredible support to fellow pupils, staff, parents and the wider community. When we return to the building after summer, the role of our pupil leaders will be more important than ever in helping our school community adjust to the circumstances and the challenges we will undoubtedly face. As in previous years, we will be electing two Head Pupils and 3 Deputes to lead the pupils of Knox Academy into next session.

The candidates have submitted their manifestos for consideration from a panel which includes pupils and staff and on Monday they will submit their campaign videos which will again be judged and ranked by pupils and staff. We hope to also run a live Question Time next Wednesday which will be an opportunity for pupils and staff to directly speak to the candidates.

The interviews will take place on Monday and Tuesday evening and the whole school vote will be on Thursday 24th June, with voting for staff and pupils closing at 2pm, therefore the successful candidates will be known by the end of next week.

We are very much looking forward to seeing what this year's candidates will have to offer! (Mr Miller)

Youth and Philanthropy Initiative

The final of this will be held on Tuesday 22 June, wherein the five final S5 teams will put forward their case to win £3000 for their charity – which they have worked on researching over the last six months. We have external guests joining us virtually to judge it.

Haddington Athletic Football Club – free summer camps

These are free for all age groups and will take place on the 3G at Whittinghame Drive. Places must be booked ahead of these camps.

5-9 July, 10am – 1pm

19-23 July, 10am-1pm

26 – 30 July, 10am-1pm GIRLS ONLY

2 – 6 August, 10am-1pm

To book a place phone: 07756022558 or email: info@haddingtonathletic.co.uk . Please provide your young person’s name and contact number.

Wider Achievement – Football

Congratulations to Aidan Smith, Murray Bowsher and Tobie Craig who were playing in a Cup Final, last Sunday. The boys play for Haddington Athletic CFC U14s and they won the John Crawford Cup, beating Dalkeith Thistle 2-1 and beating all other teams in the South East Region. This is a fantastic achievement in their first season of 11-aside match. Well done!

Accessing web sites at home using East Lothian Council/School devices (by ELC)

Having been reviewing our security in relation to learning devices used by pupils in our schools I wish to bring the following to your attention. With pupils making good use of Chromebook and other devices that can be attached to any wireless network, it enables them to work normally anywhere there’s a suitable wireless network, not just in school, such as on trips and visits as well as at home. This capability has been a great help over the last year, enabling large numbers of Chromebooks to go home with learners who would otherwise have inadequate computer access.

We’ve had some questions from parents over whether in-school web filtering happens when the devices are used at home. Web filtering is the technology which is designed to block access, as far as these systems can, to inappropriate web content.

When your child uses a device at home, it does not connect via these school/Council filters, so therefore requires the same supervision as any other networked device used in the home. It connects to the internet directly via the home Internet Service Provider (ISP), typically BT, Sky, TalkTalk or Virgin Media. If it’s a home wireless network, it will default to the ISP’s content filtering. If it’s connected via a portable hotspot issued by the Council, it will use another third party web filter, configured to give similar access and protection as the filtering when devices are used in school. If it’s connected via any other portable hotspot, or via a mobile phone hotspot (known as “tethering”) then it will use the phone’s network operator’s filtering.

All the main internet providers in the UK offer their own parental controls which can be used, if appropriate, to prevent age inappropriate content being accessed on any devices in your home.

LFD Testing in school

As Community transmission continues in East Lothian and schools report positive cases of COVID it remains crucial to continue to carry out testing if you have given consent for your young person to be part of this programme (or they have consented themselves if over 16).   This programme is voluntary but recommended.

Kits are available from the school office at any time and Mrs Fraser is present each morning to distribute kits to those who require them at the front of the school entrance hall. Despite nearly being the end of term it is vital that we aim to identify anyone with symptoms at the school and maintain safety of all at the school, as well as supporting our community and keep it safe too. Please also see below the current guidance from ELC;

“Testing continues to play an important role, in and out of schools/settings, in our fight against COVID-19. Staff should continue to test themselves and report results, and are asked to encourage young people in secondary schools to do likewise.” 

If your young person is part of the testing programme please remind them to pick up some more kits from the school prior to leaving for the summer holidays. This will allow them to test prior to returning and during the summer too, should they so wish.

Asymptomatic Testing in East Lothian

If you are asymptomatic, you can also visit a mobile unit in East Lothian to be tested.

COVID-19

Positive Cases: Please report positive cases to the school by phoning us on 01620-823387. Please also report any positive cases to covidinschools@eastlothian.gov.uk or if you do not have access to email, telephone 01875 613921.Thank you.

Please note: Those pupils required to self-isolate as result of contact tracing MUST book a PCR test as per NHS guidelines.

Dates for you diary:

Friday 25 June - End of term

I hope everyone has a lovely weekend when it comes.

Sue Cook

Please also remember to follow us at: www.ka-net.org.uk for the latest information and updates

Published: 11 June 2021

On Monday 7 June we were delighted to be able to welcome the P7s from Haddington, Letham Mains, St Mary’s and Yester Primary Schools.  Each class visited in their ‘class bubble’ and met their House Teams and were taken on a tour of the school, with a ‘Treasure Hunt’ by their Pupil Support Leader.  We have really enjoyed all the online transition meetings – brilliantly planned by the Pupil Learning Team – but it was great to see all the P7s in person.

All parents/carers of P7 pupils have been invited to a virtual information evening on 14 June at either 6pm. or 7pm. and we are very much looking forward to meeting them at this. 

For those pupils who are coming from non-catchment primary school we are in the process of arranging for individual visits before the summer break.

Covid-19 Update

We have received an update from the Scottish Government that asks to retain all current mitigations at present to reduce the transmission of Covid-19 in schools. This decision has been taken in light of the ‘Delta’ variant of concern. The Scottish Gvt will continue to review their guidance in readiness for the start of the new session in August and we will communicate with parents/carers about this prior to the start of the new term.

Staffing

We will be welcoming a number of probationers to the school in August and will give more details in the next few weeks about the subjects these will be in.

Pride

This week we have been celebrating PRIDE at Knox Academy. Throughout registration this week, we have been looking at a range of different things, which include the LGBT+ History, use of pronouns and Trans Rights. On the last day of term, we are going to have a PRIDE dress down day to raise awareness and celebrate the LGBT+ community at Knox and in our community. We are asking each registration class to dress up in the colours of the LGBT+ flag. There will be a prize for the best class. The school has come a long way in being more inclusive and next year we will be working towards the Silver LGBT Charter.

Parents/Carers Information

School Uniform

To help parents/carers with planning ahead over the summer for school uniform, please see our updated letter.

SQA Update/ Appeals and issuing of provision grades

S4-S6 pupils will be issued with a copy of their provisional grades on the afternoon of Tuesday 22 June. Those young people in S6, who have now left school, should pick these up from the office window, in the school vestibule, between 2p.m. and 4p.m. on this date, whilst maintaining 2M physical distancing if there is a queue.  Any not collected on this date will be posted home.

QMU Schools

If your young person is in S5/S6 and is interested in studying any of the health professions then they can sign up to QMU’s online week-long conference on 5 – 9 July! They should email:  stepintohealth@qmu.ac.uk if interested. An email with more details was sent to all S5/6 pupils on Wednesday.

Scottish Youth Parliament Elections

The Scottish Youth Parliament is the democratically elected voice of Scotland’s young people. The next elections will be held in November 2021 and this could be your young person’s opportunity to influence issues that affect children and young people in our country including poverty, mental health, travel, climate change and Covid recovery as an MSYP. Please encourage them to get involved and have their say. Find out more from the Scottish Youth Parliament.

East Lothian Council

A summer hardship fund will be paid to families registered and eligible for free school meals currently  in primary and secondary. The payment is £100 per child. If you are already registered for free school meals no action is required.

Fundraising for CALM

An amazing group of staff at Meadowpark, Knox Academy is walking 26 miles, on Friday 9 July to raise money for the Campaign against living miserably (CALM). This charity focuses on clamping down on the stigma relating to mental health and suicide, particularly in men. With a number of our community affected by mental health the team wanted to raise awareness that there is always someone who can listen and provide support.

The staff team got in touch with CALM and asked where any donations would go. £8 funds a potentially lifesaving phone call, which will be taken by a call taker trained highly in mental health and suicide de-escalation. During lockdown many people felt their mental health getting worse because of the lack of social interactions and CALM was able to support so many people with managing this.  CALM runs a confidential and anonymous phone line service from 5pm. - 12am, 365 days a year, so people can reach out to them anytime for support. 

So far the staff team has received support from the school, Shamin Akthar, Craig Hoy, John McMillan and Lesley Brown, as well as many others. Currently they have raised £2,234, which will be enough to fund an astonishing two hundred and seventy-nine phone calls, which can save lives.  As a team they are keen to highlight that men have mental health issues too and want to promote the importance of the reaching out for support too.  If you wish to find out more about the fundraising the team has been doing, you can do this at: .01 - the username for their Twitter and Instagram pages. If you would like to sponsor them you can do this here.  Thank you for your support of such an amazing charity and a great team here at Knox Academy, Meadowpark.

LFD Testing in school.

As Community transmission continues in East Lothian and schools report positive cases of COVID it remains crucial to continue to carry out testing if you have given consent for your young person to be part of this programme (or they have consented themselves of over 16).   This programme is voluntary but recommended.

Kits are available from the school office at any time and Mrs Fraser is present each morning to distribute kits to those who require them at the front of the school entrance hall. Despite nearly being the end of term it is vital that we aim to identify anyone with symptoms at the school and maintain safety of all at the school, as well as supporting our community and keep it safe too. Please also see below the current guidance from ELC;

“Testing continues to play an important role, in and out of schools/settings, in our fight against COVID-19. Staff should continue to test themselves and report results, and are asked to encourage young people in secondary schools to do likewise.” 

Thank you for your support with this.

Asymptomatic Testing in East Lothian

If you are asymptomatic, you can also visit a mobile unit in East Lothian to be tested.

COVID-19

Positive Cases: Please report positive cases to the school by phoning us on 01620-823387. Please also report any positive cases to covidinschools@eastlothian.gov.uk or if you do not have access to email, telephone 01875 613921.Thank you.

Please note: Please do not send your young person to school if they, or anyone in your household has tested positive or has Covid-19 symptoms – a new continuous cough; fever/high temperature; loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste (anosmia). Please self-isolate and book a test.

Be safe at the beach

We have been asked by water safety to share the following message with parents/carers and pupils now the warm weather has arrived and that the summer holidays are around the corner:

When warm weather arrives the beach is a popular destination for many people however playing or swimming in the sea is not the same as being in an indoor swimming pool. Waves can be great fun but are also unpredictable. Always supervise your young people playing in waves as they can easily lose their balance if struck by a larger wave. Inflatable toys, dinghies or lilos are a well-known hazard – with many incidents of people on inflatables blown out to sea. They are not designed for use in open water and should be restricted to sheltered and confined spaces only such as rock pools.

You might want to enter the sea simply to ‘cool off’ but the water may be much colder than expected. The average sea temperatures in the UK are just 12°C - below 15°C is defined as cold water which can seriously affect your breathing and movement.

Also be aware of tides, and if planning a walk across a beach, check when the incoming tide is expected so you are not cut off.

Finally remain aware of hidden dangers and don’t swim near or dive from rocks or cliff faces. Check safety notices at beaches which may indicate specific local hazards.

If you do see someone in difficulty in the sea call 999 and ask for the Coastguard.

Dates for you diary:

Friday 25 June        End of term

Have a lovely weekend.

Sue Cook

Please also remember to follow us at: www.ka-net.org.uk for the latest information and updates


 

Published: 04 June 2021

Today is a milestone date as our S6 pupils, and a small number of S4 and S5, leave Knox Academy.  It has been a great privilege to work with such an amazing group of young people and all at Knox Academy would like to wish them all the very best in their next steps in life. We do hope they will keep in touch with us and let us know how they are getting on.  I have sent a letter to all leavers with a personal message from me and all the staff at Knox Academy.

If any of our leavers do require any future support with their career pathway they can email Chris Trotter, our school’s Skills Development Scotland Advisor at chris.trotter@sds.co.uk and he will be able to provide them with assistance.

On Saturday East Lothian moves to Level 1 Covid restrictions. Once further information has been received from the Scottish Government, in relation to any changes we are required to make at a school level, I will let parents/carers and pupils know these.  At present we will continue with our current health and safety mitigations with a focus on hand-sanitising, face coverings (unless exempt), class seating plans, well ventilated classrooms and corridors, outdoor learning (where possible) and breaks and lunches outdoors. Pupils are also encouraged to participate in twice weekly lateral flow testing (voluntary) for those who are asymptomatic (see details below).  Anyone with symptoms should book a PCR test. You, your child and anyone else you live with should stay at home and not have any visitors until you get the test result – only leave your home to have the test.

Staffing

Hannah McBride – congratulations on the birth of a little girl, Sophie Marie.

Congratulations to Clare Williamson, our Biology Probationer, who has been appointed to a permanent position at Ross High School in August.

Lana Borwick – PE – will be re-joining at the end of June following her maternity leave.

We will be welcoming a number of probationers to the school in August and will give more details in the next few weeks about the subjects these will be in.

Parents/Carers Information

Head Pupils’ Elections

All S5 Pupils wishing to apply for Head Pupil or Depute Head Pupils positions should do so by Wednesday 9 June. All S5 pupils have been sent an application to their EduBuzz emails to enable them to apply if they wish to do so. Elections will take place over the coming weeks and the successful applicants appointed prior to the end of term. Further leadership positions will also be available in our Prefect Team and leading other aspects across the school.

S6 Leavers’ Event

This will be held today, at 12.30pm, in the school’s quadrant (outdoors) and will be an Afternoon Tea style event. All S6 have been invited to this and we are looking forward to saying a final farewell to them at this.  They have been an amazing year group and this has been captured in the leavers’ letter I have sent to them all and which they will also get a copy of today if they are attending our leavers’ event.

S4 and S5 pupils who are staying on next year must remain in all classes until 14 June, when the timetable changes.  

SQA Update/ Appeals and issuing of provision grades

The formal assessment period has now come to an end for pupils at Knox academy and across East Lothian. Pupils will receive their formal Provisional Grades for each of their subjects on Tuesday 22 June, in the afternoon. This will be in the format of a simplified school report document which will outline the grade banding being entered to SQA as their provisional result. A covering letter will explain all aspects of this report.

Details of the Appeals 2021 process was announced formally yesterday. It will also be useful at this stage to see the most recent Letter to Learners from the NQ2021 Group, which outlines all the supports and the next steps as we progress through the stages of the Alternative Certification Model (ACM). Please discuss these with your young person. Thank you.

East Lothian Council

A summer hardship fund will be paid to families registered and eligible for free school meals currently in primary and secondary. The payment is £100 per child. If you are already registered for free school meals no action is required. More information can be found here.

Emails

If you have not already given us your email address (which is our main method for correspondence), please can you send this to admin@knox.elcschool.org.uk – this will ensure all information reaches you.  Our website details most of our information but it is good to be able to email parents/carers with more personalised/specific information at times too. 

Twitter

Please can I encourage parents/carers to sign up to our Twitter pages, which feature all the events happening at the school on a day to day basis and also features lots of employment opportunities that advertise. Twitter is easy to set up and well worth doing as has lots of excellent links for parents beyond the school too. The Twitter    accounts are ; ;  .  Most of our subject departments have accounts too and post some useful work for our young people or links for them to explore. It would be great to have as many parents/carers following us as possible.

LFD Test Kits

If you wish your young person to receive a test kit please complete the e-consent form. Pupils over 16 can consent themselves but parents/carers must consent for those under 16 (before any testing kits can be handed out to this age group).

If a pupil tests positive using the LFD test kit, they and their family should self-isolate and the pupil should book a PCR test through the NHS. Other members of the household do not need to book a test unless they are symptomatic. Please also note that if a pupil receives a negative LFD test result, but has possible Covid symptoms, they should book a PCR test and remain at home until they have a negative PCR test result.

LFD test kits for parents/carers/households can now be ordered through NHS Inform if you do not have symptoms. Pupils who have consented should continue to pick these tests up from school. 

Asymptomatic Testing in East Lothian

If you are asymptomatic you can also visit a mobile unit in East Lothian to be tested.  Information can be found here.

COVID-19

Positive Cases: Please report positive cases to the school by phoning us on 01620-823387. Please also report any positive cases to covidinschools@eastlothian.gov.uk or if you do not have access to email, telephone 01875 613921.Thank you.

Please note: Please do not your young person if they, or anyone in your household has tested positive or has Covid-19 symptoms – a new continuous cough; fever/high temperature; loss of, or change in, sense of smell or taste (anosmia). Please self-isolate and book a test.

Dates for you diary:

Monday 7 June                 In-service day for staff (SQA) – Pupils’ holiday

Friday 25 June                   End of term

Have a great weekend, and again, thank you for your ongoing support.

Sue Cook

Please also remember to follow us at: www.ka-net.org.uk for the latest information and updates