21 August 2015

Welcome to session 2015-16 at Knox Academy! It’s great to be back, and I am delighted to say that the pupils seem in fine fettle. The new S1s are finding their feet very quickly and are excited about their classes. The new S4s are getting into the swing of the year and, whilst it is a bit of a slog, are getting stuck in. I was delighted by the results that the new S5 and S6 achieved. They are a strong platform to build further successes on this year. The senior pupils are looking smart and have an air of purpose as I see them around the school. I must add a note of congratulations to last year’s S6 – they achieved some great results, doing both us and themselves proud. I wish them all the best as they head off on their new adventures be they at college, university, or gap years. I was also really proud to hear of some university graduations (from Aberdeen this time):

Alex Berwick MA Economics

Anna Brewster MB, BS Medicine

Alasdair Brown MA Politics and International Relations

Kelsie Hamilton MA English

Gemma Herkes MA Education

Kirsty Shaw LLB Law

Ellen Steven MA Sociology

We welcomed new staff this week: Ms Simpson (Art); Ms Laudi (French); Mr Blair (PE); Mr McCrae (RMPS); Ms MacDonald (Communication Provision) Ms Prime (DHT: Communication Provision); Mr Gilholm (Pupil Support Base); Mr McGinley (Pupil Support & Modern Studies); Ms Benson (PE); Mrs Crichton (Drama); Mrs Fraser (support for Learning); and Mr Blair in Maths will be taking over as PTC Numeracy and Technology for one day a week. I hope that they all settle in well to their roles and that they enjoy them. We are also in the process of saying farewell to a couple of staff – Mrs McKenzie (Support for Learning) and Ms Stevenson (Guidance). They are both retiring and we wish them all the very best.

There’s a lot planned for this session, so please keep an eye on this update as I try to advertise things as they come up. Next Friday sees us launch the school’s new Learning and Teaching Policy. Pupils have been involved in writing it and good learning and teaching can’t happen without their input. We are suspending the normal timetable for the day and pupils are going to lessons focusing on active learning, growth mindset and effective assessment. Pupils will be hearing about our plans in assemblies over the next week.

A couple of our pupils: Adam and Tom Wilson, are playing in a concert at the Town House on Sunday 6th September at 3pm in memory of a family member, Dudley Wilson, who tragically died from Leigh’s Disease. Seat reservations can be made via both jules.gong@gmail.com and geomus@me.com with donations being received at the end of the concert. The boys are both very talented musicians and would really appreciate your support.

Have a very good week

S Ingham