Kirkcaldy High School News 1 March 2019

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Published: Friday 01 Mar 2019 by Fife Council

Dear Parent/Carer

Here is the latest on what’s going on here in KHS. I do hope that you are well.

This week has another busy one with Yeargroup Assemblies led by our UNICEF Rights Respecting School student group. They had a focus on the United Nations’ “Sustainable Goals” Programme. These are 17 targets related to quality of life and environmental protection. I am grateful for our group for spreading awareness. Humankind faces huge challenges and it will fall to our youth to work together to make the world a better place. Can there be a more important message? It was also good to welcome Linsey Neilson to our assemblies. Linsey is a local youth worker and she was promoting youth clubs in the Templehall area.

On Monday afternoon, parents and carers of S5 were invited in to meet Guidance Staff to discuss course choices for next session and at 6pm, Mrs Morris held a parent/carer evening for those families interested in our proposed trip to Chateau de Warsy, France in February 2020. I would remind you that any young person entitled to free school meals will receive some financial support from the school to take part. I am grateful to our donors and in particular to “Friends of Kirkcaldy High School”, who have raised thousands to support initiatives such as this.

Also on Monday, our S3 footballers reached the Fife Cup Final after beating Woodmill 1-0 at KHS. Well done to the lads and congratulations to the coaching team of Mr English and Mr I’Anson. The final is to be staged at Bayview Stadium. On that theme of football, well done to Kieron Bowie (S5), who made his professional first team debut for the Rovers last Saturday, and played again on Tuesday away at Dumbarton.

On Tuesday our S1 attended the Balwearie Football Festival and in the afternoon, Mr Young and I attended the Council’s Area Committee at the Townhouse to explain recent trends in exam results and also to give feedback about our work to close the “attainment gap” for young people from poorer backgrounds. We have used the Scottish Government’s “Equity Funding” to help boost reading, numeracy and confidence of target groups of young people and have employed Mrs Hardie as our Family Support worker, engaging with families who find attendance at school challenging, often as a result of financial stress or other hardship.

On Wednesday evening it was our S4 Parent/Carer Evening, I’m sure that the feedback received, if acted upon, will help our learners achieve of their very best in the SQA exams in May. We also invited “Fostering for Fife” to put on a stall at the Parent/Carer evening. You can find out more here: Help a child belong!

On Wednesday and Thursday we had a large group of S1 working with Mark Fleming, our “Author in Residence” sponsored by the Scottish Book Trust. Yesterday, Miss Tennant and our Go4SET technology enjoyed an industrial visit to Leviton, the Glenrothes based electrical wiring manufacturer. The team comprises six S2 girls and boys and the competition is a Scotland wide Science and Engineering Challenge (photo).

Yesterday afternoon we hosted an event with Costa Coffee to help recruitment of trainee baristas. We’ll had young people from S5/6 from across Fife, who are interested in hospitality as a career. Having seen previous success for some KHS pupils who were a bit unsure about their direction in life, I am delighted that we are sponsoring this engagement. Thanks to Miss Malcolm for her leadership of this.

Today we have a group of budding Sports Leaders from S3 helping at the Fife P1/2 Athletics Festival being held at the Michael Woods Centre, Glenrothes. At the same time, our S6 Sports Leaders are officiating and supervising at the Disability Sport Fife swimming, also in Glenrothes.

The week ends with a group of KHS musicians playing at the launch event of a Kirkcaldy Solicitors’ new office in Townsend Place after school. We are grateful to Boyd Legal for the invitation and for their donation, which will go to purchase new music equipment for the school.

Saturday School tomorrow is English at National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher. Also, very best wishes to Fiona Mundwiler (S6). Fiona representing KHS in the East of Scotland finals of the Rotary Club “Young Musician” Competition (instrumental section). Fiona is a superb violinist and she is playing Vivaldi in the competition, which is being held at Kinross.

Also, our Rwanda exchange team are fund raising for their trip this October by offering a bag packing service at B and M Stores at the Retail Park. I hope you will support them if you are out shopping. It’s a very exciting and challenging experience to visit Africa in this way.

In sport this week; U15 football: KHS 1 - 0 Woodmill in the Fife Cup semi-final, U13 football: KHS 2 - 1 Balwearie and KHS 1 - 0 Viewforth, which also means another Fife cup final. Fife Schools Gymnastics: Well done to Tayla Lazmirski, Iona Connolly and Nikki Meredith, who competed so well. Nikki won a silver medal and Iona a gold medal.

Next week our assemblies are being led by Science staff to mark “British Science Week” … expect some bangs! On Tuesday, our LGBT+ group are delivering training for the clergy of the Scottish Episcopalian Church at St Peter’s, Kirkcaldy. At 6pm, there is a parent/carer for those involved in the Great War battlefields trip in May. Many thanks to Mr Harrower and to the other staff involved. Also that evening, Mrs Davidson and I will be along at the Rotary Club of Kirkcaldy meeting being held at the Dean Park Hotel. It’s the special “Youth Showcase” evening and we’ll be joined by our “RYLA” leadership camp students; Liam Nisbet, Jake Ramsay and Megan Ramsay, all S5. All three have won sponsored places at the camp in the Cairngorms this summer. We’ll also have “Young Musician” winners Fiona Mundwiler (violin) and Cara Hayes (vocals) performing and Charlie Murdoch, the Chair of our Interact Club will give a report back. Our “Youth Speaks” public speaking team attended a meeting recently and are contesting the Scottish final at Stirling University in two weeks’ time.

On Wednesday, as well as the Carlyle Assembly, we have a film crew in school, from Edinburgh University. They are making a short film about equality and diversity in education. This will be part of the teacher induction programme. We also have our Sport Leaders officiating the Disability Sport Fife Badminton and our senior basketball team competing in the Fife Championships, many thanks to Mr Harrower. Our “Extreme Team” Challenge group of S1/2 will again be up at Falkland Estate on their outdoor education programme. In the afternoon and early evening, parents and carers of S4 have been invited in to discuss course choice for S5. Many thanks to the guidance staff who go to great lengths to get this right.

Thursday see our S5/6 trained peer educators leading “Sexperts” sexual health and relationships training with all S3 and in the afternoon, myself and a group of staff are visiting Valley primary to read to children there as part of World Book Day. After school I’ll be attending a Presentation Ceremony for Duke of Edinburgh Award Licenses. This takes place at Queen Anne High School, Dunfermline and I’ll be joined by some of our pupils who are undertaking this excellent programme of personal development and challenge. It will mean I will miss the S2 parent/carer evening. You should have received an email explaining the electronic booking system. This is live until Wednesday evening. Can I ask that you limit your discussion to the allocated 5 minutes, it’s the only way we can make sure that the timetable can be followed. Thanks for your cooperation with this. We ring bells every 5 minutes to keep things moving along.

Friday evening is our annual “Friends of Kirkcaldy High School” ceilidh night, which is always great fun and an excellent fund raiser for the school. FoKHS supports us to acquire new equipment and to help less well-off kids take part in school trips. Sadly, this year’s event will be overshadowed by the recent news of the death of FoKHS Chairman, John Beck. John was a former pupil who held a very dear place in his heart for his old school, frequently travelling up and down from Surrey to support KHS. Our thoughts are with Diana and John’s family at this time.

The Saturday School for 9 March is Latin, Classics, Psychology, Graphic Communication, Design and Manufacture and Engineering Science. Thanks to all staff supporting this initiative. Miss Diamond is putting together the SQA Easter School programme next week. This will be shared shortly.

Next week's canteen hot meal menu is as follows:

Monday:Lentil soup, Stovies with crusty bread, turnip Tuesday: French onion soup, Chicken korma, boiled rice and vegetables Wednesday: Tomato soup, Steak pie, potatoes and vegetables Thursday: Green pea soup, Sweet chilli beef and noodles, vegetables Friday: Vegetable soup, Breaded fish/Scotch pie, chips, peas.

We also have baked potatoes, pizza, pasta, sandwiches and salad available every day as well as our outdoor snack bar. Please do be aware that we offer a free cup of soup with bread for all our young people, regardless of their “free school meals” status. We also have our "Breakfast Club" available from 8.10am and this is free to those facing hardship (it costs 44p otherwise). We have cereal, toast and jam and juice on offer.

May I again draw your attention to Scottish Apprenticeship Week 2019 which is coming up shortly? Skills Development Scotland are keen to host “Scotland’s Biggest Parents’ Evening” on Wednesday the 6th of March. The people at Fife’s “Developing the Young Workforce” Foundation Apprenticeship team are preparing a webinar where you will be able to hear from a panel of young people and employers discussing the benefits of apprenticeships. It sounds like an excellent interactive opportunity and you can take part be registering here:

Miss Malcolm has also reminded me that, as part of Scottish Apprenticeship Week, Skills Development Scotland are hosting a free Apprenticeship Fair next Thursday 7 March at Windmill Campus, from 6-8pm. This is an ideal opportunity for pupils, parents and carers to meet with local employers and national organisations, gaining a better understanding of Foundation, Modern and Graduate apprenticeship programmes that are available to our young people.  I’m grateful to Miss Malcolm for her work with the whole “employability” agenda. She has also put together our latest jobs and training bulletin (attached). If you could help with this eg by offering a talk about your career or business or by offering work placements at your workplace, please do be in touch. You can simply reply to this message.

Looking a wee bit further ahead, please come along to the school hall on the evening of Thursday 14 March, for our first ever school “Dance Showcase”. Please see the attached flyer. Thanks to Miss McIntosh for all her commitment to this. It’s down to her efforts that Dance has become such an important part of our curriculum over the past couple of years. I’m sure it will be a great show.

With all the fuss about inappropriate internet content circulating, may I remind you that it would be useful to monitor your son/daughter’s online habits as best you can. We have a strong focus on online safety in our school and encourage kids to report any contact or content which concerns them.

Finally, please note that there will be a Parent Council meeting at 6pm on Tuesday 19 March … it would be great to see you there. All parents/carers are welcome to attend. It’s a good way to participate in the life of the school.

Regards and best wishes

Derek Allan


1 March 2019

Kirkcaldy High School - Headteacher
Tel: 01592 583405 Contact Kirkcaldy High School - Headteacher online
By Post: Kirkcaldy High School Dunnikier Way Kirkcaldy Fife KY1 3LR
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