Kirkcaldy High School News 22 February 2019

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Published: Friday 22 Feb 2019 by Fife Council

Dear Parent/Carer

I hope that you are well. Here is the latest news update from KHS

As you know, last week saw a large group of our Social Subjects students away on trip to London. This was an excellent experience which included a tour of the House of Commons. The group also visited Madame Tussauds, The Museum of London, The Imperial War Museum, The London Dungeon, went to see “School of Rock” at Covent Garden, cruised on the Thames and took a ride on the London Eye. Many thanks to all the staff who looked after the group. I am informed that all our pupils were an absolute credit to the school.

Also, our staff training last week went very well. We had teaching and support staff from Capshard, Fair Isle and Torbain along on the Wednesday morning for a session on “Adverse Childhood Experiences”. Morgan Faulds (S4) was up first, offering a report on her attendance on the “ACE Aware Nation” Conference in Glasgow. Morgan was inspiring. As was Mary Glasgow, Chief Executive Officer of “Children 1st”.

We also had our own Mr Broadway (Head of Supported Learning) introducing the “Be That Person” film, made by Fife Council to help promote awareness and understanding of the impact of childhood trauma. There is compelling data which shows that neglect and abuse can have a severe negative impact on young people in school, and on their life chances. There is an emerging science behind this which is of interest to all education professionals. Mrs Kendrick (Principal Teacher of Guidance) had put together an excellent programme for staff on teenage mental health issues, including a session on our increasing involvement in the delivery of meditation, yoga etc.

On Monday of this week, we held a special options “Fair” for S4 and S5 learners to help them with course choices for next session. Each Department had a stall manned by staff and students to go over course requirements, expectations and links to further study or careers. All S4 attended (by House) just after interval and all S5 just before lunch. It was also great to have inputs from Fife College, Edinburgh University, Fife Council Foundation Apprenticeship Team and Skills Development Scotland.

We’ve also had House Assemblies this week on the theme of Diversity and Equality. These were being led by KHS LGBT+ to mark LGBT History Month. Many thanks to Blake, Morgan, John and Alanah, who gave a very informative presentation. The group offered further staff training on Wednesday, this time for P7 pupils at Juniper Green Primary School, Edinburgh. At the assemblies, the group highlighted today’s “purple Friday” event. Pupils have been invited to wear the colour purple to show that they respect all others, regardless of their sexuality, identity or other characteristics. It’s good to see that so many have responded positively.

Also on Wednesday we hosted the latest round of the Disability Sport Fife football tournament and after school, our “First Chances” pupils had more study/revision sessions with their undergraduate mentors from St Andrew’s University. Many thanks to Mrs Hunter (Guidance), who leads on this. We are also looking at another University link up. The programme is called “Lift Off” and will involve us working with Dundee University to broaden the experiences of kids from working class backgrounds. Mrs Davidson and I are attending a launch meeting in Glenrothes next week.

Yesterday we had the NHS Fife Immunisation team in school for further vaccination catch up sessions and had the University of St Andrews conducting "focus groups” with young people discussing their attitudes to smoking. In the afternoon, our S5 “Sexperts” were trained to deliver their sex and relationships education programme to S3, again supported by NHS Fife, who are excellent partners in so much of our work. The other event yesterday afternoon was a consultation involving “Children First”. We had a group of young people involved in discussion groups about “extended rights”. As a UNICEF “Rights Respecting School”, we are always keen to be involved in this type of activity.

Yesterday and today we are hosting a visiting examiner for the SQA Music Practicals … good luck to all our musicians and vocalists. Also today, the S5/6 Reports will be posted out. Our Office team is currently working on this.

This week’s sports results are as follows: Senior football: KHS 2 - 8 Dunfermline, S1 football KHS 0 - 2 Inverkeithing, Senior Basketball KHS 51 - 69 Inverkeithing, S1 Netball  KHS “A” 7 - 10 Queen Anne “A”, KHS “B” 7 - 1 Queen Anne “B”. Many thanks to Miss Steedman for compiling the scores, and to all the staff involved in coaching, driving the bus and refereeing.

I hope you like the photo of our S6 "Class of 2018". They were posing for their Yearbook picture at lunchtime today.

The Saturday School sessions for tomorrow are in French, PE and CDT (Design, Graphics and Engineering Science). Again, a big thanks to the staff involved. Also tomorrow, our LGBT group will attend a get together organised for all of Fife’s school based equalities groups at Queen Anne High School, Dunfermline.

Next week is another busy one with Yeargroup Assemblies led by our UNICEF Rights Respecting School student group. They will focus on the United Nations’ “Sustainable Goals” Programme.

On Monday afternoon, parents and carers of S4 have been invited in to meet Guidance Staff to discuss course choices for next session and at 6pm, Mrs Morris is holding 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.

On Tuesday afternoon, Mr Young and I will be attending the 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, our LGBT group have been invited to give a talk at the Scottish Youth Workers Conference in Glasgow … their reputation extends the length of Scotland. In the evening it’s our S4 Parent/Carer Evening and the “PEBS” online booking system is “live”. All S4 parents and carers should have received a message this afternoon. Paper instructions are available at the school office. We have also invited “Fostering for Fife” to put on a stall at the parent/carer evening. Please stop by for a chat about their work if you have time. It’s such a worthwhile commitment to make. You can find out more here: www.foster.fife.scot/ Help a child belong!

Next Wednesday and Thursday we have a large group of S1 working with Mark Fleming, our “Author in Residence” sponsored by the Scottish Book Trust. On Thursday, Miss Tennant and our Go4SET technology team will enjoy 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.

On Thursday afternoon we are hosting an event with Costa Coffee to help recruitment of trainee baristas. We’ll have 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.

On Friday we’ll 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. Then, the week ends with a group of KHS musicians playing at the launch event of a Kirkcaldy Solicitors’ new office in Townsend Place. 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 for 2 March is English at National 5, Higher and Advanced Higher.

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

Monday:Lentil soup, Butter Chicken Tikka Masala and Rice, vegetables Tuesday: Mushroom soup, Grilled Sausage/burger – veggie/beef/chicken, chips, baked beans Wednesday: Scotch broth, Roast chicken and gravy, potatoes and vegetables Thursday: Carrot and coriander soup, Lasagne, garlic bread and vegetables Friday: Yellow split pea soup, Breaded fish/Sausage roll, 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 draw your attention to Scottish Apprenticeship Week 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: www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/scotlands-biggest-parents-evening

Looking ahead, Miss Malcolm has also reminded me that, as part of Scottish Apprenticeship Week 2019, Skills Development Scotland are hosting a free Apprenticeship Fair on Thursday 7th 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.

Please remember that it’s our “Friends of Kirkcaldy High School” Ceilidh on Friday 8 March. Tickets are priced £10 and this includes dancing to the Bert Pozzi Band and a Valente’s fish supper … what a deal! There is a bar and raffle with all proceeds supporting good causes in the school eg school trips and equipment. Please call 01592 583405 and ask for Mrs Davidson to reserve tickets.

Also, a wee reminder about the memorial football match being held in memory of Connor Aird and Ethan King. This takes place at Stark’s Park with a 7.30pm kick-off on Tuesday 12 March. You can pay at the gate. Alternatively, advance tickets priced £4 are available. Brooke Wishart (S3) is organizing a stall at lunchtimes from next week. Well done Brooke.

On that theme of football, the local youth worker team has asked me to advertise the Free Friday Football sessions on our astro pitch from 7-9pm. These are supervised sessions for young people aged 10-16. Please call Dean Ewing on 07791801557 for details.

Finally, I mentioned the S4 Parent/Carer Evening. We also have S2 coming up on 7 March. All parents/carers of S2 with an email address have received a message with log in details and a copy of the letter and paper copies of this letter are available at the school office if necessary.  The system is now live and will be open to take bookings until 6 March at 11.55pm.  Those without internet can call the school on 01592 583405 and the office staff will help. Our pupils know this.

Of course, if there is anything with which we can be of assistance, please do be in touch with the school.

With best wishes to you,

Derek Allan

RECTOR

22 February 2019

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By Post: Kirkcaldy High School Dunnikier Way Kirkcaldy Fife KY1 3LR
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