Friday, 24 October 2014

11: Friday 24th October 2014

From the Director

We have had a very busy and productive half term but I sense we are all looking forward to a week’s holiday. Please use this time to help your children recharge their batteries and to get ready for next half term as we lead up to Christmas. We had an inspiring visit from Lic Napoleon Ardaya this week who worked with staff and parents on issues relating to developing young people with character who embrace our shared community and family values. There is information on his visit on the Newsblog.

In response to the problems with mosquito based infections we have been spraying the school regularly this term and will continue to do so next term. We are seeing less mosquitoes as a result but please let us know if you notice problems with bites.

Next half term we are going to start restricting access to some of our blogs from outside. We already have them set so that they cannot be found through search engines. When we make them private, one way to log in will be through your Parent card and we ask that you try to get your card if you do not have one. You could do it one day next week when the Offices will be open even though the school is closed for teaching. 

Over half term we have a group of IB students visiting Berlin and Krakow and we will be following their progress through the ABC Trips Blog on the ABC website.

There are some changes to pick up arrangements for Lower Primary students which should make picking up students easier in the afternoon. We also hope it will make it less necessary for parents to arrive early which causes traffic problems for many of our neighbours and the ABC should be a good neighbour in our community.

Have a lovely break and thank you for all the support you have given the school in so many ways this half term. I would also like to say publicly how pleased I have been to work with Sharon Short and Stephen Spicer who joined the school at the start of this term and I think both have made excellent starts in their new roles as Heads of Primary and secondary respectively. 

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

Our first half term draws to a close. What a busy time it has been for us all. I hope you have been able to look at the school blogs and read and see what has been happening. In Primary we have a very strong team of teachers who work very hard to give your children the best possible opportunities.

Over the half term holiday please make sure your children practice some English, share a book with you for pleasure and get any homework done early so that then they can really relax. My first day of the holiday will be spent either sorting out my office again or reading a good book. Either of which will make sure I am able to enjoy the holiday week more!

Please note that we are trying to go paperless for ecological reasons and therefore it is important that you read the emails the school sends you. They can be trip notifications, invitations for events, permission slips and many other things that you need to know. The great benefit of being paperless is that you can go back to an email easily rather than hunting high and low for a piece of paper. Please let the office know if you change your email address.

In the parent portal on the school website, under Health and Safety we have placed some guidance on the use of child car seats. Please have a look at it when you get a moment. It is very clear. 

Once again we have listed the assembly dates below. Have a wonderful holiday. We look forward to seeing you all again on Monday 3rd November.

Very best wishes,

Sharon Short

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary 
October:
Monday 27th - Friday 31st - Mid-Term Holiday
November:
Friday 7th - 1st Cáceres assembly
Friday 14th - LP Spanish assembly 
Monday 17th - LP Extracurricular classes begin
Friday 21st - Prepa Ware assembly
Friday 21st - Guy Fawkes
Friday 28th - Prepa Gray assembly
December:
Friday 5th - Prepa Taylor assembly
Friday 12th - LP reports go home
Wednesday 17th - LP Christmas show
Friday 19th - last day of school

Upper Primary
October:
Monday 27th - Friday 31st - Mid-term holiday
Wednesday 5th November 3rd Grade Spanish assembly 9.20
Wednesday 5th November 4th Grade Spanish assembly 12.15
Wednesday 12th November 2nd Elisa Hernández assembly 9.20
Wednesday 12th November 4th Avilés assembly 12.15
Wednesday 19th November: 2nd Lourdes Hernández Assembly 9.20
Wednesday 19th November: 5th Hayward Assembly 12.15
Thursday 27th and Friday 28th November: 3rd grade camping

Secondary News

Dear Parents,

You don’t choose your family. They are God’s gift to you, as you are to them. Desmond Tutu

I hope you have an enjoyable and restful break and that you manage to spend some quality time together as a family. To say family is important is a massive understatement; family should be everything. In today’s busy world family time is so precious, and unfortunately time together as a family often suffers. We need to seize every opportunity which comes along to be with our friends and family. 

Students and teachers have been working incredibly hard this half term and there have been so many achievements, both individual and group, that we can be proud of. An organisation’s biggest asset is its employees and I have been so impressed with the dedication and enthusiasm that I have seen from the teachers and support staff these past few months. It has been an excellent start to the school year and I hope the next half term will be equally successful.

All the best,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

United Nations Week
This week we have been celebrating United Nations Week in the Secondary School. One of the main priorities of the United Nations this year is the ‘Health of the Planet’ and this has been the focus for this week.

There have been various activities during the week and the week culminated in whole grade assemblies today. During today’s assemblies students gave advice on how we can make difference to the environment and there were excellent musical performances from Miss Gowman & Marianela Chiu (from Grade 11) and 8C (with a United Nations rap). 

Secondary dates for your diary
HALF TERM - w/c 27th October
Friday 7th November: Pride Day 
Monday 10th November: Start of the British Fortnight (more news on this in the next ABC Weekly)
Friday 14th November: Grade 7 Year Group Empowerment Fieldtrip - Quinta El Carmen, Ataco (7:30am to 4.00pm)

Friday, 17 October 2014

10: Friday 17th October 2014

From the Director

We would like to warmly invite you to a meeting about using values to help young people develop with an understanding of those values in their lives. This continues the work that Neil Hawkes was promoting during his visit to El Salvador last month. This meeting will be on Wednesday 22nd October at 6 pm in the PAC and our speaker will be Lic Napoleon Ardaya Borja. We hope many of you will be able to join us at this event which is also being promoted through the Parents Association.

It was great to see all the Lower Primary celebrations for their UN Day today and the rest of the school will be celebrating UN Week next week. I would like to remind the community that 2015 is the deadline set at the start of this century for achieving the UN Millennium Goals related to reducing poverty, improving primary education and the health of young children and their mothers amongst others. We in school have been working to play our part as I know many other groups in the country have. UN Week will help remind us of the real importance of these issues especially in our modern world where we need to build bridges between communities rather than divide them.

During the present weather and concern over the rains and landslides we are obviously being careful with trips and activities going out of school and hence we postponed the trip for the class 2019 today. We hope the situation will have improved by next week. 

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

The Lower Primary curriculum nights are now finished and I would like to share my thanks, and comment on the dedication and inspiration of the school staff who prepared the evenings for you. I am sure you learned a lot from those that you attended and had a very pleasant evening as well.

Although the Lower Primary United Nations parades took place today (Friday) the Upper Primary classes will be continuing with their preparations and activities all week. I feel that the united Nations organisation is an important one for us to recognise as its objectives include maintaining international peace and security, promoting human rights, fostering social and economic development, protecting the environment, and providing humanitarian aid in cases of famine, natural disaster, and armed conflict. So much can be accomplished when nations work together.

On Monday I will be showing a ‘crash dummy’ seatbelt video to our Upper Primary students. Please support and encourage them with their seatbelt use by being good role models yourselves and reminding them if they forget.

Friday is the last day of this half term and we shall all be having a well deserved rest. I hope you all have a safe and pleasant week ahead. 

Very best wishes,

Sharon Short

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary 
October:
Friday 24th - Music Assembly - PAC (students only)
Monday 20th - Friday 24th - United Nations week
Monday 27th - Friday 31st - Mid-Term Holiday
Friday 7th November 1st Caceres assembly
Friday 14th November LP Spanish assembly 

Upper Primary
October:
Friday 24th: UN Day
Monday 27th - Friday 31st - Mid-term holiday
Wednesday 5th November 3rd grade Spanish assembly 9.20
Wednesday 5th November 4th Grade Spanish assembly 12.15
Wednesday 12th November 2nd Elisa Hernández assembly 9.20
Wednesday 12th November 4th Avilés assembly 12.15
Wednesday 19th November: 2nd Lourdes Hernández Assembly 9.20
Wednesday 19th November: 5th Hayward Assembly 12.15
Thursday 27th and Friday 28th November: 3rd grade camping

Secondary News

Careers Day - Thursday 16th October - see the link on the ABC Newsblog
Thank you to everyone for organising a great event and to Mr. Victor Clark Head of the British Embassy mission here for addressing the opening ceremony. Please look on the News blog for more details and pictures.

Deadlines
Commitment: Either you do or you don’t, there is no in-between.

Not meeting deadlines is a recurring problem amongst students in all schools. This does not mean, however, that we should not try to address the issue. It is important that we teach our students the importance of meeting deadlines, the need to be responsible and to honour our commitments. Deadlines, especially for examination classes, are important and the failure to submit work can have dramatic consequences. More often than not, the IGCSE and IB deadlines are imposed by the examination boards and these are not flexible. 

I encourage you to please discuss upcoming deadlines with your child/ren and to monitor whether they are on target to meet these deadlines. Indeed, deadlines are by definition the final day that a piece of work should be submitted; we should be helping our youngsters to be organised and to submit work before these dates. 

If a student is unable to attend school when there is a deadline for a piece of work, and they have not submitted work already, then the onus is on them to ensure that the work is still submitted to the relevant teacher that day (whether it be sent electronically or brought into school by another person).

Thank you for your support.

Theatre Week - w/c Monday 13th October
Thank you to all the visitors, staff and students that have made this year’s Theatre Week such an amazing success. Please see the ‘ABC News’ for photographs capturing the highlights from this week.

Pride Day - 7th November
On Friday 7th of November we will, thanks to the Student Council, have the first ABC Pride Day.

The purpose of this day is to celebrate the ABC community and to have some fun. The main event will be a staff-student football match with half-time entertainment.

This day will also be a non-uniform day and students will have the opportunity to wear the ABC Bulldog Pride t-shirt that has been specially designed for the event. Congratulations to Mariella Rodriguez for coming up with the winning design.

The t-shirt costs $6 and is on sale (pre-orders only) at the school cafeteria at break and lunch times up until Wednesday 22nd of October.

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Saturday 18th October: Grade 11 Empowerment Day
Thursday 23rd October: IB History trip to Berlin & Krakow departs
Thursday 23rd October: Grade 10 Empowerment fieldtrip to Cardedeu, Lago de Coatepeque (7.30am to 4.00pm)
HALF TERM - w/c 27th October
Friday 7th November: Pride Day (see article above)

Friday, 10 October 2014

9: Friday 10th October 2014

From the Director


ABC Pride
I hope I speak on behalf of the whole community when I talk about the pride we feel in our school. It is almost 44 years ago That the Fundación Escolar Británico Salvadoreña was set up in anticipation of the school opening its doors for the first time in February 1971. The school has a long tradition, there are thousands of Exabrits who identify with the school and all it stands for. There is an ABC Community that cares. Neil Hawkes on his recent visit helped us understand how the school has a strong set of values and more importantly how we can make those values an even more important part of our community. We have a vision, a motto and we are a school with a mission to make our community and our world a better place. We will soon be reviewing the documentation that contains our Philosophy and Objectives and I want to alert you to this process because it is important. We need to ensure our whole community supports the direction we are going in and is involved in helping create young people who will care for and make a difference in their world as responsible outstanding citizens. I will be writing to all parents about this review later this month. We want this review to set us up for greater achievements in the future and to help us all work together in our shared interests.

I have been asked by the Income & Collections Office to remind parents that we need you to collect and sign invoices for payments for this school year. If you have not done so we will try to connect with you at Parent Teacher meetings but otherwise please call into the Admin Office.

Thank you to so many of you who have supported the school trips going out over the next few weeks. These are important for us in helping build strong. positive relationships in school.

We hope to see many of you in the PAC on Tuesday evening for the performance of Lazaro!

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

I expect those of you with children in grade 4 and 5 have heard about the new Ski trip we are trying to organise. The letters went out last Friday. This trip is designed as an English speaking opportunity and addresses the outdoor and adventurous element of the PE curriculum as well as giving children the new experience of snow. Children do not need to be able to ski to go. Full instruction is included in the package. The social and independent side of school trips are also invaluable for children’s development. Please confirm your interest to Mr Hall as soon as possible or by the 13th October at the latest. We need to have an idea of numbers before we know if we can proceed with bookings.

Once again we had some marvellous curriculum nights this week. Thank you to everyone who attended. I am sure you enjoyed yourselves and learned a lot too. On Wednesday it is the final Lower Primary curriculum night and we are hoping for a good turnout from grade 1 parents to finish this series of events.

On Friday the 17th Of October it is United Nations day. Each class in the school has been researching a particular country that has a link with snow. They have chosen an incredible variety. Children are very excited about their country and its customs. We are working together to make costumes for our parades. Pre-Kinder parents are invited to watch their child's parade at 8:30 am. This will last approximately 30 minutes, after which we ask that you leave to allow parking space for the Kinder parents. Kinder parents are invited to watch their child's parade at 10:00 am. This will last approximately 30 minutes too.

The LP children will parade for UP children later in the morning. UN Day food is kindly provided by the Madres Enlace with the support of parents from each class.

Best wishes for the coming week,

Mrs Short

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary 
October:
Wednesday 15th: First grade Curriculum Night - 6:00pm PAC
Friday 17th: Prepa Watt Assembly - 7:30am PAC
Friday 17th: LP United Nations Day - PK Parade 8:30am, Kinder Parade 10:00am PAC
Monday 27th - Friday 31st - Mid-Term Holiday

Upper Primary
October:
Friday 24th: UN Day
Monday 27th - Friday 31st - Mid-term holiday

Secondary News

Theatre Week
Theatre Week 2014 begins on Monday 13th October and it promises to be the best Theatre Week ever! It will be so great in fact that we have changed its name to reflect the magnitude of the event. Theatre Week 2014 has now become El Primer Festival de Teatro ABC!

Next week there is something theatrical happening each day. On Monday at lunch time, we kick off our celebration of theatre with CAS Face Painting in the cafeteria area and the drop in improv stage will be available for students and staff. In the corridor in front of the LRC there will be a variety theatre related puzzles and displays for students to interact with and there will also be a Theatre Week display for inside the LRC.

On Tuesday the teachers will provide the entertainment, by performing bucket improv for the students on the improv stage at lunchtime. There will also be a special performance by a Grade 12 student at this time. At 12:20pm in the PAC the 9-12th grade students will be treated to a performance of Lazaro by the Galerateatro troupe, which is based on the play Lazarillo de Tormes. This same performance will be repeated in the evening for the ABC community at 7:00pm. Tickets are available for $3.00 in the Secondary & Primary School offices.

On Wednesday at 10:20am KS3 students will be treated to a pantomime performance entitled Historias Del Silencio by the Cuenterete Teatro troupe, in the PAC. At lunch, in the Drama Studio, the 11th grade IB Theatre students will present a performance. From 2.00pm to 3:00pm Foam Puppet Making-Session 1 will take place just outside the LRC. During this time, students will be given the opportunity to create their own foam puppets.

On Thursday at lunch time, the 9th grade IGCSE Drama students will present a performance for everyone in the Drama Studio.

Finally, on Friday there are two activities that will take place. The first is a theatrical costume parade of staff and students who have dressed for the event. Proceeds for this non-uniform event will be donated (students will pay a $1) to the various grade level charities. From 2.00pm to 3:00pm on Friday the LRC will host the Foam Puppet Making-Session 2 outside the main LRC doors for those students who need to finish off their puppets or would like to create a new puppet.

We hope students will join in and make the most of this wonderful event.

Year 11 B&M Trip to Bolsa de Valores
On Wednesday 8th October and Thursday 9th October Grade 11 Business and Management students visited the Bolsa de Valores. 

On the second occasion the students had the privilege of meeting the Presidente Rolando Arturo Duarte Schlageter.


A big thank you to the Bolsa de Valores for giving our students the opportunity to visit and to learn about their work and their history. 

Know Your School and Parent Teacher Meetings
We had a good attendance this week for the Know Your School and Parent Teacher Meetings. 

A special thank you to the parents of Grades 9 & 10 students for coming despite the awful weather!

ABC ROCs - Values in Action blog
Please see the new blog ‘ABC ROCs - Values in Action’ for an article on the recent victory for the Girls’ Basketball Team.

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary School

Secondary dates for your diary
Thursday 16th October: Grade 11 – Careers Day
Friday 17th October: Grade 8 Empowerment fieldtrip to Cardedeu, Lago de Coatepeque (7.30am to 4.00pm)
Saturday 18th October: Grade 11 Empowerment Day
Thursday 23rd October: IB History trip to Berlin & Krakow departs
Thursday 23rd October: Grade 10 Empowerment fieldtrip to Cardedeu, Lago de Coatepeque (7.30am to 4.00pm)

Friday, 3 October 2014

8: Friday 3rd October 2014

From the Director


Thank you to so many parents who have been attending our Curriculum Nights and Know Your School events this week and hopefully we will see many more of you next week. We cannot stress how important it is that we meet regularly and discuss issues relating to the well-being and healthy development of your children. We know and understand the importance of home and school working together in the best interests of your children.

The week after next we will be celebrating Theatre Week and on Tuesday 14th October the Rene Lovo theatre company will be performing Lazaro. There will be a performance for Grade 9 to Grade 12 students during the day and there will also be a performance of Lazaro in the evening for parents.


I would like to request that parents or drivers who are collecting children in the afternoon do not arrive early because we are causing unnecessary traffic lines in the surrounding community. It also seems unnecessary that people wait so long before the school gates have been opened. It would be in all our interests if you planned to arrive no more than 5 minutes before the gates are opened for your grade.

Please check out our new ABC ROCs blog on the school website. You will notice we are making changes to the website to make it more accessible. We would welcome your comments or feedback! 

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

Thank you to those parents who attended the Pre-Kinder Curriculum Night. What a fantastic experience! Please see the ABC news and class blogs for photos. 

We also had a wonderful children’s day with the children involved in a range of additional activities.

This week we have the Kinder curriculum night on Tuesday and the Prepa Curriculum night on Thursday. I am sure these evenings will be just as informative and our Madres Enlaces will once again be providing delicious refreshments for the end of the evening. English books will be available for purchase.

On Wednesday our Learning Support Unit will be presenting information on helping children resolve conflicts. As I mentioned last week this can be a tricky business. We must empower children to deal with issues themselves as soon as we can, but when and how are not always straightforward. Come along and build your knowledge of how to handle this tricky area. Please note the change of time to 7.15 am.

Please note the dates of the upcoming class assemblies below and arrive in good time to see what your child’s class has been up to.

Reminders
Please make sure your children are strapped into their car seats before pulling away. We know the pressure is on to be as quick as possible but safety must come first.

All Primary children with long or shoulder length hair should have it tied up all day. This is for health and safety reasons. We do not want to spread head lice and we do not want hair to get caught on play equipment or doors etc.

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary 
October:
Tuesday 7th: Kinder Curriculum Night - 6:00 pm PAC
Thursday 9th: Prepa Curriculum Night - - 6:00 pm PAC
Friday 10th: First Aguirre Assembly - - 7:30 am PAC
Wednesday 15th: First grade Curriculum Night - 6:00 pm PAC
Friday 17th: Prepa Watt Assembly - 7:30 am PAC
Friday 17th: LP United Nations day - 8:00 am PAC
Monday 27th - Friday 31st - Mid-term holiday

Upper Primary
October:
Wednesday 8th October: School for Parents: Helping children resolve conflicts. 7.15 am PAC
Wednesday 8th October: 3rd Padilla assembly
Wednesday 22nd October: 2nd Elisa Hernández assembly
Wednesday 22nd October: 4th Avilés assembly
Monday 27th - Friday 31st - Mid-term holiday

Secondary News

TECHO fundraising
TECHO is a youth led non-profit organisation present in Latin America and the Caribbean. Through the joint work of families living in extreme poverty with youth volunteers, TECHO seeks to overcome poverty in slums. TECHO’s belief is that poverty can be permanently eradicated if society as a whole recognises poverty as a priority and actively works towards overcoming it. 

At the ABC TECHO is being supported over the next two weeks (Monday 6th October through to Friday 17th October) through the sale of areca palms. The concept is that through the sale of these palms ($5 dollars each for a small palm in a decorative flower pot) we can help the environment, brighten people’s homes and raise money for this worthy cause.

Volunteers will be selling tickets for the palms each break time and lunch time during this period. The actual palm trees will be available for collection on Friday 17th October from the top car park near the Administration.

Know Your School and Parent Teacher Meetings
Thank you to the Grade 6 parents (Tuesday 30th September) and the Grade 11/12 parents (Thursday 2nd October) that attended this week’s Know Your School and Parent Teacher Meetings. The attendance of the Grade 11 & 12 meeting on Thursday was, however, a little disappointing. We communicate important information about each grade and the year ahead at these meetings. The meetings are also an opportunity to meet your son’s/daughter’s teachers and to discuss their performance. Please make every effort to attend these meetings.

Please be reminded that we have Know Your School and Parent Teacher Meetings for parents of students in Grades 7, 8, 9 & 10 next week (see below for details).

ABC ROCs - Values in Action blog - on the school website
Please see the new blog ‘ABC ROCs - Values in Action’ for articles on the recent achievements of staff and students in the ABC Secondary School:
  • Bronze and Silver International Award trip to Walter Deininger Park
  • Comasagua Trail Race
  • Guatemalan Open 2014
Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Monday 6th October: KYS meeting for Grades 7 and 8, 5.30 PAC
Wednesday 8th October: KYS meeting for Grades 9 and 10, 5.30 PAC
Wednesday 8th and Thursday 9th October: PAES examinations for Grade 12 students
Thursday 9th October: Johns Hopkins University, Vanderbilt University, NYU, Northwestern
University visit - 2.00pm to 3.00pm & 4.00pm to 5.30pm in the PAC (parents
and students Grade 9-12 are invited)
Friday 10th October: Grade 6 Empowerment fieldtrip to Cardedeu, Lago de Coatepeque
Thursday 16th October: Grade 11 – Careers Day
Friday 17th October: Grade 8 Empowerment fieldtrip to Cardedeu, Lago de Coatepeque
Friday 17th October (3pm) to Monday 20th October (1pm): Silver International Award final expedition - El Impossible
Saturday 18th October: Grade 11 Empowerment Day