Friday, 11 December 2015

16: Friday 11th December 2015

From Sharon, Stephen and Graeme


All three of us on the school leadership team would like to mark this final newsletter of 2015 with our very best wishes for the last week of term leading into a wonderful family Christmas and a prosperous 2016 for our community and our country. We know how much our community cares - we see it in school on a daily basis. At this time of year we really do want to show that we care for those less fortunate than us. The Student Council recently raised over $800 from their Spooky Hotel event at Guy Fawkes which will be used to help support children at the Hospital Bloom burns unit. We are still collecting funds for the Save the Children project we are supporting to improve the survival rates of newborn babies. These projects have been supported wholeheartedly by so many of our students and families. Thank you! We have one final request for this year which so many of you have already responded to. We are collecting Christmas shoeboxes to make Christmas special for many children in our local area. These boxes will be donated so children have a present to open on Christmas Day. We hope each child will organise a shoe box indicating the age and gender of the recipient with the following items which should be new. 
  • An item of new clothing to fit the age range you have chosen
  • A new pair of socks
  • Tooth paste and a tooth brush
  • Candles
  • Cookies
  • A toy
You may also put in any other articles you wish to include such as colouring pencils, stickers, scissors or special things that a child may enjoy at Christmas. 

Last night it felt like we really started our Christmas celebrations with a packed Auditorium for the Upper Primary Concert and Food Fair which was a resounding success with our students the stars of the show. We can all learn something from their energy and enthusiasm and it is wonderful to see their joy as they look forward to Christmas with their friends and families. We would like especially to thank our music teacher Mr Diaz, the class teachers for their hard work in preparing the children and of course, the Madres Enlace for organising the food and all the parents who contributed to the international food festival. There were many delicious Christmas tastes to share together but Mr Keslake would especially like to mention the mince pies!

All students should now have receive their Cal 1 reports. Students in Secondary can access their reports through their iSAMS log in. This is a new system for us and we have had some slight problems with rounding errors. These have been resolved by iSAMS in the UK but if there are any apparent issues in the report please contact us on Monday morning. We apologise for any delays.

We would like to send our congratulations to Estela Mena who had a baby daughter last week. We have some staff leaving us at the
end of this term. Ms. Silvana Winter has been at the school for sixteen years and we want to thank her for all she has done in the sports department. She is returning to Argentina and we will always remember her contribution to the school and wish her the very best of luck in her future. Due to family circumstances we are also sorry to see the departure of Mr. Ben Brooke and his family who are returning to Spain as well as Mrs Andrea Rivera from 1st Grade who is moving to the US. We are also sorry to see them go but wish them all the best in their new locations.

Next week we have a number of Christmas events which we hope to see many of you supporting with your sons or daughters:

Monday: Board of Governors Prefect Reception which all Prefects from the Class of 2016 are invited to.

Tuesday: Grade 11 (IGCSE) Certificate Awards Evening from 6pm to 7.30pm. All Grade 11 students are expected to attend and their parents are also invited. We will be awarding Cambridge iGCSE certificates as well as Roll of Honour awards and Millennium scholarships.

Wednesday: Lower Primary Christmas Shows 3:15 - 6:30 pm in the PAC and Primary School Santa’s Festival. This a lovely time for the students to anticipate Christmas and as usual all money raised will go to the support staff scholarship fund which has been running so successfully for many years. All primary children are welcome to drop by from 3.30pm to support Santa’s Festival and buy food, books and play the games.

Thursday: Christmas Celebration for the ABC Community 6.15pm - 7.30pm. This event will include carols and readings as well as performances by student and staff choirs. There is a $3 charge which covers refreshments and tickets are available in school from the Secondary or Primary Offices

Friday: On the last day of term we have normal classes in Secondary school before the traditional tug of war. There will be a whole school assembly with all ABC students in the Auditorium so they can see what a large, diverse community they are part of. Students will leave at the following times
11:00 am - All Lower Primary with any Upper Primary siblings
No Play Room (Sala Cuna)
11:30 am - All Upper Primary and Secondary students.
Please collect your children on schedule and we aim for the campus to be ready to be shut down by 12:15 pm.

It remains for all of three us on behalf of our Teaching, Support and Administration staff to thank you for your support this term and wish you all a great final week of term leading up to a very Happy Christmas. 

Students return to school January 11th 2016

Friday, 4 December 2015

15: Friday 4th December 2015

From the Director


I have been in London this week doing some recruiting for new teaching staff and I left on Saturday morning with very happy memories of the Guy Fawkes Party. It was fantastic that so many of you turned out and made it such a family occasion. I want to say a special thank you to all the children who participated in the music and dance performances, to all their parents for supporting them and for the Performing arts teachers for helping them show their talents. It was a magnificent performance and event. I was delighted to see so many children participating in community based fundraising activities and especially the magnificent Student Council who did a great job on the Spooky Hotel. We should be so proud of our students when we see them working so hard for causes they really care about

I have been asked why we have stopped selling alcohol at these events and I want to take this opportunity to explain the school’s view. We believe there are so many events where alcohol is sold that we should show an example of an event where everyone has fun without the need for alcohol and we believe this is a great example to our students. It is easy to have fun with family and friends without drinking alcohol. It is the school’s policy at present not to sell or serve alcohol when we have a family event with children present. We are also happy knowing everyone is driving home after the event with no danger of anyone driving from school when they have consumed alcohol.

We are having our staff Christmas Party on Sunday with up to 500 people attending. It is a chance for us as a community of employees to share some time together with our families. I am also informing you because the school will not be available for other users other than for the swimming pool.

We are still planning to complete our Lower Primary classrooms next summer and applications are filling up for places in per Kinder next year. We only plan to offer eighty eight places in Pre Kinder so if you are hoping for a place please make sure you get your application to Estefania Chacon at school as soon as possible. 

Christmas is coming upon us rapidly and I would like to remind you that we are planning some Christmas shoe boxes for children around our city and country who otherwise would not have much reason to celebrate this Christmas. Please think about getting a shoe box ready. Details can be found in the separate sections of this newsletter but please give your support!

A final thank you to the Class of 2015 who made a donation of 75 cushions to help make sitting in the Auditorium for long events more comfortable. They have also made a significant contribution of $1,019.35 to our beca scheme for staff students. Thank you to the Class of 2015 for thinking of our community. In the photo Rebecca and Chantal are handing over one of the cushions.


Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

Last Friday already seems such a long time ago but I sincerely hope you all enjoyed our Guy Fawkes night fireworks, entertainment and bonfire. I would like to join Mr. Keslake in congratulating all those parents who joined us for the event and kept a good eye on their children and thereby contributed to a very enjoyable event. 
On Tuesday we opened up our Pre-kinder department for people to come and have a look. We received a very favourable response from everyone who visited. Thank you to the Pre-kinder staff who gave up their time to be present for the event and for preparing all the things that the visitors enjoyed.

Monday is the theatre production of ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’. Every child in primary will have the opportunity to attend a professional theatre production and therefore we would like every child to contribute. Please send in their $2 on Monday at the latest if you have not already sent it in. Thank you to everyone who was on time with the money.

Many students are bringing in Christmas accessories in preparation for the concerts and other christmas events. Please make sure there is a name in it. I have no idea who 400 santa hats belong to (and neither do the students!)

Thank you to everyone in Lower Primary who sent in a filled jar for Santa’s Festival. The ones I have seen have been beautifully decorated and filled with fun and delicious things. Today was the last day to hand them in but I am sure if you still have yours at home they will be accepted on Monday.

The shoe boxes from Upper Primary have started to trickle in too. They have also been beautifully decorated and filled with things a child would be delighted to receive at Christmas time.

Next week on Thursday, late afternoon, is the Upper Primary Concert and International Food Fair. Please bring your children to the PAC at 5.30pm. You are then free to go off to the food fair while we warm up the children for the concert. This will start in the auditorium at 6.30pm. Please ensure your children are on time.

Don’t forget the mini fair that our CAS students are involved with tomorrow.

Jingles visited my office today and cast his Christmas magic. Please ask a 2nd Aviles student for more information!

Our bake sales each Friday continue to raise funds for Save the Children. Thank you everyone for your continued support at this very special Christmas time. I hope to ‘bump’ into you all over the next two weeks.

Very best wishes,

Sharon Short
Head of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
December
Saturday 5th December: Corazon Del Padre Mini Feria
Monday 7th December: Pirates of the Caribbean Theatre Performance
Friday 11th: LP reports go home
Wednesday 16th: Christmas Shows 4:00 - 6:30 pm PAC and Santa’s Festival
Friday 18th: Last day of term one - finish 11 am with older siblings - NO PLAY ROOM

Upper Primary
December
Saturday 5th: Corazon Del Padre Mini Feria
Monday 7th December: Theatre Performance
Thursday 10th: UP Christmas Concert and food fair at 5.30
Friday 11th: 4th grade Save the children Bake Sale
Friday 11th: UP reports go home
Wednesday 16th: Santa's Festival
Friday 18th: Last day of term one. Students leave at 11.30am (no PASS club)

Secondary News

Shoe Box Campaign - ‘A little Christmas Gift’
As requested in the recent communication from the Secondary School, please support our Shoe Box Campaign, which this year is entitled ‘A little Christmas Gift’, by filling an ordinary shoe box with at least one of the following items:
  • A new pair of socks
  • Tooth paste and a tooth brush 
  • Candles
  • Cookie 
  • A toy

The items should be new and aimed at a boy or a girl of a certain age range (please label the wrapped box accordingly - see the above image for more detail). 

The deadline is Tuesday 15th of December and boxes can be handed in to the Secondary School Office. 

The boxes will be given to less fortunate children from local communities.

For full details please refer to the recent email. If you still have questions please contact abc-actua@abc-net.edu.sv or the Secondary School Office.

Movember
Movember came to an end with style. Thank you to all those -students and teachers- that have supported Movember.

Well done to Mr Hall, Upper Primary Deputy Head, on being nominated best moustache at the Guy Fawkes/Christmas Fair. 

Secondary male staff that participated in Movember, supported by some Mo Sistas.

Grade 7 Social - Tuesday 1st of December
On Tuesday 1st December, the Class of 2021 enjoyed a fun afternoon of socialising and playing with water. The Madres Enlace worked together with staff and Grade 12 mentors to provide some excellent activities and we all had a wet and wonderful time. The money raised from the event will go to support the Grade 7 charity, Con Textos.


A big thanks to everyone who took part. 
Lucy Burns, Head of Grade 7

Grade 6 to 8 Parent Partnership ‘Internet Safety’ - Thursday 3rd of December
The initial response to yesterday’s Grade 6, 7 & 8 Parent Partnership has been very positive. Below are some photographs from the different workshops that were on offer:

Online Gaming - Potential Issues, Advantages and Examples

Digital Footprints - GPS, Tracking, Filter Bubbles and Settings

Social Networks - Potential Issues, 21st Century Skills and Benefits and Examples

Cyberbullying, Sexting, Predators, Pornography

Cell Phones and Tablets - Setup and Restrictions, Tracking and Text and Chat

We plan to replicate this format in upcoming parent partnership meetings and we are very keen to hear suggestions from parents of possible future topics that you want us to address.

Grade 8 Coffee Fair - Friday 4th of December
Over the past couple of months the whole of Grade 8 have been working hard in an exciting cross-curricular project within IT and Geography. This project involved students taking on different roles to plan and create their own coffee business in preparation for a big coffee fair. 

After presenting their business plans and products within a Dragons Den event to professionals and receiving valuable feedback, the students effectively marketed and produced tasty coffee treats to sell to the rest of the school at the coffee fair. 

Students from all age groups attended the coffee fair and were met by our top class Grade 8 chefs and company mascots, who all enjoyed their lunchtime eating and drinking products produced by these new found companies. Well done Grade 8! 
Alex Kilford, Head of Geography

Turtle Release - Saturday 5th of December
The IGCA is organising a turtle release tomorrow (Saturday 5th of December) at Playa Amatal, La Libertad. Around 30 students will join this activity, as well as some parents and teachers from the ABC. This is a permanent school project to help on the preservation of sea wildlife.
Walter Arevalo, IGCA Coordinator

International Award Expedition - Saturday 5th to Sunday 6th of December
The Year 10 Bronze International Award group will be away from Saturday morning to Sunday afternoon. They will be camping in the El Limo parque at Metapan. During the expedition they will be taught and assessed on their camping skills, hiking and cooking. We expect to see some waterfalls, forestry and wildlife whilst enjoying the natural world outside of our busy city lives. 
James Merry, International Award Coordinator

Grade 10 Empowerment Activity - Tuesday 8th of December
Next Tuesday Grade 10 have a special empowerment activity beginning at 1.00pm and finishing at 5.00pm. This compulsory event will involve various team building activities and should be a great learning experience for our students.

As mentioned in Mrs Forsyth’s recent communication, students should wear their PE uniform and bring a change of clothes. They should also bring a water bottle and a towel. A light snack will be provided during the afternoon.

Parents please make the necessary arrangements to pick up your child at 5.00pm on that day. 

Grade 9 & 11 Parent Partnership - Tuesday 8th of December (now extended to all parents of children in Grade 9 and above) 
Although originally planned as a Grade 9 and Grade 11 Parent Partnership we now invite parents of children in Grade 9 upwards to join us on Tuesday 8th of December at 6.00pm in the PAC. Our guest speaker is Eduardo Loyola from the Centro Terapéutico Jaime Hill. Eduardo Loyola contributes to the Substance Abuse Prevention unit of our Life Skills programme. On Tuesday the focus will be on class/open parties and the new drugs which are becoming increasingly accessible to our youngsters. 

We hope you can join us.

I hope you have a lovely weekend.

All the best,

Stephen Spicer 
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Friday 4th December - Grade 6, 7 and 8 Cal 1 reports published electronically 
Saturday 5th to Sunday 6th December - International Award Expedition
Monday 7th December - Grade 6 Xmas lunch, 12.20pm to 2.00pm
Tuesday 8th December - Grade 10 (Class 2018) Empowerment Day: Theme ‘Perseverance’ 
Tuesday 8th December - Grade 9 & 11 Parent Partnership. Now extended to all parents of children in Grade 9 and above (Grade 9 & 11 Cal 1 reports issued)
Friday 11th December - Art Mock Part 1
Friday 11th to Sunday 13th December - International Award Expedition
Saturday 12th December - Art Mock Part 2
Monday 15th December - Grade 11 (iGCSE) Certificate Awards Evening (6.00pm to 7.30pm)
Friday 18th December - Last day of term

Friday, 27 November 2015

14: Friday 27th November 2015

From the Director


I hope to see many of you with your families at the Guy Fawkes Night this evening. We are all hoping for better weather than last week. I do apologise for the late cancellation.

We are starting our value of considerate next week which is a value all of us should be practicing all the time. I would like to take this opportunity to ask you to support these values actively at home. it is so important that our children see consistency between school and home.

We were proud to receive an award from Save the Children this week to recognise our partnership with them over the Race for Survival. This is a project we will be continuing and working on for the remainder of this school year and we have already raised over $4,100 to purchase life changing equipment in local hospitals for young babies.

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

We are hoping for better luck this evening and that we will actually have another enjoyable school event take place. It is the annual culmination of our ‘British Fortnight’. It is the…. 

‘GUY FAWKES FIREWORK NIGHT.’

The event opens at 5.30 and the concert performances start at 6.30pm and are in three sections. Please make sure you sit and observe the students and staff perform with courtesy. If you just want to chat please move out of the Cafeteria area. We want everyone to have a good time but parents please supervise your children, especially if they are handling sparklers. We recommend gloves to ensure no-one gets burnt or touches the hot metal by mistake. Students should not be running about without an adult to keep an eye on them. If a child ran into a sparkler it would be very upsetting. Our staff are hoping to enjoy the evening themselves. They are not on duty for this particular evening. Don’t forget there will also be the Christmas market in the auditorium and we will be selling quality English books. A ‘must’ for every household in the school.

Last week’s Grade 3 bake sale raised $450 for Save the children. Well done to the students in Grade 3 (and their parents) for the lovely cakes and cookies, the teachers for their encouragement and organisation and to the rest of the school for supporting them and buying the items. They were delicious. Today Grade 5 are running their sale. We hope they do just as well.

On Thursday morning the Save the Children organisation came in to present our Grade 5s, along with the Grade 9s, a trophy for their excellent work in organising the Race for Survival. We were able to review how the machine they are buying will help diagnose premature babies with hearing difficulties and to see some of the photos from the event. Well done again to the Grade 5 students and their teachers.

The schedule of Christmas events is developing below. We know we are asking a lot but please remember this time of year is a particular time for giving and continue to dig deep into your pockets with generous hearts, knowing that you are making a big difference to a child somewhere near here.

Current Primary Initiatives.
Bake sales for Save the Children - Fridays -Whole Primary
Shoe boxes - Upper Primary
Toy collection - Lower primary
Jars for Santa’s Festival - Lower Primary
Food for the International Food Festival -10th December -Upper

If you have things that you would like to give to other sections, please do so, but I thought it would be helpful to know where the focus lies.

We have been asked to let you know about another event supporting the orphanage that the school has a special interest in. Our secondary students have been involved in organising the event. It is on the 5th December. Please take your children along.

On the 7th December we have a special theatre production of ‘Pirates of the Caribbean’ in school. It is a tradition in British schools to have a theatre production in at Christmas time and we felt that it is such a worthwhile experience that we wanted to do it too. The cost is $2 per student. Much less than if you took them to the theatre yourselves. We hope you will support this new event especially as we have not been able to go on many outside trips this term.

Lastly today, can I comment on driving etiquette in school?

Please wait in the line patiently and make sure your driver does too. Do not jump the queue and overtake those cars who are waiting patiently. You actually cause more of a problem. 

Never try and drive down the wrong side of the road. 

Pull as far forward as you can to drop off your child particularly along the green railings and in the admin carpark. You block everyone behind you from getting in and slow the process right down. 

Make sure your child is ready to get out before you get here. Coat is on, bag to hand, any items they are bringing in such as money can all be got ready the night before. Do not block drop off spots by doing all this once you are here. We need the transfer to be as quick as possible. 

After the first week of attending school you do not need to wait and see your child go in. We have adults supervising all drop off areas. 

Drive off as soon as you can. Please do not check your phone at this time. Once again you hold everyone else up because you are not alert to what is going on around you.

Please do not be a selfish or oblivious driver in school.

‘I wonder if we will have snow for Christmas?’ is a question I would often ask when I lived in Europe. Here I know the answer - definitely not! I will still see plenty of reindeer, sleighs and Christmas lights though. The Christmas Season is almost upon us and I am really looking forward to the next few weeks. I hope you are too.

Best wishes,

Sharon Short,
Head of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
November
Friday 27th: Guy Fawkes Night
December
Friday 4th: Prepa Watt assembly 7:30 am PAC
Saturday 5th December: Corazon Del Padre Mini Feria
Monday 7th December: Theatre Performance
Friday 11th: LP reports go home
Wednesday 16th: Christmas Shows 4:00 - 6:30 pm PAC and Santa’s Festival
Friday 18th: Last day of term one - finish 11 am with older siblings - NO PLAY ROOM

Upper Primary
November
Friday 27th: Guy Fawkes Party and 5th Grade Save the children Bake Sale
December
Wednesday 2nd: 4th Navas Assembly. PAC at 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 4th: 2nd grade Save the children Bake Sale
Saturday 5th: Corazon Del Padre Mini Feria
Monday 7th December: Theatre Performance
Thursday 10th: UP Christmas Concert and food fair at 5.30
Friday 11th: 4th grade Save the children Bake Sale
Friday 11th: UP reports go home
Wednesday 16th: Santa's Festival
Friday 18th: Last day of term one. Students leave at 11.30am (no PASS club)

Secondary News

PAES results are in!
Congratulations to the Class of 2016 for achieving an 8.03 global average. 97% of the students scored at the ‘Superior Level’ of 7.5 and above, and our top score reached was a 9.15. The PAES is a national exit exam for graduating students, which covers the Natural Sciences, Maths, National History, and Spanish Language and Literature. 81,633 students took the exam in October 14th and 15th of this year; 23,661 came from private institutions. Our students scored higher than the average for bilingual schools at 7.71, and private schools in La Libertad with an average of 6.33. We are very proud of our students' effort and dedication, and very thankful of the support of all our teachers who work with them. The national PAES average stands at 5.3. Yet, we want to work hard to stay strong and deliver our earnest effort. 
Eric Quijano, National School Director
Toys for Smiles
We have started our Christmas toy drive called “Toys for Smiles”. There are collection boxes (like the one in the picture below) around campus. We want the ABC community to donate as many new toys, and used ones (so long as they are in good condition), as they can for local underprivileged children who otherwise will not get a toy this coming holiday season. 


We will be collecting toys from now until Wednesday 16th of December. 

Thank you in advance for all your support.

Grade 8 Coffee Project


Over the last few months the Grade 8s have been working together in teams to develop and promote different coffee products in order to understand global trade as well as finding out more about El Salvador’s number one commodity... coffee!! Each student has been playing a different role within teams to design, plan and make products for a big coffee fair event which will be happening on 4th December.

This week the students put their products, advertising and business plans to the test when they took part in a ‘pitch’ presentation similar to the TV show ‘Dragons Den’ (Shark Tank in the US). We had a number of judges assessing the presentations including Mr Spicer, Benoir Gravel (the owner of Ben’s Coffee), Rodrigo Giammattei (operations manager for Cafe Cate) as well as two Exabrit students who are now working within the baking and coffee industries.

The afternoon of presentations were a success due to the hard work and effort that the Grade 8 students had put into it. The students are now re-evaluating their work ready to sell their products to the school during the lunchtime on Friday December 4th. All students are invited to come along to this Coffee Fair event to show some support as well as buy some tasty goodies, make sure you hold onto your dollars ready for this event.
Mr Alex Kilford, Head of Geography

G10 & 12 Parent Teacher Meetings - Thursday 26th of November
We had a new format Grade 10 to Grade 12 Parent Teacher Meetings yesterday. As reported last week, we have moved to appointments (made in advance by students) and the meetings ran 3.15pm to 6.00pm.

Thank you to all the parents that attended. We will be reviewing this model, but we hope to use it in future Parent Teacher Meetings.

Grade 6-8 Parent Partnership - Thursday 3rd of December
Sign up for the event closes today for the upcoming Grade 6 to 8 Parent Partnership on online safety issues/topics. As mentioned last week, and in subsequent emails to Grade 6, 7 and 8 parents, the format of the evening will be a selection of workshops which parents can sign-up to based on which workshops are of most interest to them.

The workshops that will be on offer next week are:
  1. Online Gaming - Potential Issues, Advantages and Examples
  2. Digital Footprints - GPS, Tracking, Filter Bubbles and Settings
  3. Social Networks - Potential Issues, 21st Century Skills and Benefits and Examples
  4. Cyberbullying, Sexting, Predators
  5. Cell Phones and Tablets - Setup and Restrictions, Tracking and Text and Chat
At the time of writing this we have had a pleasing response, but many parents had yet to register. If you want to attend please register by the end of today. All you need is your unique ID number



Parents are asked to bring their mobile devices (laptop, ipad, smartphone, etc) through which they will be able to access the workshop. However, if this is not possible there will be laptops available to use. 

Grade 6, 7 & 8 Cal 1 reports will be issued electronically on Friday 4th December (more details to follow shortly).

HIV/AIDS week
Next week (week commencing Monday November 30th) is HIV/AIDS Awareness Week in the Secondary School. Tragically HIV continues to be a major global public health issue. Since 2000, 38.1 million people have become infected with HIV and 25.3 million people have died of AIDS-related illnesses.

In 2014, an estimated 36.9 million people were living with HIV (including 2.6 million children). The vast majority of this number live in low- and middle-income countries. In the same year, 1.2 million people died of AIDS-related illnesses.

During HIV/AIDS Awareness Week we will be working with the students to raise awareness of the devastating impact of this disease.

Source: Statistics and chart courtesy of AVERT

I hope to see you tonight at the Christmas Fair/Guy Fawkes celebration.

Warm regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
w/c Monday 30th November - AIDS/HIV Awareness Week
Tuesday 1st December - Grade 7 Social, 3.00pm to 4.45pm
Thursday 3rd December - Grade 6, 7 and 8 Parent Partnership
Friday 4th December - Grade 6, 7 and 8 Cal 1 reports published electronically
Saturday 5th to Sunday 6th December - International Award Expedition
Monday 7th December - Grade 6 Xmas lunch, 12.20pm to 2.00pm
Tuesday 8th December - Grade 10 (Class 2018) Empowerment Day: Theme ‘Perseverance’ 
Tuesday 8th December - Grade 9 & 11 Parent Partnership (Cal 1 reports issued)
Friday 11th December - Art Mock Part 1
Friday 11th to Sunday 13th December - International Award Expedition
Saturday 12th December - Art Mock Part 2
Monday 15th December - Grade 11 (iGCSE) Certificate Awards Evening (6.00pm to 7.30pm)
Friday 18th December - Last day of term

Friday, 20 November 2015

13: Friday 20th November 2015

From the Director



Please note we have postponed Guy Fawkes until next Friday 27th November due to the rain this afternoon and the threat of more rain tonight. The event will take place as planned tonight but next Friday.



Thank you to everyone who shared the Save the Children Race for Survival event last Saturday. You can see some pictures on our ABC News blog. It was wonderful to see members of our whole community supporting this cause which our children feel so passionate about. They are busy fundraising to help us achieve our goal and thank you for all your support so many of you have given at a time of year when I know we do ask for a lot!



On an individual note I would like to congratulate Alejandro Apóstolo for winning the Under 15 Central American tennis championship. You can see further details of his triumph on our ROCs in Action blog. Congratulations to him and his team of supporters.

I was looking forward to seeing many of you at the Guy Fawkes party tonight but instead I hope to see you next Friday. We will have games, shopping, food and family entertainment. I am hoping that you will come along as individual families and thereby make up the wider ABC family to which we all belong. At the Guy Fawkes event we will be having students performing and I would like to remind you that many of these students have been practicing for a long period leading up to this event and they deserve our full support and attention. I would like to highlight some golden rules for being an audience at a live show which you need to observe if you are in the audience arena where the performers are performing:
  • Please be quiet and do not talk or eat while the performer is performing.
  • Please make sure your mobile phones are turned off and are stored away.
  • Please do not walk out in the middle of an item as it can be upsetting to the performer.
  • Please watch the performance, think about the delivery and try to understand the message and how the performer got to this point.
  • Please show appreciation for all the acts in the show regardless of whether you know the performer or not.
  • At the end please clap, whether or not it was very good. Your clapping is to show appreciation for the effort that has been made. If it is very good, clap loud and fast!
  • Please feel free to provide feedback. If you liked the performance you should express your appreciation, or share your opinions for improvement afterwards, it means a lot to the performers.
I hope you all have a great weekend and that we are able to celebrate Guy Fawkes with each other next Friday.

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

As if school isn’t busy enough we are fast approaching the busiest and one of the most exciting times of year - Christmas. It is extremely hectic for us all; staff, students and of course parents. We hope you will be able to keep up with us all and bear in mind it is only for a few weeks! Please look at the calendar dates carefully.

We are starting our annual shoebox appeal and toy collection this week. This has been a very worthwhile activity in previous years and we know the students really enjoy selecting the toys or items to go in the boxes and making them look nice. We are combining our efforts with the secondary students of Actua and the boxes will be distributed to several worthy causes. Secondary will be starting their appeal shortly. Please do support the appeal as much as possible. It does bring such joy to so many children. We have started a little earlier this year to give more time to get the boxes prepared.





I know that none of you would be this presumptuous, but I just wanted to check that parents understood once teachers have left school they are no longer contactable by email. Their work hours are finished (We don’t pay them all night as well as all day!). Any emails sent to them in the evening are not guaranteed to be looked at until the next day. Some of our kind and diligent teachers do check their work emails from time to time but this cannot be an expectation.

I led my first Parent Partnership meeting this week on Anti-Bullying Strategies. Thank you to those parents who were able to attend. I hope you found it useful. This year we have allocated some funds from our school budget to support these events and so we will no longer be charging for parents to attend. We also have a small library of books on particular learning difficulties and/or parenting that are available for loan by the LSU. These are on display at the parent partnership events and can be booked out there too.
Please note that primary students who bring mobile phones into school should hand them into the Upper Primary office in the morning and collect them at the end of the school day. This is for all students protection and wellbeing. Students found with phones on their person, in their bags or in class during the school day will have them confiscated and parents will have to come and collect them at their convenience. Primary students should not have smart phones in school at all, only basic handsets.

Today I am asking you to ask yourself, “How much quality time do I spend with my children?” We are noticing some students with either anxiety or poor manners and this can be from a lack of attention or interaction with their parents. Please remember parents, you are your child’s main role model and it is only by spending time with you they learn to follow your example and understand acceptable boundaries for behaviour. Please make sure you are a great example to follow in line with our school values. It is important that for all of us working with children at school or at home that we do not use inappropriate language or lose our temper. Ideally we demonstrate care and tolerance to all, remembering to greet and say thank you to anyone who helps you; from the guards at the school gate and retail assistants to your maids and help at home.

I hope you have a lovely Guy Fawkes evening next week and look forward to seeing you there.

Sharon Short
Head of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
November
Friday 27th: Prepa Gray assembly 7:30 am PAC
Friday 27th: Guy Fawkes Night
December
Friday 4th: Prepa Watt assembly 7:30 am PAC
Friday 11th: Reports go home
Wednesday 16th: Christmas Shows 4:00 - 6:30 pm PAC
Friday 18th: Last day of term one - finish 11 am with older siblings - NO PLAY ROOM

Upper Primary
November
Wednesday 25th: 5th Molina Assembly. PAC at 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 27th: Guy Fawkes Party and 5th Grade Save the children Bake Sale
December
Wednesday 2nd: 4th Navas Assembly. PAC at 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 4th: 2nd grade Save the children Bake Sale
Thursday 10th: UP Christmas Concert and food fair. at 5.30
Friday 11th: 4th grade Save the Children Bake Sale
Friday 11th: UP reports go home
Wednesday 16th: Santa's Festival
Friday 18th: Last day of term one

Secondary News

Good afternoon,

Parent Partnerships and Parent Teacher Meetings
In the coming weeks we have a number of important events for parents to attend:
  • Grade 10 & 12 Parent Teacher meetings - November 26th
  • Grade 6, 7 & 8 Parent Partnership - December 3rd
  • Grade 9 & 11 Parent Partnership - December 8th (more information shortly)
As mentioned in last week’s ABC Weekly the arrangements for some of these will differ from recent meetings.

Grades 10 & 12 Parent Teacher Meetings
The parent teacher meetings will run from 3.15pm to 6.00pm and appointments will need to be made in advance with teachers by the students (students have already been provided with booking slips and should have started making appointments). The 5 minute appointment slots will need to be strictly kept to as otherwise this will cause frustration for parents waiting for their slot and meetings with subsequent teachers will not start on time. Each teacher will have a timer on their table so that appointments are kept within 5 minutes. 

The purpose of the meeting is to discuss student performance. Cal 1 grades will be issued in advance of this meeting so that parents and their children can discuss how they have performed so far this academic year in advance of the event. As always, we ask that parents request a separate meeting with a teacher(s) if there is a matter that can not be resolved within the time available. 

We expect the Grade 10 and Grade 12 students to accompany their parents on this event. At this age students should be actively involved in such meetings as they are mature enough to hear directly a summary of their current performance along with targets for improvement.

These changes have been made in response to requests from a number of parents. We are confident that the benefits will be clear to parents and that the new format will be warmly received.

Grade 6, 7 & 8 Parent Partnership
The objective of this Parent Partnership is to offer parents practical advice on online safety issues/topics through a selection of workshops and to enable parents to opt for the workshops that most interest them. We hope parents like the idea of being able to personalise the evening.

Following a brief talk on general guidelines and resources, the workshops that will be on offer are:
  1. Online Gaming - Potential Issues, Advantages and Examples
  2. Digital Footprints - GPS, Tracking, Filter Bubbles and Settings
  3. Social Networks - Potential Issues, 21st Century Skills and Benefits and Examples
  4. Cyberbullying, Sexting, Predators
  5. Cell Phones and Tablets - Setup and Restrictions, Tracking and Text and Chat
Parents can sign up for three of the five workshops, each lasting 15 minutes. A separate communication has gone out with complete details of how to sign-up. 

As mentioned in last week’s ABC Weekly, Grade 6, 7 & 8 parents will need their unique ID number to register. Please contact the ICT office ASAP if you still do not have this.


We look forward to seeing you at these events and please contact me if you have any questions. 

Grade 11 (Class 2017) Empowerment Day - Saturday 21st of November
Tomorrow we have the Grade 11 Empowerment Day. If you are not aware, under the guidance of Mr Quijano, this is a unique event in our calendar as it is run by our students (the Grade 12s) for our students (the Grade 11s). Based on the theme ‘unity’, the Grade 11 students will experience a series of challenging and fun activities. 

I look forward to helping out and I am confident all involved will have a great time. 

Shoeing Campaign - update
An amazing 1000 plus pairs of shoes were collected as part of our recent Shoeing Campaign. Well done to all the Secondary students that were involved in organising this extremely worthwhile initiative and thank you to everyone that kindly donated. 

In the words of Irene Bustamante (representing the SHOEING TEAM) “Thank you again for bringing smiles to many children in need of shoes and caring”.

I hope to see you at Guy Fawkes next Friday and that you have a great weekend.

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary 

Secondary dates for your diary
November - aka Movember
Saturday 21st November - Grade 11 (Class 2017) Empowerment Day: Theme ‘Unity’
w/c Monday 23rd November - Recycling Week
Thursday 26th November - Parent/Teacher meetings for Grades 10 & 12 
w/c Monday 30th November - AIDS/HIV Awareness Week
Friday 27th - Guy Fawkes Night
Tuesday 1st December - Grade 7 Social, 3.00pm to 4.45pm
Thursday 3rd December - Grade 6, 7 and 8 Parent Partnership
Saturday 5th to Sunday 6th December - International Award Expedition
Tuesday 8th December - Grade 10 (Class 2018) Empowerment Day: Theme ‘Perseverance’
Tuesday 8th December - Grade 9 & 11 Parent Partnership
Thursday 10th December - Grade 6 Xmas lunch, 12.20pm to 2.00pm
Friday 11th December - Art Mock Part 1
Friday 11th to Sunday 13th December - International Award Expedition
Saturday 12th December - Art Mock Part 2
Monday 15th December - Grade 11 (iGCSE) Certificate Awards Evening (6.00pm to 7.30pm)
Friday 18th December - Last day of term

Friday, 13 November 2015

12: Friday 13th November 2015

From the Director


I trust you have had a good week. I am hoping to see many of you at school tomorrow supporting our Race for Survival which is launching a campaign to help improve infant mortality rates in El Salvador. Our students have been inspired by this campaign and we are hoping that many of you will be here on Saturday morning to launch the campaign through the Race for Survival.There has been a huge community effort to prepare for this event and I would like to thank everyone involved including of course the Madres Enlace 

I also want to give you a warm invitation to our Guy Fawkes party and Christmas Fair on Friday 20th November. We will have lots of games and activities for children to enjoy as well as our traditional bonfire and fireworks. We hope you will join us for some fun and community celebrations.

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

It is the RACE FOR SURVIVAL TOMORROW - 8.30am. We expect to see you all there for an exciting and enjoyable time, whether you are running or not and whether you have bought the T-Shirt or not. (We hope you did though.) We can make a difference and literally Save the Children from a lifetime of deafness. So let’s do it!

These two weeks are ‘British Fortnight’ and the students are focussing on all things British. Today we had a small english tea party for each grade with a scone and jam and cream if the students wanted it, and a nice drink of squash.

2nd Tutty did a wonderful assembly about remembrance for Remembrance Day and had really thought about the significance. You can see them all here wearing their Poppy’s.

It was co-incidentally the first meeting for the grade 5 UK trip on Wednesday. 

Next Friday it is our annual Firework event ‘Guy Fawkes’ night. I really enjoyed it last year with performances from staff and students, a lovely food court and the firework finale. I hope you have the event in your diary and are planning to bring the whole family along. During the week the students will be undertaking little activities in their classes related to Britain. Such as learning about the Firework Safety code and the history of Guy Fawkes Night.

Please can I appeal to you again to be aware that students arriving late to class cause considerable disruption to their own and everyone else’s education. Please be on time or a few minutes early for school.

Can I also make sure that everyone is aware that it is school policy that students should not bring toys to school unless specifically requested by the class teacher for an activity. The toys cause major upsets and arguments as the children lose sight of what is theirs and what isn’t. Teachers have no way of knowing what belongs to who and there is equal distress when things get lost or broken. We do not need your toys in school. We have our own! Please also send back toys/items that come home that you know do not belong to your family.

Best wishes for a great day tomorrow. See you there!

Sharon Short
Head Of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
November
Saturday 14th: Race for Survival
Friday 20th: Prepa Taylor assembly 7:30 am PAC
Friday 20th: Guy Fawkes Night
Friday 27th: Prepa Gray assembly 7:30 am PAC
December
Friday 4th: Prepa Watt assembly 7:30 am PAC
Wednesday 16th: Christmas Shows 4:00 - 6:30 pm PAC
Friday 18th: Last day of term one - finish 11 am with older siblings - NO PLAY ROOM

Upper Primary
November
Saturday 14th: Race for Survival
Wednesday 18th: 4th grade Spanish Assembly. PAC at 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 20th: 3rd grade Bake Sale
Friday 20th: Guy Fawkes 
Wednesday 25th: 5th Molina Assembly. PAC at 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 27th: 5th Grade Bake Sale
Friday 27th and Saturday 28th: 2nd grade Camping
December
Wednesday 2nd: 4th Navas Assembly. PAC at 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 4th: 2nd grade Bake Sale
Friday 11th: 4th grade Bake Sale
Friday 11th: UP reports go home
Wednesday 16th: Santa's Festival
Friday 18th: Last day of term one

Secondary News

First Cross Schools’ Student Council Conference - Thursday 12th of November

On Thursday the ABC staged the first Cross Schools’ Student Council Conference. Students from the ABC (the StuCo Executive Team) were joined by the Escuela Americana, Liceé Francés, Colegio Maya and the International School.

The purpose of the conference (the first of very many) was to establish a network of San Salvador student councils/governments in order that hereafter they can collaborate on cross school campaigns and events. There was a real buzz in the LRC as the students got to know each other and shared ideas.

We hope more schools will join us in future conferences.

British Fortnight

As part of the British Fortnight, the following food will be available next week from the Cafeteria:

Monday 16th
Cottage pie

Tuesday 17th
Bacon butty

Wednesday 18th
Toad in the hole

Thursday 19th
Bangers and mash

Friday 20th
Cornish pasty

As well as a ‘taste of Britain’, the Performing Arts Department has staged a number of concerts (and will continue to do so next week) and students have been enjoying British-themed segments in their lessons.

Please be reminded, that the fortnight culminates next week with a night of entertainment with the Guy Fawkes celebration/Christmas Fair (Friday 20th of November).

Parent Partnerships and Parent Teacher Meetings
In the next month we have a number of important events for parents to attend:
  • Grades 10 & 12 Parent Teacher meetings - November 26th
  • Grade 6, 7 & 8 Parent Partnership - December 3rd
  • Grade 9 & 11 Parent Partnership - December 8th
Next week’s ABC Weekly will explain these in detail, along with describing how the arrangements will differ from previous years.

In preparation for the Grade 6, 7 & 8 Parent Partnership parents who do not have an ID will need to come to the school to collect the physical card with photo. If this is not possible then parents, as a temporary solution, can call the ICT office to get their number. Grade 6 to 8 parents will need to input their unique ID number in order to sign-up for the parent partnership workshops that make-up the evening (as said above, more details in next week’s ABC Weekly).


Art Trip
The Secondary School Art Trip to Holland and France was a real success. Thank you to Mrs De Leon and Mrs Mercedes Escalante for giving up their half-term to offer this amazing experience to our students. 

Below are a few words from the teachers:

We returned from our Art trip last Saturday the 9th of November, at 10:00 pm, having met all the trip objectives and visited the main museums in Amsterdam and Paris. These visits provided our students with a better appreciation of a variety art movements and the work of artists that we have studied in class.

It was a pleasant experience to observe the satisfied expressions on the faces of our students, as they admired the art. We hope that this trip was not just a nice experience for the student, but that it has heightened their curiosity, and has motivated them to continue to explore and widen their interests for the arts.


Mrs De Leon and Mrs Mercedes Escalante

I hope to see you at tomorrow’s Save the Children’s ‘Race for Survival’. 




Kind regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
November - aka Movember
Saturday 14th November - Save the Children ‘Race for Survival’
Friday 20th November - Guy Fawkes Party and Christmas Fair
Saturday 21st November - Grade 11 (Class 2017) Empowerment Day: Theme ‘Unity’
Monday 23rd November - Recycling Week
Thursday 26th November - Parent/Teacher meetings for Grades 10 & 12 
December
Thursday 3rd December - Grade 6, 7 and 8 Parent Partnership
Tuesday 8th December - Grade 10 (Class 2018) Empowerment Day: Theme ‘Perseverance’
Tuesday 8th December - Grade 9 & 11 Parent Partnership
Monday 15th December - Grade 11 (iGCSE) Certificate Awards Evening (6.00pm to 7.30pm)
Friday 18th December - Last day of term

Friday, 30 October 2015

11: Friday 30th October 2015

From the Director


This weekend I am attending the IB Heads Conference and trust everyone has had a good end to the week at school. I hope that, from this ABC weekly and hopefully from talking to your child, you are aware of the forthcoming event on Saturday 14th November at school from 8.30am - 12.30 pm - the ABC’s first RACE FOR SURVIVAL which is in partnership with Save the Children. This is a major event to raise awareness and funds and to show the ABC community’s commitment to improving the survival and wellbeing of newly born babies and infants in El Salvador. We are expecting many parents and students to come along and support the event, hopefully with their t shirts and we will be organising car park passes to ensure parking is available. More details of the car park passes will come next week. Please do get a car pass and join us. We need everyone's support.


The RACE FOR SURVIVAL includes the following:
  • a 28 lap tribal competition running relay (each student who volunteers will only have to run 2 laps with their tribal teammates) and a tribal competition based on fun activities planned for the day on the school field. Each tribe (Aztec, Inca, Maya, Pipil) will have 28 students running in the tribal relay and the other fun games - so this is an opportunity for your son or daughter to represent his or her tribe. Please encourage your son or daughter to participate and help promote his event
  • a more serious 2.8 km race for individual Secondary ABC students or adult runners - so parents bring your running gear and get practising. There is also a 0.9 km run for Primary athletes. Student athletes can register their interest in participating in these races at school. 
  • there will also be food, music, performances, awards and lots of fun events planned by the children for children on Saturday morning. So even if you or your children are not involved in the races we want you to be there to show your support. 
  • ultimately we want the ABC community assembling together to send out the message that we are committed (along with Save the Children) to improving the survival chances of infants in El Salvador!
The reason for the number 28 is that a new-born baby is most vulnerable during its first 28 days and in El Salvador this is when too many babies lose their lives. Also, according to Save the Children, approximately 28% of infant deaths in El Salvador are due to babies being born prematurely. Our RACE FOR SURVIVAL will increase awareness, raise funds and significantly help to prevent such losses!

Please encourage your child to sign up to run in the actual 28 lap tribal competition relay (the actual RACE FOR SURVIVAL) and perhaps the 2.8km race as well. Students that sign up to run using the google form that Mr Rombout emailed to them (http://goo.gl/forms/HSX4gcQlqI) will automatically gain a tribal point for their enthsiasm and willingness to participate.

Whether or not you child is running in the race, parents please bring your family to our first RACE FOR SURVIVAL on Saturday 14th November and participate in this historic event at the ABC that should really show our commitment to infant survival in El Salvador!


On another note I would like to remind all parents of the car park etiquette in the morning and afternoon. Please keep your speed down at all times and watch out for children. Please never encourage your child to cross the road except at the pedestrian crossing. We are working with the students in this respect but we ask for your support so that children see the same message coming from all of their carers.

We wish you all a very pleasant half term holiday and see you back in school on Monday 9th November. I look forward to seeing many of you at the Guy Fawkes party on Friday 20th November.

Primary News

In UP This Week

5th Grade went to war as Roman soldiers in Tortuga formation and got a little wet! Thanks to the Madres Enlace for their help with the water bombs!



Inspired by both Ollie Tumner's body percussion and STOMP videos, 4th Grade experimented with these ideas for their Entry Point for their new IPC unit 'Look! Hear!' Mr. Díaz started us off with body percussion rhythms, and then each class separated into groups to produce STOMP’s using basketballs, cups, brooms, pots and pans, different types of bags and plastic containers. An amazing time was had by all children, and the results were fantastic. Perhaps an ABC STOMP group is in the making. 



For the past 3 weeks, 3rd Grade have been learning about the value - 'Enthusiastic'! They have learnt about the importance of doing everything with a positive attitude and how this makes all the difference when trying to achieve positive results!


Students from 12th grade have been coming to UP and, through playing different games, giving pep-talks and performing role plays, they have been sharing their experiences of how, by being enthusiastic about school life and activities, they have changed the way they approach challenges, and how important this is!

It has also been United Nation’s Week which has included 3rd Pattenden’s very informative assembly about all the important issues the UN are involved with. As always the Madres Enlace have been wonderful and ensured all of UP were able to experience a range of foods from India, Argentina, Brazil and France for our UN Food Fair. Look out for pictures in the next edition.

Movember - Cancer Awareness
Primary staff, along with Secondary students and staff, will be growing moustaches to raise awareness of men’s health issues in November. It all starts with a clean shave! 


Have a relaxing half term break and we look forward to seeing you in school on Monday 9th November.

In LP This Week

We finalised our United Nations activities this week. In PK and Kinder we have been joined by parents on a daily basis over the past month. They have been helping out with the different activities and it was great to have such fantastic support!




In Prepa we invited parents in to join their child for the “Who am I?” exit point in the PAC.


Last week some of the PK parents presented their interpretation of the book Handa’s Surprise by Eileen Brown.


Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
October
Friday 30th: Half term begins
November
Monday 9th: Return to school
Friday 13th: Prepa Ware assembly 7:30 am PAC
Saturday 14th November: Race for Survival
Friday 20th: Prepa Taylor assembly 7:30 am PAC
Friday 27th: Prepa Gray assembly 7:30 am PAC
December
Friday 4th: Prepa Watt assembly 7:30 am PAC
Wednesday 16th: Christmas Shows 4:00 - 6:30pm PAC
Friday 18th: Last day of term one - finish 11 am with older siblings - NO PLAY ROOM

Upper Primary
October
Friday 30th: Children's Day- Jeans Day. 
Half term begins
UN food fair 
November
Monday 9th: Return to school 
Wednesday 11th: 2nd Lourdes Hernandez Assembly. PAC at 9.20 and 12.15
Saturday 14th: Race for Survival
Wednesday 18th: 4th grade Spanish Assembly. PAC at 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 20th: 3rd grade Bake Sale
Friday 20th: Guy Fawkes 
Wednesday 25th: 5th Molina Assembly. PAC at 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 27th: 5th Grade Bake Sale
Friday 27th and Saturday 28th: 2nd grade Camping
December
Wednesday 2nd: 4th Navas Assembly. PAC at 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 4th: 2nd grade Bake Sale
Friday 11th: 4th grade Bake Sale
Friday 11th: UP reports go home
Wednesday 16th: Santa's Festival
Friday 18th: Last day of term one

Secondary News

Cancer Awareness Month - Breast Cancer Awareness Talk & Movember
This week (on Tuesday 27th of October) we had the talk by Dr. Cecilia Martínez de Monroy, leading clinical oncologist, on breast cancer. The feedback from those that attended was very positive. 

Dr. Cecilia Martínez de Monroy presenting to parents on Tuesday night

As mentioned in last week’s ABC Weekly, November sees the start of Movember. Staff and students, in support of Movember (moustache November), will be growing moustaches. Please note, this is not an excuse for students not to shave, to be scruffy or to grow a beard; participating students are only allowed to grow.



ABC Talent Show
The first auditions (at this stage there are no eliminations, instead students are given advice to work on their presentations) were held this week for the ABC Talent Show. There will be a round of second auditions in November (this is when there will be eliminations). Acts of all types were invited to audition, including singing, dancing, drama and magic tricks. 

Students will be working on their acts in January, technical and dress rehearsals will happen in February and the show will take place on February 19th. The show will be open to parents, students and teachers. 

IT web conference - Wednesday 28th of October
On Wednesday, we held our long awaited web conference with St. Justin Martyr School, in Missouri. Grade 6 students in both schools have been working on a project in which they share a presentations which illustrate a typical day in their lives. 



This was an unforgettable sharing and learning experience for our students, one which I am sure they will remember the rest of their lives.


It is vital that the current generation of children learn to actively engage with the world in a positive manner and practice good netiquette in doing so. Experiences such as this one help students build their understanding of global citizenship and embrace its values and practices.

Jennifer Garcia
KS3 ICT Teacher & Learning Resources Centre Coordinator

Halloween Make-up Competition - Friday 30th September
Today we had a halloween make-up competition. Students competed at lunchtime to produce the best halloween costume/make-up combination (although judging was based primarily on the make-up) for a halloween hamper worth $25.

Congratulations to Gabriela Zedán in grade 11 - a very talented artist!

A big thank you to Mrs Estela Mena for organising this fun and creative event.

Absences during term time
Students should only be absent from school when unwell or when there are extraordinary circumstances (in which case the school should be notified in advance whenever possible). That said, there is a worrying number of parents that are taking their children out of school in term time for holidays/family events (normally immediately before or after a school holiday - when it is at these times that we often set internal assessments that contribute to CAL grades). 

We try to be accommodating with regards to re-scheduling assessments when a child is absent for legitimate reasons, although this is still not always possible. Planned assessments will not however, be rescheduled if students announce they are going to be absent due to a holiday and, due to time constraints, it may not be possible for an absent child to sit an assessment before the CAL deadline. This then leaves teachers with missing information regarding a child’s progress and understanding (and the child themselves is left uncertain of their progress). Equally important is that students are missing learning experiences when absent from school. 

Please note that student attendance matters for academic performance and as such absences from school should be avoided whenever possible. It is for this reason that the school calendar is published well in advance to accommodate parents making holiday arrangements.
Requests for information
We encourage parents to speak to their children about their progress, and happiness, and to contact the school if they have concerns. During the school year we provide opportunities for parents to meet with teachers and if we have concerns we are quick to contact parents (this often results in a child’s teachers being contacted to provide information on the issue). 

If a parent has academic concerns about a specific subject then, having copied in the relevant Head of Year, they are very welcome to contact that teacher. Concerns other than academic or general requests for information should go the student’s Head of Year; parents should not send out requests for information directly to all of their child’s teachers. However, as a rule -given that we provide regular opportunities for face-to-face feedback, that we do act swiftly if we have concerns as a school and as our teachers are exceptionally busy- we do not support general information requests from parents. 

British Fortnight 
The British Fortnight starts straight after the half-term break. As part of this celebration we will be offering a variety of British food and the Performing Arts Department is planning a number of concerts. Furthermore, many subjects will have British-themed segments in their lessons during the fortnight.

The fortnight culminates with a night of entertainment with the Guy Fawkes celebration/Christmas Fair (Friday 20th of November).

I hope you have the opportunity to spend some quality family time together over the half-term break. When we return after the holiday we will be on Week B (please make sure your child/ren are prepared for the correct week).

Warm regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
November - aka Movember
Monday 2nd - Friday 6th November: HALF TERM HOLIDAY
Monday 9th November - ‘British Fortnight’ begins
Friday 13th November - Save the Children ‘Race for Survival’ t-shirt/non-uniform day - Cake Fair
Saturday 14th November - Save the Children ‘Race for Survival’
Friday 20th November - Guy Fawkes Party and Christmas Fair
Saturday 21st November - Grade 11 (Class 2017) Empowerment Day: Theme ‘Unity’
Monday 23rd November - Recycling Week
Thursday 26th November - Parent/Teacher meetings for Grades 10 & 12 
Thursday 3rd December - Grade 6, 7 and 8 Parent Partnership
Tuesday 8th December - Grade 10 (Class 2018) Empowerment Day: Theme ‘Perseverance’
Friday 18th December - Last day of term