Friday, 27 February 2015

25: Friday 27th February 2015

From the Director

We are focusing on respect for the next two weeks and as part of that programme we have written to parents and students from the class of 2023 upwards. As a community we want us all of us to play our part in showing respect to ourselves, to each other, to our school and to the environment. I know that as a community we all recognise the importance of respect and helping the young people in our community develop respectful attitudes which will make their present and their future lives so much more rewarding and enjoyable.

We have been doing entry assessments for our Pre Kinder entry - the class of 2031 recently and as usual at this time we still have a few places available. If for some reason you want entry for your son or daughter into Pre Kinder in August 2015 please contact us as soon as possible to organise for an assessment. The assessments are friendly and simply designed to ensure your child is ready to start school.

The Bicultural Arts Festival started this week with some art work shared by students from all seven participating schools here at the ABC. Next week we will also be hosting the drama and dance festivals leading to the performances at the Teatro Presidente on Friday 6th March and Saturday 7th March. We hope to see many of you there.


Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

Tomorrow is our Spring Fair and we look forward to seeing you all there to give your children another wonderful learning experience and to have some fun together. You have received information concerning the time to arrive and the stalls will open at 9.00. We have arranged for parking at SISA and Liceo Francés.

Thursday 5th March is World Book Day, and here in Primary we will be marking this all next week (2nd to 6th March), with a special Book Week full of fun activities. We would like to ask for your help with some of the activities:
  • Reading / Telling stories to the class: We would like parents to read or tell a story to their child's class each morning next week, at the start of the school day. Each grade has made specific arrangements. If you have any further queries please contact your class teacher. 
  • Extreme Reading competition: Take a photo of your child reading in an unusual place or time and send it to their teacher, by Friday 6th March. The most extreme reader from each grade will win a prize. (Please keep safe!)
  • Bedtime Story Day: On Thursday 5th March the children will come to school in pyjamas and dressing gown (if they wish) throughout the day will be told stories by different members of the school community.
  • Book Character Day: On Friday 6th March the children will dress up as book characters. There will be a parade and other related activities. The children need to bring the book the character is from. The focus is specifically on book characters, rather than popular characters from film or TV. Please be creative and make your costume together at home.
  • Book Sale: The children will be visiting our book sale on Monday (Lower Primary) and Tuesday (Upper Primary). If they see a book that they would like to buy, they will make a note of it and bring the money to buy it - the sale will be here all week.
Thank you, we greatly appreciate your help!

The value we are working with at the moment is respect. It is very important that parents demonstrate respect at home in order to help our children develop this quality. Are we respectful to the people who help us at home or in the supermarket? Do we acknowledge people properly in the street? Please do your utmost to model respectful behaviour in the home an outside it.

Behaviour management at home has arisen in several of my parent meetings recently. I feel it is important for you all to note that hitting children at home, especially with something, is abusive, against the law and can cause long term emotional and physical damage. It also has very little long term impact on behaviour. There are much better ways of instilling clear and consistent boundaries for children rather than hitting them. This also applies to saying nasty and unkind things to children such as, you wish you had never had them or you will send them away. Plenty of studies show that parents who say cruel and unkind things to their children cause long term psychological damage and prevent children reaching their full potential. It also impacts on future relationships and the rest of their life. Children need to feel loved and secure in order to develop properly. This doesn’t mean they should be allowed to do what they like! We are preparing some short guidance and tips for managing behaviour at home which we will share with you when it is ready. In the meantime anyone with concerns can contact our Learning Support Unit for support and ideas.

Have a wonderful weekend and week ahead.

Sharon Short
Head of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary 
February
Friday 27th: LP Extra-curricular activities 2nd session ends
Saturday 28th: Spring Fair - all students to attend
March
Saturday 14th March: Summer Carnival 9am - 9pm
All week 2nd - 6th: Book Week
Friday 6th: Pre-Kinder Siri Assembly - 7:45am PAC
Friday 6th: First grade sleepover
All week 9th - 13th: Brain Awareness Week
Monday 9th: Pre-Kinder Carbajal Swimming Lesson 10.00 - 10.45am
Wednesday 11th: Kinder Quintanilla Swimming Lesson 11.00 - 11.45am
Thursday 12th: Pre-Kinder Cáceres Swimming Lesson 11.00 - 11.45am
Friday 13th: Pre-Kinder González Assembly - 7:45am PAC
Friday 13th: Pre-Kinder Siri Swimming Lesson 11.00 - 11.145am
Monday 16th: 3rd session extracurricular activities begin
Monday 16th: Pre-Kinder González Swimming Lesson 11.00 - 11.45am
Tuesday 17th: Kinder Rampone Swimming Lesson 11.50 - 12.35pm
Wednesday 18th: Kinder Frances Swimming Lesson 11.50 - 12.35pm
Thursday 19th: Kinder Suárez Swimming Lesson 11.45 - 12.35pm
Wednesday 18th: Convocatoria 6pm - 7pm
Friday 20th: Pre-Kinder Cáceres Assembly - 7:45am PAC
Friday 20th: 1st Grade Swimming Gala - 11am Big pool
Monday 23rd: Prepa Swimming Gala - 10am Small pool
Monday 23rd: Prepa Night Activity 4pm - 8pm
Wednesday 25th: Pre-Kinder Easter Egg Hunt Trip
Friday 27th: Pre-Kinder Carbajal Assembly - 7:45am PAC
Friday 27th: Last day of term - break for Easter
Monday 30th March - Friday 10th April: Eastern holiday

Upper Primary
February
Monday 23: Half term break, NO SCHOOL
Saturday 28th: Spring Fair - all students to attend
March
Saturday 14th March: Summer Carnival 9am - 9pm
All week 2nd - 6th: Book Week
Swimming Galas

Secondary News

Key Stage 3 Disco
The Key Stage 3 Disco has had to be re-scheduled from tonight (Friday 27th February) to Friday 13th March. Ticket sales were not sufficient by lunch time on Thursday (26th February) for the event to be viable. 

We remain committed to staging the disco as we strongly believe that it is a positive way for students to enjoy themselves out of school hours and make friendships within the Key Stage 3 community. 

We are hopeful that the ticket sales will be sufficient for the event to successfully run in two weeks time.

Please note that all tickets sold will of course be valid for the new dates. If your son or daughter can not attend on that Friday, money will be refund.

Bicultural Art Festival
Unity is strength. When there is teamwork and collaboration, wonderful things can be achieved.” Mattie Stepanek.

The Bi-cultural Art Festival, which after 16 years has become a tradition, is an explosion of creative diversity that covers different artistic disciplines such as Visual Arts, Photography, Music, Dance and Drama.

The key purpose of the festival is to bring together students from the different bilingual schools and, in doing so, produce a collective exhibition of artistic expressions. 

All students who participate in the festival play an important role in the development of activities; including the planning, implementation and public presentation of the created parts. All this happens under the supervision of teachers specialised in different areas of art.

Respecting teachers’ privacy
It has come to our attention that some Secondary School students are taking an unhealthy interest in the social lives of their teachers. Some teachers have been photographed, without their knowledge, whilst enjoying their leisure time outside of school. Teachers activities and who have have been with have also been shared between students. This behaviour is clearly intrusive and disrespectful.

Furthermore, a small number of students have begun to use their phones whilst in school to take photographs of teachers and classmates. Again this is clearly unacceptable behaviour. Any students caught engaging in such behaviour will have their phones confiscated and the school may well require parents to come into school to collect them.

We would be very grateful if you would discuss the unacceptability of these behaviours with your child/ren.

Annual Leadership Conference of the International Schools
This week was the 10th Annual Leadership Conference of the International Schools. This project is a co-ordinated effort amongst local schools and the Leadership Centre at ESEN. This year a group of more than 100 students from the ABC, International Maya, and Panamericana School will be working together on the topic of Values Based Leadership and Innovation over the next two days. 

Students are working on hands-on activities, presentations, discussion groups and interactive teamwork games that are designed to develop basic principles like respect, honesty, compassion, empathy and courage - all of which are fundamental to positive leadership. Yet, a leader must also have a flexible and creative mind to deal successfully with a changing world, and stay ahead of the trends, in other words, to become a trend setter. And, that is where innovation steps in. 

For the ABC, the Conference is the culmination of a week-long agenda of activities focused on Leadership, where students from Grade 6 through to Grade 12 get involved in morning assemblies lead by the Head Students and where there are lunch time interactive teamwork activities lead by the new Prefects. With a little bit of guidance and encouragement, and the opportunity to reflect on importance of leadership traits in their personal lives, ABC students readily step up to the challenge! 

Warm regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
w/c Monday 2nd March - Bicultural Arts Week
Saturday 7th March - Bicultural Arts Production
Saturday 7th March - Comité Católico: Grades 9, 10 & 11
Friday 13th March (rescheduled) - Key Stage 3 Disco, 6.00pm to 9.00pm in the PAC. Priced at $3
Saturday, 14th March - SUMMER CARNIVAL
Tuesday 17th March - Grades 6 & 7 Parent Partnership Meeting with Cal 2 Reports
Thursday 19th March - Grades 9 & 11 Parent Partnership Meeting with Cal 2 Reports
Tuesday 24th March - Grade 8 Parent Partnership Meeting with Cal 2 Reports
Wednesday 25th March - Indigo Concert
Thursday 26th March - Grades 10 & 12 Parent Partnership Meeting.
Friday 27th March - Last day of Term 2
Monday 30th March to Friday 3rd April - Easter break

Friday, 20 February 2015

24: Friday 20th February 2015

From the Director 

We have had a very interesting week looking forward in the school. At the start of the week we were visited by Susan Jackson who is an expert in British style international education and she worked with the staff, the Board and the leadership team to help identify priorities for the future of our school. Thank you to all of you who contributed by completing the questionnaire last week. At the end of the week we have been visited by our Values Consultant Napoleon Ardaya who talked to parents on yesterday evening and staff this morning about our values and promoting them in school and throughout our community. I know both these visitors in different ways are going to help us develop into an even more successful school that has high academic standards and places positive caring values at the heart of the school. I do want to make the point that we are a listening school and we do want to hear your views and want you to feel that your voice matters. We see the school as a community and we need to support each other and the school in the development of that community.

We will be sharing the school strategic plan at a later date so you are able to understand the ways in which the school is looking to develop and the important role you will play in that development. School is closed on Monday for half term and we will be open as usual on Tuesday. 

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

As mentioned last week and the week before our traditional Spring Fair will shortly be upon us. As this event is designed to promote the students learning in a real context please note that all students are expected to attend. 

To support the Spring Fair we will be having a non-uniform day on Wednesday 25th February. The students can wear their own clothes to school in exchange for an item for a tombola stall. There will be a bottle tombola for Upper Primary Students, so students can bring in anything ranging from olive oil, through drinks to shampoo (as long as it is in a bottle) for the privilege. 

For Lower Primary a jar with a lid, perhaps a jam jar that has been finished with, or a pickle jar, that has been thoroughly washed out and filled with something else. Suggestions to put in the jar have included a small hair brush and some hairbands, a nail care kit and some nail varnish, a small lego kit or some other small toys or some luxury sweets. I have seen some ideas online so you could try an internet search engine if you are not sure what to do. the items can be suitable for children or adults, male or female. The jar can also be decorated to give it an individual feel and to create an attractive display. Please make sure all items are new and any food is wrapped. The children’s own clothes on the day should be smart-casual and suitable for school activities. No high heels, beach shoes, strappy tops, exposed midriffs, excessive jewellery or ripped jeans. Please check your child’s choice of clothes before they leave the house!

We are also trying to collect larger prizes for the raffle. If you are a business owner and can donate gift vouchers or a significant item related to your business as a raffle prize, please contact Mrs Claudia Aviles in the Primary office or a member of the Spring Fair committee team. We are intending to list donations of larger items and vouchers in the event flyer. Thank you for your support with this.

At this time of year we sell off our lost and found items so please make sure your child has got all their possessions and that everything is still clearly named otherwise everything we have will be up for sale at the Spring Fair. 

I have recently been asked why we do not start the academic learning processes such as writing and recorded maths earlier in school. There are, in fact, many good reasons for this but I will try and explain as succinctly as possible. The child’s brain is still at a very early developmental stage at the age of 3 and 4. Not all of the brain connectors ‘synapses’ are in place and this means that many children will not have the biological requirements in place for this type of activity at this age. In order to develop these good connectors children need plenty of physical activity and higher level thinking skills such as problem solving and critical thinking. Lastly in order to function effectively in a learning area or environment they need a complete set of social skills enabling them to learn from their teachers and their peers as individuals or as part of a cooperative process. The raft that children should have in place before they begin academic learning may not develop, for some children, until they are 9 years of age. This is why many countries do not begin their formal education until children are 7 years old, minimising the lack of preparedness for formal learning. At this age they then proceed very quickly and make very rapid progress. As highly trained professionals we understand the dangers of introducing reading and writing and paper recording of subjects as a risky business that can damage a child’s perception of themselves as learners, and fail to put the other skills needed in place first. Therefore we use multi-sensory methods and play, to teach children in a non-damaging way. Less highly trained professionals will have children writing and using worksheets from an early age which is very detrimental to their longer term development. Please encourage your young child to be up and doing, not sitting in front of the tv or computer for hours and you will reap the rewards in their brain development later in life. If your child is attending a ‘local kinder’ that has started any form of reading, writing or formal activities - please ask them to stop!

The week after next is book week. Your children will be invited to dress up as a character from a book on one of the days (Please note no disney costumes) and come in their night clothes another. keep an eye open for the full details which will be sent out to you next week.

Very best wishes for a wonderful week.

Sharon Short
Head of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary 
February
Monday 23rd: half term - no school
Friday 27th: Kinder Francés Assembly - 7:45am PAC
Friday 27th: LP Extra-curricular activities 2nd session ends
Saturday 28th: Spring Fair - all students to attend

Upper Primary
February
Monday 23: Half term break, NO SCHOOL
Saturday 28th: Spring Fair - all students to attend

Secondary News

Key Stage 3 Disco
On Friday 27th February we have the much anticipated Key Stage 3 disco from 6.00pm to 9.00pm in the PAC.

Tickets (priced at $3 - including a snack and beverage) are available all next week from the Secondary School Office. 

Parents of Grade 6-8 students, please make sure your child purchases their ticket before Friday as we will not be selling tickets on the night.

Students should purchase tickets early to avoid disappointment. Numbers are limited.

Personal belongings
To ensure the safety of personal belongings, students should not leave items unattended and they should make use of the locker that they have allocated. Frustratingly students, despite repeated communications, are not taking adequate care of their belongings. 

Each student has been provided with a locker, but many students choose not to secure their belongings in these and worryingly many students use lockers but decide not to secure them with a padlock. 

On a daily basis, to safeguard personal belongings, ABC staff remove items of value that are on clear display in open lockers and items that are left unattended around the school.

One particular area that has become a concern are the corridors around the Learning Resource Centre (LRC). Unattended bags as well as being at risk from theft are also a safety hazard as they obstruct the foot traffic in this area. As of next week all bags left unattended around the LRC will be taken to Secondary School Office.

Please encourage your child/ren to not leave items of value unattended at any time and to utilise their locker. Expensive personal items should NEVER be brought into school unless required. Please also note that Teachers can not accept money or other valuables for safekeeping. 

Furthermore, mobile phones if brought to school, should be turned off and stored securely in lockers for the duration of the school day. On a daily basis students are having their phones, and other electronic items, confiscated for improper usage. Hereafter, parents may be asked to retrieve confiscated phones, and other items, from the Head of Secondary.

Grade 12 Parent Partnership
Please be reminded that next Wednesday (25th of February) there is the Grade 12 Parent Partnership from 6.00pm to 7.00pm. Cal 2 Reports will also be issued at this meeting.

Grade 10 IB Options Presentation (followed by the Grade 10 Parent Teacher Meeting)
On Thursday 26th February we have the Grade 10 IB Options Presentation starting at 5.30pm in the PAC. 

Established in 1968, the International Baccalaureate (IB) Diploma Programme (DP) was the first programme offered by the IB and is taught worldwide to students aged 16-19. The IB is recognised and respected by the world’s leading universities. 

As you may be aware, the Diploma Programme consists of six subject groups and the DP core. The DP core is central to the programme and comprises of theory of knowledge (TOK), creativity, action, service (CAS) and the extended essay. 

The presentation will explain the Diploma Programme subject options that are offered at the ABC and provide advice on how best to decide on the subjects on offer. The presentation will also cover: key dates for remainder of Grade 10; the upcoming IGCSE exams; MINED CAS; and, at the end of the evening, Cal 2 reports will be distributed.

After the presentation Grade 10 subject teachers will be available in the Auditorium to discuss student performance and to provide guidance on DP options. 

Warm regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Monday 23rd February: Half term - school closed.
Wednesday 25th February: Grade 12 Parent Partnership (and Cal 2 Reports issued)
Thursday 26th February: Grade 10 IB Options Presentation and Parent Teacher Meeting (with Cal 2 Reports)
Friday 27th February: Key Stage 3 Disco, 6.00pm to 9.00pm in the PAC. Priced at $3

Friday, 13 February 2015

23: Friday 13th February 2015

From the Director

On Monday we are launching our new traits and values as part of our revised philosophy and objectives. These are available to view on the ABC values tab on the main school website. These have been produced following a long consultation which started with parents in early 2014 by Mr. Hobson. I think they are a clear indication of the sort of school we want and the direction we expect the school to move in. Next week on Thursday 19th February I will be formally launching the new Philosophy and Objectives and there will be a guest speaker - Mr. Napoleon Ardaya who will be focusing on practical ideas to help the community support these values and traits. Napoleon is a friend of the school, an excellent speaker and he will also be working with staff on Friday 20th February during our training day when school is closed to students.


We are also expecting Susan Jackson, an expert in strategic planning next week from Great Britain who will be working with the school leadership team and the Board of Governors on strategic planning. Many thanks to so many of you who completed the survey last week which she will be using to help us reflect on the way forward for our school. 

I would also like to point out that we are supporting an intensive SAT preparation course through the ABC Centro de Idiomas which will help our students improve their SAT scores in a 12 week programme leading up to the SAT exams in June. Please contact the Centro de Idiomas if you want more details or would like your son or daughter to attend the taster sessions being organised. You can see more information in the Secondary news section.

I also want to thank those of you who attended the family vigil this week which was a source of inspiration and hope for the community and a reminder of the importance of our families and a positive family life. Thank you to the guest speakers and the Parents Association for arranging this event.

Please remember school is closed for students on Friday 20th and Monday 23rd February for half term.

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

Our traditional Spring Fair will shortly be upon us. the letters of invitation went out last week. As this event is designed to promote the students learning in a real context please note that all students are expected to attend. the Spring Fair committee is already hard at work and teachers are planning the related activities for the week after half term. 

To support the Spring Fair we will be having a non-uniform day on Wednesday 25th February. The students can wear their own clothes to school in exchange for an item for a tombola stall. There will be a bottle tombola for Upper Primary Students, so students can bring in anything ranging from olive oil, through drinks to shampoo (as long as it is in a bottle) for the privilege. For Lower Primary a jar with a lid, perhaps a jam jar that has been finished with, or a pickle jar, that has been thoroughly washed out and filled with something else. Suggestions to put in the jar have included a small hair brush and some hairbands, a nail care kit and some nail varnish, a small lego kit or some other small toys or some luxury sweets. I have seen some ideas online so you could try an internet search engine if you are not sure what to do. the items can be suitable for children or adults, male or female. The jar can also be decorated to give it an individual feel and to create an attractive display. Please make sure all items are new and any food is wrapped. The children’s own clothes on the day should be smart-casual and suitable for school activities. No high heels, beach shoes, strappy tops, exposed midriffs, excessive jewellery or ripped jeans. Please check your child’s choice of clothes before they leave the house!

We are also trying to collect larger prizes for the raffle. If you are a business owner and can donate gift vouchers or a significant item related to your business as a raffle prize, please contact Ms Claudia Aviles in the primary office or a member of the Spring Fair committee team. We are intending to list donations of larger items and vouchers in the event flyer. thank you for your support with this.

At this time of year we sell off our lost and found items so please make sure your child has got all their possessions and that everything is still clearly named otherwise everything we have will be up for sale at the Spring Fair. 

Our Grade 5 campers return today after 2 days of exciting activities that really extend them and develop their character. All carried out in a safe and secure environment and with our confident and well trained teachers supervising and supporting. A wonderful experience for them!

Tomorrow is the end of our first round of entrance assessments when we observe the youngest children to evaluate their readiness to learn and come into school. Very young children develop at different rates and it can be detrimental to start their formal education before they are ready. It is also no reflection on their future academic ability if they are not ready to learn just yet. if you have not signed up your child for the next school year please do so as soon as possible as the available places can disappear very fast.

As part of our IPC work we begin a unit with an ‘entry point’. This is something to engage the students in the unit, develop their curiosity and stimulate them to further learning and research. It is not just a party or event in its own right it is solely designed to promote learning. it can be a very small, low key affair or a bigger extravaganza. If you have anything at home that relates to the unit please share and discuss it with your child as a personal interest can be even more motivating. When the students have studied the unit for a while they start to work towards an exit point. Ideally this is something to bring all their learning together and apply it in a practical way to cement it into the students memory. It is best if these exit points reflect the students own work and achievements or their co-operative skills with a group. 

Very best wishes for a wonderful week.

Sharon Short.
Head of Primary.

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary 
February
Friday 20th: training day for Teachers - no school 
Monday 23rd: half term - no school
Change of date: Kinder Francés Assembly is moving from the 13th to the 27th February
Friday 27th: Kinder Francés Assembly - 7:45am PAC
Saturday 28th: Spring Fair - all students to attend

Upper Primary
February
Wednesday 18th: Ash Wednesday, Mass at the auditorium from 2:00 - 3:00pm
February 18th 2nd Brooke assembly. 9.20-10.05
February 18th 4th Navas assembly. 12.00-1.00
Friday 20th: INSET day, NO SCHOOL
Monday 23: Half term break, NO SCHOOL
Saturday 28th: Spring Fair - all students to attend

Secondary News

Appointment of the ABC Senior Prefect Team
Prefects are Grade 11/12 students who want to take on extra responsibility, extend their experience and develop personal skills and qualities, including leadership and responsibility. Being a Prefect also provides students with opportunities which will support their applications to university and to work. Prefects are expected to establish and maintain the highest standards of behaviour and attitude at all times, providing a positive role model for other students across the school.

Prefects at ABC are led by the Senior Prefect Team. The Senior Prefect Team consists of two Head Students and, this year, seven Deputy Head Students. Senior Prefects coordinate the other Prefects and they play an important role in helping with the smooth running of the school. 

I would like to announce that, after very careful consideration, we now have our new Head Students and Deputy Head Students.

The Head Students are:
Sabrina Jubis; and, 
Alberto Fuentes.

We know that they will be well-supported by our new Deputy Head Students: 
Andrea Atanacio. 
Camila Tablas. 
Jimena Iraheta. 
Alejandro Alfaro. 
Julian Igualada. 
Andrés Butter. 
Saúl Padilla.

Congratulations. 

There were many strong candidates for these roles and it was a very difficult decision to make, but we are confident that these students have the necessary qualities to excel in these roles.

As well as announcing the new Senior Prefect Team, I would also like to acknowledge the superb work of the outgoing Senior Prefect Team. They will be a tough act to follow.

Outgoing students:
Andres Carranza - Head Student
Sabrina Escobar - Head Student

Sebastian Diaz-Bazan - Deputy Head Student 
Calixto Hernandez - Deputy Head Student
Tae Soo Kim - Deputy Head Student
Maya McCormack - Deputy Head Student
Isavel McGough - Deputy Head Student


Internet Safety Week
This week has been Internet Safety Week at ABC and, following on from last week’s piece on internet safety, below are some very helpful sources of information on internet safety for teenagers and parents: 


CAT4 Presentations to Grade 6 & 9 Parents
Last night (Thursday 12th of February) we had the Grade 6 CAT4 presentation to parents and earlier this week (on Tuesday 10th of February) we had the Grade 9 CAT4 parents’ presentation. At these meetings we explained how CAT4 can help in intervention, monitoring progress and setting targets for future attainment. We also distributed individualised CAT4 student reports to the parents present. Grade 6 and 9 parents that were unable to make these meetings can direct their son/daughter to collect their personalised CAT4 student report from the Secondary School Office.

Kind regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Tuesday 16th to Thursday 19th February: Grade 7 & 8 internal examinations
Thursday 19th February: ABC Values Parent Meeting with Napoleon Ardaya, 7pm to 8pm in the PAC.
Friday 20th February: Training day - school closed.
Monday 23rd February: Half term - school closed.
Wednesday 25th February: Grade 12 Parent Partnership (and Cal 2 Reports issued)
Thursday 26th February: Grade 10 IB Options Presentation and Parent Teacher Meeting (with Cal 2 Reports)
Friday 27th February: Key Stage 3 Disco, 6.00pm to 9.00pm in the PAC.

Friday, 6 February 2015

22: Friday 6th February 2015

From the Director 


I want to start by thanking all the parents who have so openly worked with the school this week to help each other and our community. We have shown ourselves to be a strong and supportive community that truly cares. I want especially to thank the Madres Enlaces for their initiative and support. This week we have focused on helping parents with our own staff but also with external expert help as well as continuing to support students. We plan to meet with the Madres Enlace of all grades from grade 4 upwards to ensure there are no issues we need to provide further support for. Please contact your Madres Enlace if you have any issues you would like us to consider and please ask if there is anything you feel you need.

We have completed our review of our Philosophy and Objectives including our Values and you can see the proposals on the ABC Values link on the school website or below:

Our renewed ABC Values will be launched on Monday 16th February and we will also be having a meeting which all parents are invited to launch the new values on Thursday 19th February. Napoleon Ardaya will be joining us to discuss the ways our community values can work together at school and at home. 


This month we are also starting to look at our strategic planning for the next five years. This means identifying areas of strengths, areas to develop as well as opportunities or threats to the school and considering ways to respond to those. As part of this process we have a strategic planning trainer arriving later this month. As we would like her to see some of your views we are sending a questionnaire home to all parents which contains many question but is simple to answer. Please take ten minutes or so to fill it in as we do need your feedback. The questionnaire will be in your inbox today

As you will have noticed we are changing our PE uniforms and consequently we are selling our old PE kits at 50% reductions from Monday. These PE kits can be used as sports clothing and can also be bought as souvenirs!

I hope you all have a pleasant weekend with your children.

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

Thank you all so much for your participation in our recent Sports and Family Mornings. We hope you had an enjoyable time. Nearly all the feedback we have had from students and parents has been positive. I would like to thank the Madres Enlaces for their hard work and support for the event as well as all the school staff who came into school in addition to their regular hours. 

Next week we will be taking school photos, both individual and group ones. The schedules have been organised and you should have already have received the information. Please make sure your child is dressed in correct school uniform on the day of their photographs.

Our traditional Spring Fair will shortly be upon us. The letters of invitation went out this week. As this event is designed to promote the students learning in a real context please note that all students are expected to attend. The Spring Fair committee is already hard at work and teachers are planning the related activities for the week after half term. 

To support the Spring Fair we will be having a non-uniform day on Wednesday 25th February. The students can wear their own clothes to school in exchange for an item for a tombola stall. At the moment we are considering a bottle tombola for Upper Primary Students, so students can bring in anything ranging from Champagne to shampoo (as long as it is in a bottle) for the privilege. For Lower Primary we are suggesting a jar with a lid, perhaps a jam jar that has been finished with, or a pickle jar, that has been thoroughly washed out and filled with something else. Suggestions have included a small hair brush and some hairbands, a nail care kit and some nail varnish, a small lego kit or some other small toys or some luxury sweets. I have seen some ideas online so you could try an internet search engine if you are not sure what to do. The items can be suitable for children or adults, male or female. The jar can also be decorated to give it an individual feel and to create an attractive display. Please make sure all items are new and any food is wrapped. The children’s own clothes should be smart-casual and suitable for school activities. No high heels, beach shoes, strappy tops, exposed midriffs, excessive jewellery or ripped jeans. Please check your child’s choice of clothes before they leave the house!

At this time of year we sell off our lost and found items so please make sure your child has got all their possessions and that everything is still clearly named otherwise everything we have will be up for sale at the Spring Fair. 

I will just finish with a request for parents to be aware that your children may be listening to your conversations even when they appear to be busy. Please be very discrete in front of your children and if broaching a difficult subject remember that your children will come into school and repeat what you say. We have some very odd or tactless comments reported back to us from time to time that have no factual and are actually purely gossip. This can be very destructive in school. I thank you in advance for your co-operation with this.

Good luck to our second grade campers this evening! Grade five will be off for a few days next week too.

Very best wishes for a great weekend and a wonderful week.

Sharon Short.
Head of Primary.

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary 
February
Monday 9th - Friday 13th: school photos 
Friday 20th: training day for Teachers - no school 
Monday 23rd: half term - no school
Change of date: Kinder Francés Assembly is moving from the 13th to the 27th February
Friday 27th: Kinder Francés Assembly - 7:45am PAC
Saturday 28th: Spring Fair 

Upper Primary
February
February 18th 4th Navas assembly
Saturday 28th: Spring fair 

Secondary News

Internal examinations
The Grade 10 (IGCSE) and Grade 12 (IB) mock examinations finish today (Friday 6th of February). The examinations have gone very smoothly and the students have behaved impeccably. 

The next students to sit internal examinations will be the Grade 7 and Grade 8 students. These examinations run from Tuesday 16th of February to Thursday 19th of February.

Internet Safety Week - w/c 9th February
All next week we will be working with Secondary School students on the topic of internet safety. Unfortunately, people of all ages continue to make bad decisions when using the internet and, in doing so, they expose themselves to some potentially very serious problems. Internet Safety Week’s focus is to raise awareness of these possible problems. 

Below are some tips on being safe online:
  1. Keep your online identity secret - Do not share your name and address or any information that enables people to locate you. 
  2. Do not share your username(s) and password(s) - This is a very common problem amongst young people. Frequently we hear “my account has been hacked”, when the reality is that the student has shared their username and password with other students and then one or more of these students access the account and behave inappropriately.
  3. Be sensible about what you share on the internet (pictures, comments etc.) - Think very carefully about what you share and how you communicate. Once you send something out on the internet, it's almost impossible to take it back.
  4. Behave online - Being online is quite impersonal and you can not see peoples’ reactions to what you are doing. For these reasons, and others, when online people sometimes act out of character, act inappropriately and try to hide their identity.
  5. Be very careful when making friends online - Many people make good friends online, but you have to be incredibly careful. 
Please discuss these tips with your child/ren.

Grade 11 IGCSE Certificate Presentation Evening - Tuesday 10th February (followed by the Grade 11 Parent Teacher Meeting)
Please be reminded that, starting at 5.30pm, on Tuesday 10th of February we have the Grade 11 IGCSE Certificate Presentation Evening in the PAC. All Grade 11s and their families are invited. The special guest will be Mr. Garry York (the first Headmaster of ABC).

Please also note (details in last week’s ABC Weekly, plus see ‘Secondary dates for your diary’ below) that next week we have the:
  • Grade 9 CAT4 presentation to parents/Parent Teacher Meeting; and the,
  • Grade 6 Parents CAT4 presentation.
Photographs
Next week (from Monday to Friday) photographers will be school to take individual and group photographs of the Secondary School students. Grade 6 to 11 students will have individual photographs taken and tutor group photographs will be taken of Grades 6 to 12. 

Emails have been sent to parents and students with the dates of the photographs. 

Please ensure that, as always, your child is in full school uniform for the school photographs.

Lost property
Friday 13th of February will be the last day to display all of the lost property from Primary and Secondary and then on that Friday evening anything of value will be sold during the Primary Spring Fair. Please make a special effort to come and look for your lost items before that day. 

Parents or students can also go to the cages anytime to look for items that might have been left behind (lunch boxes, school bags, school/PE uniforms, books, shoes, etc.) and if you identify something please go to the offices to get the keys of the cages.

Warm regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Tuesday 10th February (rescheduled from Thursday 29th January): Grade 11 IGCSE Certificate Presentation Evening. Followed by the Grade 11 Parent Teacher Meeting.
Tuesday 10th February (rescheduled from Thursday 29th January): Grade 9 Parent Teacher Meeting. Please note that the Grade 9 Parent Teacher Meeting starts off with a CAT4 presentation to parents in the Lecture Theatre at 5.30pm.
Thursday 12th February: Grade 6 Parents CAT4 presentation (see above for more information).
Tuesday 16th to Thursday 19th February: Grade 7 & 8 internal examinations
Thursday 19th February: ABC Values Parent Meeting with Napoleon Ardiya, 7pm to 8pm in the PAC.
Friday 20th February: Training day - school closed.
Monday 23rd February: Half term - school closed.
Wednesday 25th February: Grade 12 Parent Partnership (and Cal 2 Reports issued)
Thursday 26th February: Grade 10 IB Options Presentation and Parent Teacher Meeting (with Cal 2 Reports)