Friday, 26 February 2016

23: Friday 26th February 2016

From the Director


I would like to remind you to look at our ABC Newsblog where you can catch up with events at school. On the Blog you will see we had a pleasant coffee morning on Tuesday with parents and we also had an interesting presentation by Dr. Guttfreund and Dr. Barrios to parents from bicultural schools in the city about teenage addiction. 

We are looking forward to seeing many of you with your families at the Parent Association Summer carnival tomorrow. We have parking available in the Lycée Français and SISA as well as on our own campus. The event is from 9am - 9 pm and climaxes with music, entertainment, food and shared time together. It will be a fun event and we would like to give a big thank you to the Parents’ Association for the time and effort they put into organising this event. We really appreciate them!

Please make a note in your diary that the School Annual General Meeting or Convocatoria is taking place on Tuesday March 15th at 6 pm. 

The Bicultural Arts Festival has started this week and will be continuing across the school leading up to the Bicultural Arts Festival Performance next weekend. I hope you all have a safe and enjoyable weekend.


Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

Thank you to everyone who attended the Primary Spring Fair on Saturday. The feedback that I received from parents was very positive and the students got a lot out of the experience as well as having loads of fun when they were not on duty. We are awaiting final figures but we raised in the region of $10,000 to support the Scholarship Fund - Fairs to Educate . Great news indeed. Thank you too to the team of primary staff who organised and took complete responsibility for the event as well as all staff members who turned up on the day. 


I was able to try nearly every stall and can vouch for how exciting it was to participate as well as the enthusiasm and encouragement of the student stall holders. Please see some more of the photos at our news blog link: http://abcnews-blog.blogspot.com/2016/02/primary-spring-fair.html

It was also wonderful to have our Grade 2 parents in for the IPC unit ‘Chocolate’ exit point. Parents were able to see an exhibition on the history of chocolate, how it is made, where it grows best and many other aspects related to chocolate. They were also able to taste some very interesting flavours! Well done to all our Grade 2 students for their hard work and to their teachers for organising the event. Once again, photos are available on the class blogs. 

Fransortes
Fransortes was brought to school by his son this week and we were delighted to be able to give him $1006.00. We would like to thank everyone who contributed. We are hoping that he will be well enough to join us again next Children’s Day! 










Next week is Book Week, in recognition of World Book Day which is on Thursday 3rd March. In Primary the children will be enjoying a range of fun activities related to books, reading and stories. 

Reading is a vital component of children's education, being important across the curriculum and a great source of pleasure that will last a lifetime.

We hope that many parents will be able to come and read or tell a story to their child's class. If you haven't yet volunteered, please contact your child's teacher so that they can arrange it.

Friday 4th March is Book Character Day. All Primary children should come dressed up as their chosen character, and bring the book that the character appears in. There will be a parade and the children will complete other activities related to their character.

The children are invited to participate in a competition to design a bookmark. One lucky winner from each grade will have their bookmark professionally produced and distributed to all the children in their grade. Entries should be in by the end of next week, and the more creative, the better!

Please note English books will be on sale all week. Start building your children’s personal libraries!

Walking for Water will be taking place on March 11th. All primary children will be taking part by carrying water in their backpacks or blue bags around the field and therefore should wear their PE kit on that day. We want our students to understand that they are very privileged to have access to clean water and that many children in the world, including here in El Salvador, have to collect water for their family before they can go to school. Funds raised will be used to buy water filter/dispensers for a local school. Please keep an eye open for the full information that will be sent home shortly.

Swimming Galas will be taking place in the week before the Easter Holidays. Please do make sure you know when your child’s event is taking place so that you can come along and ensure they come with all their swimming clothes and equipment.

The Primary school is supporting the STEAMFEST on the 16th March by holding our Science Fair that day. Students from Prepa to Grade 5 will be creating science projects and experiments during the week running up to that day and then displaying their creations. They will be using their Science skills to devise their projects, their Technology skills to build them, their Engineering skills to make sure they work and are stable, their Art skills to decorate them and provide supporting information, titles and instructions etc and their Mathematical skills to take measurements and get their results. Please ask your children what they are planning to do.

Hopac
Is a charity that helps people of any age with mental illnesses. It provides basic education such as learning to read, write, colour and count - all of this depending on the individual’s capacity to learn. Unfortunately the organisation is having some economical problems, so our CAS students decided to help them by collecting goods and money. In Primary we will be donating food items to support this cause. More information will be shared soon.

It is always a busy time in school so we wish you a relaxing weekend with your children.

Sharon Short
Head of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
February
Friday 26th: Extra-curricular activities - session 3 finishes
Monday 29th: Extra-curricular activities - session 4 begins
March
Book Week
Friday 11th: Walk for Water
Friday 11th: 1st grade sleepover
Monday 14th: Prepa night activity
Wednesday 16th: Steamfest
Friday 18th: Pre-Kinder Rampone assembly - PAC - 7:45am
Monday 21st March - Friday 1st April - Easter holidays - school closed

Upper Primary
February
Friday 25th: End of 3rd Extracurricular term
Monday 29th: Start of Extracurricular term 4
Monday 29th: Book Week
March
Friday 4th: 5th Grade Camping
Saturday 5th: Bicultural Festival Teatro Presidente
Wednesday 9th: 3rd Quijano Assembly
Thursday 10th: Music Week
Friday11: Walk for Water
Monday 14th: Brain Awareness Week
Tuesday 15th: Swimming Gala 2nd Grade 11:30a.m.
Wednesday 16th: Science Fair
Thursday 17th:
3rd Grade Swimming Gala from 9:30a.m. thru 11:00a.m.
4th Grade Swimming Gala from 11:30a.m. thru 1:00p.m.
Friday 18th: 5th Grade Swimming Gala 11:30a.m.
Friday 18th: End of Session 3

Secondary News

Dear Parents / Guardians,

IB Geography Antigua Trip - Wednesday 24th to Saturday 27th of February
The Grade 11 students set off early Wednesday for their Geography field trip to Antigua.


Reports in thus far are that everybody is having a great time. Parents of children involved please see the trip blog that has been created, and is being regularly updated, for details of what they have been doing (along with pictures - one of which is above).

Thank you to Mr Kilford (Head of Geography) for organising the trip and thank you also to Mrs Duarte, Ms Harrison and Mr Rombout for helping to supervise the trip.

Grade 10 Options Evening - Monday 29th February
On Monday we have the Grade 10 IB options evening in the PAC (from 5.30pm to 6.15pm), following by Parent Teacher Meetings in the Auditorium (6.15pm to 8.30 pm). This is a very important evening for Grade 10 students and parents and we hope all will be present. 


The presentation in the PAC will cover the key dates for the remaining months of Grade 10, we will discuss CAS / MINED hours and we will be explaining the structure of the IB Diploma; along with the options available and the process for selecting courses from these options. 

The Parent Teacher Meetings that follow will be an opportunity for parents and students to get feedback on student progress to date (along with an analysis of student performance in the recent mock examinations) and subject teachers will be giving advice on how students can best prepare for the upcoming iGCSE examinations in May / June.

National debate contest - Saturday 27th of February
The National Debate Contest organised by ESEN starts this Saturday, and it will run for three weeks consecutively on Saturday, February 27th, March 5th and 12th. The ABC Debate Team will participate with 36 other school teams from all over El Salvador. This is the 8th edition of this contest and through the years our school has reached the finals in many occasions. We feel very confident and proud of our team this year, which is made up of five students from Grade 11. They have been working rigorously for two weeks now, guided by their teachers in the Spanish Department and coaches. 

The general topic for the debates this year is the transparency of our institutions. For the first debate, the issue to argue for and against whether or not the health status of the President should be part of the public domain, or must it be kept confidential. To prepare the students have researched the law of our country, judicial cases, international law and many other sources of information. The debate is conducted at a high technical level and it must be based on law. 

Our team has done its work, and they are ready. We wish them the best at their first match. 
Eric Quijano
National School Director
University Guidance & Careers

Model United Nations New York Trip - 1st March to 5th March
From the 1st of March to the 5th of March a mixed group of Grade 10 and 11 students will be venturing forth to New York to visit the United Nations. The programme starts with a day of icebreakers and a bit of culture at the United Nations school. The students will be hosted within the United Nations building itself and will take part in two days of lectures and seminars under the overriding topic of the media's influence: opinions, activism and outcomes. Examples of the sessions on offer are:-
  • “To what extent is the use of social media in advocacy beneficial or detrimental to society?”
  • “Independent or corporate media: Which is more effective?“
Guest speakers range from Ban Ki Moon (Secretary-General of the United Nations) to various high profile journalists and editors such as Casey Neistat (an American film director, producer, creator of popular YouTube videos and co-founder of social media company Beme) and Susan Chira (Assistant Managing Editor for news at The New York Times).
James Merry
Head of History & Assistant Head of Grade 10

Book Week & World Book Day (Thursday 3rd of March)
Next week is Book Week in the Secondary School and internationally it is World Book Day on Thursday. Designated by UNESCO, World Book Day is a celebration of books and reading and its aim is encourage children to explore the pleasures of books and reading. The event is marked in over 100 countries all over the world.


It is important for teenagers to continue the habit of reading as, research has shown, it helps them to:
  • deal with their increasingly complex world, and understand some of the adult issues they will have to deal with;
  • know they are not alone – that others may be thinking and feeling the way they do;
  • open lines of communication, particularly if parents, teachers and friends discuss what they are reading;
  • share and see how others have found solutions to problems;
  • develop their vocabulary;
  • broaden their imaginations;
  • improve their writing;
  • deal with the increasing demands of school work; and,
  • gain confidence when speaking.
Evidence suggests that reading for pleasure is more likely to determine whether a child does well at school than their social or economic background.

Here are three tips to encourage your son / daughter to read on a regular basis:
  1. Read for enjoyment. Model the behaviour that you want your son / daughter to display. If they see you reading regularly for pleasure they may well echo this behaviour.
  2. Have books that interest your son / daughter available. If there are no books at home that interest him / her then go to the book shop and buy some (or borrow some books).
  3. Subscribe your son / daughter to a magazine about his / her interest. Magazine articles are short to read, but it is still reading. A magazine subscription will ensure that your child has something new to read regularly (and it may well help them develop an interest).
Bicultural Festival
On Monday and Tuesday we hosted the Bicultural Arts Festival (thank you to Mrs Gonzalez, Head of Art, for organising and hosting this) and last weekend we staged the first Bicultural Drama Workshop (thank you to Mr Olwande for all your work on this). Meanwhile other students have been practicing hard for musical performances (credit to Mr Diaz and Ms Leong who have have both been working closely with our students).


Last year’s performances at the festival were amazing and this year looks set to be as good, if not better. Please do attend one of the nights next weekend if you can. 

I wish you a great weekend and I hope to see you at the Summer Carnival tomorrow.

Kind regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Wednesday 24th - Saturday 27th February: IB Geography Antigua Trip
Saturday 27th February: Summer Carnival 2016 
Saturday 27th February: National debate contest
w/c Monday 29th February: Book Week
Monday 29th February: Grade 10 IB Options Meetings & Parent Teacher Meetings, 5:30pm PAC
Tuesday 1st - 5th March: MUN New York trip
Thursday 3rd: World Book Day
Saturday 6th March: Bicultural Arts Festival 
Thursday 10th - Monday 14th March: Music Week 
Friday 11th March: Science Fair final
w/c Monday 14th March: Brain Awareness Week and British Science Week
Monday 14th March: Grade 6 'Friendship and teamwork' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Wednesday 16th March: STEAM Fest 2016 
Wednesday 16th March: Open Parent Partnership “Netiquette” 6pm PAC 
Thursday 17th March: Grade 12 Parent Teacher Meetings, 3.15pm Auditorium
Friday 18th March: Last day of Second Term
Monday 21st March - Friday 1st April: Easter holidays (school closed)
Monday 4th April: Back to school - First day of Third Term
w/c Monday 11th April: Art Week
Friday 15th April: World Art Day
w/c Monday 18th April: Earth Week
Monday 18th - Thursday 28th April: Grade 11 exams
Thursday 21st April: Secondary School closes at 11:30am - Grade 7 'Assertiveness and independence' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Thursday 28th April: Last day of school for Grade 10 & 12 students
Monday 2nd May: IB exams start for Grade 12 students
Saturday 7th May: Spiritual retreat for Grades 9 to 12 students (Comité Católico ABC)
Monday 9th May: IGCSE exams start for Grade 10 students
Tuesday 10th May:Grade 6 trip
w/c Monday 16th May: Cultural Diversity Week
Wednesday 18th - Friday 27th May: Grade 9 exams 
Friday 20th May: Secondary School closes at 11:30am - Grade 8 'Ethical and moral choices' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Thursday 19th May: ABC Digital Awards, 6 pm PAC
w/c Monday 30th May: Health Awareness Week
Tuesday 31st May: Thanksgiving Ceremony for Class 2016

Friday, 19 February 2016

22: Friday 19th February 2016

From the Director

Thank you for your patience yesterday with collecting children earlier. We have learned some lessons to ensure a smoother pick up at these times next time! Please note we have RAF coming in next week to do individual and class photographs. These will be available for purchase in due course.

We have decided to return to wearing full school uniform across the school next week. We have worked hard to reduce mosquito reproduction possibilities on campus and we have seen a significant decline in mosquito numbers. 

Last week we had a very interesting talk by Dr. Guttfreund and Dr. Barrios who are local experts in the area of teenage addiction. Their talk covered many things including concern over addiction to cigarettes, alcohol, drugs and pornography. It ended by concluding that we as carers and parents must be communicating with our children and ensuring we guide them through adolescence with a genuine interest in their lives and concerns. It also emphasised the importance of us all working together as parents of a class, grade or section. This event was open to all parents from Grade 6 to 12 but unfortunately less than 100 parents were able to attend and some of them were from other schools who we had also invited. I would like to appeal on behalf of the school that we all find time to ensure we are able to participate in these types of information evenings so we can act together on advice and ensure the wellbeing of not just our own children but of the whole body of children at school. 

On Tuesday morning Mrs. Ana Maria Portillo the Chair of the Board and myself will be hosting a coffee morning for parents at 7 am. There will be an opportunity to talk informally and a short presentation. If you are available at that time please drop in.

Can I please take this opportunity to remind you of the forthcoming Bicultural Arts Festival at the Teatro Presidente on Friday 4th and Saturday 5th March which our children are already preparing for. We have drama workshops in school tomorrow and music preparations are in full swing. 

I hope to see many Primary parents at the Primary Spring Fair tomorrow and please remember the upcoming Summer Carnival next Saturday. Enjoy your family time at the weekend and see you on Monday.

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

As mentioned above we are back to proper school uniform next week. Please ensure your children are dressed correctly.

Some important information for you all.

There have been several situations recently in the Primary school where the internet and social networking sites have been used unsafely. Please note that no Primary school age child should have access to the internet at home or at school, without supervision and no primary child should have a social networking site. Both of these are extremely dangerous. We strongly advise that you shut down your children’s social networking sites and remove their internet access unless you are present. The best advice is that you should only allow the use of the internet in public spaces in your home where the whole family can see what is being researched or explored.

I thought it would be helpful for you all to understand how bronchitis is caused as there have been a few cases lately, both in staff and students and there are some misconceptions. Bronchitis is the inflammation of the trachea, bronchi, and bronchioles. In children, acute bronchitis usually occurs in association with viral respiratory tract infection. The virus can be picked up at anytime anywhere. It is not caused by being either damp or cold. Please see this site for more information. http://kidshealth.org/en/parents/az-bronchitis.html?ref=search . I have suffered from chronic bronchitis for many years and have done considerable research on the matter.

We recognise the importance of including children in family birthday celebrations but please note that it is not appropriate to take time off during school for birthday celebrations. I am sorry to say that if a request is received it will not be approved. Please inform your relatives so that celebrations can be planned at the weekend or in school holidays if they actually want your child to attend.

Today was Teleton day and the children came in their Jeans and Teleton t-shirts if they wanted to. The school has traditionally supported this event and I would like to congratulate the members of staff in primary who have supported the CAS students in the organisation of the event. In Primary we raised over $5,500 but we are waiting for a final total.

If you would like to have some ideas for really good activities for children of any age please have a look at this website. So cheap and easy to do and so valuable for the children. Much better than hours in front of the TV or on a tablet!


The Spring Fair is tomorrow. We look forward to seeing you all there with your children and hope you have a really great time. The children who are running stalls etc should be here at 8.30am and things will be open for 9.00.am. The raffle will be drawn around 10.30-11.30am and things should be finished by 1.00pm or earlier if we are all sold out! The Lower Primary choir will be performing at 9.00am and 10.00am. I am really looking forward to it.

Best wishes for a fun packed weekend.

Sharon Short
Head of Primary.

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
February
Saturday 20th: Spring Fair 9:00 am - 12 pm
Friday 26th: Kinder González assembly - 7:45 am - PAC
Friday 26th: Extra-curricular activities - session 3 finishes
Monday 29th: Extra-curricular activities - session 4 begins

Upper Primary
February
Saturday 20th: Spring Fair 9:00 am - 12 pm
Wednesday 24th: 5th Caceres Assembly at the PAC. 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 26th: Extracurricular Activities Session 3 Finishes
Monday 29th: Extra-curricular activities - session 4 begins 
Wednesday 16th March: ABC Steamfest
Friday 18th March: End of Term Two

Secondary News

Dear Parents / Guardians,

Business Management/Economics New York Trip - Thursday 11th of February to Monday 15th of February 
The Grade 11 & 12 Business Management / Economics students had a great time in New York last weekend. It was cold, but that did not stop the exciting programme of visits.


Thank you to Mr Murgatroyd, Head of Business Studies and Economics, for organising and accompanying the students and thank you also to Miss Burns, Head of Grade 7, for giving up her time to accompany the students.

Grade 9 Empowerment ‘Labels and Stereotypes’ - Thursday 17th of February
Yesterday, when the other grades finished at 11.15am for teacher planning, the Grade 9s had their 'Stereotypes and Labels' themed empowerment afternoon. The objective of the afternoon was explore the issue of stereotypes and to give the Grade 9 students the confidence and tools to combat stereotypes.

Teenagers are often unfairly labeled by the media and society as a whole. Stereotyping can be detrimental to a teenager’s mental and emotional development. When a teenager is stereotyped, s/he might assume that they have to behave a certain way. Once labelled a young person may not pursue opportunities, despite having the skills and talents to do so and succeed. Stereotyping can also make teenagers resistant to change.

Some stereotypes result in a poor self-image, isolation and rejection. As a result, teenagers may struggle with depression and have trouble fitting in with peer groups. 

Stereotyping can sometimes be divisive, driving a wedge between different groups of teenagers and resulting in discriminatory behaviour. Discrimination is one of the most harmful effects of stereotyping because it is usually based on race or gender - factors that have nothing to do with a person's values or character traits.

Thank you to the Madres Enlaces for providing lunch and the snacks and thank you to everybody that contributed to what was a really fun afternoon.




Please see the Grade 9 Blog for more pictures.

Bicultural Schools Art Festival
The ABC is once again hosting the Art and Drama workshops as part of the now traditional Bicultural Arts Festival next week. We look forward to welcoming students from the different bilingual schools and their artistic performance at the end of the Festival. 

IB Geography Antigua Trip
In Geography next week (Wednesday February 24​th to Saturday February 27​th​) the Grade 11 students will be visiting the city of Antigua, Guatemala, to collect data for their IB Internal Assessment and experience some of the region’s most fascinating physical geography first hand. 

Over the four days the students will be investigating the impact of globalisation in the area using fieldwork techniques they have been evaluating within lessons. On the Friday of the trip the Grade 11 students will be taking a guided hike up Volcan Pacaya allowing them to come up close and personal with one of the most active volcanoes in Central America. This will truly be a well rounded geographical experience for all of them. 

‘7 Things Parents and Teachers Should Know About Teens’
And finally … I recently came across an interesting article in the online education magazine ‘Edutopia’ about transitions in a teenager’s life and how parents and teachers can support youngsters at these times. It is well worth a read: 


Kind regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Monday 22nd & Tuesday 23rd: Bicultural Schools Art Festival
Wednesday 24th - Saturday 27th February - IB Geo Antigua, Guatemala trip
Saturday 27th February: Summer Carnival 2016 (organised by the Asociación de Padres de Familia)
Monday 29th February: Grade 10 IB Options Meetings & Parent Teacher Meetings, 5:30pm PAC
Tuesday 1st - 5th March: MUN New York trip
Thursday 3rd - Friday 7th March: Book Week
Thursday 10th - Monday 14th March: Music Week 
Monday 14th March: Brain Awareness Week and British Science Week
Grade 6 'Friendship and teamwork' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Wednesday 16th March: Steamfest 2016 
Wednesday 16th March: Open Parent Partnership “Netiquette” 6pm PAC 
Thursday 17th March: Grade 12 Parent Teacher Meetings, 3.15pm Auditorium
Friday 18th March: Last day of Second Term
Friday 21st March - Friday 1st April: Easter holidays (school closed)
Monday 4th April: Back to school - First day of Third Term
Monday 11th April: Art Week
Friday 15th April: World Art Day
Monday 18th April: Earth Week
Monday 18th - Thursday 28th April: Grade 11 exams
Thursday 21st April: Secondary School closes at 11:30am - Grade 7 'Assertiveness and independence' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Thursday 28th April: Last day of school for Grade 10 & 12 students
Monday 2nd May: IB exams start for Grade 12 students
Saturday 7th May: Spiritual retreat for Grades 9 to 12 students (Comité Católico ABC)
Monday 9th May: IGCSE exams start for Grade 10 students
Tuesday 10th May:Grade 6 trip
Monday 16th May: Cultural Diversity Week
Wednesday 18th - Friday 27th May: Grade 9 exams 
Friday 20th May: Secondary School closes at 11:30am - Grade 8 'Ethical and moral choices' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Thursday 19th May: ABC Digital Awards, 6 p.m. PAC
Monday 30th May: Health Awareness Week
Tuesday 31st May: Thanksgiving Ceremony for Class 2016

Friday, 12 February 2016

21: Friday 12th February 2016

From the Director

I hope you all have a good half term holiday and we will see you all back at school on Tuesday. I would like to remind you that we have an early closure day on Thursday for Upper Primary and Secondary School. Students will be going home early as one of our INSET Afternoons to promote the quality of our learning environment in school. All students from Grade 1 to 12 will be going home between 11.15 and 12 noon. We will be sending more precise details to each Grade next week. 

We have been working on the zika situation at school, ensuring we remove opportunities for mosquito reproduction and we feel we have been very successful. This has included reducing watering, checking gutters and ensuring water does not gather for periods long enough for mosquito larvae to develop into adult mosquitoes (2 - 3 days). We will continue to monitor next week but our plan is to be in a situation where it is safe to return to normal school uniform for girls and younger boys on Monday 22nd February. We are also looking at developing uniforms which are better suited for times when we have concerns over mosquitoes.

I look forward to seeing you at the Primary Fair next weekend.

Primary News

Dear Parents and carers,

The face painting days were a great success and we raised well over $900 for Fransortes. We are making arrangements to hand over the money to him very shortly. A big thank you to all the children who took part or made a donation and especially to those secondary students who took time out of lessons to come and paint hundreds of primary faces. They did a wonderful job and worked extremely well under the pressure.

Last Friday Grade 4 spent the day at Alicante. They linked it to their myths and legends unit and shared the day with a professional storyteller and covering their faces with white clay. All the students had a very worthwhile experience and were looking worn out when they arrived back to school. 

Please ensure your internet at home has parental controls and do not let your children have internet access unsupervised. the computer tablet or phone should always be used in a communal area so that sites visited can be easily monitored.

CAS students will shortly be running another project. This time to support an institution that works with the mentally ill. HOPEC. We will be asking students to bring in specific food items shortly. Further details to follow.

The Spring Fair is Saturday 20th February, next Saturday. It will be a lovely event for our Primary families. It will also be run and manned by Primary students and because this is an educational event all of Upper Primary are expected to attend and have the commercial experience. Thank you for the tombola jars that have already arrived in school. They are very attractive and contain quality items. Thank you too to those families who have sold all their raffle tickets or have donated prizes when requested. They are a big contribution to the money we raise for our cause, supporting the education and career prospects of support workers in the school.

Please note that it is at this event that all the lost and found items that have accumulated over the last few months are sold off or donated to charity. Please go and check both the primary and secondary cages for anything that might belong to your child, lunch boxes, bags, coats, shoes etc. If you need a key to access something, they are available from the school secretaries. If it has a name it will be left on the tables outside the administration offices.

Please keep an eye open for Spring Fair news and reminders.

Remember today was a training day for staff and Monday the school is closed. Enjoy the long weekend.

Sharon Short
Head of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
February
Friday 12th: School closed to students
Monday 15th School closed
Friday 19th: Kinder Carbajal assembly - 7:45 am - PAC
Saturday 20th: Spring Fair 9:00 am - 12 pm
Friday 26th: Kinder González assembly - 7:45 am - PAC

Upper Primary
February
Friday 12th School closed to students
Monday 15th School closed
Wednesday 17th: 3rd grade Spanish Assembly at the PAC. 9.20 and 12.15
Saturday 20th: Spring Fair 9:00 am - 12 pm
Wednesday 24th: 5th Caceres Assembly at the PAC. 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 26th: Extracurricular Activities Session 3 Finishes 

Secondary News

Dear Parents / Guardians,

The Grade 8 internal examinations started yesterday (Thursday 11th of February) and continue next week. Next week we also have the Grade 7 internal examinations. When not in examinations the Grade 7 and Grade 8 students will be in lessons as usual either continuing with their studies (for creative carousel subjects) or preparing for their upcoming examinations. 

Business Management/Economics New York Trip - Thursday February 11th to Monday February 15th
A group of 15 curious and enthusiastic Business Management / Economics students from Grade 11 & 12 headed off to New York - the world's business capital - for a fun, learning experience on Thursday. They will spend the weekend in the heart of the Big Apple and see for themselves first hand how one of the largest city economies in the world operates. They will visit the biggest, the brightest and the most innovative, they will see pieces of history and glimpses of the future, they will see the most vibrant business headquarters and visit the machine that makes the world of shares spin round - we might even visit Trump Tower. 

Over a period of 3 days, and braving the below freezing temperatures, the trip will include visits to the United Nations headquarters (where economic and political decisions that affect the entire globe are made), we will hear about the origins of the American economy as visualised by their founding fathers in the Alex Hammond Tour, see the NYSE and hear about the origins and effects of the 2008 financial crisis. Added to that we will visit some of the outstanding tourist sites - to not only soak in the culture, but also to experience the efficiency of attractions that deal with thousands of visitors every day. We plan to visit the Statue of Liberty, the Rockefeller Centre, the Natural History Museum and to take in a Broadway show. As exciting as all this is, I suspect the greatest impact might be experiencing the thousand of little things that make New York the amazing city that it is. 
Andrew Murgatroyd
Head of Business and Economics

As mentioned in the previous ABC Weekly, next week all parents are invited to the Open Parent Partnership on "Addictions in teens" by Dr Guttfreund and Dr Barrios (Tuesday 16th of February at 6pm in the PAC). 


As explained above by Mr Keslake, lessons in the Secondary School stop at 11:15am on Thursday next week (Thursday 18th of February) for teacher planning. The Grade 9s, however, will remain in school until 5.00pm for their 'Stereotypes and labels' empowerment afternoon.

The Grade 9s will have their lunch break between 11.15am and 12.00pm. Lunch is kindly being provided by the Madres en Lace. Following an introduction, the afternoon will consist of three core activities based on the theme of stereotypes and labels. The day will end with a reflection. 

Grade 9 students should wear their PE kits on that day and they should also bring along a towel and change of clothes (they are likely to get very wet at some point in the afternoon!).

Please make sure that transport is arranged for 11.15am for Secondary students in Grades 6-8 and 10-12 and for 5.00pm for the Grade 9 students (when the empowerment event finishes).

Finally, on Friday next week we have the Teleton t-shirt/jeans day (for students that have bought a Teleton t-shirt). In addition to buying a t-shirt, students can also support this worthy cause by buying a bracelet or squeeze bottle, and/or by donating money. 


All the best,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Thursday 11th - Monday 15th February: Business /Economics New York Trip
Friday 12th February: INSET Day for teachers (school closed)
Monday 15th February: Half Term Day (school closed)
Tuesday 16th - Friday 19th February: Grade 7 & 8 exams
Tuesday 16th February: Open Parent Partnership (Dr Guttfreund and Dr Barrios "Addictions in teens"), 6pm PAC
Thursday 18th February: Secondary school closes at 11:30am. - Grade 9 'Stereotypes and labels' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Friday 19th February: Teleton non-uniform/t-shirt day
Monday 22nd & Tuesday 23rd: Bicultural Schools Art Festival
Wednesday 24th - Saturday 27th February - IB Geo Antigua, Guatemala trip
Saturday 27th February: Summer Carnival 2016 (organised by the Asociación de Padres de Familia)
Monday 29th February: Grade 10 IB Options Meetings, 5:30pm PAC
Tuesday 1st March: Grade 12 Parent Partnership, 6pm PAC
Tuesday 1st - 5th March: MUN New York trip
Thursday 3rd - Friday 7th March: Book Week
Thursday 10th - Monday 14th March: Music Week 
Monday 14th March: Brain Awareness Week and British Science Week
Grade 6 'Friendship and teamwork' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Wednesday 16th March: SteamFest 2016 
Wednesday 16th March: Open Parent Partnership “Netiquette” 6pm PAC 
Thursday 17th March: Grade 9 & 11 Parent Teacher Meetings and Cal 2 Reports, 3.15pm Auditorium
Friday 18th March: Last day of Second Term
Friday 21st March - Friday 1st April: Easter holidays (school closed)
Monday 4th April: Back to school - First day of Third Term
Monday 11th April: Art Week
Friday 15th April: World Art Day
Monday 18th April: Earth Week
Monday 18th - Thursday 28th April: Grade 11 exams
Thursday 21st April: Secondary School closes at 11:30am - Grade 7 'Assertiveness and independence' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Thursday 28th April: Last day of school for Grade 10 & 12 students
Monday 2nd May: IB exams start for Grade 12 students
Saturday 7th May: Spiritual retreat for Grades 9 to 12 students (Comité Católico ABC)
Monday 9th May: IGCSE exams start for Grade 10 students
Monday 16th May: Cultural Diversity Week
Thursday 19th - Friday 27th May: Grade 9 exams 
Friday 20th May: Secondary School closes at 11:30am - Grade 8 'Ethical and moral choices' empowerment afternoon (11:30am-5pm).
Thursday 19th May: ABC Digital Awards, 6 p.m. PAC
Monday 30th May: Health Awareness Week
Tuesday 31st May: Thanksgiving Ceremony for Class 2016

Friday, 5 February 2016

20: Friday 5th February 2016

From the Director


I would like to welcome the new Exabrit Committee chaired by Jose Luis Villalta from the Class of 2008. We are looking forward to working with them to ensure our Exabrits continue both to contribute to and to feel part of our community. I am sure there will be many Exabrits at the Black and White Party tonight which I am sure will be a great event. Thank you to the Asociacion de Padres for their organisation of this social event.

We have had some concerns this week with children feeling left out when other children gave out invitations for a party and they were excluded. We recognise you may not want to invite all the children in a group to a party but we do respectfully ask that unless you are inviting the WHOLE teaching group, we do not want to see those invites being distributed in school. You need to find another way to do the invitations. This also applies if you invite some friends from each of the teaching groups. Children do end up feeling left out and we are asking for your consideration and respect for their feelings.

While I am on the subject of parties. We are fully aware that in secondary school students have class parties and most parties are well organized and run smoothly without incident. However, when you are having a party for students at your private house you should establish some general rules before the party: how many people can be invited, the time of the party and when the party will finish. Consider limiting the number of guests and do not allow an open invitation for students from other grades or other schools. You should ask other parents or adults to help monitor the party. You should identify rooms that can be used and make these rooms a safe environment. Please see our guidelines on parties on the school website, we really want to work together with you to ensure everyone is safe at these events.

When your son or daughter attends a house party you need to explain to them your expectations. You should establish a time when they will be picked up at the end of the party and you should avoid changes to this plan, such as they would like to stay over at the last minute. You should ensure that they have a safe ride home, not catching a ride with somebody else which is not organised in advance. Stay awake until your children get home or wake up on their return. This gives you the opportunity to assess whether or not to have abided by your expectations for the party.

We have our Primary Spring Fair in two weeks time. At this event all the lost and found items that have accumulated over the last few months will be sold off or donated to charity. Please check both the primary and secondary cages for anything that might belong to your child, lunch boxes, bags, coats, shoes etc. If you need a key to access something, they are available from the school secretaries.

I hope you all have some good family time this weekend. I am following the Panthers on Sunday!

Primary News

Dear Parents and Carers,

I was able to lead a discussion about the International Primary Curriculum with the School Board this week. They were very interested to learn more about the curriculum and to understand how it meets all the requirements of the English National Curriculum but allows for the best learning and teaching to take place. It also develops many of the attributes that our children will need in the workplace of the future. It was a very positive meeting and confirmed to us all that the IPC with its international and social aspects is the right curriculum for our school and our students.

I also got to see 3rd Brennes and Kinder Suarez lovely assemblies recently. They were both delightful. What a credit our students are to us all. Please keep an eye open for your child’s class assembly on the calendar. Please also note that these are sometimes subject to change.

As a school we are carrying out a parent perception survey at the moment. If you have not completed it already please go to


and let us know your opinion. Your views count.

As we continue with our precautions against mosquito bites, please ensure your children are dressed suitably for school, not a party, and that their legs are fully covered. 

I will be carrying out random clothing checks all next week.

The Spring Fair is approaching. It will be held on the 20th February and as always it will be a lovely event for our Primary families. It will also be run and manned by the Primary students and because this is an educational event all of Upper Primary are expected to attend and have the commercial experience. Thank you for the tombola jars that have already arrived in school. They are very attractive and contain quality items. Thank you too to those families who have sold all their raffle tickets or have donated prizes when requested. They are a big contribution to the money we raise for our cause.

Please note that it is at this event that all the lost and found items that have accumulated over the last few months are sold off or donated to charity. Please go and check both the primary and secondary cages for anything that might belong to your child, lunch boxes, bags, coats, shoes etc. If you need a key to access something, they are available from the school secretaries. If it has a name it will be left on the tables outside the administration offices.

The clown Fransortes, who has been a regular guest at our school for many years and delighted our students with his antics, was admitted to hospital as he was most unwell. Although he is now out of hospital he is currently confined to a wheelchair. We would like to organise a collection for him to support him at this time of difficulty. We are proposing a series of ‘Paint your Face Days’ to this effect. On the week from Feb 8th to February 11th children are allowed to come into school with their face painted for $1. Each grade will be allocated a specific day. If you are not able to decorate their face at home we will be offering a face painting service in school for $1.50 but this must be booked in advance to ensure we have enough adults and materials. All proceeds will go to help Fransortes. Keep an eye open for the full details. We look forward to seeing you all with your colourful faces.

Our secondary CAS students have organised another event for our students to enjoy on February 6th. Take a good look at the poster and map below and tell your friends. We hope you have an enjoyable family outing.


Best wishes for a wonderful week ahead.

Mrs Short
Head of Primary

Dates for your diary

Lower Primary
February
Friday 5th: Kinder Quintanilla assembly - 7:45 am - PAC
Saturday 6th: Mini Fair
8th to 11th: Paint your face days
Friday 12th: School closed to students
Monday 15th School closed
Friday 19th: Kinder Carbajal assembly - 7:45 am - PAC
Saturday 20th: Spring Fair 9:00 am - 12 pm
Friday 26th: Kinder González assembly - 7:45 am - PAC

Upper Primary
February
Saturday 6th: Mini Fair
Wednesday 10th: 2nd Aviles Assembly at the PAC. 9.20 and 12.15
8th to 11th February - Paint your face day
Friday 12th School closed to students
Monday 15th School closed
Wednesday 17th: 3rd grade Spanish Assembly at the PAC. 9.20 and 12.15
Saturday 20th: Spring Fair 9:00 am - 12 pm
Wednesday 24th: 5th Caceres Assembly at the PAC. 9.20 and 12.15
Friday 26th: Extracurricular Activities Session 3 Finishes 
March
Wednesday 2nd March to Friday 4th March: 5th grade Camping, at the Portezuelo Park

Secondary News

Dear Parents / Guardians,

Well done to the ABC teams on coming 1st place and 3rd place in the Mathcounts Maths Relay on Friday 29th of January. There were also some great results in the individual Mathcounts competitions (on Saturday 30th of January). Please see the ‘ROCs in Action’ blog for more details of the students involved.

Hopefully the ABC will be travelling to Mexico to compete in the Regionals (more details to follow in later ABC Weeklies).


After what must have felt as two very very long weeks for our students, the Grade 10 (IGCSE) and Grade 12 (IB Diploma) mocks ended today. The students have worked hard and we have been very pleased with their conduct during this time. The results of the mock examinations will be made known to the students shortly - the teachers now have large piles of examination scripts to mark!

Next week the Grade 8 examinations start (on Thursday 11th of February) and in the following week (from Tuesday 16th of March to Friday 19th of March) we have the remainder of the Grade 8 exams along with the Grade 7 examinations.

We were very pleased with the attendance of the Grade 6&7 Parent Teacher Meetings (Tuesday 2nd of February) and the Grade 8 IGCSE Options Presentation and Parent Teacher Meetings (Thursday 4th of February) this week.

Please note that we want parents to attend Parent Teacher Meetings even if there are no concerns about their child's academic achievements and/or work ethic. We encourage all parents to attend such meetings so that they can receive feedback from their child’s individual teachers, along with targets for improvement. No matter how well a student is doing there is always scope for improvement and guidance to be shared by the subject teachers. Teachers in most of cases will have availability at some point during the evening.

All parents are invited to the upcoming Open Parent Partnership on "Addictions in teens" by Dr Guttfreund and Dr Barrios (Tuesday 16th of February at 6pm in the PAC). 


Whilst some Parent Partnerships are specific to a certain grade, many are open to all parents and are on subjects of general interest. In fact, increasingly we are organising Parent Partnerships on themes/topics suggested by parents, and we encourage parents to continue to suggest themes/topics that they want us to cover. We refer to the general interest Parent Partnerships as Open Parent Partnerships.

The next Open Parent Partnership (after the one on "Addictions in teens" by Dr Guttfreund and Dr Barrios) will be on Wednesday 16th of March (from 6pm in the PAC) and the topic this time will be “Netiquette”. The word netiquette is a combination of ’net’ (from internet) and ’etiquette’. It means respecting other users’ views and displaying common courtesy when posting your views to online discussion groups. We will explore netiquette in detail at this Open Parent Partnership.

We have had a massive response from students wanting to learn Chinese (Mandarin). Starting this week on Thursday (and they will be on Thursday’s hereafter) we ran two beginners Mandarin language classes:
  1. 2.00pm to 3.00pm for Grade 6, 7 & 8 students; and,
  2. 3.00pm to 4.00pm for Grade 9 students.
Unfortunately due to the overwhelming demand we are unable to offer classes to students that are ethnic Chinese, nor can we cater for the older students (in Grades 10, 11 and 12) that expressed an interest in the classes.

A big thank you to Ms HaoWen Cheng from the Taiwanese Embassy for agreeing to come and teach our students Mandarin.

Next week the uniform arrangements for girls remain. As mentioned last week, please make sure that your child uses mosquito repellant before they come to school and that this is replenished during the day.

Finally, please be reminded that we have a staff training (INSET) day next week on Friday 12th of February and that students, after Thursday 11th of February, will not be returning to school until Tuesday 16th of February (as Friday and Monday form part of half-term holiday for students). 

I hope you and your family have a lovely weekend.

Kind regards,

Stephen Spicer
Head of Secondary

Secondary dates for your diary
Monday 8th - Friday 12th February: Internet Safety Week
Thursday 11th February: Grade 8 exams
Thursday 11th - Monday 15th February: Business New York Trip
Friday 12th February: INSET Day for teachers (school closed)
Monday 15th February: Half Term Day (school closed)
Tuesday 16th - Friday 19th February: Grade 7 & 8 exams
Tuesday 16th February: Open Parent Partnership (Dr Guttfreund and Dr Barrios "Addictions in teens"), 6pm PAC
Thursday 18th February: Secondary school closes at 11:30am. Grade 9 'Stereotypes and labels' empowerment afternoon.
Friday 19th February: Teleton non-uniform/t-shirt day
Saturday 27th February: Summer Carnival 2016 (organised by the Asociación de Padres de Familia)
Monday 29th February: Grade 10 IB Options Meetings, 5:30pm PAC
Tuesday 1st March: Grade 12 Parent Partnership, 6pm PAC
Thursday 3rd - Friday 7th March: Book Week
Monday 10th - Friday 14th March: Music Week / Brain Week and British Science Week
Wednesday 16th March: Open Parent Partnership “Netiquette” 6pm PAC 
Thursday 17th March: Grade 9 & 11 Parent Teacher Meetings, 3.15pm Auditorium
Friday 18th March: Last day of Second Term
Friday 21st March - Friday 1st April: Easter holidays (school closed)
Monday 4th April: Back to school - First day of Third Term