It was a pleasure to welcome UNICEF’s Rights respecting School Award assessor into the building on Monday. He stayed for about three hours, talking to staff, pupils and parents about the work that we have done towards our Level One accreditation. I am delighted to announce that at the end of that he granted us our RRSA Level One status. “Level 1 is the second step of the Rights Respecting Schools Award. At this stage, the school implements an action plan and makes good progress towards embedding the principles of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child into its ethos and curriculum following the four RRSA standards. The school also plans how they will fully embed the Convention as they work towards Level 2. The Level 1 Award is valid for three years, after which time schools must be re-assessed.” (UNICEF UK) At this point I would like to thank everyone who took the time to be part of the assessment. However, the real heroes of the hour are Ms Brannigan and the RRSA Group who have worked tirelessly to promote the RRSA agenda in school. It has been a lot of hard work over the past couple of years to get to the point of being ready for assessment, and I feel that we are now in a really strong place to take our work forward, focusing on values, human rights and taking responsibility.
Congratulations to Craig Jackson, a former pupil, who will be graduating this summer from Edinburgh University with an Honours degree in Architecture. It’s great to hear about our ex-pupils and their success, so please drop me a line at school if you have any news in that vein.
Yesterday a large proportion of our S1 pupils visited the Museum of Flight. They were visiting the Sky Lab, the main focus of which “is to enable young people realise and understand their potential in future STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) based careers in the aviation and related sectors. In doing so, they develop self-confidence, social skills and self-awareness, helping them to become better contributors to their communities.” This morning our second set of S1s set off to Edinburgh College to get an experience of working in their catering kitchens. The pupils really enjoy these opportunities to learn off-site and to get experiences that they wouldn’t normally get.
Speaking of experiences, we have already waved off a couple of the Activities’ Week trips: PGL Water sports and Italy. The Iceland group departs on Sunday, and the other excursions leave on Monday. The in-school packages are all organised, and as I have said before, keep an eye on the weather so pupils are properly prepared – waterproofs, water, and sunscreen could all be needed – along with some spending money and food and snacks. It will be a great week and could not happen without the hard work of all the staff, in particular Mr Taylor and Mrs Weir. I look forward to hearing how everything goes.
I am particularly looking forward to attending the opening service of the Haddington Festival this weekend. It is a lovely occasion with a real sense of community spirit, and what’s more we hear about who has won the Haddington Young Achiever Award. All in all, there’s a lot be looking forward to in the next few weeks.
Have a great week.