Melissa has been helping out at an Edinburgh based charity Empty Kitchens Full Hearts. They started up with chefs who had no work due to lockdown and turn surplus food into meals for anyone that needs them. Melissa has been involved in packing meals, delivery and handing out food packs at lunch and dinner time.
Well done Melissa!
Normally at this stage in the school session we would be preparing to welcome families into the school for the Senior Phase Awards Ceremony. This cannot take place in the usual way this year due to Covid-related restrictions on gatherings. However, I do think it is still important that we recognise the many achievements of our learners in the Senior Phase, just as we did in June for pupils in the Broad General Education. To this end, we would like to invite families of our senior pupils to join our virtual Senior Phase Awards Ceremony that will be hosted on our website from Friday, 18th September.
I also intend presenting the Dux and Proxime Accessit medals to the pupils whose academic success has earned them this prestigious prize at a small ceremony in school. Appropriate social distancing measures will be in place. Invitations will go out to the families of those who will be receiving the prizes to join us for the presentation via Zoom. Further information will follow in due course.
I do hope that you will join me in congratulating all of our prize winners in the Senior Phase.
Thank you for supporting your young person to wear a mask in school, one of the main health and safety measures that we have in place to keep everyone as safe as we can. Almost all of our young people arrive at school with a mask and comply with the wearing of their mask when they are required to do so. The school issues disposable masks to pupils who arrive without one to allow them to enter the building and access their learning.
However, I am now becoming increasingly concerned that some young people are relying on being given a disposable mask rather than bring their own reusable masks to school. This is increasing the amount of waste that is being generated by the school which will impact on the environment. Reusable masks are a much more sustainable way forward. I would be very grateful if you could remind your young person to take responsibility for their safety, and for the safety of others, by coming into school with a reusable mask.
Please let me know by email if you need any financial support with this as I can provide this where it is necessary. Disposable masks will continue to be available but should be seen as a last resort.
Thank you for your support with this matter.
We appreciate that Supported Study plays an important role in your young person’s learning at DHS and we are continuing to explore ways in which we can provide them with opportunities to enhance their learning out with school hours. E-Sgoil is part of the education system in the Western Isles and Education Scotland have provided them with significant funding to ensure that young people across that area have access to high quality learning and teaching online. They have deployed GTCS registered teachers and are using current technology to deliver real-time, interactive lessons to pupils throughout Scotland following lockdown. It’s a great opportunity for pupils, Senior Phase in particular, to take advantage of these rich learning opportunities and these live webinars take place on Monday to Thursday between 5pm and 8pm. They are approximately 45 minutes long and cover a wide range of subjects (please see attached leaflet).
Pupils can access this resource through Glow and then sign up via Microsoft Teams. Teachers will continue to promote the webinar lessons to their classes and we are currently exploring other options to allow us to continue to provide high quality supported study online.
During the recent Parent Council meeting we discussed at-home learning in length and it was a good opportunity to remind parents/carers that our school website has a rich library of learning resources for young people to access if they are unable to attend school. The quality of the school website was commended in our recent HMIe inspection and it’s an invaluable tool which we continue to develop to ensure that our young people have high quality learning available both in and out of school.
Thank you for your ongoing support.
Parent Council met last night for the first meeting of the session/AGM. I was delighted that a good number of parents/carers were able to join us to contribute to conversations about our school community. Parents/carers who attended were also able to ask questions on a range of issues from the cleaning of desks to plans for SQA assessments. Many thanks to those who were able to attend.
The next meeting will take place on Tuesday, 10th November and will be conducted via Zoom. Further information will be sent to you closer to that date. I do hope that you can put this date in your diary and join us for lively discussion and debate.
At the meeting, the Treasurer reported that almost £500 has been raised through voluntary donations from families to support us as we move through this period of recovery. I am very grateful to families who have been in a position to do this. The funds will be used to support our pupils in many ways, with a particular focus on those experiencing hardship at this time. The Parent Council/PTA Facebook page has further information for those who would like to find out more.
As I have said on numerous occasions now, the DHS community has never been stronger and I thank parents/carers for their ongoing support. We could not do it without you!
Please find below a document prepared by NHS Lothian that aims to clarify specific questions and concerns that have been raised by parents and carers over the past few weeks.
I would like to emphasise that a young person should not attend school if they have any of the following COVID-19 symptoms.
- A new, continuous cough and/or
- A fever/ high temperature and/or
- A change or loss in taste and/or smell
Note: A new, continuous cough means coughing for longer than an hour, or three or more coughing episodes in 24 hours. If you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual.