A bit of a bumper HT Update this week, so grab yourself a coffee before you dive in…
It felt like a real milestone to be able to meet with our Parent Council co-chairs this week and to decide on the shape of our partnership over the coming year. Echoing the letter from our admin team this week, please note that meetings of the Rosehill and the Brae Parent Network will take place on the following dates in session 23-24. All meetings will be held at the school between 7pm and 8pm, with participants welcome to arrive for tea/coffee from 6.45pm:
- 21st November
- 16th January
- 27th February
- 16th April
- 28th May
It was also helpful to get a sense of any Frequently Asked Questions coming through to parent representatives. In response to this, you may find the following useful on a couple of themes:
Food Court provision: The amazing work from our catering team means that this is a popular, busy option. Additional staff have been trained in the last few weeks, and queues are now consistently around 9 minutes maximum at afternoon rest break, and slightly shorter at morning rest break. Now that we are a few weeks in, it’s getting easier for the catering team to gather data to work out which menu items are most popular and to provide more or less as required. Your child can pick up a leaflet with meal offerings at any time, either from reception or from the tills in the Food Court.
School trips: Though we all appreciate and enjoy the chance to explore the wider world with young people, there is no statutory obligation for any school to organise off site excursions. Given the size of our team at Rosehill (only 18 class teachers in total, some of whom are the only subject specialists in their area of the curriculum), any staff absence to support trips has a significant impact on pupils’ overall experiences. Absence means that our teachers need to cover multiple periods for colleagues, usually outwith their subject specialisms. This is not ideal for pupil progress. Further to this, there is currently very limited supply available for secondary schools, with none at all in some core subjects. We are also mindful of the level of winter illness that looks set to be around again this year, adding to staffing pressures. As such, we are all ‘cawing canny’ with time out of school this session, but will continue to review this over the course of the year. I am sure you will agree that high quality learning and teaching in our classrooms always has to come first.
Cost of the school day: This is another consideration linked to the above point. We have an obligation to ensure that all educational opportunities are available equally to all young people. In practical terms, this can mean a substantial financial pressure on schools when a school trip is offered that is beyond the financial reach of some our families. Our draft policy on protecting the cost of the school day is here: The Rosehill Way: The Cost of the School Day. Further to this, our Senior Leadership Team is working closely with the Global Citizenship Faculty to look at other ways in which we can continue to support our families and the wider community in keeping education related costs down.
P7 Transition: As per previous communications, plans are already afoot for this. In summary:
- November-December: Rosehill Tours are available for parents and young people across a range of date. You can book here Visiting Our School – Rosehill High School (edubuzz.org)
- January: The Rosehill Team will host a ‘Meet the SLT’ Google Meet to introduce ourselves and the school community; invitations will come through partner primary schools
- April/May: Rosehill staff will visit young people in their primary schools for some taster learning sessions.
- June: In keeping with other ELC schools, Rosehill will host young people from our associated primaries for visits across the 14th, 16th and 17th of June
Given that (unlike every other secondary school) we don’t ‘lose’ any year groups this year for exams/June, we have to look at staffing this creatively. Our partners at Wallyford and Pinkie will be sending a number of staff with their young people to support June activities and we look forward to planning with them over the course of the year. In addition to the above, our Pupil Support Team will work closely with partner schools to identify pupils in need of further input throughout the spring/summer.
Please note that no transition work takes place with out of catchment pupils until their placing request has been processed. Pupils who are out of catchment should always be liaising with their catchment schools until places are confirmed.
We’ve had a couple of queries about home learning provision. Following on from previous communications, a reminder that your child is linked to a Google classroom for every timetabled subject. Google classroom can be accessed from any device at home. We also publish a range of resources to support home learning via our Knowledge Organisers. The Quadrant 1 Knowledge Organisers are here: Learning: Knowledge Organisers – Rosehill High School (edubuzz.org) and the Quadrant 2 resources will be updated in the second half of this month. As we begin to prepare some of our young people for the senior phase, we will also be looking at this topic in more detail through our Parent Engagement Group.
As noted last week, we are having a specific focus on the core value of Respect at present. This week’s theme is all around respect for others and how we can show this in simple, cost-free ways. In our Monday briefing, we asked all young people to pick one of the following targets:
- Greeting members of staff in the way that they greet you (a smile/ hello/good morning/how are you)
- Saying thank you when someone has helped you with your learning or a problem you’ve had- or just for the lesson!
- Following an instruction the first time to make sure teacher time is spent on helping, not correcting
This theme of respect has also been coming through in ongoing discussions around positive use of our outdoor sports areas. As you will be aware, our staff team volunteer to supervise this area doing rest breaks, providing an ideal opportunity for young people to be active throughout the school day. Unfortunately, Mr. Cuthbertson had to restrict access to our S2 pupils on a temporary basis. He met with them this week to refocus on expectations in this area and we look forward to working positively with them around respectful conduct on and off the pitch. Even more impressively, the young people themselves met and discussed the issue ahead of time and came to the meeting with their own solutions. Winning and losing gracefully are both life skills and there was real learning here!
It was lovely to take time to reflect on ‘wee wins’ at this week’s extended leadership team meeting. The overall message was that the routines and structures in place are really bearing fruit in terms of young people being in the best place to learn. This means we can have a real focus on making sure we get the most out of each lesson. Given our commitment to ‘no surprises’, we will continue to contact you when your young person is encountering difficulties in the classroom, and thank you for your support. Perhaps even more importantly, you will also know when they are doing well; through reports at the end of each quadrant, Fantastic Friday calls, and departmental methods of recognising achievement.