Head Teacher Update - Letter and video 56

25th October in School

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25th October 2021

Dear Parent / Carer (please share with your child)

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday together. Although the weather was varied there was at
least some sunny days to get out and about and enjoy ourselves: work permitting for many
granted. In normal times there wouldn’t be a lot to add on the first day back, adding to a letter
already written on the last day of term. However, these are not normal times and we continue
to face many challenges and uncertainties which I like to keep you fully abreast of.

Covid update

Such changes were noted by the Health Protection Team in a letter sent to you on Friday. I
attach a copy for those who missed it first time around. In summary the NHS letter notes the
rise in Covid in our area and stresses the need to keep your child at home if they are unwell
until a PCR test has been undertaken and the results show a negative result.

Additionally, in dealing with these uncertain times, the Scottish Government has once again
updated it’s guidance to schools. You can find the Scottish Government announcement and
the new guidance here:

https://www.gov.scot/news/covid-19-safety-in-schools/ 

Coronavirus (COVID-19): guidance on reducing the risks in schools - gov.scot (www.gov.scot)

The most significant points noted are that schools will continue to use face coverings, continue
our physical distancing arrangements and that the vaccination programme for 12-15 year olds
is to be extended.

Vaccinations

Although schools will host the NHS Covid vaccination offer to young people aged 12-15, similar
to the flu vaccine programme arrangement currently underway, we do not administer the
programme in any way. You will have received information last week from the Director of Public
Health. I have also attached these letters for you in case they were missed. Additionally, all
information relating to the vaccination programme for young people can be found here:

www.nhsinform.scot/covid19vaccineyoungpeople

Although we still have most of the same protective measures in school to keep our community
safe, some of the changes to the guidance allow for a slight amendment to those people who
can come into schools and other adults providing educational opportunities are now allowed
into our buildings. These additional educationalists have very specific requirements to follow
when attending our school. I thought you would like to hear of a few examples.

Sound System project

This week an exciting opportunity has arisen for our pupils to work with the Sound System
Project in connection with Oban Youth Café. This is a youth led music project and the pupils
will spend the week working together to write, produce and build their own sound system.

By the end of the week the pupils will have the experience of using electronics, woodwork and
power tools to build their own portable sound system. They will work with a professional MC
and producer to create their own music track. The week will finish with a masterclass in Djing
and pupils will perform their tracks live, and will be able to record the track on their sound
system.

Construction

Oban High School's Foundation Apprenticeship Construction class had the pleasure of working
in partnership with MacLeod's Construction for their Work Based Challenge today. They were
building new bird boxes for a local primary school. My thanks to Mairi and Stephen who gave
up their time to be with us. Working in partnership with local businesses is a great way for our
pupils to see the connection with school education and the workplace, helping us better prepare
them for life after school.

Live –N- Learn Sessions

Live-N-Learn will be delivering Growth Mind-Set and Study Skills workshops to S4, S5 and
S6 pupils from Tuesday 26th to Thursday 28th October.

More information about the content of these workshops can be found here:

https://live-n-learn.co.uk/courses/mindset-for-revision 

There will also be a virtual workshop for parents on Tuesday 26th October at 6.30 p.m. This
workshop will help parents to support their children to achieve their full potential.

All parents are welcome to join this virtual event. Please find the details below:

https://meet.google.com/zph-bjpk-nci 

Parents Outreach sessions

In addition to the Parent support sessions noted above, I thought I’d remind you all of our
regular Outreach sessions on offer. These sessions are designed to help parents with any
issue linked to school or home affairs where they feel they would benefit from either one-to-
one or group sessions with our Family Liaison staff. We will be running Outreach Sessions on
a Tuesday and a Thursday Evening. If you would like more details about this then please email:

Debbie.Gillies@argyll-bute.gov.uk 

Pupil Support and Breakfast Club

Of course as well as supporting parents, we also seek to provide additional pastoral support
for our youngsters. Our Family Liaison Officers and Youth Worker are continuing to support
many of our pupils with their mental health and their learning. Activities include gym club, group
sessions, helping with nurture, picking up pupils in the morning and many one to one support
sessions.

Breakfast Club has also started up again but on a limited basis due to ongoing Covid
restrictions. If you feel your child would benefit from this then please email:

Aileen.Jackson@argyll-bute.gov.uk 

COP 26

Next to Covid, COP 26 remains the most prominent news story of the week. With the COP 26
conference happening over the next few weeks, the school will be having a focus on the issues
surrounding climate change. This follows on from the SPLT assemblies on eco issues before
the holiday. Pupils in S1/2 Social Subjects will be given dedicated lessons around the issues
of climate change with input from Skills Development Scotland. Also in Geography pupils in
S3-6 will be studying climate change in more detail as part of their SQA courses. Pupils will
also be given opportunities in Science to look more closely at climate change with the Higher
Environmental Science class along with members of the School’s Eco-Committee taking part
in the Argyll and Bute Climate Conference this week.

Halloween / Jingles

I believe it is always good to add some fun into each term (more so in the current climate) and
this term has two main fun filled events to plan for. The first is Halloween and our Clan Classes
are in the midst of a Halloween door decoration competition. We shall also allow pupils to wear
a Halloween costume all day on Friday. If not wearing a costume then pupils are expected to
wear school uniform. The second main event begins with a C, but given it’s not December yet,
we’ll leave plans for that a while, other than to say, it is our intention to run the senior Jingles
on Friday 10th in the Corran Halls: IF the Scottish Government guidance changes and allows
us to do so. Junior Jingles will be later in December and be in school.

Young STEM Leaders Awards

I am aware this letter is running on now but I would like to quickly add a wee opportunity. Please
encourage your child to attend the following club if they are interested in the areas of Science,
Technology, Engineering and/or Maths. We are proud to announce we are now an approved
centre to deliver the Young STEM Leaders Awards with Miss Lyon and Miss Stevenson. More
information at STEM club on Thursday. Pupils will get the opportunity to earn SQA credits.

Support

Finally, should you have any questions, ideas or even concerns please contact your child’s
Guidance Teacher or use the “Contact Us” page on the website. Our clan pastoral teams are
here to support you and the Guidance staff, Family Liaison Officers, Youth Worker, IT support
staff, careers staff and the Clan Deputes will all ensure we work together to help you and our
children.

Yours faithfully,

P A Bain
Executive Head Teacher
Oban High School, Tiree High School & Tiree Primary School


Mr Bain’s update 25th October

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