Mackie Matters - Building on sports success

Building on the success of our Sports Achievement Evening pupils at Mackie Academy, who play Badminton at the highest levels, have been chosen to represent Scotland at the ISF Badminton tournament which takes place in late March 2016 in Malta.

This follows from the success of the team that went to Taipei and allows a team of nine to compete against teams from across the world. It is a fantastic achievement for all involved and we are very lucky here at Mackie Academy to have such talented young people in this sport.

On September 9, 60 pupils travelled to Aberdeen Sports Village to compete in the South Aberdeenshire Secondary Schools sports competition. Mackie Academy did very well this year winning the badminton and netball competitions. High table finishes in all the other events meant that for the 5th year running Mackie were overall champions. A big thank you to the seniors who coached the different sports on the day: Jack Ricci, Charlie Beeson, Meaghan Peters, Liam Carle, Stephen Hodds, Katy Townsend and Stuart Holley. Finally, a big thanks to Ms Keenleyside and Mrs McLaren who organised and accompanied the teams on the day.

Our rugby teams were out last week against Ellon Academy with our U16 team beating the opposition 50-5 and the S1/2 team not even allowing the other team to score with a resounding victory of 42-0. This is a fantastic start to their season as representatives of Mackie Academy and builds on the work that many of these boys are putting in as members of teams elsewhere in Aberdeenshire and Scotland.

Mackie Academy hosted a Y-Dance workshop for senior girls on Monday. The girls worked during the day with their instructor to develop dance routines which were performed at the end of the day. I was lucky enough to see the routines and it was great to see what had been achieved in such a short period of time. The girls thoroughly enjoyed their experience and I know Mrs Agnew has plans for using the routines in upcoming events.

You may have seen our Modern Studies team tweeting about their current work with our elderly residents in Stonehaven and I want to share with you their experiences as written by Levi Peddie, one of our S3 pupils:

“We have been learning about the needs of the elderly in our Modern Studies lessons. We have learnt about how to adapt housing facilities to suit their needs as well as the problems faced by these members of our community and the different ways to help the elderly wherever possible. We went on three visits – one to Clashfarquhar House, the others to Macdonald and Carnegie Courts sheltered housing. We also went into Stonehaven to complete a survey with the public. We asked questions to help us learn about this subject and we would like to thank anyone who answered. We found out that the majority of older residents in Stonehaven felt they had the respect of younger generations and we were pleased to find out that most were not intimidated by groups of young people! 66% of the people we interviewed were well prepared for their retirement and had a good standard of living. People’s lives were full of activities from playing golf to looking after grandchildren and socialising.”

Our Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) has been revived this year by a group of ladies who are planning ahead for the year. The school is very appreciative of the work done by this group as the funds go directly back to the school and support project development. The group has a Facebook page and information can also be found on the school website. Please note that the 2nd annual Mackie Academy Shopping Night will take place on October 29 from 7pm to 8:30pm in the Main Hall. With over 30 vendors, a tombola and music to entertain you it is a perfect opportunity to get your Christmas shopping underway.

Last week saw the annual Mackie Academy Sponsored Walk which, this year, is supporting the “Archie in Africa” campaign. Already, the Archie team has fundraised and opened the first Children’s Hospital in Uganda and what the pupils at Mackie Academy are fundraising for is to provide much needed equipment for the hospital. David Cunningham, Chief Executive of the Archie Foundation, joined us on the day to reward the pupils with their “Archie” pin and sent these kind words through to us:

“It was a fantastic event, unlike anything I’ve seen another school achieve in terms of scale, inclusion and development. It was wonderful to see so many pupils from across the entire school take part and everyone I spoke to had enjoyed it.”

The next stage for the school is to collect all the money raised and once this is done we have the opportunity to send a member of staff and a pupil to Uganda with the Archie Foundation to see our funds being put to use. It is excellent that the pupils get to see what their fundraising is going towards. A massive thank you to all those involved in the dayfor making it such a success.

Finally thank you to those residents who have raised their concerns around litter created by pupils when out and about at lunchtimes. We are working hard to ensure that pupils take responsibility for their rubbish and, at the same time, raising the issues of appropriate facilities with the council. Whilst we do not condone our pupils dropping their litter the lack of suitable facilities does raise its own challenges. I will keep you up to date with how we get on with this matter. It is only a couple of weeks until the October break which seems to have come around very quickly so there will be one more Mackie Matters before we head into our holidays and I have no doubt that there will be just as much to fill up the columns by then.