A busy week all round for Mackie

On Monday and Tuesday we had a quality improvement visit from the ELL team at Aberdeenshire Council.

The team of eight spent their time in lessons, speaking with students, staff and parents and from this we have received some really useful feedback which will inform our improvement planning for next year and beyond.

I look forward to sharing this process with all relevant parties in the near future.

Out of this visit came the importance of how Mackie Academy works as part of the local community and I was invited last Thursday, along with many others, to attend an event at the Community Centre to review their latest Youth Engagement report for the Stonehaven Network.

It was great to hear about so much good practice going on in our community and I am looking forward to working with the Community Learning Development Team on a joint improvement plan for the school and community next year.

In addition to this some Mackie Academy students, past and present, were there to receive their Saltire and Youth Achievement Awards.

Catriona Aitken and Rachael Patterson, both in S5, received their Bronze Youth Achievement Awards whilst Rebecca Hunter, formerly of Mackie Academy and now at Aberdeen North East College, received her 200 hour Saltire Award.

Both awards recognise achievements outside of the curriculum and reflect significant amounts of volunteering by these students which is a fantastic achievement by them.

Out there in the community of Johnshaven our students are helping organise their pantomime. We have students involved from S1 to S5 in areas as diverse as stage design, sound, dance choregraphy and music.

We also have students playing characters such as the pantomime horse (front end of course!!). The director wrote to me to express how fantastic the students have been in their contributions towards the production as has member of staff, Ms Berker, who is helping with the stage management.

The aim is to raise around £2000 which will go towards improving facilities for the disabled at the local hall. Some of our guidance team are going to attend to show support for our students which is great and with designs like the poster below by talented students such as Kirsty Mackenzie I am sure it will be a great success.

Best of luck to all involved with “Jack and the Johnshaven Beanstalk”.

We had our S5 and S6 subject evening on Thursday evening and it was great to see a busy evening for what is the last such event for this academic year.

As part of these evenings we have been collecting feedback from parents which has been very useful and will now be used as part of our improvement planning process for next year and beyond.

At the weekend I was lucky enough to hear our Concert Band play at Perth Concert Hall as part of the Scottish Finals.

They were fantastic and played three great pieces which had the crowd responding well. The standard was very high and our band received a Silver Plus award which is high quality indeed.

Thanks must go to all the students as well as the instructors who have worked tirelessly in advance of this and Sarah Gove, the conductor. Without her input the band would not be achieving such heights.

I must also say a massive thank you to all the parents who transported their children to Perth for the day.

Well done to Dunnottar who were triumphant in the inter-house cross country competition. The competition is drawing to a close early next term in advance of the exams.

Finally, we are entering the second phase of uniform consultation with the possible new designs of blazers and ties out there for students, staff and parents to see. We are hoping to display them in Front Reception over the next two weeks. This means that by Easter we should have in place our uniform list for next year.

This weekend I am off to Cardiff with our Mock Trial team as they compete in the UK finals. I am really looking forward to it.