8 May 2020

8 May: Message from the Middle Phase VP

Dear Parents and Caregivers,

I wanted to take the opportunity to address the key things that are coming up this term for the Middle School.

Year 11:

Next week, students will collect evidence they have gathered from each subject area in preparation for their viva interview. The focus of the week is to ensure that they have evidence for each of the six competencies (Character, Critical Thinking, Creativity, Communication, Collaboration and Citizenship).

For many students they will have developed skills in all of their competencies within the entrance curriculum. However, I have encouraged students to look beyond the entrance curriculum in Elements, ECA, Sport and outside school to evidence their competency development.

During the week beginning 18 May, students will take part in a 15 minute, viva-style interview with a Year 11 teacher. During this interview they will be encouraged to draw upon the evidence they have gathered to show their competency development. What will be crucial in this process is the reflection that takes place afterwards – inevitably, there will be areas for development and growth and your child should focus on these as they move into Year 12 and Year 13.

From the week beginning 25 May, Year 11 students will take part in a pre-IB induction program. The aim of the programme is to build on the skills and competency development within the Island Futures Curriculum to enable students to adapt to the demands of the IB Diploma and Career Programmes as soon as they begin in August.

The program will focus on three areas, core competencies, subject group skills and Thrive. The programme includes sessions that focus on the IBDP and IBCP core.  This will include sessions on core competencies such as Critical Thinking within TOK, Character through Academic Honesty, Citizenship through Service Learning and CAS and Leadership.

Students will have sessions led by IB and BTEC subject group specialists.  As well as developing core competencies such as communication and collaboration, they will also be able to develop some subject-specific skills. As well as having the regular Thrive sessions with the House teams, there will also be sessions that build on the Escape programme with activities such as fitness, yoga, positive education tools and physical education.


Years 9 and Year 10:

Year 9 and Year 10 students are settling in well to the new term and we are seeing very good levels of engagement with online learning. I am now working with curriculum leaders and subject leaders to evaluate the online learning so that we can ensure anything that has been missed due to the current situation is scheduled appropriately. Most notably will be the practical aspects of subjects like science, DT and Drama etc.

When we do start the return to school, the priority is to get students in front of their teachers as much as possible in the normal classroom environment. As such, I have taken the decision along with the curriculum leaders that the Year 10 exams will be postponed to the next academic year. Some subject areas wish to assess their students so that they can provide guidance on improvement so I have encouraged those department areas to do so in normal lesson time. Having all Year 10 students away from their teachers for a further week is not the best way to spend precious time when we return to school.

As ever, thank you so much for your ongoing support and I hope you have a great weekend.

Kind regards,

Nicholas Lee
Vice Principal