Letters from the Head Teacher

School Bagde

27th May 2021

Good afternoon,
This year has been very challenging in lots of different ways, and these challenges continue to affect how we do things as a school. Normally we would have a leavers party for our S6 in the common room, we are unable to do this in the current context.

Having said that I would like to share with you some good news about how we will do things differently. We will arrange for our S6 leavers to have a Chinese meal at lunchtime on 4th June (paid for by the school fund). Also, in partnership with the Calmac Community fund and Sgoil Lionacleit Parent Council we have managed to source funding to allow our S6 leavers to take part in a boat trip to Mingulay (run by Uist Sea Tours - many thanks to David Steele).

This means that our S6 pupils will get to experience part of our islands that they may not have had the chance to and carry the memory of that experience with them as they move on to the next stage of their journey.

Yours in partnership

Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

20th May 2021

Good morning,
the leadership team at Sgoil Lionacleit (SLT + Principal Teachers) feel it is important to share this information as we continue the 'alternative certification model' for our senior pupils:
In an exam period young people may sit up to two 3hr exams in one day (covering the entirety of the course) and depending upon the exam timetable may have all 6 exams one after another.

This year we are splitting up the evidence gathering into smaller chunks rather than these longer and more intense periods. Which allows us to feedback to young people in between evidence gathering and to let young people look over their performance and adjust if they did not do as well as they hoped in a paper/unit/question. This is instead of sitting both papers in one go, which would cover a larger knowledge base and allow no time for reflection or adjustment.

Approaching evidence gathering in this manner means that for the next few weeks staff and young people will be very busy, but of the different ways evidence can be gathered the principal teachers felt that this way gives young people the best chance to produce quality evidence. As you know we have the deadlines to meet to award grades, we also must gather evidence under exam conditions, and we need to meet the correct level of evidence for SQA to agree with the grades given.

We are in a very busy period, and we would ask that parents/guardians help young people to manage their time if they are struggling to fit everything in. Because we have a deadline from SQA to submit evidence and quality assure/moderate grades we need to complete the evidence gathering in this period. One way in which parents/guardians can help is where young people have jobs (working in evenings/weekends) to consider whether this could be halted/adjusted for this short time to prioritise producing the best evidence possible in school.

Yours in partnership

Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

26th March 2021

Good afternoon,
As I am sure you are aware the First Minister asked us to deliver an alternative certification model to our senior pupils, this has had an impact on our calendar for other year groups.

Please see below a table which shows how we will conduct the alternative certification model (S4-6) and the reporting timeline for S1-3. The table below also highlights the two additional in-service (INSET) days the Scottish Government have allocated secondary schools for moderation purposes.

KEY DATES – OVERVIEW Senior Pupils (S4-6)

Term 4 Date Activity
Week 5 Friday 14th May Moderation - deadline 1, at least 1 piece of high predictive value evidence should have been generated to allow tier 1 moderation
Week 6 Monday 17th May INSET – Tier 1 moderation (school level)
Week 6 Friday 21st May Reporting – Report with more secure working grade
Week 8 Friday 4th June Moderation – deadline 2, at least 2 pieces of high predictive value evidence should have been generated to continue tier 1+2 moderation
Week 9 Monday 7th June INSET – Tier 2 moderation (local authority level)
Week 10 Wednesday 16th June Moderation – Closing date for evidence
Week 11 Monday 21st June Reporting – provisional grade issued to young people (this date is subject to change dependent upon further guidance from the Scottish Government/SQA)
 

KEY DATES – OVERVIEW S1-3

Term 4 Date Activity
Week 2 Monday 19th April Reporting – S3 reports issued
Week 6 Monday 17th May INSET DAY
Week 6 Wednesday 19th May Reporting – S1 reports issued
Week 6 Thursday 20th May Reporting – S2 reports issued
Week 9 Monday 7th June INSET DAY
Week 11 Friday 25th June Last day of term
 

I look forward to welcoming everyone back after the Easter break,

Yours in partnership

Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit


Message from Mr Young

Monday 22nd March 2021

Good morning,
On Tuesday 23 March, Jason Leitch, in partnership with Young Scot, will be hosting two live Q&A sessions for young people regarding the testing programme. The first event will take place at 13:30 for S1-S3 pupils and there will be a further session with S4-S6 pupils at 16:30. The events will be held on e-Sgoil. One of the benefits of using the E-sgoil platform is that secondary pupils in any school across Scotland can tune in live if they wish and are able to do so, but if this is not possible then the video can also be accessed afterwards and become a permanent resource for young people and schools. We will share links to the recorded sessions after the event; however, you may wish to make schools in your areas aware that the sessions will be running live. Whilst we don’t yet have a direct link to these events, information should be available here http://www.e-sgoil.com/lockdown-live/ on Monday.

Yours in partnership
Gordon Young
Head teacher, Sgoil Lionacleit

Message from Mr Young

Wednesday 17th March 2021

Good morning,
SCHOLAR (an online learning and revision aid) is delighted to announce the release of our latest support video for learners. This new resource, “Studying for SQA Qualifications Using SCHOLAR”, has been created to show learners how to use SCHOLAR in their studies as they work towards a National 5, Higher or Advanced Higher qualification. The video is suitable for learners with no prior experience of SCHOLAR, but may also be of benefit to students with summative assessments or exams approaching who may wish to use the interactive course materials and automatically marked, end of topic and end of unit assessments for consolidation and revision. The YouTube link for the video is: http://bit.ly/StudyWithSCHOLAR

Yours in partnership
Gordon Young
Head teacher, Sgoil Lionacleit

Message from Mr Young

Wednesday 17th March 2021

Good morning,
A free, online Easter Study School is being offered to Senior Phase learners as part of the National e-Learning Offer. These subject webinars are designed to complement the support schools have already put in place and will focus on supporting pupils with preparation ahead of remaining assessments which are to be used as evidence of learning. https://bit.ly/3qUSV4q

Yours in partnership
Gordon Young
Head teacher, Sgoil Lionacleit


School Bagde

12th March 2021

Good afternoon,
as part of the ongoing support for senior phase options form this year, we would like to provide you and your young person with a link to a video by Skills Development Scotland (careers) that gives a presentation and answers some frequently asked questions: SDS (Careers) chossing school subject advice .

We are also pleased to offer you and your young person the opportunity of an appointment to discuss making subject choices with a Careers Adviser on the 17th of March between 3:30 and 7pm. You will have the opportunity to ask any questions or discuss any concerns you might have. If you would like to meet with a Careers Adviser, please email Gemma.Smith@sds.co.uk to arrange an appointment.

For young people who are interested in Foundation Apprenticeships you can email any questions to: apprenticeships@cne-siar.gov.uk Or you can call Dolina Smith (training manager) 07876237804 between 6pm and 8pm on the 17th of March. We will also provide links next week to case study videos for Foundation apprenticeships.

Yours in partnership

Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

12th March 2021

Good morning,
Please see below the specific guidance for young people attending school next week:

S1 Pupils
Will attend school on Monday 15th and Monday 22nd of March - S1 pupils should report to the games hall upon arrival at school. One of the Deputy Head Teachers will talk through the day with young people before sending them to their first class to follow their usual timetable for a Monday.

S2 Pupils
Will attend school on Monday 15th and Monday 22nd of March – S2 pupils should sit in the canteen at one of the marked stations upon arrival at school. One of the Deputy Head Teachers will talk through the day with young people before sending them to their first class to follow their usual timetable for a Monday.

S3 Pupils
Will attend school on Tuesday 16th and Tuesday 23rd of March – S3 pupils should report to the games hall upon arrival at school. One of the Deputy Head Teachers will talk through the day with young people before sending them to their first class to follow their usual timetable for a Tuesday.

S4/5 and 6 Pupils
Will attend school on Wednesday/Thursday and Friday 17th/18th/19th/24th/25th/26th of March. S4 pupils should report to the games hall upon arrival at school, S5 pupils should sit in the canteen and S6 pupils should report to the theatre. One of the Deputy Head Teachers will talk through the day with young people before sending them to their first class to follow their usual timetable for a Wednesday/Thursday/Friday.

HUB/Key Worker pupils
On the days where your young person’s year group is in school they will attend with them. Otherwise young people should report to Rm 22 where the HUB is based.

When not in school young people should follow their online timetable as directed by teachers.

The following protocols will also apply:

  1. Young people should bring their laptop (fully charged) and their laptop charger with them every day.
  2. On school transport young people should wear masks (unless exempt) and should maintain 1m social distancing as directed by the transport operator.
  3. Pupils should use the hand sanitiser stations on the way into school.
  4. Parents/guardians who are dropping pupils off at school should enter the main gate and proceed to the right and stop at the cones beside the buses, the pupils in the car at the front of the queue will disembark when asked to. In the interest of traffic management and safety this is the only place pupils should be dropped off by car.
  5. Young people should wear masks at all times within the building (unless exempt).
  6. Young people should maintain a 2m distance between them and other young people – there are markings in every corridor to help with this. In class, staff will remind young people of the need to maintain 2m distancing.
  7. Uniform should be worn where possible - if you would like some support with this then please contact the school office on 01870 603690.The link to buy uniform online is: schoolwearmadeeasy.com
  8. PE will be outdoors (in line with guidance from the Scottish government), where weather does not allow this PE will be classroom based.
  9. At break-time and lunchtime pupils should be either outside (weather permitting) or in the canteen/games hall.
  10. Movement between classes will be via a 1-way system that will be clearly signposted for all pupils.
  11. Upon entering a class young people will be asked to sanitise hands and use a disinfectant wipe on the area they will be working.
  12. Different departments will deal with jotters and materials in the way that best suits the subject - this will be communicated to pupils in class.
  13. Lockers will not be in use for the two weeks before the Easter holidays.
  14. As a minimum we would expect that young people bring a pen/pencil and a calculator to school with them (these materials should not be shared). If there are any issues please get in touch and we will support in any way we can.
  15. Please be aware that teachers may be transitioning between rooms or from online to ‘in-person’ learning and therefore online classes may take a few minutes to start.
If you have any questions, then you should contact your young person’s guidance teacher in the first instance.

Yours in partnership

Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

10th March 2021

Good afternoon,
I would like to say a few words about assessment and evidence gathering as I am sure it is something that young people are anxious about as they return to school.

For Senior Phase pupils there will be no assessment before the Easter holidays, staff will concentrate on teaching/learning and practising answering assessment questions. The final timetable for assessment and moderation will be published as soon as possible (hopefully before the Easter holidays). The reason for the delay is because the process needs to be agreed with other secondary schools to ensure that we can moderate/cross mark evidence at a local authority level. It also allows subject networks (at local authority level) to look at adaptations to the SQA produced instrument of assessment.

What I can say with clarity is that there will be no formal exam diet with everyone in the hall.

Staff will use the SQA produced 'instrument of assessment' and adapt it as required for the needs of our young people. This instrument of assessment will be used during class time and split over several periods. This way we meet the standard of evidence required by the SQA whilst giving young people the best chance to produce quality evidence. As I have said above the exact timetable of this will be produced as soon as possible.

In addition to this we will be issuing senior phase pupils with an online learning report next week, in this report we revisit the November working grade and identify how 'secure' this grade is after the online learning period - more information on this will accompany the online learning report.

Yours in partnership

Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

10th March 2021

Good afternoon,
Further to my presentation on Monday, please see below a link for a Skills Development Scotland (careers advisor) video about options forms: https://youtu.be/8KP-aX8x9f8.

Please also see the link to our subject choices booklet which provides more information about subjects available in Sgoil Lionacleit: http://www.sgoillionacleit.org.uk/docs/options/sl-option-booklet-2020.pdf. More information to follow about a live event by Skills Development Scotland next week,

Yours in partnership

Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

Senior Options Message from the Head Teacher
A message from the Head Teacher regarding this year's Senior Options Form which will be issued later this week.

School Bagde

9th March 2021

Good afternoon,
As you are all aware we were asked by the First Minister to create a plan that allows young people access school 'in person' again from 15th March. As you can imagine (given the constraints) this is a complex task and planning for it will carry on until Friday. The finer detail of how it will work will be communicated on Friday via group call/website and social media.

However, to ease anxiety for young people and to allow parents/guardians to plan childcare etc. I felt it important to let young people/parents and guardians know as soon as possible what the pattern for attendance will be for the last two weeks of term. This is detailed below:

W/B 15th March
Monday - All of S1 and S2
Tuesday - All of S3
Wednesday - All of S4, S5 and S6
Thursday - All of S4, S5 and S6
Friday - All of S4, S5 and S6

W/B 22nd March
As above.

Yours in partnership

Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

18th February 2021

Good afternoon,
As I am sure you are aware, the Scottish Government has asked us to prepare Sgoil Lionacleit for the return of senior pupils who require to complete practical work for course assessment purposes. To make this as easy to read as possible, the timetable for the senior phase practical classes will be published separately on 19.2.21.

The guidelines for senior phase return (and our response) are listed below:

  1. Social distancing should be followed on buses that are not service buses - as our school buses are all service buses this does not apply.

  2. Young people should always wear masks inside the school building, including during lessons - this is a change to previous practice because we are now in tier 4.

  3. Senior pupils should always maintain 2m social distancing - the theatre and canteen area will be set up to deliver 2m social distancing for senior pupils who access it. Senior pupils will also be reminded of the importance of 2m social distancing during break/lunchtime.

  4. Senior pupils should use a separate entrance and exit from the key workers and vulnerable pupils accessing the HUB - senior pupils should use the theatre door to enter and exit the building, staff will be directing young people as required.

  5. Senior pupils should be kept separate from young people accessing the HUB - senior pupils who are in for practical classes will use a separate entrance, workspace and canteen area as directed by staff. They will also access a separate outside space at break time and lunchtime as required.

  6. Senior pupils should not have their learning disrupted by accessing practical subjects - when not in practical subjects' seniors will use the theatre as a workspace to continue to access online learning for the rest of their classes.

  7. Schools should prepare timetables to allow a full day in school for senior pupils that does not disrupt learning - see above, the exception to this would be if a parent/guardian is willing to come and pick up a young person who has a study period in an afternoon etc.

  8. Schools should make asymptomatic testing kits available to staff and senior pupils who are attending school - on the first day of attendance your young person will be given a pack containing all the relevant information and a consent form. When the consent form is returned, we will issue test kits and supporting paperwork.
As stated above, the timetable for senior practical classes will be published tomorrow via group call, the school website, and the school Facebook page.

Yours in partnership

Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

3rd February 2021

Good afternoon,
following the First Minister's announcement yesterday I am writing to you to reassure you that we are working on a plan that delivers what she has asked schools to do. This plan will be communicated in due course (and assuming nothing changes between now and the 22nd February). For clarity, the instructions for secondary schools are that we should bring in no more than 8% of our seniors (S4-6), to work on practical subjects. More to follow as we have it,

Yours in partnership

Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

22nd January 2021

Good morning,
The First Minister announced on Monday that there will be an extension of online learning until at least mid-February. As promised, we are reviewing how online learning is going and I am pleased to say that the feedback has been very positive. S1,2 and 3 are coping well with the demands of online learning and our offer gives a breadth of experience without overloading young people.

However as expected there will need to be minor changes to the senior phase delivery (S4,5 and 6). As senior pupils follow their timetable (in the same way they would if they were in school) they are spending a lot of time every day in front of a screen in an intense learning experience. This is often followed with work in the evening/weekend on top of the classwork/delivery. This is unsustainable in the longer term (particularly for S4 who have 6 full columns) without negatively impacting young people. After many discussions with staff and the leadership team at Sgoil Lionacleit, we will trial the following approach for the next period of online learning (starting Monday 25th January) - S4,5 and 6 will not have any work set by teachers for evenings and weekends, all work set can be completed during class time.

The national advice is that teachers and young people should continue to focus on teaching and learning during this period of online learning.We are awaiting further guidance from SQA about how evidence for assessment will be gathered this year and will feed back further once this has been communicated.

Yours in partnership

Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

8th January 2021

Good afternoon,
Here is our plan for the switch to online learning:
We will review the impact of this and adjust as required.
I am very pleased to say that we will be offering a timetable of online learning that is comprehensive and mirrors the usual timetable for young people wherever possible. Here are the key points to be aware of:

  1. All year groups will follow their normal timetable, with some changes – see below for individual year group changes.
  2. If your young person does not know their timetable then please get in touch with the school office and we will email an electronic copy.
  3. We will send out a blank copy of a timetable next week to help young people with their planning.
  4. All content/lessons will be delivered via the Microsoft Teams platform.
  5. Lessons will not necessarily be spent in front of the computer (other than the ‘live teaching’ part of it). Also - modifications to the timetable will provide extra breaks.
  6. Teachers will deliver lessons ‘live’ and it is very important that young people are signed in and ready to take part in lessons as per their timetable, young people should be dressed and ready for learning, be polite and accept that the technology sometimes causes issues. Online learning is still school time and young people should behave as though they are in class.
  7. We will use Teams to track pupil attendance automatically so no other ‘sign-in’ will be required.
  8. PSE classes remain on the timetable and will be used to deliver the ‘Decider Skills’, this is a mental health and wellbeing course which provides tools and strategies for positive mental health. We would encourage parents/guardians to have a look at the book we will send out to young people next week.
    If you need help with this you should contact your young person’s guidance teacher:
    Mrs MacSween – jamacsween1e@gnes.net
    Mrs Campbell – fcampbell3a@gnes.net


First/Second Years:
Remove 1 period from each subject that has more than 1 period, for each class i.e. Maths will go from 4 periods to 3, Art with 1 period would stay on 1 period. Your teacher will make clear to you which period to remove.

The following subjects will provide work in teams but limited live delivery – Technical.

The following subjects will provide work in teams but no live delivery – PE.

The following subjects should be removed from the timetable – RE/RME, Skills for life learning and work, numeracy, ICT.


Third years:
Follow usual timetable with ‘live’ teaching but no homework/classwork will be set outside of the TT periods.

The following subjects will provide project work/tasks in teams but no live delivery – Scottish Studies, HEc, CORE PE.

The following subjects should be removed from the timetable – RE/RME, Crofting elective, Media elective, Gaelic elective, ICT.


Senior Phase – S4,5 & 6
The assessment calendar that was issued will now need to be updated. The assessment period planned for Jan/Feb will now not take place, updates to follow in due course.

Senior pupils should follow the usual timetable with ‘live’ teaching as required per the demands of the course, but teacher will address pupils at the start and end of every lesson.

Please note that Technical subjects will provide work in Teams but with limited live delivery, this is due to a reduction in the timetable as they are practical classes. Technical staff will however be available to answer and support pupils during school hours via email.

The following subjects should be removed from the timetable – RE/RME, Boatbuilding, CORE PE.


RE/RME – we will ask school Pastoral team to record weekly assemblies which will be sent out to pupils.

Yours in Partnership
Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

31st August 2020

Good afternoon,

Please see below a link to a form that will need to be completed before we can issue a laptop to your young person in S4-6. Once the form has been completed we will issue a laptop via school ICT support. The form can be completed via the link in this group-call, Website, Facebook page:



[This contract sets out the terms for the local authority(LA) lending computer hardware to pupils for educational purposes.]

Yours in partnership
Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

27th August 2020

Good morning,

The Scottish Government has issued further advice re face coverings in school, this advice has been collated by the Education and Children's Services department and is as follows:

From Monday 31st August, it will become a requirement for pupils in secondary schools in Scotland to wear face coverings. The introduction of this additional safety measure sits as part of a suite of controls and measures in place to keep pupils and staff as safe as possible in schools and we ask that parents and pupils continue to support these in the interests of all that attend school. The information below sets out how face covering requirements will be implemented in Western Isles secondary schools.

  • Face coverings must be worn in all communal areas, including corridors, social areas, toilets and other non-classroom areas identified by the school where pupils may congregate.
  • Face coverings are to be worn when moving between classes and at break times.
  • Coverings do not need to be worn in classrooms and should be safely stored away in a bag when not being worn. They should not be left lying on surfaces or desks.
  • As was already the case in the Western Isles, face coverings must also now be worn on all school transport.
  • The responsibility for having a face covering rests on the individual but schools will have a supply of face coverings available if a pupil forgets to bring one, it is lost or becomes damaged.
  • Exemptions will be permitted, particularly on medical grounds, and any intention to not wear a face covering must be discussed with school management and an exemption agreement sought.
  • Reusable face coverings are encouraged and they should be washed regularly at a temperature of at least 60˚c.
  • Singe use face coverings should be disposed of appropriately in bins provided in schools.
  • There is no specification about the nature or type of covering to be used. The Scottish Government has provided this video to demonstrate how to make a simple face covering.
  • Face coverings must not be shared with others.
  • Refusal to wear face coverings without valid exemption will be treated in line with the schools existing discipline policy.

Yours in partnership
Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

11th August 2020

Dear parent/guardian,

Further to the group call in June (and central group calls from CNES) can I remind you that the plan this week is for S1, 4/5/6 only to come into school tomorrow 12.8.20. Thursday 13.8.20 will see all year groups return. I would also take this opportunity to point out that with the risk assessment in place that any behaviour which affects infection control will be treated very seriously.

Yours in partnership
Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit

School Bagde

10th August 2020

Good afternoon,

as we prepare for return to school this week there are some things we would like to share with pupils/parents and guardians as to how the school day will work:

  1. Pupils should use the hand sanitiser stations at the front of the school on the way into school. New S1 pupils should then report to the Theatre (this will be signposted). Other pupils should go to their first period class when the bell goes.

  2. Parents/guardians who are dropping pupils off at school should enter the main gate and proceed to the right and stop at the cones beside the buses, the pupils in the car at the front of the queue will disembark when asked to. In the interest of traffic management and safety this is the only place pupils should be dropped off by car.

  3. At the start of period 1 on Wednesday and Thursday there will be reminders of the actions on this list.

  4. From the theatre S1 pupils will have buddies assigned to show them around for the first few days at Sgoil Lionacleit, these buddies will take them to and collect them from class.

  5. Uniform should be worn where possible - if this is not possible this week/next then please remedy the situation as soon as possible, if you would like some support with this then please contact the school office on 01870 603690. The link to buy uniform online is: schoolwearmadeeasy.com.

  6. PE will be outdoors (in line with guidance from the Scottish government), where weather does not allow this PE will be classroom based.

  7. At break-time S1-3 pupils should only be downstairs or outside. S4/5/6 pupils should head to their common rooms/area.

  8. On Wednesday we will give S1 an extended lunchtime to come down to the canteen and be talked through the systems in place.

  9. Movement between classes will be via a 1-way system that will be clearly signposted for all pupils.

  10. Upon entering a class young people will be asked to sanitise hands and use a disinfectant wipe on the area they will be working.

  11. Different departments will deal with jotters and materials in the way that best suits the subject - this will be communicated to pupils in class.

  12. Lockers will not be in use for the duration of these changes - pupils should bring whatever materials they need for that day.

  13. As a bare minimum we would expect that young people bring a pen/pencil and a calculator to school with them (these materials should not be shared). If there are any issues please get in touch and we will support in any way we can.

  14. Staff will maintain a 2m distance between each other and from young people, where this is not possible staff will wear a face covering. Young people may wear face coverings at their own discretion (except on buses where it will be mandatory).

As the advice continues and evolves I may be back in touch with further updates.

I look forward to seeing you all on Wednesday or Thursday,

In partnership
Gordon Young
Head Teacher
Sgoil Lionacleit