Mackie Matters - It’s been one busy week

Well it has been an exceptionally busy week at Mackie Academy – no change in some respects.

I had the delight of attending a night out with some of our pupils and staff in Dundee to see a production of “Sunset Song” at the Rep. It was fantastic and a really worthwhile experience.

However, what it made it even more worthwhile were the comments of the public as we left to say how impressed they were by the behaviour of our pupils.

These experiences are just as important to our pupils as their academic attainment and, in some respects, they gain as much from these.

On the same evening our PTA held a very successful shopping evening at Mackie Academy.

With over 25 stall holders, including our very own Mackie Academy calendar stall, a great evening was had by all. A fantastic sum of money was made which all goes towards the school.

A special thanks to Fiona Cameron, Lesley Cumming and Danielle Campbell for their organisation of the evening as well as all other members of the PTA and school community who supported this event.

We look forward to the next event, “Deal or No Deal” in February 2015.

On Monday, our S5 pupils attended the “Safe Drive Stay Alive” event in Aberdeen. An important part of our PSE calendar for S5 it is a hard hitting event that makes our prospective drivers think about their actions once they are behind the wheel of a car.

In addition to this our younger pupils, S1-3, participated in a “Respect for All” training day along with pupils from Portlethen and Mearns Academy.

The aim of the day is to prepare these pupils to lead developments within their school that support the objectives of the Health and Well Being theme of the Broad General Education.

A great day was experienced by all and we look forward to seeing how this develops within school. A big thank you to Ms O’Reilly for her organisation of this.

Pupil councils have been busy with their meetings this week with key issues around Healthy Eating, elements of a good lesson and much more. We are working hard to get our pupil voice working more effectively at Mackie Academy as we realise the importance of this.

It is important that, as a school, we represent the viewpoints of all groups of pupils. Therefore, it is great to see the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) group come into being at Mackie Academy. Their first meeting took place last week and, as a Rights Respecting School, it is important that all voices are heard.

Sporting activities continue to proliferate and we are going to start work towards the Sports Award offered by the Scottish Government.

Our basketball team won both fixtures against Cults Academy this week which is a fantastic achievement for both the U15 and Seniors team. Our “Fit for Girls” programme is under way on Wednesday afternoons with the aim of engaging more of our young ladies in exercise that has a positive impact on their lives. And finally a number of pupils enjoyed Scotland’s victory over Argentina at the weekend in the rugby.

For some, it was a long time since they had seen a winning Scottish team.

The interhouse competition for Halloween got intense last week when I was asked to judge the noticeboards. It was the lights that won it for Cowie with a close call between Fetteresso and Swanley for second and third place.

In addition to this house points can be won for out of school achievements and both Lauren Valentine and Jordan Kirk have completed their 2 star Dynamic Youth Award.

They have achieved this through their involvement in the local Youth Forum and we are very proud of their achievements.

Also, our Mock Trial team headed off to the Aberdeenshire competition at the weekend with great hopes in advance of their participation in the UK Bar Mock Trial at the end of this month.

In competition against Ellon, Banff, Fraserburgh, Aboyne, Inverurie, Kemnay and the Gordons School our A and B teams did really well. The ‘A’ Team won all three rounds that they participated in whilst the ‘B’ Team, all newcomers to the world of the mock trial won in Round One but narrowly lost elsewhere.

Ms Swanson was very proud of their achievements as was our local MP who was in school today to meet and be pictured with our pupils. We wish them all the best in their competition at the end of the month.

Finally, I know I have mentioned this before but I would be very grateful if anyone using the car parks at Mackie Academy, at any time of the day, can ensure that they maintain a safe driving environment.

We have had a number of concerns expressed to us in the last few weeks and would ask that all drivers think about their actions while in such a confined space.