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Newsletter

February 2002


Headteachers Remarks

Safety is of paramount importance for us and that is the main reason why at the moment we are not able to use the playground for evening meetings (because we cannot separate pedestrians from vehicles). We do have a solution to this, but it is currently being examined for the planning implications for our playground.

Parents can, and must, also help us with safety. We are increasingly concerned about the number of parents who drop children at the main entrance in Lauderdale Street and who park at the same point when collecting their child in the afternoon. The number of cars dropping children off and waiting for them now presents a serious hazard for children entering school, for staff trying to enter the car park, and for children leaving at the end of each day. PLEASE help increase safety for all children by dropping your child in a street near the school and NOT at the school gate. Please also arrange to meet them at the end of the day a little away from the school. This kind of consideration may save a serious accident - please work with the school to reduce the risk of an accident.


Colin Finlayson

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Project Trust


It was good to hear from Project Trust that some of our former students had made major contributions in their voluntary ‘gap’ year placement helping local communities. Justine Leach was in Japan, Sara Munsterhjem in the Dominican Republic, and Sarah Capewell in Sri Lanka. Project trust staff say they carried out their community service brilliantly. Initial reports of Nicola Hainey currently in the Dominican Republic and Stephen Wright in Sri Lanka are that they are also doing really well

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HMI Inspection

Inspectors came to visit during the week beginning 14th January and visited many classes in English, Mathematics, Chemistry, Business Studies, Drama & Media and Science in 1st and 2nd year. During the week starting 4th February they come back! This time they inspect the management of the school, our Guidance and Learning Support system and visit other classes in subjects not visited on the first round! A report will be produced by the Inspectors which will be published later this term - some fascinating reading to come

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Prelim Exams 26th Feb. - March 6th.

As indicated in the school calendar the Higher Prelims begin on Tuesday, February 26th. They will go on through up to and including Wednesday March 6th.
As with Previous years students involved in these exams will be given exam preparation leave during that time. Rooms are always available for study purposes in the school over that period.

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Some Reminders

The course choice evening for parents of S4 and S5 students will take place on Wednesday 13 March. S4 at 7.00 p.m. and S5 at 8.00 p.m. Also please note S4 Reports are issued on Friday 1 February.

Students return after the February break on Tuesday 26 at 8.30 a.m. Monday 25 is an in-service day.

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Reading, Reading, Reading....

A Inglis, our SLRC Coordinator writes… There are several ways that the School Library Resource Centre can support your children's reading. My role is to try to extend and improve, if necessary, the range of your child's reading for pleasure.
For that reason there are available in the SLRC copies of reading lists for S1-3, pupils, Int2, Higher and Advanced Higher in English. Another very useful source of ideas for new reading is in Teen Titles. This very eye-catching magazine is produced by Edinburgh's School Library Service and includes reviews of books by children from most Edinburgh schools (this month there are several Gillespie's contributions). "Teen Titles" is on display in the SLRC and is also available on subscription from the Publications Unit of the Council.
Lastly I run the Cover 2 Cover Book Club in the SLRC which provides monthly selections of prime titles at reduced rates. Your child can pick up the monthly flier listing all the offers and bring it home to discuss with you. Should you want to purchase books, just fill in the order form, send with cash or cheque and the books are supplied at discount prices. The SLRC benefits with commission vouchers to allow me to buy new titles also.

As it says on the walls of the newly re-furbished corridor leading to the SLRC "Reading is to the mind what exercise is to the body"
P.S. 'SLRC' is the new name for the School Library' and stands for 'School Library Resource Centre'

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Modern Studies Benmore Study Week-end

From March 8-10 some 20 Higher Modern Studies students will enjoy a weekend of work and play. The work is in the form of a complex role-play which uses higher materials and information and is of great benefit in their preparations for Paper 2 of the Higher. The play is based outdoors and challenges the students' teamwork and leadership skills. This course has run over many years and if past experience is anything to go by then a weekend of challenge, companionship and pleasure will be thoroughly enjoyed by all.

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Parent Network Meeting

The next meeting of the Network is on Wednesday 6 February at 7.30 p.m. in the staff room. The school is currently looking at changes in the course choice offered to those going into 3rd year and those going into 5th and 6th years. There are possibly going to be quite a few changes to these course choice sheets. Please join us to hear about the proposals and to give us your views. The meeting is always an informal one starting with coffee and all parents are welcome to join us.

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Rock Night , Thursday 4th April

This is a new date for the Rock Night. We already have 8 bands preparing to perform. Any other budding rock stars should contact Mr Leslie. The event takes place in the school Hall and starts at 7.00.p.m , tickets priced £2 will be available at the door.

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Dates for your Diary


6 February 7.30 p.m Parents’ Network

18 – 25 February February holiday for students

27 February 7.00 p.m. School Board

7.30 p.m. P.T.A.

28 February Instrumental Instruction Parents’

9 March Diversecity IV

13 March S4/5 Course Choice
Information Evening

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Food Glorious Food



A parent wrote to us recently complaining about the high cost of food particularly mentioning high calorie fatty biscuits. The nature and cost of the food in our Dining Room is not influenced by the school, since the company providing the service has a contract with the city of Edinburgh Council. But, the balance of food offered is designed to be a healthy balance and the prices are considerably lower for sandwiches and good filled baguettes than can be found in local shops. For information here is a sample of what is offered; -
Grapes 40p, Fresh Fruit Salad 40p, Melon 40p

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Diverscity Festival



At James Gillespie’s High School
Saturday 9 March at 7.30 p.m.
Including:
Chinese Dance, Breakdancing, Clarsach Music with Dance, Salsa Dance, A Newly Composed Piece by the James Gillespie’s Jazz Band, Music from Romania, Indian Bangra Dance, a Performance of Tabia Drums and World Disco.
Tickets on sale now priced £5 for adults and £2.50 for children (including food) and yes there will be a bar!

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