Catching Fire

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You know me by now; as Mr. Garbett likes to put it, I am “the glass half-full type”! I have just returned from two weeks in London recruiting teachers for next academic year (watch this space for further news in this regard!) and, I suppose like many of the other Heads and Principals, spent much of my time persuading candidates about what a great school we are. And you know I have spoken recently of this sense I have of a school “catching fire”. However, the cynics might legitimately challenge me by saying, “That’s all very well…..but how do you know?”
Some of the answers are obvious, or even predictable, but others are more anecdotal, others still are inferences, even intuitions, but taken together they are, I believe, overwhelming.
I think our school is “catching fire” because:

  • IGCSE results continue to rise year on year
  • We continue to send all of our IB Diploma students to Universities of their choice
  • The numbers of students opting to stay with us for our IB programme are rising sharply
  • The numbers of Ambrosoli children choosing to join our secondary school in Year 7 continue to be strong despite ever-increasing competition
  • The consensus amongst parents in the recent Parent Survey is that we are the best international school in Uganda, up from 2nd place last year
  • Our sports teams are winning more ISSAK competitions
  • Good teachers and leaders, who could undoubtedly earn more money elsewhere, are choosing to stay with us
  • Good teachers and leaders are choosing to join us
  • There is an increasing confidence in our primary school that we are on top of the move to the new curriculum and have an effective assessment framework to accompany it
  • Teachers are talking about and sharing good practice
  • Our students are increasingly literate and reflective about their learning
  • Participation and attendance at the secondary swimming gala was up significantly
  • Our final two Head of Primary candidates loved our school
  • I am receiving fewer parental complaints
  • More parents are telling me/us how pleased they are with the school
  • Our children are proud of their school and tell us it is improving
  • Students with special learning needs feel supported and are flourishing
  • “Super learning days” are motivating and stretching academically gifted students

There is more but much of it is quite difficult to articulate. I feel a growing sense of community around school and that our identity as a school community is coming into sharper focus. I hope you feel the same. We are not, as I have said many times before, the finished article by any means, but (and here perhaps reference my earlier remarks regarding Mr. Garbett’s views on my inherent optimism!) I see that as a positive because it means there is so much more that we can all achieve together! Have a great week!

date authored: 

Friday 27th January 2017 Africa/Kampala

author: 

School Director - Steve Lang