Achievement Award Success

We are so proud of our students and staff represented at the annual City of Edinburgh Council Achievement Awards ceremony which took place on Thursday 11 September in the Assembly Rooms in George Street, hosted by Grant Stott. The awards provide an opportunity to recognise and celebrate the outstanding work of individuals, teams and establishments. The official photographs have now been delivered for you to see!

Winner! Promoting Mental and Emotional Wellbeing through the Growing Confidence Programme
We were joint winners along with Wester Hailes Education Centre in the Getting it Right for Every Child category for our work on promoting emotional and mental wellbeing through our Growing Confidence programme of training for staff, students and parents. This is a prestigious award to win and we are very proud of all those who have taken part in the training and this has been used to further support our students.

Winners – Getting it right for every child category

Highly Commended! Wilfred Owen, World War 1 Poet, Historic Scotland Commemorative Plaque
Wilfred Owen Plaque
Our School Library Resource Centre Coordinator Mrs Carolyn Kerr received a highly commended award in the improving literacy outcomes category for her collaborative work with the Wilfred Owen Association, Historic Scotland, The Scottish Poetry library and other external agencies which resulted in a successful application to Historic Scotland for a  plaque commemorating the World War I poet Wilfred Owen’s time spent teaching at Tynecastle High School in September 1917. Mrs Kerr was nominated by her School Library Service colleagues.

Highly Commended – Improving Literacy Outcomes

Nominated! Meaningful May
Our brand new Meaningful May programme – an inclusive programme for non-exam leave S4 students designed to identify and acquire skills for learning, life, and work – was nominated for an award this year. Students and staff were delighted to have their work showcased on the evening – there were huge cheers all round for each nomination!

You can read more about these awards, and all of the other award winners and nominees in the official Achievements Award 2014 Brochure – tap here to view the brochure

Battlefields Trip – September 2014

WreathOn the 10th September 2014, 30 students and four staff set off on the Tynecastle High school Centenary WW1 Battlefields Trip. Everyone was in agreement that it was a very special experience, particularly in the centenary year marking the outbreak of this terrible and momentous conflict. Amy Meechan one of the S5 students who took part, described her experiences:

“The battlefields trip to Belgium was very moving and interesting. We visited many cemeteries where the bodies of the soldiers that lost their lives in World War 1 are buried. We visited places that 100 years ago would have been where the battles took place e.g Newfoundland park which is owned by Canada because many Canadian soldiers were stationed there. This is where the battle of the Somme took place. We saw the Thiepval Memorial which is a memorial for all the missing of the battle of the Somme, there are 72,195 names on this memorial. We went bowling on the Friday night and that was a lot of fun. I learnt a lot about WW1 that I didn’t know before and it was an honour to pay respect to those who lost their lives fighting for their country. I would encourage anyone who gets the opportunity to go on a trip like this to take it because it is incredibly interesting.”
Battlefields 2014 a
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Four students were specially selected to be THS’s representatives and take part in the Last Post ceremony at the Menin Gate. This ceremony has taken place every day at 8 o’clock since 1928 except when Belgium was occupied during WW2. The students selected were two S5s: James Gibson, Kristen Nayar; and two s4s: Matthew McLaughlin and Amber Lee. They were chosen as staff felt they had truly committed to the spirit of the trip and appeared to have gained the most from visiting the sites.

Some of the students who came on the trip have volunteered to pass on what they saw and experienced to the rest of the student body in a special assembly. We have also been asked to take part in a WW1 centenary memorial service taking place at the Gorgie Memorial Hall on the 11th of November. We hope to offer a future opportunity to take part in the this rewarding and valuable experience in 2016, which will also coincide with the 100 year anniversary of the Battle of the Somme.

Family history revealed on the Battlefields Trip

Milkolay Durczak in S5 along with his father did some research into his family’s involvement into WW1 prior to the trip. Milkolay managed to find out where his Great Grandfather’s remains were buried – Langemark German Cemetery. His Great Grandfather Kazimierz Saskowski  fought on behalf of the Prussian army, he was a telegraphist and lost his life on 5th November 1918, 6 days before the end of the war. Milkolay found his name on the memorial in the Langemark Cemetary and was able to pay his respects on behalf of his family.

Family History at the Battlefields 2
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World Challenge to Bolivia – June 2014

In June 2014, with only the rucksacks on our back, 10 students and 2 members of staff headed off to Bolivia for the trip of a lifetime. We spend a month volunteering with the charity Habitats for Humanity, trekking in the jungle and the Apolobamba South mountains and travelling the length and breadth of the country. During the month we saw many spectacular sites, including the Uyuni Salt Flats, the silver mountain in the city of Potosi, Lake Titicaca and the vibrant and lively capital of La Paz. It was an adventure none of us will ever forget.

Check out our Bolivia 2014 video below to experience for yourself the sights and activities we took part in.