School news 22nd January 2016

Exam action planning – Mr Hulme has been working with S3 on learning and revision and has issued the class with notes on this to help in their studies. Find out more here and access resources to assist your child with study.

Homework Policy – The revised homework policy is available on the school website. This includes details of expectations and provides support and advice for parents, based on current educational research, to help their children.  Click here to access the policy and other support documents.

Futurechef Success – S3 pupil Emily Morrison is progressing through the finals of FutureChef 2016.  Read about it here and see some photos.

Futurechef 2016

Senior Art Trip – From the 14th-16th December a group of Higher and National 5 pupils were taken to Glasgow to see an Advanced Higher Exhibition organised by the SQA at Scotland Street School.  In addition, pupils saw the Turner Prize Exhibition at Tramway and visited Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum and Glasgow School of Art.  In our free time we were given the chance to see the Christmas lights and enjoy the fair at George Square.  We also visited the Christmas market at St Enoch Square.

The trip was a fantastic experience for us all as the excellent Advanced Higher work on display gave us inspiration for our own work.  It also gave us a chance to look at contemporary art that was different from anything we had seen before – Charlotte Kelman S6

Art Trip Glasgow 2015Click on the photo to see more images

Build a Bridge Competition CITB – On Thursday 14th January our S2 class had a visit from Billy Skinner of CITB Alba Scotland.  He came to do a class competition where we had to build bridges.  CITB is an organisation, which takes on young apprentices and encourages STEM activities.

We were put into houses groups of four (Maree, Kerry and Tollaidh).  Mr Skinner became our client and he gave us his terms and conditions on how he wanted the bridge built (e.g. max width was 15cm, max length 110cm).  We had a type of ‘shop’ set up where we would ask for supplies such as wood rods and they would cost around £250.  Our running cost was totalled every time we bought more materials.  We had from 9am to 2pm to plan, design and build the bridge.  But just like real clients Mr Skinner restricted our use of certain materials.  During the building we all had great fun but had to keep in mind it was a competition.  At 2pm everyone’s bridge had 10kg hung off it and then weights added until it collapsed. The strongest bridge held 45kg!  You can only imagine the tension as each kilogram was put on.  In the end there were different awards – best team skills, strongest and most cost effective bridge, mention of those who might be taken on as an apprentice and everyone got a certificate.  The Kerry team, Cameron MacLennan, Jasmine Brown, Amy Gudgeon and Dylan Paterson built the strongest most cost effective bridge.  Overall it was a great day and a brilliant change from our normal subjects! – Isabella Wiseman (S2)

Bridge Building Competition 2016You can see lots of photos from this event by clicking on the image above

S3 BiologyI thoroughly enjoyed the trip to Flowerdale – Mr Cunningham clearly knows pretty much everything about the area so listening to what he had to say was pretty interesting. I also thought hearing about how electrofishing works was cool, interesting to spectate too. (Amber Drummond – S3)

You can read more about this field trip and lecture here or by clicking on the photo below

S3 Team Biology

Important DatesCheck out the website here or phone the school if you require information about events.

  • 22nd January – prelims end
  • 19th Feb – S5/6 reports issued
  • 24th Feb – S5/6 Parent Evening
  • 29th Feb – S3 exams begin
  • 1st March – S4 reports issued
  • 3rd March – S4 Parent Evening

Erratum – Jordan Gorman, after a stiff selection process, was invited to join the Under 18 Scottish Basketball Squad and not the badminton squad as incorrectly reported in last issue of the Gairloch and District Times.

School news 8th January 2016

The staff of Gairloch High School wish all our pupils, parents and other members of the community a good New Year and a successful 2016.

Christmas DanceThanks go to everyone who helped make this great occasion possible – the list is long but the pupils appreciate it. Prior to the dance Mrs Hildrey and other staff help teach and reinforce dance moves allowing S1 to S6 pupils to participate comfortably with reels, waltzes and jigs. This year the dance began with an extended performance by the Pipe Band. Our musicians for the evening were delayed by the heavy rainfall but threw themselves into the music making quickly after setting up. Two of the musicians, Katie MacDonald and Christian Gamauf, were involved last year with Charlie Grey and Megan MacDonald joining them on this occasion. We are also very grateful for the continued support of the Westerbus for assisting with transport to and from the dance, along with additional minibus driving, once again by Mr Bowker.


Thanks must go to Mrs Anne Fraser for organising her team of staff volunteers to produce all the food for the interval buffet. Mrs Janet MacLennan made all the table decorations for this and her skills were much appreciated by all. Finally it is worth mentioning that it is the pupils’ participation and enthusiasm that make this such an event and worthy of the effort put in by so many.

Photographs of this event can be viewed on the school website by clicking on the image above.

Krypton Factor, Indoor Rowing & School Quiz – We like to end the term with a variety of activities that are important educationally yet encourage a sense of community and challenge. Thanks to Mr. Hulme and Dr Caley the school quiz provided a challenge that all pupils can take part in. Pupils are mixed into teams and compete for House points. This year Maree won the quiz overall although the top team was from Kerry. All involved, including those on the two staff teams had a lot of fun trying to answer a diverse set of questions.

The pupils also took part in an Inter-House indoor rowing competition organised by Mrs Johnston and her Activity Tourism pupils. Maree also won this competition. In an exciting final race the senior Kerry boys prevented Maree from a clean sweep of the races this year.

Indoor Rowing Competition 2015

Click on the photo above to see more images from the event

On the last day of school before the Christmas Holidays all the pupils took part in a Krypton Factor. Five activities organized to test physical and mental skills. Points are awarded to House teams and tallied. Maree won this year as well! Thanks to Mrs Macrae and her staff team for organising and supporting this fun event.

Maths Competition UK & Highland – Before Christmas each of S1A, S1B, S2A and S2B classes were entered into an online mathematics competition for the Highlands. Read about their considerable success by clicking on the image below.


Basketball Success – We are glad to hear that Jordan Gorman, after a stiff selection process, has been invited to join the Under 18 Scottish Basketball Squad. Well-done Jordan!

Senior Basketball 2014

Here is Jordan playing a school match in 2014

Important Dates – Check out the website or phone the school if you require information about events.

  • 7th Jan – School opens for new year
  • 11th Jan – S4-6 Prelims begin


School news 11th December 2015

Duke of Edinburgh’s Award – In additional to the nine Bronze Badges awarde recently another four pupils have been presented at assembly. Leonie Baptist, Hannah Wood, Gregor Vickerstaff and Sean Quinn have achieved Bronze certificates and badges. Well done to each of them.

Recent Success in Art Competition – Congratulations to Arlene Morrison who won a place in Albyn Housing Society’s Art Competition.  The theme for the drawings was ‘Life in your community’ and Arlene’s drawing was of a fishing boat, depicting traditional industry in Gairloch.  Arlene’s drawing was one of 13 selected from entries across Highland Schools.  A generous prize of £50 was awarded to Arlene and £200 for the school, as well as having her drawing printed up in the Albyn Housing Society’s 2016 calendar. The calendar will be distributed widely across Highland.

Scottish Malawi Partnership Conference – On Monday 23rd November four pupils (Leonie Baptist, Eilidh MacDonald, Caitlin Mitchell and Jack Wright) travelled down to Glasgow for the day with Dr Caley.  They each attended different workshops learning about cultural differences and causes of poverty.  The pupils also visited different stalls, learning about fundraising for trips, technology by solar power, Fairtrade and much more. At the end they watched a debate about ‘Do celebrities have an important role in charities?’  In the end the proposing side won, but the opposing side put up a good argument.

“It was a great experience and helped us learn a lot about the partnerships.  I now have a bag of a lot of leaflets and notepads I collected from the day that will be helpful in understanding more about the Scottish Malawi partnership.”

School Calendar – Our new School Calendar 2016 is now available (£6) to purchase from the school office and other local outlets. It was launched at the opening of the Senior Art Exhibition. We were grateful to Councillor Greene saying a few words and officiating. The well-attended event in the library was catered by pupils being assessed for their National 5 Hospitality exam. You can read about this here. We are also grateful to Caitlin Mitchell, Sara Johnston and Joseph Stewart who provided a lovely musical backdrop to proceedings. Thanks to Mrs Browne and Miss Thistlethwaite for organising this successful evening and also to Mrs S Banister for helping prepare the displays for the exhibition which was open to the public until 4th December.

Senior Art Exhibtion OpeningClick on the image to see more photos of the event

S4 Hospitality EventOn Friday 27th November the S4 Hospitality class at Gairloch High School catered for the opening of Mrs Browne’s Art Exhibition, which was held in the school library.

Senior Art Exhibtion OpeningClick here or on the image to read Jade’s report

 St Andrews Geobus – Miss Smith arranged for the Geobus to visit the school again. This was another great opportunity for the geography pupils to work with University level geologists. S3 looked at fluvial processes while S4-6 pupils studied geological mapping. One of our S6 pupils also got to study thin sections of local rock under a microscope as part of his geology course.

Geobus 2 2015Click here or on the image to see more photos

Geography trip to Cairngorms – Working on data collection for their National 5 in Geography, 7 pupils travelled to Aviemore at the end of November to undertake a whole host of fieldwork. They surveyed traffic moving North and South to better understand the impact at different times of the day, studied 3 locations on a river to measure changes as it flows from upper to lower courses, visited Cairngorm Mountain to hear about the impact of mountain activities on the landscape and even managed to fit in some mapping around Aviemore, which we’ve started to add to the OpenStreetMap website. Pupils worked very hard, late into the evening and benefited from taking their learning outdoors where the weather, noise and wet feet cause a whole host of new challenges!

N5 Geography Cairngorms 2015 Click here or on the image to see more photos

S6 Blood Donors – After a talk to S6 about the benefits of donating blood several S6 signed up to donate during the recent visit by the Scottish Blood Donation Service to Gairloch. Accompanied by


Mrs MacRae and Dr Close, four pupils successfully qualified for donation with others requiring to wait until the next visit.   It was a valuable experience for all the pupils and we hope that many will continue to understand the importance of donating blood for many years to come.

Aithisg Film G le Somhairle Street / FilmG Report by Sorley Street


Click here or on the image to read Sorley’s report and see more photos


Engineering Science STEM visit – Angela Rae, who works for RJ Mcleod, has been working with the S4 Engineering Science class again this year in her role as STEM ambassador to promote engineering as a possible career path. Angela was sent ten questions set by the class related to engineering and incorporated them into her first presentation. Angela then set two tasks where the pupils had to put themselves in the shoes of a civil engineer. The first task involv002.JPGed the pupils producing the road layout for the new Corriemoillie Wind farm and costing the road construction to determine how economic the design is. The second task was a wind farm scenario where Wester Ross Power is planning to construct 10 wind turbines at the top of Achtercairn hill, the pupils have to produce a newsletter which addresses some of the social, environmental and economic concerns the Gairloch residents and local businesses may have. Angela will be taking the class on a site visit to a development early spring. Thank you to Angela for her work with the Engineering Science class and on-going support.

Project Trust Support – Dr Close has given a donation of £115 on behalf of the Banff Shooting Syndicate.  This money is to be split between Joe Smith and Calum Nelson for their Project Trust fund.  The money was raised by selling pheasants prepared by senior pupils in the school and sold to staff. Thanks to Dr Close for providing the birds so that the Rural Skills students could learn how to pluck and prepare. The birds were sold to school staff who will no doubt enjoy them, with their families, during the coming Christmas festivities.

Rural SkillsClick here or on the image to see more photos

Important DatesCheck out the website or phone the school if you require information about events.

  • 14th Dec – S1 monitoring reports issued to parents
  • 14th Dec – S4-6 prelim timetables issued
  • 18th Dec – Christmas Dance
  • 22nd Dec – School closes for Christmas

Remember to visit the school website to see more photographs associated with these events. LIKE us on Facebook and you will be kept up to date with the life of the school.

Have a great Christmas everyone and thank you for your on-going support of the School! Let’s hope next year is as successful.

School news 27th November 2015

Senior Art Exhibition – The Senior School Art Exhibition will run from Monday 30th November till Friday 4th December in the Gairloch High School Library. All members of the public are welcome to drop in and view the best work of our senior pupils including submissions made for national exams.

The new School Calendar 2016 is also now available to purchase from the school office and other local outlets.  Cost £6 towards supporting pupils in their education!

S4-6 Prelims – Pupils in S4-6 have been working with their teachers preparing and planning for their exams which start in the second week of January. Parents should be aware that these pupils should now be focused on these exams. They have been given appropriate materials for their subjects and advised about the steps they need to take to achieve their best grades. The booklet ‘Information and Study Advice for Pupils and Parents’ has been issued to pupils in S4 and ‘new’ pupils in S5/6. It is available on the school website to refer to should any of S5/6 have mislaid theirs. We would ask that parents support pupils in preparation for these important exams.

Interview Skills Day – Senior pupils from S4-S6 had the chance to take part in mock interviews and gain experience and constructive feedback from our guest interviewers. With the help of local members of the community and members of the Dingwall Rotary Club pupils were given advice about their application forms, presentation and interview techniques. Mr Milner organises this event annually and we are very grateful to those who assist us provide this valuable experience for our pupils.

Scottish School Badminton Highland Qualifier – Click on the photo to read more about the success of our pupils in this event.

Badminton Team

Deasbad Nàiseanta na Gàidhlig, SteòrnabhaghAir an treas latha den t-Samhain chaidh dà sgoilear Ghàidhlig bhon cheathramh bliadhna, Max Conway agus Iain Nelson, air turas gu Steòrnabhagh airson an Deasbad Nàiseanta.

Bha iad air a bhith a’ dèanamh deiseil san sgoil ro-làimh airson an dà dheasbad, “Tha stoidhle nas cudromaiche na susbaint an-diugh.” agus “Cha robh ginealach a-riamh ann an am Breatainn cho fortanach ris a’ ghinealach dom buin mise an-diugh.”

 As dèidh coimhead air deasbad no dhà eadar sgoiltean eile, thàinig an cothrom airson Ard- Sgoil Gheàrrloch. Anns a’ chiad deasbad, bha na puingean dòchasach dha sgioba Gheàrrloch: bhuannach iad 18 – 15 an aghaidh sgioba Acadamaidh Hazlehead à Obair Dheathain. Bha na gillean toilichte aig a’ cheann thall oir ‘s e a’ chiad deasbad aca a bh’ ann.

 Ach bha an dàrna deasbad gu bhith nas dorra is sgioba Gheàrrloch a’ deasbad an aghaidh Sgoil MhicNeacail (Steòrnabhagh), an sgioba a bhuannaich a’ cho-fharpais an-uiridh. Rinn Sgoil MhicNeacail a’ chùis air sgioba Gheàrrloch 26 – 18, ach ‘s e deasbad gu math inntinneach a bh’ ann airson a h-uile neach a ghabh pàirt.

 Aig oidhche Diciadain bha cèilidh aig na sgoilearan uile le ceòl agus dannsa, far an robh cothrom aig a h-uile duine bruidhinn ri chèile.  Uile gu lèìr, ’s e tachartas feumail agus spòrsail a bh’ ann dha na balaich agus tha ùidh aca ann a bhith a’ gabhail pàirt a-rithist.

National Gaelic Debate, Stornoway – On the third of November two Gaelic pupils from fourth year, Max Conway and Iain Nelson, went on a trip to Stornoway for the National Debate. They had been preparing in school beforehand for their two debates: “Style is more important than substance today” and “There was never a generation as fortunate as the one to the which I belong today.”


After watching a couple of debates between other schools, Gairloch High school had its own opportunity. In the first debate, the scoring was encouraging for the Gairloch team: they won 18 – 15 against the team from Hazlehead Academy (Aberdeen). The boys were happy because it was the first debate that they had ever taken part in.

However, the second debate was going to be much harder – Gairloch’s team was against The Nicolson Institute (Stornoway), the team that had won the event last year. The Nicolson beat the Gairloch team 26 – 18 but it was a very interesting debate for all who took part.

On Wednesday night there was a ceilidh: music and dancing for all those who had been involved and an opportunity to get to know each other. Overall, it was a useful and fun event for the boys and they would like to take part again.

CREATE – Centre for Enterprise and Innovation UHI competition for Entrepreneurship

Youth Entrepreneurship Award
Click on the image above to read more and view photos from the event

Scottish Schools Indoor Rowing Championships – Thirteen pupils headed for Bellahouston Stadium in Glasgow after school on Thursday 19th November and returned on Friday evening after competing throughout the day. Click on the image of our successful S3 Scottish School Girls Champions to read more and access lots of photos.

S3 Girls Scottish Indoor Rowing Champions

Scottish Indoor Rowing League – As part of the preparation for the National Championship in Glasgow pupils have been training and many more have been participatng in the National Indoor league.  The league has now finished and Gairloch has come third in Scotland after three rounds.

In Round 3 we finished second. As in the previous rounds pupils achieved points for participation and the top five pupils in each category gained extra points and are mentioned in dispatches. S1 Lucy Hildrey was 4th in Scotland in Round 3. S2 Jasmine Brown came 5th, S3 Amber Drummond 3rd and Morven Maclean 5th. S4 Sara Johnston 1st, Jade Moore 2nd, Carys Townsend 5th and S4 Iain Nelson 4th boy. In S5 Lewis Campbell came 2nd and S5 Eilidh Johnston 4th. Finally S6 Charlie Bulmer 2nd girl, S6 Sydney Tippett 2nd and Calum Nelson 5th

We out-rowed much larger schools because of the high level of participation.  In round three 77 Gairloch pupils took part.  However the schools above us on the league table had participation scores of over 200!  So we did our best and congratulations are due to all the pupils involved.  Thanks to Mrs Johnston for running this training session after school on a Tuesday.

Important DatesCheck out the website or phone the school if you require information about events.

  • 30th Nov to 5th Dec – Senior Art Exhibition in Library
  • 14th Dec – S1 monitoring reports issued to parents
  • 14th Dec – S4-6 prelim timetables issued
  • 18th Dec – Christmas Dance



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