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Latest Newsletter to Parents

 

 

Newsletter 35/2014                                                                                                     28th November 2014

IB2 Leavers

Last Friday evening we said goodbye to another set of IB graduates. It was a wonderful evening of celebrating the best the school, the teachers and above all the students have to offer during their time at the school. The thing that struck me the most was how life-changing, seminal, profound (I am not sure what adjective to use) the two-year IB diploma experience is. I suspect that the almost overwhelming demands of the various elements of the diploma, including (perhaps, especially because of,) the final external exanimations, puts each individually, and all of them collectively, into a crucible of experience that will form their characters for life. Of course with the death of one of their own and one of their teachers, this experience was brought into even sharper relief for the group. I was struck by the fact that even though we as the adults in their lives (teachers and parents/guardians) are an integral part of this experience, we cannot and never will be able to be in the crucible with them. It is unique to them and their peers which they will cherish forever. We are often debating and experimenting with IT in the world of education with many arguing that virtual classrooms will definitely define learning in the future. I am one of the sceptics, mainly because I cannot believe anything virtual or technology-based can ever compete with the experiences of the IB Crucible that our students experience in the classrooms, the library, the sports fields, the stage, the dining hall or in their residences for those that board with us. No technology will ever be able to replace such human interaction and experience.

Community Service “We gain so much in giving.”

The CAS programme is at the heart of the IB Diploma. It involves students taking part in creativity, action and service over the two years of the diploma. CAS should be both challenging and enjoyable, offering a personal journey of self-discovery. Community Service exposes students to global challenges, including most notably, inequality and injustices in people’s material lives. Through this exposure students are encouraged to be aware of and made to feel sometimes uncomfortable by the situation while staying open minded and flexible in finding ways to make a personal contribution towards building a better society. Our younger students also take part in service activities and so start to become accustomed to the Waterford community spirit. Two IB students wrote of their CAS experience:

  • “The goal is that once students leave Waterford they become part of tomorrow’s world and hopefully by creating a small accepting student body here, we can slowly influence the larger picture by dispersing these tolerant individuals across the globe where they will hopefully stand up for equality.”
  • ”The CAS programme has stretched me to limits I never knew I could reach.”

From giving we are gaining so much and through community service we provide a strong educational tool that deeply benefits all those who take part in it.

Departing Staff

As is often the case at this time of the year, a number of academic staff are moving on. Yesterday we had a final assembly where students and staff said goodbye to the teachers:

  • As you all know we are saying goodbye to our Deputy Principal, Bruce Wells who is going to be the Head of a school in Limpopo.
  • Mrs Lucy Mensah, our librarian is leaving after many years of exemplary service in the Library. She is retiring and joining her husband in Namibia.
  • Rita Fineberg, our school counsellor is also retiring after some 35 years of service to spend time with family.
  • Mr Martin Mwenda is leaving to head a school in Ghana.
  • Ms Lisa Mbuli is leaving us to join the IB after having spent this past year on unpaid leave while she completed an MA degree at Wits University.
  • Mr Oulton from the English department will be taking a one year sabbatical. We wish him well and look forward to welcoming him back in 2016.

We also say a fond farewell to our student volunteers, Lily and Fabio who have helped us in various areas during the third term.

Arrangements for reports, IB and IGCSE Examination Results

The envelope your child brings home should contain his or her term report. Reports for all students are sent electronically next week. The envelope also should contain an account, and the term dates and schedule of fees for 2014.

IB2 results become available on Tuesday 6th January 2015, and we will try to get a summary of these results on the WK website www.waterford.sz as soon as we can after the release of the results by the IB.

The IGCSE results will be published on the 21st January 2015.

WK has a policy of withholding results, reports, university references and certificates in the case of significant outstanding fees. Should you be in this position, please contact the Bursar as a matter of urgency (+268 24220866/7/8 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it ).

Reminder: Important Dates

  • 12 January 2015: IB Residences Open
  • 14 January 2015: IB1 Orientation begins
  • 18 January 2015: All Residences Open after lunch
  • 19 January 2015: Forms Orientation
  • 20 January 2015: Lessons begin

Start of term bus arrangements

Date

Time

Depart

Monday January 12th

14:00

OR Tambo Aiport

Sunday January 18th

12:00

Park Station, Johannesburg

13:00

OR Tambo Airport

14:00

OR Tambo Airport

Sunday January 18th

07:00

Maseru

Please be advised that we will only provide transport from Maputo to WK on Sunday January 18th if a minimum of 8 students sign up. Please e mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it on Thursday, January 16th, 2015 to enquire about this bus.

We are also saying good bye to all of you this weekend. I hope that you all have a wonderful and restful holiday time, for those who do get a break at this time of the year. To our students and families I hope you manage to spend some quality time with one another and that you come back to the New Year wonderfully rested and recharged for the challenges of the year ahead. I said to the students at assembly yesterday that I want them to sleep for the first week of the holidays because of how tired they all are.

Au revoir and all the best for this forthcoming holiday season

Kind Regards

Stephen Lowry