I recently received a lovely e-mail from a 2016 graduate of the school. I consider this feedback to be a reminder of the tireless efforts put forward by every stakeholder in making the school the success it is. Some extracts:
“I am an IB3 student who has just enrolled at the University of Pretoria to study medicine. I would like to pass on my gratitude. The school has done a tremendous job in helping me get into the university and get to register on time … Going to Waterford has greatly benefitted me. I now think outside the box and my process of thinking is now more analytical and critical. I do not only accept what people tell me. I also ask about it but not forgetting to accommodate other people’s opinion. I learnt all of this from the values instilled in us by the members of the WK community. Being at the school has made me more aware of the world around me and to accept differences in terms of cultures and people’s backgrounds. I have the teachers and WK staff to thank for this. These are the sort of traits one needs in the world we live in. Being at a UWC has made me a well-rounded person. Although the teachers seemed to be battering us with endless assignments and showed a bit of tough love, I now see that it was for the better. Being at university and doing courses that I did in IB, I believe that my first year experience will be less daunting because I remember what they taught me. Their constant pushing and drilling of information and work made sure that I always have this knowledge. Thank you for providing an excellent team of teachers … I would like to particularly mention how the Admissions department helped me through all of these applications to South Africa and the US. I worked closely with the Admissions department during my last year of IB. It always went the extra mile to assist me with my applications. It never grew tired of helping me and I say this because I have been to the office countless of times just to clarify matters regarding my application. … I just want to thank the school for everything because if it was not for its patience and thoughtfulness, I might not be at the University. I would like to thank the staff for all the hard work they have put in to make WK a wonderful community.”
Bill Brown Visit
Mr Bill Brown is an American philanthropist who partially funded the construction of the school Dining Hall. He is visiting the school this coming weekend together with his son-in-law, Mr John Reppas and his grandson, Hadrian. They arrive tomorrow afternoon and will leave for Johannesburg on Monday where I will accompany them on a tour of Johannesburg. During his stay here, he will get to see various initiatives by the school including our Community Service projects. Mr Brown will hold an open forum with students on Sunday afternoon in the school assembly hall, starting at 3:45. Parents and Guardians are invited to join us as well.
Homo Sapien eARTh
Homo Sapien started on a high note, with an amazing evening of poetry and song last week Friday. I hope that it will continue to have high attendance throughout the year. Parents are invited to the second event, eARTh, which will take place on Wednesday, the 22nd of February at the CCLD, starting from 6pm. This is an arts exhibition, showing both visual and performance arts. The Homo Sapien is an ongoing student led school event, which celebrates the environment through the arts.
Over the next two days, IB2s will have their oral Theory of Knowledge (TOK) presentations in front of their peers. TOK is one of the IB Diploma requirements. The overall assessment of the course is done through an oral group presentation and a final essay. These two forms of assessment are intended to give IB students an opportunity to reflect on the ways of knowing, where students ask themselves “how we know what we claim to know.” These presentations are always very interesting to watch.
Parties and Underage Drinking
It was brought to the attention of the school management that a few of our younger students (form 3 upwards) attended a party at a local establishment on Friday 10 February 2017. Although these students were all under the care of their parents or guardians, we would like to inform parents that we have heard reports of the excessive consumption of alcohol from some of these underage students. As they were not under the jurisdiction of the College at the time, we simply informed their parents of what was reported to us, leaving it to the parents to manage. We thought it prudent to bring this to the attention of all our parents and offer some ideas regarding the tricky situation of teenagers and parties:
We encourage parents to find out information on where their children are going, particularly if they say that they are sleeping over at a friend’s house. Speak to other adults who are either hosting or transporting your child directly. Try and meet them face to face and do not rely on SMS’s or messages. Arrange lifts for your child (or better yet transport your own child) - it is risky for children this young to be making use of taxis late at night. Call venues in advance and ask questions about the event and venue. Find out if there is an age restriction and whether or not alcohol will be served. If the venue tells you that it is an under 18 event, ask whether or not there will be adult supervision.
Inquire about start and finish times and stick to a suitable curfew time. Do not allow underage children to attend parties / events at a licensed venue, unless there is a responsible adult accompanying them. Be awake (or wake up) to greet your child when they return home. We are committed to keeping your child safe and are willing to assist if this is required.
Basketball Festival: The school’s under 14 girls basketball team will participate in a basketball festival to be held at Sifundzani High School tomorrow. They will play with 6 other teams. Basketball Tournament: The under 19 boys and girls basketball teams are participating in a tournament to be held at WK tomorrow, starting at 10:00 am. St Johns College tournament: Our under 19 boys basketball team is travelling to Johannesburg next week Thursday to participate in a tournament at St Johns College. The tournament will take place from 23-27 February 2017.
Please be advised of the following errata’s in the school calendar. AISM soccer: The American International School of Mozambique has approached us with a request to move the tournament a week forward. The tournament will now be on March 3rd instead of March 10th. Musical (Urine Town): Due to a clash with the annual Art trip, the Theatre production of Urine Town will now be held at the end of March. Further correspondence closer to the time, will follow. We regret any inconvenience this has caused.
Reminder: Important dates
• 23 February – Parent’s Evening Forms 2 to IB2 (4:30 to 6:00pm)
• 24 February – 28 February (inclusive) Mid-term
• 11 March – Entrance Testing for the Forms and IB
• 18 March – Entrance Testing for the Forms only
• 8 April – UWC Day
• 13 April – School closes, buses depart for Johannesburg
• 13 May – Regional Entrance Testing (Details to follow)
• 10 June – Entrance testing in Maputo
If you have any questions and feedback, please don’t hesitate to drop me a line at email@example.com. If the question is of broad interest I will publish the question (with the permission of the writer and without the name) and my reply in the newsletter.