I was pleased to have seen many of you at the wonderful countryside apericena organized by our PTA last week.
I thank all of you who participated in our first coffee morning and Back to School Nights. I received only positive feedback on the meetings with our teachers.
With the third week of school, we are now in full swing with events and activities.We started the Cycle Assessments in all classes of the Upper Primary and Secondary schools.
We have also started activities that run parallel to curricular lessons: the weekly assemblies in the primary section and the sports clubs after the lunch break.
In the Secondary section we started the new clubs: Drama, Robotics, Band, Homework, Biology and Maths support, Soccer for boys and girls, MUN, Maths Competition, Chess etc. Our students were able to free enroll in their favorite courses / clubs scheduled every day immediately after the lunch break.
The optional after-school clubs, were held on a trial basis last week and several are still on standby as they have not reached the minimum number of students to start. Please contact Mr. Hutchison at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The class timetables have been finalized as have the schedule of the uses of all of our spaces arroud the campus and our students have taken off with a school year full of challenges and initiatives.
I wish you a peaceful weekend,
Learner Profile Week
Next week all of our students, regardless of age, will be involved in a theme that is central to IB schools: what is the Learner Profile to me and how do I put it into practice? In the Primary and Secondary section of the newsletter, you will find important reflections on the Learner Profile.
I would like to focus on a topic that is very dear to me and that is closely linked to the implementation of the Learner Profile: how is bullying manifested and what is the school’s position in this regard?
Our school has a clear anti-bullying policy to ensure that all school stakeholders (students, parents, staff and administration) understand the common definition of bullying and the collective community response to it. The anti-bullying policy covers all aspects of school life, and all stakeholders without exception, to ensure that all those who work in the school do so in a safe, positive learning environment.
The anti-bullying policy is linked directly to the ISC core values and in particular: creating a community based on respect, encouraging action, and Service & Personal Responsibility.
Therefore, it is essential that all members of the school community understand and abide by the policy, and model respectful behavior in all situations. This encourages and empowers all stakeholders to be proactive in creating a positive sense of community and responsibility so that the opportunities for bullying to exist are minimalized.
Ways of educating about bullying through the curriculum and the Learner Profile
The curriculum of the school, the IB programmes and the Learner Profile are all mediums to raise awareness of the nature and causes of bullying and how it affects individuals and communities.
Within the programme of inquiry there are also specific units of inquiry that develop an understanding of respect, for others and the environment, and taking responsibility. Assemblies, Homeroom time, class or group social awareness initiatives such as circle time, and specialist lessons, can also have a focus on anti-bullying. It is important that bullying be addressed directly in the school and proactively throughout the school’s curriculum. All class teachers and specialists need to work on this area of pastoral care.
A buddy system and the use of mentors and monitors in the playground is a proactive way of ensuring that there is a positive climate in the school and that bullying issues are minimalized. Bullying can occur in isolation and therefore it is important that no student is isolated mentally or physically.
School community’s response
ISC has a coordinated and consistent response to bullying in school. There is a zero tolerance to bullying of any kind and the immediate implementation of an organized procedure to deal with the incident. This includes support for those being bullied and, where appropriate, both support and sanctions for those perpetrating the bullying. This enables all stakeholders to feel secure in being able to visit, work and learn in a supportive, caring and safe environment.
The School Uniform & Punctuality
I regret the fact that the school uniforms you have ordered have not yet been delivered, with the exception of some items. I would like to remind you that throughout this school year it is possible to continue to wear our old uniforms. The PTA organizes a used uniform sale (in good condition) during coffee mornings, offering a valuable service to families. If you are not yet in possession of school uniforms, I invite you to respect the school’s dress code: white or blue shirt and blue trousers.
You may have noticed my presence at the school’s entrance in the morning as the students arrive; I like keeping an eye on them both at the entrance and at the exit off of campus. Even the non-verbal exchanges first thing or at the end of the day help me to know them and understand them better. I am pleased to note that the vast majority of our students arrive on time at school. There are only a few exceptions that I am monitoring.
I warmly invite you to respect the school’s rules, starting with the timetable. Arriving late for lessons is disruptive to the entire class and, unless it is an exception, is considered a serious lack of respect. All instances of tardiness are noted and will be recorded on report cards.
NISSA at ISC
The International School of Como has recently joined the Northern International Schools Sports Association. This organization’s main purpose is to hold sports tournaments for MYP & High School students of International Schools in Italy & Switzerland throughout the scholastic year. We would like to take part in as many tournaments as possible and we believe that once our students get a taste for competing with other schools and the camaraderie that this instills they will be very willing to sacrifice a Saturday morning every now and then. The students participating in our lunchtime & after school sports clubs get first priority when it comes to picking teams however we will most probably also be asking for additional students from the wider school community. Some middle school tournaments will also be open to Grade 6 students.
Help us realize the dream of forming strong and passionate teams so our students can feel a sense of belonging and have fun with healthy sport competition. I would like to thank Ms. Steph and Mr. Ruben who together make up the heart of this project and who are putting a lot of energy into it.