PARENT NEWSLETTER (24 – 28 FEBRUARY)

Dear Parents,

What a fantastic week to lead us nicely into a half term break.

On Monday we were overjoyed to welcome Ramsey back to school for a quick visit from the UK. His bone marrow transplant went so well that he appears to be free of his leukaemia – this was amazing news! He spent 30 minutes chatting with his classmates at lunch. It was lovely to see and share with his wonderful family their happiness.

On Tuesday I spent time with another special family – the Fieldings.

Mrs Fielding has three children who attended Aloha College over 20 years ago. Tragically, one of her daughters, Antonia, passed away as a result of cancer, six months ago. She left behind a husband and a beautiful 2-year-old daughter, Mila. This was the family’s first visit back to Aloha since the children left to go to universities back in the UK.

What an emotional journey for them all as they were shown around our fantastic school by the Head Students.

They could not believe how much the school had changed over the last 20 years and were overwhelmed by its current facilities. They very much want to make a donation to our school in memory of Antonia whom older members of staff – Juan Plaza, Kevin Wade, Isabel Rueda – remembered with fondness.

Meeting this incredible family reminded me of how lucky I am to have my loved ones around me and such wonderful families in our school.

I will keep you updated.

Greased lightening!

What can I say? Three nights of the most fantastic, professional performances by our Secondary pupils and Year 6. They danced and sang with gusto!

I have attended shows in the West End of London, and our Grease could match any one of those.

The pupils were accompanied by a live band of Aloha! Incredible – thanks to Arshia Farajollahi, Luca Hadjisotiriou, Sofia Zaripova, Sofie Axén and Mateo Iturmendi.

Thanks to Miss Thompson and Miss Williams who organised costumes and make-up, and Mrs Moore and Mrs Wain who contributed all the art work and scenery. I sat with pride watching Miss Longdon coordinate the whole performance with Mr Sharp, who was even included in the cast.

If you didn’t manage to attend you missed an incredibly professional event! Congratulations to all pupils, staff and the parents who supported us.

Staff Training Day

Last Saturday all teaching staff attended a training day. The workshops included PSHE, Mental Health issues, Financial Education, Differentiation, Thinking skills, Communication and Social skills, and Interactive Whiteboard.

Keeping staff up to date with training is crucial if we are to remain a great school.

International Mother Language Day

Yesterday we celebrated International Mother Language Day, particularly relevant in our school where we have 57 nationalities and children who come to us with already 2 or more home languages. Please see Mr Escobar’s newsletter for how this was celebrated.

Sadness

It is with great sadness I report to you that the mother of Miss Liz Keys (Key Stage leader in the Primary section) passed away last weekend after a long illness. Please keep Miss Liz in your thoughts.

Please remember – our families are the most precious people in our lives.  Have a lovely half term break with your families and enjoy their presence.

Our next newsletter will be on Saturday 7 March.

“Families are the compass that guides us. They are the inspiration to reach great heights, and our comfort when we occasionally falter.” —Brad Henry

Yours sincerely

Elizabeth Batchelor

Principal


PRIMARY SCHOOL

Dear Parents,

We all know our children like to talk and what they have to say is one of the reasons that choosing a career in education is so rewarding. I have had some really interesting conversations this week with children from all year groups. Firstly, the under-9 football teams (Y3-4) who played in the football tournament against international schools at SIS in Sotogrande last week. Both boys and girls excitedly explained their games, kick by kick. It was great to hear how much they valued team spirit, as they wanted me to know how well each other played. Imagine their surprise when I shared with them that I too used to play in a football team!

I’ve also met with the School Council children who offered me some very insightful advice and suggestions of how we can further improve our school ranging from reintroducing a ‘Wash your hands’ campaign, to providing play materials for the Key Stage 2 playground. They are currently looking through the catalogues to create a ‘wish list’ for me. They have promised they will be very sensible and not spend too much! 

Finally, if you really want to know what I do all day, please don’t worry, as Alex in RCEMA (FS2) asks me daily: ”Mrs Salmon where are you going? Why? What for?” – closely followed by further questions from his classmates. They certainly keep me on my toes!

To start the week it was great to see all of the FS2 children on Monday confidently sharing with the audience all they know about patterns in our Monday assembly. Their message was patterns are everywhere and they certainly are! Looking for them could be a good game for half term.

Thank you to all parents who were able to attend the Primary PSHE meeting last Friday 14 February. Our guest speaker, Alison Harris, who visits many schools in the UK and around the world, shared with us the global experiences children are now facing and some resources we will use to prepare our children with the knowledge and skills to make the right choices. More information on the Personal, Social and Health Education programme is available on the Parent Portal (Primary>Other Supporting Materials). PSHE Key Stage meetings for parents will be held in March.

Like many of you, I attended the Secondary theatrical production Grease, The Musical. Wow! All the performances were outstanding and I thank Miss Longdon and Mr Sharp for inviting our Year 6 pupils to be part of such a wonderful experience. Many of our Year 6 pupils are now getting ready for their residential ski trip to Astún joining Y7-Y11 Secondary students.

Call in & Collect
This is an opportunity for parents to come into school to look at their child’s learning environment just before collection time. The invites will normally be on a Friday from 15:30 to 15:50 h. The first Call in & Collect will be for Year 1 on Friday 6 March. Parents will have to sign at the main reception for security purposes. These dates may be subject to change, please check the newsletter and the web calendar.

Yesterday, as is tradition, the whole college, in a sea of green and white, celebrated the start of half term and the Día de Andalucía (Feb 28) with a traditional Andalusian breakfast of olive oil and bread. Year 2 performed an outstanding assembly in the afternoon sharing Andalusian culture and dancing to get us in the holiday mood.

I wish you all an enjoyable week whether you are here or travelling and look forward to seeing you all again on Monday 2 March.

Aloha Value Focus – Next half term EFFORT 
Personal Goal Target for March – MORALITY – What good choices can you make that will make other people happy?

Yours sincerely

Kathryn Salmon
Headteacher, Primary


SECONDARY SCHOOL

Dear Parents,

The majority of our students use English, their second language, more frequently than they do their mother tongue. They spend approximately seven hours at school speaking and writing in English. It happens to me as well, I sometimes even forget words in my mother tongue! It is interesting to listen to students referring to the library as the ‘libreria’ and when talking about applying to university, they say ‘aplicar a la universidad’. Do you think that  it is possible to forget one’s mother tongue?

Research shows that due to globalisation, 43% of languages spoken worldwide are endangered and some even disappearing. This means that traditions, opportunities and different ways of thinking can be lost too. Language is not just merely a means of communication, it helps us learn about new cultures and develop an attitude of tolerance and acceptance of our differences.

Yesterday, we celebrated International Mother Language Day. This was to give recognition to an estimated 7,000 languages spoken in the world and promote linguistic, cultural diversity and multilingualism.

We have been working together to promote and celebrate the diversity among our learners in our school. Year 12 students, along with their tutors have been preparing for International Mother Language Day. A number of students have volunteered to make a statement in their mother tongue and explain what it means to them! 

Please click here to watch the video that our Year 12 students have prepared.

Nelson Mandela said:

“If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart”        

I would like to take this opportunity to thank Ms Churchman and Ms Turner for accompanying our students to participate in two international mathematics competitions in Vienna during the half term break. I wish you all the best of luck!

I hope you have a nice half term break.

Francisco Escobar

Headteacher, Secondary