Alongside ensuring that children are the first priority in a school, and great teachers are the most important resource, the curriculum is an equally vital element in an excellent education. What is taught is just as important as how it is taught. I have instigated an ongoing discussion with colleagues about what an outstanding curriculum looks like, what should be taught and when. It has been wonderful to see teachers in their subject teams or phase, talking excitedly and animatedly about this, thinking about the design, structure and sequence of their curriculum, which is then implemented through great classroom teaching. The end result of a well-taught curriculum is that students know more, and are able to do more, and the results of their learning can then be seen in the standards they achieve.
In my previous school we carried out a really interesting activity. We thought about and discussed the following question: what do we want all our children to have a good knowledge and understanding of before they leave school, if we are to have given them a truly outstanding education? We came up with a list of 30 such things (and it was very hard to narrow it down as you can imagine!) and if we hadn’t been teaching these things - we made sure that we did. I am passionate about the importance of children acquiring deep and important knowledge, and especially the notion of “cultural capital”. This is the essential knowledge that pupils need in order to be educated citizens, introducing them to the best that has been thought and said and helping to engender an appreciation of human creativity and achievement.
The current timetable has some flaws in it that need to be remedied. Changing a timetable midway through the school year is not uncommon. In any case, since we have more school days ahead of us than behind us I think it is important to remedy any weaknesses in the timetable rather than just limp along until June. We are currently re-writing the timetable so that after Christmas your child may have a slightly different one. However, I can assure you it will be an improved one and will address some of the concerns and questions that you have raised and that I have seen. This does not mean your children will get different teachers, but just that when some lessons are taught will alter, as well as, in some cases, how frequently. The timetable creates the daily experience for children (and teachers) for the year so getting it as right as possible is vital. As you know, we are currently also reviewing the languages curriculum and asking primary parents specifically for their feedback on this. I haven’t yet fully analysed the results but one thing is coming through loud and clear - you want your children to have more Spanish teaching in the primary school, and this is something myself and Sra. Reyero are looking at in earnest. In addition to what is taught, we are currently discussing the how including things such as lesson length and the shape of the day. Do we start too late? Should we start the school day earlier? Should we finish earlier? Is our current lesson (50 minutes) the best length to ensure the strongest learning and teaching? These are important questions and ones to which I, of course, invite your own input - as I do on anything to do with our school. I remain determined and energised about making BIC the number one school of choice on the island, and that your children get the best education possible.
BIC, Sa Porrassa
We have recently been discussing the merits and advantages of having a reading dog. Dogs have been allowed on site, but due to some parental concerns we have, for the time being, decided that dogs should not be brought on site (this includes staff and parents). Thank you for your understanding.
Canteen - Catering company Saned
On Wednesday 27th November at 4 o’clock our catering company Saned will be in school to talk to parents about some proposed changes both to the food and to the canteen itself. Parents are invited to come along when they will also get the chance to taste the food that children are served. If you are interested to participate, please register sending us an email to email@example.com
We are looking forward to seeing you all.