School’s out for summer

Summer is in the air; the holidays are about to begin, and the Parent Council is feeling cheerful. Last week’s decision by the City’s Education, Children and Families Committee to commit to investing £10million on developing sports facilities at Bangholm and progressing plans for refurbishment of Trinity Academy was such a great way to end the school year. This decision comes after a long period of campaigning by the Parent Council over many years. It will be great to start the new school year with the school community working with the Council on shaping our new facilities. The Education Committee’s decision and three amazing performances of We Will Rock You have given us a warm end of term glow!

Campaigning for investment in the school has been a major focus this year for the Parent Council but we’ve been busy with other things too. We have been working with the school on initiatives to tackle the costs of the school day which can make life difficult for some families. We’ve worked together on a project which should result in more parental involvement in the life of the school. We’ve done loads of fundraising and we made a donation of over £12,000 to the school to fund projects such as stage sound and lighting systems, laptops for pupil support, cricket kit, the new school website and ties for our new S1 pupils. Our members have helped with the recruitment of new curriculum leaders for Mathematics and Expressive Arts. And our first survey of parents for many years gave us really useful feedback – thank you to everyone who contributed.

September 4th 2018 is Trinity Academy’s 125th birthday and a year-long programme of events to celebrate this milestone is planned. The year will kick off with a celebration event on Friday 7 September – details of this exciting event will follow – watch this space. The ever-popular Bangholm Fun Day takes place this year on Saturday 1 September. The Parent Council’s first meeting of the year will be on Wednesday 12 September. We would love to see you at any or all of these events.

On behalf of the Parent Council, I would like to thank all parents, carers, pupils, teachers and staff and our elected representatives for their support this year. As Trinity bids farewell to the pupils and teachers leaving the school this year, we wish them well in their future careers and destinations.

An island in the summer with boats in the foreground

We hope everyone has a good summer break and returns refreshed and ready for an exciting year ahead.

Liz Blair
Chair, Trinity Academy Parent Council

Universal Children’s Day

Today, 20th November, is Universal Children’s Day established in 1954 and celebrated on this day each year. It is also the date in 1959 when the UN General Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child and in 1989 the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

To mark this day on which children’s rights are advocated and promoted, we share a part of a wonderful poem written by George The Poet, aka George Mpanga.

A child is not a portion of an adult.
It’s not a partial being.
A child is an absolute person,
An entire life.

The fact that the child is developing,
Doesn’t mean it’s incomplete.
This just makes it especially important for the Child to drink and eat,
and get a decent wink of sleep.

Young Scot Nurturing Talent Fund

Drawing of dancers

The Young Scot ’nurturing Talent’ fund is open for applications. The fund aims to support young people aged 14-20 with an interest in developing their creative talent in areas such as drama, dance, film, writing, music and visual arts. Individuals and groups can apply for funding ranging from £50 to £600.

For more information on what project can apply for funding [check out the application guidance notes](http://young.scot/information/learning/nurturing-talent-time-to-shine-fund/). The deadlines for applications are 28th August and 9th October.

Consultation on new Victoria Primary School

Victoria Primary School extension building

The Council is holding a statutory consultation on a proposal to relocate Victoria Primary School to a new building in the Western Harbour area and undertake catchment changes in the Western Harbour and North Leith areas of the city. The public consultation period will run until 5pm on Friday 17 March.

The Council has a legal obligation to carry out a statutory consultation under the Schools (Consultation) (Scotland) Act 2010 as amended by the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014. The proposal put forward will have implications for families at Trinity Academy and they want to hear the views of anyone affected.

Parents at Trinity Academy have been advised of the consultation because of the proposed changes that will add Western Harbour to the school’s catchment area. Traditionally Victoria Primary’s roll has been drawn from housing to the south and west of the school and sections of the Western Harbour area are currently not contained within any catchment area. The primary pupil population in the Western Harbour has increased by 500% between 2009 and 2015; some of those students are now in P6 and many will soon be welcomed to Trinity Academy as their neighbourhood secondary school.

Two public meetings on this proposal are planned:

  • Trinity Primary School – Tuesday, 21 February 2017
  • Victoria Primary School – Monday, 27 February 2017

The Parent Council will be discussing this consultation at our next meeting and and we welcome your views on the changes.

What are the implications for Trinity Academy?

The Council report highlights that all of our cluster primary schools (Trinity, Wardie and Victoria) have faced “accommodation pressures” in the last few years, exacerbated by the closure of Fort Primary in 2010. Each of our feeder primaries has had extensions added to cope with this growth in school rolls and some of these children will soon be moving to secondary school — many of them to Trinity Academy. in the last 6 years the cluster primaries have seen their rolls rise by by as much as 70%. The new Victoria Primary School is proposed to allow that school to cope with increasing numbers. Trinity Primary has had four classrooms added and plans are in place to add a further extension in August 2018.

As a Parent Council we wish to ensure that the Council has a strategy in place to cope with increasing intakes to Trinity Academy given the majority of children at Trinity, Wardie and Victoria primaries will move to the Academy.

Trinity Academy currently faces pressures coping with it’s current roll with regard to general purpose space and PE provision. We want to ensure that when we welcome increasing numbers of students to the school they are provided with the appropriate environment.

This consultation provides parents at Trinity Academy with an opportunity to comment on the proposed change to the Trinity Academy catchment and to highlight any concerns about the impact of rising school rolls in the area and request that the Council consider a strategy for the secondary school estate in addition to primary schools.

To give the council your views visit the consultation website or email new.victoriaschool@edinburgh.gov.uk. If you wish to share those views with the Parent Council send an email to trinityparentcouncil@googlemail.com.

Review of the Scottish Schools (Parental Involvement) Act 2006

Adult assisting student

It has been 10 years since the Scottish Schools (Parental Involvement) Act 2006 introduced Parent Councils to ensure parents can be fully involved in their children’s schooling. The National Parent Forum of Scotland is carrying out a review into the impact, successes and failings of the act the associated framework on involving and engaging parents.

There are separate online surveys for:

The surveys close on 31 October and provides an opportunity to give feedback to the Scottish Government on what we think of parental involvement, our experiences  and issues, and suggest ways of dealing with them.