8th June 2018

Last Saturday, Miss McRae was performing as the timpani member of the Jedburgh Brass Band at their concert. At the Brass Band’s request, Miss McRae had called upon the St. Mary’s choir to volunteer as part of the evening. Despite exams looming for the seniors, 23 pupils turned out. They were accompanied by Miss Renwick, Mrs Hardie, and Mrs Harvey, and as ever, organised by Miss McRae. The contribution was highly valued and much appreciated, and thank you to parents for facilitating their involvement too. I paid tribute to the staff and pupils involved on Monday during assembly, and took the time to congratulate Mrs Runciman and Form 5 for their first class contributions to their Bannockburn visit, and for how they had made the most of the cycling activity at Gala Policies on the Friday. Mr Brown raved about how engaged and interested they were during the Bannockburn visit, and Mrs Bell, who has been at the centre of the cycling activity, coordinated by students from Borders College, could not speak more highly of the pupils and the process.
The Former Pupil Club AGM took place on Monday evening whilst Pre-Prep Parents’ Evenings got underway. During the day, Forms 6 and 7 started their exams in the Morrison Hall without fuss or fluster, for which they are all to be commended. A month ago, Form 8 might have been forgiven for dreading Tuesday 5th June, as it signalled the start of their Common Entrance exams. However, their contribution and hard work have seen them develop appropriate composure in the run-up to these exams, and we have been delighted with how they have eased into such a demanding process.
As I write, our dedicated classicists are sitting their final examination on CE Classical Greek. To ensure a calm and quiet environment on Tuesday, Mrs Runciman, Mrs Kirkness, and Mr Millar led the Middle School to Abbotsford for a big picnic by the river. On their return, I asked a buoyant Mrs Runciman and Mrs Kirkness how the trip had gone, to which they replied, “the pupils were absolutely fabulous”. Well done to all involved. 
On Tuesday evening, whilst a busy boarding contingent made the most of the favourable weather we are experiencing, parents of pre-prep pupils concluded their parents’ evenings.
A fixture programme ran on Wednesday, with one of the benefits being some respite for our senior pupils from the rigours of exams. See results and match reports on the school website. Meanwhile, Kindergarten staff welcomed parents of our Kindergarten pupils to an evening where their children’s progress can be discussed and a less pressurised stroll around our fabulous Kindergarten facility could be conducted. The fast-paced daily routine, which includes drop-off and pick-up, rarely provides such an opportunity, so Mrs Berni and her team thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to liaise with parents in a more relaxed situation.
Thursday’s examinations flowed whilst Form 3 headed off to Darnick Woods with Mrs Kirkness and Mr Millar, and this morning as the CE process draws to a close, we are in the process of welcoming family and friends of our pupils and parents to our annual Kith ‘n’ Kin day. Madame Syme and her Form 7 team are primed ready to serve and entertain our guests in the French café, and Miss McRae is preparing to provide musical and poetry performances delivered by our pupils as the morning draws to a close. It is pleasing to see so many happy visitors to the school.
Whilst an extremely well-earned half-term break approaches, we wish Lara, Thomas, Ollie E, Oliver L, and Freyja the very best of luck ahead of next weekend’s Gordonstoun Challenge. They will be taken to Morayshire by Mrs Hardie and Dr Morgan, and we wish them the best of luck. Thank you to all for proudly representing St. Mary’s in this wonderful event.   Good luck to our UKMT mathematicians (Junior Kangaroos) Oliver C and Lucy W who will be in school on Tuesday sitting maths papers.
Finally, I sign off this half term by congratulating Form 8 on their mature and committed approach to the Common Entrance process. We could not be more proud of them. Enjoy a well-earned half term holiday. 
Having written my .mail and tidied up loose ends, I am delighted to announce that Henry Jonathan James Scott Aiton was born at 2:33am and weighed 5lb9oz. 

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