What an extraordinary year this has been. No one could possibly have imagined the events which started emerging during the week of our February break. Matters spiralled as circumstances changed on a daily basis. Loreto staff worked tirelessly to put together a Leaning Resource to ensure our children did not miss out on the curriculum and online contact with the teachers was developed. Whilst we are aware that the system we adopted did not suit everyone, we do truly believe that the education we provided enabled the majority of pupils to cover the work which would have been done in school. At this point, we also had the children of key workers in school and later the children of parents who both had to work and had no alternative childcare. I am still meeting with parents who feel that things could have been done differently, so please do let me know if you would like to chat.
In spite of everything, and in true Loreto fashion, our pupils have still managed to shine. In past months we have:-
supported Catriona McGrath and Ruby Isola in their respective fundraising efforts for GHA
recognised artistic and literary talent from our pupils’ success in short story and art competitions
been awarded the overall school prize in a competition ‘New Decade, New Habits’ organised by The Nautilus Project.
Not bad considering the Lockdown!
As we prepare for the new academic year, we do so with optimism but also recognise that things may never completely return to what we regard(ed) as ‘normal’. We are having a complete review of our network, a new broadband installation and investing in IT equipment which will assist in developing online support, should it be required in the future.
Contingency plans are being made for September 2020 in consultation with the Department of Education and will be shared with parents in due course.
Your words of support in emails have meant more than you can possibly imagine to the whole Loreto team and buoyed us up when we most needed it.
You have recognised the huge effort put in by all staff members to keep the school up and running. Nearly all fees have been paid with the 20% discount offered by the Board of Trustees and many of you have given generous additional donations. Thank you.
I would like to commend the whole school community for the way it has faced the challenges of this global pandemic. You and your families have embraced home schooling with enthusiasm and should be proud of what you have achieved. Unlike many schools in UK, Loreto children have, for the main part, completed the academic targets for this year and, for any who have struggled, we will ensure that gaps are filled.
I believe we are one of very few schools which has managed to welcome ALL pupils back before the end of term which is quite an achievement.
I wish you all a healthy, stress free summer and look forward to welcoming you and your children back in September.
Schooling in Covid times
Four months ago we started our new Home Learning platform which continued to follow our curriculum. We took this decision and staff prepared for 10 weeks of home-schooling work, in fact we were not far off with 12 weeks being prepared in total until the end of term.
"I would like to thank all the staff and teachers for their hard work at this difficult time. By continuing coming into school you have put the needs of the children before your own need to self isolate and for this we are all truly grateful.
Thank you for all that you do for our children." Visit our website page for more lovely comments.
End Of Year Presentations
With the strangest of ends to a school year, we recognised and celebrated the achievements of our Year 6 and 7 leavers. Mrs Napoli led the presentations, assisted by Miss Grech and Miss McNally with Mrs Robinson having the privilege of awarding the trophies and shields for the last time.
Heart Of Gold Award These very special awards are made every year in memory of Helen Menez – a much loved Nursery teacher – who sadly passed away 10 years ago. Helen was a bright star in our Nursery and her husband, Charlie, asked if we could present an award in her memory, to a child who had stood out over the year for kindness, helpfulness and consideration of others. This year, awards went to:- Lara Smiddy Page, Clara Arenillas Ramos, Maria Marfil and Olivia Holliday.
Year 6 Gymnast of the Year
Molly Taylor Year 6 Runner Up Sports Boy of the Year
Tom Newing Year 6 Sports Boy of the Year
Javier Felice Year 6 Runner Up Sports Girl of the Year
Georgina Desoisa Year 6 Sports Girl of the Year
Pia Felipes and Lili Murphy
Road Racing Cup
Runner Up – St Anne’s (47)
Winners - St Catherine’s (51)
Road Racer of the Year
Year 7 Gymnast of the Year
Isabella Lombard Year 7 Runner Up Sports Boy of the Year
Benedict Hill Year 7 Sports Boy of the Year
Sebastien Gorny Year 7 Runner Up Sports Girl of the Year
Isabel Simpson Year 7 Sports Girl of the Year
Academic Shield Runner Up – St Anne’s (7,022)
Winners – St Joan’s (7,042)
Runner Up – St Catherine’s (1,025)
Winners –St Anne’s (1,229)
Lowri Madoc reading Parent Lowri Madoc visited the school reading her new book Hetty Backstage to year 1 and 3 pupils. Great to hear so many thoughtful questions from these young readers.
Hetty Backstage is available from The Gibraltar Heritage Trust Shop, The Main Guard, 13 John Mackintosh Square, Gibraltar. Click and Collect service available here: https://bit.ly/3fNxTzi
Also available in paperback and eBook edition from Amazon:
Amazon UK — https://amzn.to/2TSXBtL
Gardening Children returned on a 50% timetable, with club cancelled the gardening club members could only watch on as their crops have grown. We have a full complement of green grapes and tomatoes growing, along with a couple of Squash which Katie planted back in February.
Leavers 2020 This year two cohorts of classes were to leave us as we said farewell to the last Year 7 classes at Loreto, and goodbye to Year 6 pupils. To fall in line with Government restructuring, it was the last year Loreto would have Year 7 pupils, it was therefore a suitable time for Mrs Robinson to hang up her PE whistle and class teacher role after 35 years and head into retirement. Mrs Byrne, who has been at the school for 25 years, teaching Reception years and more recently heading the Special Educational Needs & Disabilities Department will also be retiring.
Mrs Pou who has taught and supported teachers more recently in her role as a Teaching Assistant has retired. We will miss her wonderful knitted animals that she kindly makes for the children at Easter.
Miss Azzopardi has left her role as teaching assistant to move onwards, starting her PGCE training in September to become a fully qualified teacher.
Mrs Hoare has been teaching for 4 years and has left us to return to the UK to teach as her husband’s job has taken them to pastures new in Bedford.
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Welcome Back In September we welcome back Mrs Allan, who will be re-joining us after her Maternity Leave. Mrs Allan returns teaching Year 6.