Weekly Head’s Update 07.02.2020

We are a learning community, passionate about providing an International Education, which inspires and encourages learning and intercultural understanding.
We facilitate self-discovery and the development of unique interests, gifts and talents, whilst promoting service learning as a force for good in the world.

7th February 2020

Versión española

School Calendar

Wednesday 12thU9 Inter School Football Tournament
Thursday 13thSotoRox 2020
Friday 14thSotoSmash 2020
Monday 17th – Thursday 20thPrimary student, parent, teacher consultations, target setting. By Appointment.
Tuesday 18thP3 Unit Based Trip (1 class)
Wednesday 19thEC1 Unit Based Trip
Wednesday, 19thP3 Unit Based Trip (1 class)
Thursday 20thPTA Meeting
Thursday 20thPTA II Meeting 7pm start
Thursday 20thRice Day
Friday 21stInter School Handball Workshop
Friday 21stClimate Change Awareness Day
Friday 21stSend a Child to School Day
24th – 28th Half termSchool closed

Dear parents and guardians,

This week our D2 students completed their mock exams. I want to congratulate the students on their dedication, revision, and for their punctuality during this time. D1 students are also completing their mid-year exams; these are an important step in their preparation for D2. We wish them all good luck.

On Monday, we hosted a meeting for P6 parents, whose children are transitioning to M1. Parents were provided with an insight into the MYP and given an opportunity to ask questions about the next step in their children’s educational journey. Thank you to everyone who attended the transition meeting.

Yesterday one of our M5 students, Alejandra, used the findings from her Personal Project to create a delicious vegan menu, which was served to the entire school. The Personal Project encourages self-directed study within a global context, and Alejandra chose to focus on the many benefits of a vegan diet. Read her blog to learn more about her approach and findings. Well done, Alejandra, – I thoroughly enjoyed my lunch yesterday.

This weekend our music students are practising for SotoRox. This is shaping up to be a fantastic event, with over 150 SIS students, visiting Inspired school, Fulham, and a large number of staff taking part. An advanced ‘thank you’ to parents, who will be dropping/collecting students over the weekend for rehearsals. For those of you who have not seen Sotorox before, please click on this video link to see the 2016 event. Tickets are on sale now from the main gate and school reception.

Recently it has been brought to my attention that some parents are struggling to access the Google forms we send out to gather feedback, surveys, and votes for the Advisory Panel elections. If you are struggling to submit a form, please let us know by emailing info@sis.gl, or come and discuss it with Henry at reception. Your feedback and comments are vitally important to us, as we want to ensure the tools we use are effective. Thank you in advance for your help.

In last week’s newsletter, we shared the fees for the academic year 2020/21. I now need to ask for your assistance in ensuring we can plan successfully for September 2020. We are close to being full in several year groups, and our admissions team are establishing waiting lists. As existing members of our community we look forward to welcoming your children back in September, however, should you have uncertainties about next year, please make sure you speak to one of the team ASAP.

The official deadline for notifying us of your departure is 31st March 2020 at 4 pm. To inform the admissions team of your intent to leave, please email a withdrawal letter to, admissions@sis.gl. Any notification after this date will result in the non-return of your deposit. We sincerely hope that you decide to remain with us and continue to choose our outstanding education for your children.

With the Coronavirus becoming more widespread, we wanted to share the attached document that has been created by the Inspired health and safety lead. As a school we have been using the advice in the “How to protect yourself” section.

We are aware that our students have many questions about the coronavirus, and with this document, we aim to provide you with information and guidance from the World Health Organisation (WHO). We encourage you to read this document carefully and discuss the contents with particular reference to the “protecting yourself” section with your children. We also request that if your child is unwell, that you keep them at home.

We have a number of students turning up, saying “my parents said I should see how I go today”. We actively request that you read the “How to protect others” section and keep any unwell children at home.

Until further notice if any families have visited, are visiting or have had visitors from China, then we request that you inform the school by sending an email to the following address: info@sis.gl

Thank you for your help and support.

Finally, a year has passed, and I can honestly say that Paul Templeton has been in my thoughts regularly. Early morning walks with my dogs, at points of joy (When I consider how much Paul would have enjoyed this) and at moments of difficulty (What would Paul have done in this situation?). I am proud when I walk around the campus, that the school still lives and breathes his legacy.

I have been in discussion with the Inspired Chairman and CEO, Nadim Nsouli, who has supported a request to name the new Secondary Building in Paul’s memory. After his passing, we received many kind words and emails of condolences, and in one there was a suggestion that we name an area of the school ‘Ubuntu’. Ubuntu is a Nguni Bantu term meaning “humanity”, or sometimes translated as “I am because we are”, or “humanity towards others”. But it is often used in a more philosophical sense to mean “the belief in a universal bond of sharing that connects all humanity.”

This is what drove Paul, and is central to our values as a school. Thank you to the Sanchez Pintado family, who made the suggestion, and it is with joy that I announce that the new secondary building will be known as the ‘Ubuntu Building’. May Paul’s legacy continue to live on in our community and humanity thrive on the back of this. Read more here

Wishing you a wonderful weekend,

Jak Kearney

Head of Sotogrande International School

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