Science: Fiction: Make: Believe

Recently the school entered a Scotland-wide creative writing competition for S2 pupils, organised by St Andrew’s University, called Science: Fiction: Make: Believe. Pupils were to write a 750 word creative piece about any Scottish scientist, alive or dead, or the impact of their discoveries or inventions. Through the collaboration of the English Department, Science Department and Library Resource Centre, all of our S2 pupils participatedwith staff selecting the work of Morgan Mackie (Alexander Fleming) and Andrew Ross (Dr Knox) as the two entries from Our Lady’s High School.

The judges have awarded Certificates of Commendation to both Morgan and Andrew, and they are invited to attend the award ceremony on the 4th March, at St. Andrews University School of Physics & Astronomy. A representative from the Royal Society of Edinburgh will present the prizes before an audience of pupils and their families who are warmly invited to the all-day event.

Well done, Andrew and Morgan! You can read their essays on our school website shortly.

SQA Appointee of the Year

Huge congratulations to Mrs Lyn Zambonini who won SQA Star Award for Appointee of the Year.  Mrs Zambonini has a wealth of experience in relation to wider achievements in SQA awards.  She has supported hundreds of schools and centres over many years on their journey to provide the best possible courses for young people.  The pupils in Our Lady’s, from first year all the way to sixth year, are fortunate to be in a school where wider achievement is so much a part of their experience, from learning sign language, taking part in Duke of Edinburgh Awards, to volunteering in the community, organizing Burns Suppers, learning HeartStart and raising money for all kinds of charities.

Our pupils know that Teaching and Learning are about much more than exam results; Mrs Zambonini has led the way for many years in making every pupil believe that he or she is special, talented and gifted in his or her own way- we are very proud her!

Broad General Education Awards 2016

The OLHS Awards for Broad General Education (or BGE) for pupils from S1-3 were held last night.

Our thanks to School Chaplain, Fr Martin Delaney, to Lewis Longmuir for introducing our speaker, to Shannon Waldron for the vote of thanks, our fabulous band for their wonderful music and to Mr Philip McGhee for presenting the awards.

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Rotary Youth Leadership Award

Report from Mrs Sinclair

Congratulations to Sophie Tougher Mitchell, Emily Tougher Mitchell and James Mullen who were awarded the Rotary Youth Leadership Award last night in the Bentley Hotel. We were all made very welcome and had a lovely meal followed by the presentations. At the presentations we were delighted to hear that Sophie had won the The John Mair Award.

The Rotary Youth Leadership Award (RYLA) is an amazing opportunity and experience for young people. It was clear from the action-packed week that RYLA really does develop leadership skills and instils a sense of pride in achievement. It stimulates the mind and body and it incorporates great team spirit and sportsmanship.

The John Mair Awards are presented to the two individuals who, in the judgment of their peers, have shown the most overall improvement during their respective weeks at RYLA. Young people from all over Scotland attend for one week in July.

Mrs Mair was on hand to present the award in memory of her late husband.

Scottish Schools’ Young Writer of the Year 2015

Newly-former pupil, Gemma Grier, has just been named the Scottish Schools’ Young Writer of the Year 2015.


The competition was open to 15-18 year old pupils writing a non-fiction piece of 1,000 words which commented on experiences, events or people. The judges were Kenneth Roy, Chair of the Institute of Contemporary Scotland and editor of the Scottish Review; Rose Galt, former president of the Educational Institute of Scotland; Katie Grant, novelist, journalist and Royal Literary Fund consultant fellow; and Professor Walter Humes, visiting professor of education at the University of Stirling.

Gemma’s work, Hannah, described her thoughts following a trip to Auschwitz-Birkenau with the Holocaust Educational Trust, beginning with a single name noticed on a suitcase. Working with Principal Teacher of English, Mrs Elaine Millar, as editor, a heart-breaking and lovely original was transformed into a beautiful piece of writing, worthy of the award. The audience were moved to tears when it was read aloud at the ceremony in Glasgow on June 12th. A report and photos from the event are available on the Scottish Review website.

Congratulations to Gemma on her well-deserved success. And of course, thanks to Hannah.

U14 Scottish Plate Final

Our Under 14s did not win the Scottish Plate yesterday despite a valiant effort. The game ended a 4 all draw after some fantastic play by Our Lady’s, particularly in the second half. They came back from a 2:1 at half time and just would not give up. The whole team gave their all and we should all be very proud of their efforts.

To lose such a prestigious competition on penalties was very disappointing for the team but the spirit in which it was played was very passionate and sporting. Well done boys.

Thanks to Mrs McNeish and Miss Simpson for their coaching and support throughout the year (in all weathers!).

Caritas 2015

Report by Mr McHugh

Our Lady’s High School was well represented at the recent Caritas Award Ceremony, on Wednesday 3rd June, at the Clyde Auditorium. It was a fantastic experience to see 41 pupils from Our Lady’s High School rewarded for their commitment to their faith when they were presented with their Caritas Award.

The Caritas Choir’s hard work and endeavour was duly recognised when they were invited to contribute to the Opening Prayer and Closing Reflection of the Award Ceremony. The performance of the Caritas Choir was both inspirational and spiritually uplifting. Well done to all involved.


Say hello to the Under 13 Scottish Schools FA Plate Champions 2015!!!!!

Congratulations to the whole squad, boys and coaches!2015_0601_championsCongratulations to our Under-13 football team who battled through horrendous weather against Torry Academy to win this year’s Scottish Plate 6-2

Coaches: Mrs McNeish, Miss Simpson

Fashion Brand Retailing Award Ceremony

2015_0527_5292Four of our senior Art and Design pupils have been studying Fashion Brand Retailing at Glasgow Caledonian University over this past year. The awards ceremony for the course was held on  Wednesday 27th May at the University.

The four pupils, Charlaye Hobson, Stephanie Alexander, Heather Baird and Cerys Law, all achieved distinctions intheir studies.

In addition, Cerys was awarded a special award for Outstanding Creativity, achieving the highest grades in Theme 1 and 2 assignments.

Excellence Awards 2014

Twelve pupils from OLHS attended the Excellence Awards Ceremony today at St Ambrose HS for their performance in SQA examinations:-

Congratulations to:

David Martin, Connor Thomson, Jakub Mitas, Hayley Stevenston, Gemma Grier, Cerys Law, Beth Cunningham, Sophie Tougher Mitchell, Lisa Mitchell, Claire Ross, Lewis Donnelly, Owen Leach

Awards Ceremony 2014

Report by Ms Steinert

The annual Awards Ceremony was held on Thursday 2nd October in a packed games hall where over 300 pupils received their awards. The event was kicked off with a bagpipe solo of Highland Cathedral by Michael Clark followed by an opening prayer from our school chaplain, Fr Frank King.

Our special guest, Mr James McVittie, OBE, was introduced by School Captain, Aaron Hawthorne. Mr McVittie, former head teacher of St Ninian’s High School in East Renfrewshire, spoke to the gathered audience about the buzz of working with young people and the importance of Catholic Education. He was a highly motivational speaker and both pupils and parents enjoyed his talk.

The performing arts department were their usual magnificent selves, with a bagpipe solo of Highland Cathedral by Michael Clark, a rendition of Let the River Run by the choir and Highlights from Brave by the school concert band.

Following the presentation of the awards, School Captain, Aimee Houston, gave the vote of thanks.

Photographs of the award winners were on sale for £1 from the Art Department. If any parent or guardian still wishes to purchase a copy, their son or daughter should see Mrs Steinert.

Photography Club

Report from Ms Steinert

The Photography Club has had two pupils complete the coursework for the National Progression Award in Photography SCQF level 4.

3rd year, Maia Winton, and 5th year, Hayley Stevenson, have both worked very hard throughout the school year to complete this award. The pupils went on four photography shoots looking at photographing people and photographing places and explored and reflected on photographic techniques and styles. The pupils learned to store their images safely and use Adobe Bridge and Photoshop to create contact sheets and adjust images as part of their learning experience.

The Photography Club will resume after the holidays.

Young Quality Scots

Report from Mrs King

The Volunteering / Duke of Edinburgh group have been involved in a national award called Young Quality Scot. Last Thursday, 6th March, the group, accompanied by Partnership Officers, Mrs King and Mrs McDonald, and Depute Head, Mrs Mulholland, headed for North Queensferry for the Young Quality Scot Awards. The pupils have been working towards the award over the past six months with Kirstin Thompson from the Youthwork Team at HQ.

2014_0307_0827The Our Lady’s group joined young people from six other authorities across Scotland, all staying overnight in North Queensferry Hotel. During the event, pupils from OLHS gave a presentation on bullying. Speaker, John Houghton, former chair of the Scottish Youth Parliament, impressed the OLHS group with his motivational speech, and singer, Micha B, came along in the evening to provide entertainment.

Convener’s Awards

Report from Mrs Sinclair

I am delighted to advise you that ten of our pupils are achieving the Convener’s Award this year.

The pupils concerned are:

5th years: Shannon Gill, David Martin, Ashleigh McIntyre, Jill McMurray, Jordan Mooney and Hayley Stevenson.
6th years: Daniel Dolan, Katy Devlin, Megan O’Raw and Stephen Ross.

The ceremony will take place on Monday 4th November in Caldervale High School.

World Record Writers!

Back in February, Our Lady’s took part in an attempt to break the world record for the largest number of people writing a story. Author, Matt Haig, provided an opening paragraph, and participants took turns to write one or two sentences to keep the story going.

Guinness have now confirmed that the record attempt was successful, with over 100 schools involved across the UK, meaning that Our Lady’s is proud to be home to 55 record breaking staff and pupils!

Convener’s Award

Report from Mrs Sinclair

Six of our fifth year students have received the Convener’s Award for Excellent Achievement in their SQA exams. They attended an awards ceremony in Coltness High School last night with all of the other winners from the 24 secondary schools in North Lanarkshire Council.

Congratulations to Megan O’Raw, Francesca McCoy, Dominic Nolan, Stephen Ross, Rhys Bevan and James Bennett, who attained eight Credit 1s or equivalent at Intermediate 2. Very well done to everyone.

Caritas Awards

Report from Mrs Sinclair

15 of our sixth year pupils received their Caritas Medals and certificates at a wonderful ceremony in the Clyde Auditorium on Saturday as part of the very first Caritas Programme.

The ceremony was attended by the Cardinal, bishops, priests, MPs and MSPs , as well as family and friends.  Our very own Luke McMahon entertained a large audience in the VIP lounge.

Well done to our pupils.

John Muir Award

Report from Mrs McDonald

A group of 12 pupils from OLHS received the John Muir Award this week in recognition of ‘awareness and responsibility for wild places’. 

The pupils from S1-S4 had all taken part in a week long programme last October, organised and ran by the Motherwell Community Learning & Development Youth Work Team.  It involved learning about their outdoor environment and participating in workshops on camp craft, survival skills and forest walks.  Well done to all.