In-Service Training – September 2022

Thursday, 15 September 2022

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By David Gray

The new academic year started with Gisele Hanna, the new Head of Professional Development and Appraisal, implementing the programme of two days of In-Service Training which began with my addressing the staff on the start of the school year, excellent examination results, salaries and projected improvements to pay, the introduction of 29 new staff and 10 staff in new positions of responsibility, the relaxation of Covid 19 measures and the importance of our focusing on the needs of the students.  I also asked for volunteers from staff to become advisors since we had a shortage of these and for volunteers for the 150th anniversary committee which will be setting up and implementing a number of innovative ideas for 2023 in addition to establishing some others.  After my address, which was on the whole well received and in which I think, we were able to start the year off in spite of  the circumstances on a positive note, Sarah Hanna talked about counselling and the circumstances in which staff should refer to the counsellor, which was a useful session and was followed by Georges Rizkallah on the Cambridge Programme and how we shall assess students this year by using Cambridge designed tests involving questions which did not require rote learning but rather independent thought and analysis.  I found this a very interesting session and one on which staff will build in the course of the year with the help of the Heads of Department and Subject Coordinators.

The second day of  In-Service training was largely devoted to departmental work and also sessions on the 4 Quaker values which we intend to focus on this year, namely individuality, respect, tolerance and peaceful resolution, and on issues of pastoral care which were led by the Heads of Section and concerned how colleagues could best take responsibility for the care and welfare of the students for whom they were responsible.