One thing that I have come to value during my first year here at Craigclowan, has been the chance to meet so many parents and to have the opportunity to gather their views and opinions. Not everything that I hear makes comfortable listening (thankfully much of it does), though I appreciate that every bit of feedback is thought provoking and therefore useful to us. I have recently been asked what sort of a school are we? Are we an academic school or a musical school or a sporty school? Now, rather than giving a simple answer, that we are an academic school which also values a broad and rich curriculum and moving on, I’ve actually been giving this a great deal of thought.
It’s perhaps worth sharing with you the conclusion that I’ve come to. The honest answer to this seemingly simple question is this. We are, without hesitation, an academic school. This has always been the ‘crown jewels’ of a Craigclowan education and I am determined that this should remain the case. Of course, it has to be thus; we are preparing the young people in our care for entry to their senior schools when they will sit challenging entrance exams. Our ambition is that they are not only equipped to pass these, but also to stand out from the crowd. And our track record shows that we succeed in this. Without a doubt, academic excellence is our bread and butter and we are both proud of what we have achieved in the past but also focussed on continued academic success.
So where does this leave the rest of our curriculum? Well, I am convinced that the breadth of our curriculum, the quality of our music, drama and sport and the broad range of other activities on offer are a significant part of the detail that helps us to produce the academic goods. The happy, rounded children who are the hallmark of Craigclowan produce the results academically precisely because they are happy and rounded. This is the foundation upon which we build their academic successes.
So, thank you to every one of you who has taken the time to meet with me and share your views. They really are valued and you can be reassured that they do provoke further thought and debate.
John F Gilmour