I hope everyone had a good holiday weekend.  Whether it was staff who were off on the Monday, pupils who had three days off or parents it is important we take time to relax.

I know some of you took time on the Saturday to attend a very moving funeral service for Kathy Rohan Head Teacher at Broomhill School.  We were both shocked and deeply saddened to learn that Kathy had died, it will have been a great comfort to her family to know that she was held in such high regard by her colleagues, by the families who she had supported and to the community.

On the Wednesday staff from all the schools in the Harlaw area (Harlaw, Hanover, Ferryhill, Broomhill and Kaimhill) met together.  We do a fair bit of joint work and on this occasion it was to focus on a mental health pilot we are working on.  This work will see us helping pupils and families to cope with the many challenges of modern life.  We have been gathering views of staff, pupils and parents to identify priorities and over the next few years we will try to help address these priorities.

One of the areas people identified was social media and with this in mind we have sessions running in all the schools next month.  During the week of these sessions there will also be an evening session for parents at Kaimhill on Thursday 24th March (I think Hanover Street are organising something at the school for parents that week too).

When we think of mental health the word ‘stress’ often springs to mind.  Stress often carries very negative implications but there are times when stress is what brings out the best in people.  Below is an interesting talk on the subject “How to make stress your friend”.  It made me think about how I view stress and I hope it will help young people, and others, to recognise how they can use stress (eg in exams) in a more positive way.