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Mintlaw Academy pupils’ Donation for Bunono School, Uganda

Newspaper Article-1

Photo: Marlyn Somers (3rd right) and Trixie Findlay (4th Right) with the cheque for £200 and the pupils who made it possible.

S1-4 pupils from the Horizons Group and Enhanced Learning Suite at Mintlaw Academy have raised funds for Bunono School in Uganda by running an enterprise, which has included making and selling bird feeders and holding a raffle. Bunono School is the beneficiary of the charity ‘Uganda Person to Person’ founded 10 years ago by Marlyn Somers, an optical dispenser from Forres. Bunono School also opened 10 years ago and now has a roll of 600 pupils, who receive a Primary Education. Uganda Person to Person is so called as all money donated goes directly to the school with no administration fees. Marlyn accompanied by Trixie Findlay from Elgin were invited to speak to the pupils earlier in the session and as a result,the pupils and staff of the Additional Support for Learning department were so touched by Marlyn’s work and the needs of Bunono School that it was decided that they would help with resources by fundraising. Some pupils also wrote to the school and their letters along with photos of their enterprise work were taken out to Uganda in January. Marlyn and Trixie have recently returned to Mintlaw with photos and news of the pupils and their trip. The sum of £200 will be used to fund a shower cubicle for the boys at the school and the department will continue to raise funds to help with resources.

Celebration of Success for Mintlaw Academy’s Young Photographers

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Photo:  Callum Davidson ,Senior Winner (Far left), Kenneth Chalmers, Intermediate Winner(2ND from left), Kathleen and Norman Laird (back right), Dr Bob Murray and Lena Levy (front) accompanied by the S1-4 pupils  .

S1-4 pupils from Mintlaw Academy’s Additional Support for Learning Department have recently taken part in the local heats of Young Photographer of the Year, a competition sponsored nationally by the Rotary Club of Great Britain and Ireland and locally by Central Buchan Rotary Club. The pupils were given the theme “My Beautiful World” on which to base their photographs and their entries were judged by Peterhead Photography Club with Norman Laird (Chairman) and Kathleen Laird (Secretary) at the helm. Rotarian, Dr Bob Murray was instrumental in the success and co-ordination of the project by providing the link between the school and the Photography Club. A Prize giving event was held at the academy, which was attended by all the pupils who took part, Lena Levy (Central Buchan Rotary Club President), Dr Bob Murray, Norman and Kathleen Laird, Alan Horberry( Head Teacher) and various staff members. Dr Murray announced the winners as follows

Intermediate Competition-

1st Kenneth Chalmers, 2nd Danny Burnett, 3rd Sean Davidson

Senior Competition-

1st Callum Davidson, 2nd Lauren MacLean, 3rd Katie Matthew

Lena Levy presented the winners with trophies and all participants with a certificate from the Rotary Club. On behalf of the Rotary Club, Dr Murray presented the school with a Tripod. A selection of photos from all participants will be shown at the North East of Scotland Open Studio Art Exhibition in the Kemp Hall, Old Deer in September. Kenneth and Callum’s photos will now be entered at Rotary District 10/10 level to compete against young photographers from Shetland to Fife and out to the Western Isles. The importance of the positive impact on and skills developed by pupils through photography is highly valued by the Additional Support for Learning department at Mintlaw as is the encouragement and recognition of their achievements by the Rotary and Photography Clubs. Various photography courses are taught within the department by Mrs Heather Reid and since the introduction of the courses the S3 and S4 pupils have successfully gained an SQA qualification each year. The tripod gifted by the Rotary Club will be used in the teaching of these courses and for creating images for next year’s competition.

Callum 7kenneth 4

Mintlaw Academy outscores national and shire averages


Mintlaw Academy.

Pupils at Mintlaw Academy surpassed themselves as the school continued to beat national and shire wide averages in key studies.

Figures released for the 2014/15 school term show that students at the academy have continued to improve on the year previous’ results in key areas like numeracy and literacy as well as positive destinations for those who have completed their studies.

Students leaving the school and achieving a positive destination – meaning employment, apprenticeships and further or higher education, rose from 93.4% to 96%, bringing it above the Aberdeenshire average of 95.6%.

 Local councillors welcomed the figures as they were presented to them at Tuesday’s Buchan Area Committee.
Jim Ingram, Councillor for Central Buchan, said: “It’s above the Aberdeenshire average and that is a positive in many respects.”
Norman Smith, also a Councillor for Central Buchan, said: “There is still a lot of work to be done and it is being done so I would like to thank you for that.”

The school has bettered national and shire averages at different levels in literacy and numeracy while continually outscoring it’s Virtual Comparator – a performance benchmarking tool based on the social and economic background of the academy.

The school has set out a long term improvement strategy to try and “re-define the ethos of the school and raise aspirations and expectations”.

The academy has also strengthened links with primary schools with a focus on numeracy. 

Article from Buchan Observer by Sean O’Neil

Mintlaw Academy – Celebration of Engineering 2015

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The 2nd – 6th November 2015 is Mintlaw Academies Celebration of Engineering, engaging with Industry is seen as an important factor to enhance the curriculum with the Faculty of Technology.  Every pupil who has a class within the Faculty during this week will be given a presentation or take part in an activity either to help them with career options or to inspire them about Engineering.

 We have a range of contributors to the week who will all bring something different for the pupils.  Highlights of the week include visits and presentations from GE Oil and Gas Peterhead, an insight into the Carbon Capture and Storage project at Peterhead power station as well as the annual S2 Engineering Challenge delivered by NESCOL.

 This aims to be an enjoyable week for staff and pupils and hopefully the building of strong industrial relationships.

Mintlaw Academy presents at Offshore Europe 2015

Please click the link below to see how working in partnership with Shell our “Engineering Girls” are inspired by their course.



Mintlaw Academy Wins Schools Litter Challenge 2015

The inception of the Schools Litter Challenge arose from research conducted by Keep Britain Tidy, which highlighted a general ineffectiveness of litter prevention.  Academies across Aberdeenshire were asked to take a creative and innovative approach and encourage their fellow students to reduce the amount of litter they create throughout the school day. Aberdeenshire Waste Team carefully assessed each entry and scores were given across a range of categories for effort, originality and effectiveness.

 After careful consideration they chose the best three entrants with the follow results;

 First Place:          MINTLAW ACADEMY

 Second Place:    Banchory Academy

 Third Place:         Portlethen Academy

Congratulations to Iain Lovie in S2 who recently won the Silver Medal in the Scottish National School Championships for his age group.  Iain also receives the “Mintlaw Academy Pin” for achieving outstanding success. Well done Iain.

Iain Lovie


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