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Kilmarnock Academy School Board Annual Report - July 2006

Kilmarnock Academy School Board is pleased to report to you on the work of the board during the course of this session. The Board welcomes the comments and suggestions of all parents and would encourage you to make contact, via the school.

At present the board consists of :

Mrs Mary Grant - Chair and Parent Member

Mrs Adrienne Howard - Parent Member

Mrs Elizabeth Bryson - Parent Member

Mrs Annette Donnelly - Parent Member

Mr Ian Fyfe - Teacher Representative

Mr Ian Murdoch - Teacher Representative

Mrs Carole Ford - H.T. and advisor to the board.

Mrs Lois Cairney - Clerk

There is one vacancy for another parent member and the opportunity to co-opt members. If you are interested in joining the board, please contact Mrs Ford for further information.

We have found it difficult to persuade pupil representatives to attend board meetings, so we now use the Pupil Council as a means of ascertaining pupil views.

Many thanks to formers members of the board, particularly to teacher members

Mrs Joanne Miller and Mrs Wendy McKenzie.

The work of the board is largely to represent the parental viewpoint on the management, policies and procedures of the school. There is therefore regular discussion of current and proposed developments. For example, the recent changes to S1 and S2 class composition was fully discussed at board level; changes to the format of Parents' Evenings will be implemented following suggestions from the board. Much of the discussion is therefore at a fairly detailed level. However, there have been some specific issues in which the board have been involved.

Roads and Parking
The Elmbank Drive area is extremely congested immediately before and after school. It is also regularly lined with parked cars which can create difficulties for the bus which ferries pupils to and from the playing fields. The school board has made representation to the Roads Department on this issue and has been assured the situation will be addressed in the near future. The board will continue to monitor the situation and make further representation if necessary.

Sports and PE Facilities
The school board was very disappointed over the council's decision to sell the only flat, grassed area on the school campus, and to grant planning permission for the erection of flats right on the edge of the school playground. The board did inform the education authority of its opposition to the sale of the ground, and attended a planning meeting to raise its objections to the building of residential properties so close to the school campus. Although the objections were overruled, the new Executive Director of Educational and Social Services, Mr Graham Short, has assured the board that he will look favourably on the suggestion that money from the sale of the ground be used to create an all weather pitch on the school campus. Again, the board will be vigilant in pursuing the best possible outcome for the pupils of Kilmarnock Academy .

Careers Scotland
The board was pleased to be invited to hold one of its meetings in the offices of Careers Scotland on John Finnie Street . Pat McPhee, Team Leader, gave a short presentation on the work of Careers Scotland, and the service it provides both to the school and the wider community. Given that the school will be part of a pilot project involving enhanced Careers' Officer support, the presentation was very informative and useful. The scones were excellent too! Many thanks to Careers Scotland for their hospitality.

Wider representation
Members of the school board continue to represent the parental view from Kilmarnock Academy in other areas. In particular, members routinely attend East Ayrshire School Board Steering Group meetings and Parents' Forum meetings. Both these meetings inform local authority policy so it is vital that parents are represented.

Each year our administration and travel costs fall below the level of our annual allocation, and it has been practice to donate the surplus to selected school activities. This year the board made a donation to the school yearbook and to the activities fund, which exists to subsidise the cost of trips and visits for pupils.

Your views
The school board is keen to fully represent parental views. If you have any issues you wish to raise, please make contact via the school. All communications will be forwarded to the school board chair, Mary Grant.

School Board Members
As already mentioned, the board would welcome new members. Please make contact if you are interested or if you have ideas about how more parents might be attracted to participate.