Director Updates 07 February 2017

Dear Parents,

The year keeps moving on and we are now firmly into 2017. At this stage it is time to welcome the new families and students that have joined us since the beginning of this calendar year. We have Skye, John, Nuala and Agam all in Early Childhood, Maayani and Victor in Elementary School and Celia and Uthandile in High School. They, and their families, are all very welcome additions to our learning community.
As the numbers continue to rise we are moving forward with equipping and preparing the second campus for Early Childhood. The gardens and buildings have been cleaned up and are in the process of being equipped with the appropriate furniture and learning resources. We are also ensuring that they will be safe and secure for the eventual move. A tentative date for a whole school move is the 6th of March with an open house being planned for March 1st.  More details on all this will follow.
We have begun to interview for the new teaching positions approved at the last Board Meeting and are close to hiring the first of the new teachers. We have had some very good candidates apply and we are confident that we will be in a position to choose those who best fit the ISKR profile.
The Secondary School has just recently completed some very successful educational school trips in different areas around Rwanda. Over 90% of the students participated and all claimed to have really enjoyed their individual trips. Grade 6 went camping on a farm in Bugesera, Grade 7 went camping in Akegera national park, Grade 8 drove to Nyungwe National Forest stopping off in Butare to visit the National Museum and High School went to climb Mt. Bisoke in Volcanoes National Park. I hope you have all heard the interesting stories from these trips and have seen the photographs. We hope to rerun the same trips next year fine-tuning as we go to ensure even greater educational and cultural experiences. I would like to thank all the teachers who gave up their evenings and home comforts to accompany students on these trips, the teachers who stayed behind and took on extra responsibilities with the classes still at school and the office staff who spent extra hours organizing logistics. And a special thank you to Ms Lwanbo who was the lead behind the whole programme.
Not to be outdone the Early Childhood took their annual picnic off campus and spent a lovely Friday morning at Central Park where there were games and food galore for students, parents and teachers. And Elementary School went to visit various swimming pools and bowling alleys around Kigali to carry out experiments to help with the whole school IPC units based on the general theme of ‘Forces’.
And while the staff have been extra busy at this time of year so too has the Board of Directors. As well as seeing to the general business of the Board they have given up the first weekend of February for the annual Board retreat and training session. This year the Board invited Mr. Michael Thompson as a consultant and facilitator for the retreat. Mr. Thompson is a very experienced International School Director with a good deal of past experience in Africa (Including in Botswana and in Tanzania). The retreat centered around strategic planning to ensure that the school continues to move in the right direction.
Many parents have been to visit the school to participate in and help with ongoing activities. We would like to thank you for this and to encourage you to continue to do so.
As the school grows the drop off and pick up times are becoming busier and busier. We need to ensure that we are always extra vigilant at these times for the safety of our students, staff and general community. Please take the time to ensure that all the children that you, or your drivers, transport to school are safely strapped in and in the appropriate seats as dictated by age. Please ensure that they leave the vehicle safely and above all we need to ensure that as drivers we are all very patient and careful on approaching and leaving the school. Having a second campus on the same road will complicate matters so getting everything right now will make this transition easier and safer.
Thank you for reading and understanding.

Séamus Hennessy