Dear Parents,

The end of term 2 has come around in the most unexpected and challenging way. Our school has responded magnificently to the current situation and I am proud of the manner in which students, staff and parents have rallied together to ensure that our school community spirit is as strong as ever. This has enabled our students to continue with their education as effectively as possible. We started preparing for this eventuality over 6 weeks ago now and put in place a system of online learning which has proved extremely successful. I would also mention that we were one of the first schools in Qatar to provide a fully operational VLE service from lesson 1 on day 1 of the school closures. Many other schools in Doha are still trying to accomplish what we have already achieved. We are a leading school in this current situation and will continue to make strides to improve this service over the coming weeks.

The virtual learning aspect of teaching and learning has put a lot of strain on our teaching staff as well as you and your children, but through continued feedback and dialogue between us, we have been listening and adjusting our provision accordingly. For example, at a recent Year 9 virtual assembly, students were asked ‘Have we got it right? Is the balance of work manageable?’ The answer was a resounding ‘Yes.’ This might not be the case for every year group, yet, but we will continue to engage with you to ensure we are providing a manageable workload for all concerned. We are all learning in this new situation and we have made excellent progress in the past few weeks. I have written separately to Y11 parents regarding the new status of IGCSE exams, following the UK postponement of the Summer date for all exams.

During the next 2 weeks of our Spring break, teachers and admin/support staff will be recharging and preparing for our summer term. To help parents and children over the break, our Student support team will be sending you ideas for activities and wellbeing. We recognise that this hiatus in teaching & learning might result in some students feeling more anxious, and I hope that these resources we send will help to ease this.

Thank you all for your continued support for the school. Together we will ensure that Oryx International School remains at the forefront of educational provision in Qatar and we will all have learned many valuable life lessons along this journey.

Regards and best wishes,

Derek Laidlaw

Our children are our greatest treasure. They are our future. - Nelson Mandela

Derek Poems

Stay safe, stay calm.

We can’t calm the storm, so stop trying.

What we can do is calm ourselves.

The storm will pass.

Most young children will remember

what their home felt like during the

coronavirus rather than anything specific

about the virus itself.

How we respond now will teach our

children how to behave in a crisis.

What is your home filled with right now?

Panic? Fear? Anxiety?

Let’s teach our children to be resilient.

Let’s teach our children to love, share, to care

for those who need help. Let’s model the kind

of people we want them to be.

As schools close due to Covid-19, teachers and students at Orbital schools across the globe have moved seamlessly from the physical classroom to online learning overnight ensuring no gap in their student’s education. Read all about in the link below.