A Very Good Start to the New Year!


Well, we are in week two of 2018 and things at UAS are in full swing!  Last week we had our KHDA inspection and I am pleased to report that it was an exceptionally positive experience.  The inspectors took a long, critical view of the work we have undertaken and were very complimentary of the things we so around here.  Middle School, in particular, was applauded for their growth, a fact that is sure to pay dividends for High School as these great students transition to the older grades.  I am not at liberty to give the overall judgements, but I can say that the school’s improvements have been recognized by the KHDA.  In my time at UAS, I have been proud to serve on the leadership team that has now improved the school in over 40 areas!  We will continue along that trajectory in the coming years.

It is important to communicate that the AFEF board WILL NOT be raising fees next year, even with the successful inspection!


One of my favorite parts of inspection is the National Agenda mandate for schools to become more innovative.  The inspectors asked us to put together a presentation on innovation.  Wanting to take an innovative approach, I asked Mr. Jackson to set up a camera in our media centre, in front of the green-screen.  I then put out an all-call to the teachers to come and share some of the great things we do in the school.  57 people came to share their ideas. Here is what we came up with in less than 24 hours!

First Ever Cohort of National Honor Society Students at UAS!

We do not do anything at UAS to impress inspectors, rather, our relentless dedication to improving the quality of education we provide your children is being recognized.  Last week, Dr. Haag led the inaugural cohort of UAS students to join the National Honor Society (NHS).  NHS is the most distinguished academic and service learning society in America.  UAS has been working for two years to get accreditation and we are so pleased that we were able to induct almost 30 of our best students into this prestigious club.  We had a guest speaker, Dr. Kamel Haddad who gave the most eloquent speech on understanding the sub-text of such an honor.  It was a truly wonderful night!


One of the goals of the school is to improve the learning experiences of the our students.  Yesterday, I was delighted when 60 students and 18 teachers gave up a portion of their Sunday to participate in the first ever UAS Arts Retreat.  Led by Ms. Williams, Ms. Etmadi and Ms. Corarito, the students participated in acting, performance, visual and musical arts.  It was a great event.  Teachers got in the fun as well, and despite a lifetime of stage-fright, I was even coerced into going on stage to participate in the event.  It was a lot of fun!


In the next two weeks, there will be a lot of assessments.  We will not collapse the timetables, but students will be writing a number of assessments, up to two per day in Grade 11.  We are hoping to put a little pressure on the students to get them used to managing their time while still preparing for assessments.  We will use this week to give some final in-class assessments for Grade 10 students in semestered classes.   It is important that students attend in the next two weeks as they could miss a great many assessments which will be challenging to catch up.

Upcoming dates:

  • Jan 14 to 18 – CIS/MSA/IB verification visits
  • Jan 15 – 6:30 PM- MS/HS Choir Concert – MPH
  • Jan 17 – 6:30 PM- MS/HS Band Concert – MPH
  • Jan 21-25 “Assessments Week”  – Grade 10 finals and Grade 11 IB week of assessment
  • Jan 27 – Feb 1 – MAP TESTING
  • Thurs Feb 1 – End of Semester 1 – All Engrade Gradebooks to be fully updated at that time.
  • Feb 1 to 3 – UASMUN conference
  • Sun Feb 4 – Sports day (collapsed schedule / MS WWW)
  • Thurs Feb 8 – proofed reports and comments to be on Engrade.
  • Thurs Feb 15 – Reports go home.
  • Feb 18 – 22 Week Without Walls / IB Mock Exams (Grade 12)