The 2014 Bell Race
St. Gilgen International School has rung in the new school year - quite literally! Last week students and staff took part in the annual Bell Race which sees them racing up the Falkenstein hill and ringing a bell at the top to prove they have made it. The afternoon was filled with a spirit of camaraderie as everyone walked around the lake to the starting point, where we gathered together to prepare for the steep climb ahead.
Thankfully we had good weather for the event and 116 students ran or walked to the top of the very steep hill. Once there, each student rang the bell in celebration and to earn points for their house (Tirol, Bachwirt, Kendler or Traube).
The results are in, and we are pleased to announce the overall fastest time of 8:09 was in the senior boys category and for senior girls the fastest completion time was 15:22. We also had quickest junior boys and junior girls categories. These students were honoured at assembly this week and detailed results were sent with our weekly newsletter.
Haus Tirol came in first with 78% participation and earned the coveted house points. We are proud of our students and staff for taking part, keeping up the Bell Race tradition and enjoying an active afternoon outdoors.
Examination results 2014
For the third year in a row our students have achieved very pleasing results. This year the IB average points score was 33 points, compared to a World average of less than 30 points. The pass rate was 96% compared to a World average pass rate of less than 80%. The class of 2014 had 28 students who took the prestigious International Baccalaureate Diploma. This is our third set of results and the previous two year groups have also performed very well in the challenging IB programme: an average of 33 points in 2013 and an average of 34 points in 2012.
Tom Walsh, Principal of St. Gilgen International School said:
The students who took their exams in May 2014 were a very diligent and committed set of young people. They deserved to do well and I am delighted to see that their hard work has paid off. St. Gilgen International School fosters an educational environment in which young people choose to work hard. This result is a reflection of the students and also of the efforts of the teachers and house staff who have supported them during their time at our school.
The 'eternal city' of Rome
In June our Grade 8 German A class followed the steps of the German classic author Johann Wolfgang von Goethe in the ‘eternal city’ of Rome.
The students visited the Casa di Goethe in the Via del Corso, where they saw how the famous poet lived when he stayed in Rome for nearly two years during his Grand Tour.
Students got to know Goethe, ancient Rome and the contrast of the pulsating metropolis of the city today.
Goethe’s quote came true, “the best education for a clever person is found in travel”. We learnt a great deal on this journey and furthermore, the class community grew closer and all of us enjoyed our time!
Fortunately we threw a coin into the Trevi-fountain so that we may return one day. Cari saluti e a presto!
All performances were self-composed by each competitor and some even incorporated the use of two languages.
Congratulations to the winners listed below:
• Slam Saint (Content): Lorenz Ehrlich
• Silver Tongue (Performance): Anna-Katharina Preidl
• Language Lyricist (Integration of Languages): Elena Hueckel
• Slam Saint: Paulina Hilla
• Silver Tongue: Rike Heindl
• Language Lyricist(s): Lauren Frauenschuh & Hanna Mathis (TEAM)
• Special Mention: Charlotta B
A special thank you to Miss Borrero for organising the event, all of the participants and those who helped on the day to make the event possible.
Grade 12 students exhibit art
Each individual chose a theme and created a number of pieces based upon it. Everything was self-driven by them from start to finish. Congratulations to all who submitted work and thanks to those who helped to put on a memorable IB Art show.
The Lightning Road
In Short24 and 25 March 2014, 7.30 pm, St. Gilgen Kino
05 March 2014,
The World War II musical drama, set in rural Wisconsin, USA and Belgium during the 1930’s and 40’s, centres around two leads, Emmeline Quinn and Cole Van Buren. Emmeline is a troubled, small town girl, whose family have fallen apart since the death of her mother, and Cole is a young Catholic Dutchman running away from his past. Their paths collide in the middle of a lightning storm. Emmeline is struck down and Cole is her mysterious saviour who carries her to hospital.
Years later, Cole is now a priest, and Emmeline comes to confession not knowing that her former saviour is sitting next to her. A series of deep conversations between the two occurs and she reveals all her secrets and fears. Although, they never see each other face to face, she makes him feel guilty for hiding away in the Church and not serving on the front. Cole’s conscience kicks in, he volunteers and is sent out to Europe. Emmeline is also there, serving as a nurse. On Christmas day during the Battle of the Bulge, their paths collide for one final time.
Come and join us at the Kino, 7:30pm on the 24th and 25th March 2014 for what is sure to be a hit show.
Basketball in Budapest and Bratislava
The girls' team played in Bratislava, Slovakia, hosted by the British International School. They won two out of their three games to take third place overall. Corinne Donnay (Grade 10) scored the most points for the team and Sylvia Jermann (Grade 9) the most rebounds. The next tournament for the team will be in Vienna.
The boys' team played in Budapest, Hungary, hosted by the American International School. The team also managed two wins out of three beating the International Christian School Vienna and the American International School Budapest.
Congratulations to both teams for a great set of performances.
We had an astonishing opportunity to experience first hand the locations from our history books.
The first city we visited was Tel Aviv, the cultural capital of Israel. Directly translated it means “Spring Hill” which is a great metaphor for the combination of the new mixed with the traditional. In our private bus we travelled from the North to the South of the country and almost covered everything that one should when visiting Israel. We swam in the Dead Sea, rode a camel and visited a traditional Kibbutz. We even learnt how to barter in a traditional marketplace.
Throughout we were accompanied by a very kind guide with an immense amount of knowledge of the Middle East. During our bus rides he regaled us with the history of the Middle East in superb detail. Our trip was split between driving from place to place, seeing the sights and the other half in the city of Jerusalem.
In the capital of Israel we followed Jesus’ path of life from the church where he was born in Bethlehem, to the Basilica of the Holy Sepulcher, the church that is built on the spot where Jesus was crucified. We experienced the key locations of biblical stories in more reality than we ever could from any textbook. A particular highlight was joining a lovely Jewish family for a traditional Sabbath dinner. Then, on the same evening we witnessed the spectacular event of hundreds of people praying in front of the Wailing Wall.
What was so great about our trip was everyone expanded his or her individual horizons. Most of us, having known very little about the Jewish culture, or how Israel actually looked like, were all experts after the trip. We could now put these fragments of knowledge together to help us develop a deep and multi-perspective understanding. We saw amazing things and images of beauty that will definitely remain in our memory for a long time, if not forever.
Summer School 2014
In Short9 – 16 year olds
5th July – 18th July 2014
05 February 2014,
StGIS prides itself on delivering repeated academic excellence, exceptional activities, a platform for creative self-expression and a broad range of cultural experiences. Our Summer School provides the opportunity for our students to share these experiences with other like-minded students – those who are keen to develop themselves, explore academic opportunities and share fun experiences with similar aged friends and family.
A high-level academic programme of exceptional performing arts coaching, intensive English and German tuition and sports science training will be accompanied by a magnitude of activities and cultural events promising to make for a great two weeks in St. Gilgen.
Students enrolling will experience a taste of boarding school, the Austrian Alps and a spectacular European summer on the shores of Lake Wolfgang. This is ideal for students wanting to experience an international boarding school.
Applications are now open, interest level is high and places are filling. Summer School 2014 is going to be an exceptional way to finish off the academic year and a fun, rewarding and unforgettable experience for those enrolled.
Enroll and invite a friend for a summer to remember!
Enquiries : w.parker(at)stgis.at
9 medals, 3 age group champions and 2 new pairs of skis!
School Ski Race Team
The season started with the Volkl International Schools Cup in Engelberg, Switzerland and was hosted by the International School of Zug in Luzern. The team took part in two events: a parallel slalom knockout and giant slalom event.
After day one, the team finished with the following results: Emilia Reynal in equal third place for Category C girls (Fastest time in category), Savva Berdyanov first place Category C boys (Fastest time in category), Kami Krista qualified for the quarter finals for Category B girls and Savva Baibakov gained third place in Category A boys.
On day two, the team took part in a ‘Combi’ event consisting of a single course with a mixture of slalom and giant slalom gates. Savva Berdyanov claimed first place in Category C boys and Savva Baibakov took second place in Category A boys. Other good performances to note were Christopher Heep (8th), Ernst von Puttkammer (7th), Kami Krista (8th) and Rike Heindl (9th).
At the end of the competition the team had two medals, one age group champion (Savva Berdyanov) and one second place age group representative (Savva Baibakov).
The next competition took place in Fanningberg, Austria. The team raced against Munich International School, Vienna International School and Danube International School. The format was more conventional with a slalom event on day one, a giant slalom on day two and a super giant slalom on day three.
Savva Berdyanov finished as champion of Category C boys (1st place slalom & giant slalom), Savva Baibakov finished as champion in Category A boys (1st place slalom, giant slalom & super giant slalom), Peter Ponomarev finished as Category B boys age group champion (2nd slalom/super giant slalom & 1st giant slalom), Ernst von Puttkammer Category B (3rd place slalom), Max von Baumbach (4th place slalom and giant slalom) and Kami Krista Category B (4th place slalom).
I wish to congratulate the whole team for their colossal effort and their attitude across both competitions. To compete and also beat schools with far larger teams than ours is a fantastic achievement.
"We were all very fortunate to be able to debate our ideas with other young and inspired minds."
Model United Nations
The Model United Nations group (M.U.N), led by Ms. Manrai and Mr. Chumbley, undertook an adventurous trip to Ethiopia. We took part in a conference in Addis Ababa focusing on African development.
The first day, still drowsy from the previous day’s travelling, we were full of excitement and started exploring Ethiopia. We visited two museums and saw a spectacular view up on the hill where the city was established. Our dinner was briefly interrupted by a short power cut (the locals are used to these), which made it more exciting!
During the conference we were all very fortunate to be able to debate our ideas with other young and inspired minds. M.U.N gives us an opportunity to push ourselves, explore our individual potential in public speaking, debating and politics. Of course the conference included ups and downs for each of us, but we will use these to help perfect our performance as a delegate. One of us showed extraordinary potential, Robert Newman (Grade 11), by winning the “Best Delegate Award”.
Ms. Manrai and Mr Chumbley took great care of us. Everyone enjoyed the trip and we are looking forward to the next conference.
This was sadly, the last Grade 12 Theatre students' performance but one which should leave its mark.
'Our Country's Good'
At the end of the winter term , Theatre students from Grades 10-12 performed their version of "Our Country's Good" by Timberlake Wertenbaker. This is a play that explores the role of art in society, and is particularly relevant in our small community here in St. Gilgen. Students have been working on the play with Ms. Davey and Mr. Disney since September, giving up several weekends and studiously learning their lines - some more studiously than others! Both performances were very well received, and the students really raised their game in terms of performance quality. Students hopefully learnt some valuable lessons throughout the process, which will stand them in good stead in their future endeavours. This was also, sadly, the Grade 12 Theatre students' final performance, but one which should leave its mark. Congratulations to all involved.
The Café that serves more than Coffee
As well as serving great coffee and food, the School café really does a whole lot more.
It serves as a hub for the creativity, action and service programme (C.A.S) with the Grade 11’s working in the café as part of their service element.
Mr Neil May, Head of the C.A.S programme and the café, further explained the student connection with the scheme and its benefits.
“Students sign up to work in the café for as long as they want, which for the most part is the whole of the year. It certainly improves their confidence and interpersonal skills. Just as I am sitting here you can see the students working and making coffee, it’s great to see” said Mr May.
Mr May, was also the brains behind the original idea of creating the café to link to the programme. “I wanted to create a welcoming environment for the students and it seemed like a great idea in terms of a base for C.A.S within the School. I get to see the students every day and discuss their progress with them.” he stated.
The café also acts as a venue for other School events and he described the social side of it. “We can link with bake sales and open days. We welcome Parents and friends of the School. The café really is the social hub of the School for students and staff.” he said.
At its simplest, Mr May explained that the café is the starting point for the students and staff in the morning. “The Headmaster and School Prefects greet the children as they arrive through the front gates, they then grab a latte and head to lessons. What a great start to any day!"
Junior football team unbeaten!
The junior football team (Saints) won every game at their tournament and bagged the Danube Valley Athletic Conference Middle School Trophy in Vienna recently.
Head Coach of the Team, Tristan Dalgleish was proud of how the team played as a whole. “I am immensely proud of the teams’ effort; they fought hard in every game and played with real skill. As every game progressed so did the team. They listened to all the advice I gave and then turned it into some stunning performances on the pitch. I could not ask for more than that.”
“To be the first junior football team to win a trophy for the school is a really great achievement.” he said.
Mr Dalgleish also explained that the Saints were also the only team at the tournament to field girls, which proved advantageous.
“Our team was the only one that had girls in it and we were the best team there. The graft they put into each game was fantastic and their attitude was spot on.” he said.
On the road to winning the tournament the team beat Vienna International School 3-1, American International School Vienna 2-0, American International School Budapest 6-0 and Danube International School Vienna 2-1 in the final.
This was the last tournament for the team for this calendar year, however it is expected there will be more fixtures for them next spring.
Saints Rugby Team Records First Win
The School rugby team (Saints) recorded their first ever win at their debut tournament at Ragensburg Rugby Club in Germany recently. Head coach of the team, Kyle Edwards, was thoroughly pleased with the performance by the squad.
“For The Saints' first ever rugby tournament, the boys played out of their minds. They played tough, they played with discipline and competed with every team they played against. The team played as if they had something to prove and as the underdog. StGIS rugby made a strong step into the competitive club level of rugby.”
Stefan Reiner, Grade 12, also etched his name into the history books by scoring the team's first ever try.
The Saints also played against Munich International School, Ragensburg Rugby Club (hosts) and Bavaria International School. Unfortunately the team failed to win on these occasions.
Despite these losses, Mr Edwards explained the performances were relative to the team’s early development in the sport. “Considering they have only been training seriously for three weeks, I am immensely proud of their achievements thus far.”
The great Bachwirt bake off
The Bachwirt Babes love to bake and were thrilled to raise 350 Euros at the beginning of November with one of their amazing bake sales. The Bachwirt was filled with delightful baking smells the day before the sale, not only from the girls' kitchen but also from the houseparent’s apartment and from Miss Neiman’s flat. As always, everyone enjoyed it; those who baked, those who sold, those who ate! (especially those who got there in time to buy Miss Neiman’s legendary chocolate brownies - truly to die for!) The money will go towards the purchase of school and play equipment for the Mango Tree House School in the Philippines. The Bachwirt and Traube already sponsor Ailyn and Adam at the school and we are delighted that we can do something for all the children with this money. In fact, we are able to send off 700 Euros altogether because the school Café has 'change' tins which seem to fill up very rapidly. The School community also wanted this money to go to the Mango Tree House School. When we all work together we can have fun and enjoy doing something for others. It’s a win win!
For more information about the Mango Tree House School, check out the ACST website
You will find information about how you too can sponsor a child. Go on, do it! Give a child a chance to build a better future!
Please note this was safely supervised by adults and should not under any circumstances be attempted.
Pushing the boundaries in the name of Art
“I wanted to make a self-portrait that really related to my idea of holding on to the good memories and letting go of the bad,” Simon said.
Out of this concept came the idea of a sculpture of his face made entirely of ice. As the photographs show this involved covering his entire face in mod-rock. Simon described the whole experience.
“It wasn’t too bad actually, it was quite comfortable and I definitely zoned out. I had straws up my nostrils so that I was able to breathe. It took approximately two hours to cast with four people working on me,” he said.
His art teacher, Kirsty Lamont was present during the process and also gave her view on the idea. “He was incredibly brave to do it, it was claustrophobic but he still managed to remain calm.” “I think the idea of using ice is interesting, the material is unpredictable yet exciting,” she explained.
Water was poured into the cast and put into the freezer to set. Simon also outlined the next steps for the sculpture. “The next step after it has frozen will be drilling through it to put the LED lights in. Then I’m going to film it as it melts and when I edit, I will speed up the sequence.”
Keep checking the website to see the next installment of Simon's art project.
Thanks, Ms Lamont, for a brilliant trip!
London IB Arts Trip
In total we visited over twenty galleries including the Saatchi Gallery, the Royal Academy and the Tate Britain as well as the Tate Modern. We also participated in a pop-in drawing event at the National Portrait Gallery and created a coffee drawing in a café. We even had a little adventure when we were trekking through London, looking for Boris's lost sketchbook. After he bought two replacements we finally found his original one in a shop, the shopkeeper had kept it for him! Oh Boris! Overall, I can say that we had an amazing time in London, saw many great exhibitions, got to know many new artists, their techniques and learnt from their fabulous ideas.
The School's annual service day on Saturday proved to be a great success, with many students helping the community. Peter Bennett, teacher (English and Economics) and organiser of the day was thrilled with the students’ contribution. “Everywhere I looked, I saw a reciprocal spirit of endeavor, a sense of fun and a genuine respect for opportunity to serve. On the day, I was humbled by the effort and energy devoted to the initiative by students and staff, as well as parents,” he said. The students worked in a variety of businesses and undertook a number of different activities, including but not limited to running a toddler club in the soft space, putting on a football session in the Hauptschule, gardening at the Monastery in Winkl and setting the tables at Wirt am Gries. Mr Bennett also acknowledged that the community played a vital role in the success of the day. “Without our willing partners in the community, consisting of local schools, clubs, events, associations and firms, such a day would be unimaginable.” After the success of this year’s event, it is almost certainly expected that it will feature on the calendar for the next academic year.
“There’s always a bigger volcano around the corner!” Chris Sheppard
Exploring Nicaragua in July 2013
In Short24 days
3 active volcanoes
10 October 2013, Nicaragua
For 24 days ‘Team Nicaragua’ hiked, camped, built and wandered through the diverse landscapes of this little known Central American wonderland.
The expedition was in three phases: service, trekking and rest and relaxation.
In phase one the team worked closely with a conservation project, La Biosphera, in the northern area of Jinotega. Here we built trails through the jungle to conserve the local fauna and flora and also learnt about sustainable living practices. In phase two the team excitedly hiked the volcanic chain outside of the city of Leon. The hiking was long and hot but the amazing experience of camping on the crater of a volcano and summiting three active volcanoes and two dormant ones was simply indescribable! After such hard work the team headed to the coast! We spent 4 days exploring Granada and San Juan Del Sur. Here the culture of Nicaragua is apparent and the team ate local chocolate, learnt to surf and took a leisurely boat ride out to ‘Monkey Island!’
This amazing experience was facilitated by Wilderness Expertise, and the students of StGIS were challenged to ‘be more and do more than they ever felt possible!’ Look out for our next adventure!
Croatia Sea Kayaking Trip June 2013
In Short6 students
06 October 2013, Croatia
...and this remained for the duration of the expedition. The warm, turquoise sea was irresistibly inviting to everyone whenever there was an opportunity to cool off.
Campsites each night were deserted beaches and with no shower, mirror or tap in sight. Food was basic, but adequate. Sleep was plentiful. Company was delightful.
The best paddle of the week was undoubtedly the evening open crossing to the island of Plavnik. This 10km paddle was undertaken after dinner on the island of Krk, under the setting sun on mirror-like water, with only a couple of local fishing boats still out on the sea. Dolphins were spotted and the idyllic campsite was reached just as darkness was falling.
“We were very surprised how fast we joined this welcoming community”
Our new Grade 11
24 September 2013, St. Gilgen
To get to know all the new students, we decided to bake some delicious muffins. The following day the returning students arrived and we were very surprised how fast we joined this welcoming community. The first few days passed by really quickly and we started to settle into the daily routine, we really feel comfortable there. As new IB students, we quickly realised how exhausting and challenging the two years will be. We feel confident due to the support of fabulous teachers!
“I have enjoyed every day so far!”
What our youngest say about School
Daisy says she has enjoyed every minute at StGIS so far, met many new friends and had lots of fun during her first weeks in St. Gilgen.
When asked about what she enjoys the most, she quickly answers “Maths”, because she loves learning new things. Daisy also particularly enjoys sports, because she has learnt many new exciting games. Daisy is extremely proud of her new School uniform and would wear it all the time if she could! Daisy and her classmates are also very enthusiastic about their trip to Venice planned in November with Mrs House.
Franz (Franzi), a boarding student and Daisy’s classmate, adds that he is most excited about the “cool” afternoon activities that are on offer. He particularly enjoys swimming every Friday and is looking forward to taking part in some even more exciting and adventurous activities such as mountain biking and kayaking. Franzi loves the vibrant and fun atmosphere in the boarding house where he feels at home.
“The teachers and staff at StGIS have been the greatest support on my way to Oxford.”
What are our alumni up to?
In ShortMarieta Saktorova,
class of 2012
24 September 2013, Oxford
Now, I am reading Law and German Law at University of Oxford and I’ve just completed an internship with one of the biggest international law firms in London - so I am well on track with achieving my dreams. Looking back, I could not imagine a place that would prepare me better for such a demanding course as Oxford Law than St. Gilgen International School.
Apart from the countless astonishing memories I have from here, I realise that studying at StGIS shaped not only my academic skills, but also my personality. What I have learnt here was among other important qualities, respect towards others, tolerance and a positive attitude to work. Education at StGIS was a great springboard to further academic and professional life and I believe that the education which I was given here, enables me to excel at Oxford.
“You are given a handful of great opportunities, so be smart with your choices.”
Impressions of Grade 10
I came here because I wanted a good education and to focus on Art. My previous school didn’t offer Art so I found a suitable alternative.
In general, the school is a modern environment for efficient learning and productive work. We are given a handful of great opportunities, so we should all be smart with our choices.
I’m focusing on Art, so I spend a lot of time in the Art Garage – the school’s Art studio. The facilities are really modern. The surroundings, for an artist, create a very inspirational atmosphere. If you enjoy Art – you won’t get bored in class.
Currently I’m doing a study of portraits so at one point I could complete my own self-portrait. Whether it’s going to be realist, or surrealist… is completely up to me. I am given a fair amount of artistic freedom, which I enjoy much more than being put in a “cardboard box” bound by restrictions.
“We like to make Haus Tirol feel as much like home as possible!”
Greetings from Haus Tirol
In Short2 great House Parents
1 caring RBA
1 new dance studio
16 September 2013, St. Gilgen
I am happy to report we have had a wonderful start to the year!
The full activities programme is up and running now and there are many amazing things on offer for the girls from our House. From rock climbing to debating and volleyball to horse riding, just about anything you can imagine is possible.
I have a short update on the uniform shop as well; the new uniforms are in and the girls look fantastic in them.
I expect that this is going to be an exciting and dynamic term full of great changes in Haus Tirol: for instance we will be planning a fundraising effort to make-over the basement downstairs into a dance studio on one side and a lounge room on the other. We are planning on putting on a dance performance later this term to aid our cause. And there will be lots more going on that the girls can look forward to!
“Over and above the quality of the people we have at the school, our facilities are now amongst the best in the world.”
READY FOR 2013 - 2014
In Short183 students
1 new boarding house,
new learning resources and books
01 September 2013, St. Gilgen
This summer we have been busy improving the infrastructure of the school – upgrading student social and dining spaces, opening our fourth and entirely new boarding house (Haus Tirol), opening two exceptional music teaching rooms at the Ratz and installing a brand new, state-of-the art Science Laboratory.
Apart from those extensive changes to school facilities, we also recruited new outstanding and highly qualified staff, who are utterly committed to leading our students to excellence. We also have the pleasure to congratulate last year Grade 12s on their remarkable examination results and at the same time welcome new exceptional students to our StGIS community.
In short, our commitment to excellence continues in all aspects, and with many new extra curricular activities on offer, exciting trips and expeditions planned, we are sure that 2013 – 14 will be an absolutely astonishing year at St. Gilgen International School.