The most exciting event so far was the CERN trip. I had a rare opportunity to visit the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland. Along with a few of my friends, we visited the facility and learned about its mechanisms and history in depth. Next term I will be going to Gdansk, Poland to learn about political history.
Fettes is a unique community where students are encouraged to push themselves to their limit. However, they offer limited information online, hence I have attached a summary of the school below. I hope it gives an idea of what Fettes is like.
6:30 Wake up
8:15~8:50 Chapel service
19:15~20:50 Prep Sessions
22:20~ Lights Out
■Games & Societies
One thing that surprised me the most was that Fettes is filled with both physically and academically capable pupils. Excelling at both is quite the norm; as it is embedded in the school curriculum.
Every Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday (yes, we have lessons on Saturday) we have compulsory Games, where students are required to take up a sport. These sessions range from 90~120mins on average, depending on what you take. Rugby, hockey and cricket are the major sports- as with all the public schools- but at Fettes we do offer other seasonal sports such as football, lacrosse, swimming, tennis, etc. There are so many different activities you could choose from, I am sure no one would be left without a choice.
Aside from Games, there are optional societies students can attend to, usually after 6pm. These are non-compulsory, but it is highly recommended you attend one, as it would enhance your knowledge. For instance, I attend law society and pol/econ society, as well as math society, occasionally dropping into many more.
The House system is a distinctive feature of Fettes. All boys and girls are divided into 4 houses each, which they will be a member during their time at Fettes.
For boys, these are: Carrington, Kimmerghame, Moredun, and Glencorse. For girls, these are Dalmeny, Arniston, College East, and College West. They all have their unique traits (just like the Houses in Harry Potter!) which I may talk about in coming reports.
Fun fact: it is said J.K. Rowling had used Fettes as a model of Hogwarts.
One of- or perhaps the most- important aspect of school life. Suffice to say, food at Fettes is very good. They offer all sorts of food, ranging from Chinese to Italian. (Of course, fish and chips are served too, but ironically, they’re the worst in my opinion.)
I came to Fettes expecting a ghastly plate full of chips and pizzas, but fortunately that wasn’t the case, so I was pleasantly surprised.
There are A LOT of subjects you could take at Fettes. Computer science and economics are popular, followed by psychology and P.E. (For reference, I take politics, economics, mathematics and further mathematics, all of which are fairly popular.)
The quality of lessons is truly amazing. Teachers are experts in the field, some having achieved a doctorate in the subject. Lessons are taught with passion and zeal, at a very high standard.
For example, mathematics tends to be taught quite slowly in U.K, often laughed upon by Asian students; here at Fettes, it is no joke. If you take further mathematics, you are expected to finish the mathematics course at twice the speed of a normal student, so students learn new material almost every day.
Despite the strenuous curriculum, there are dedicated timings to catch up if you lag behind, on Friday afternoons. This is called Academic priority: students can go to teachers seeking clarification where necessary. Many use this time to engage in a discussion with the teacher, to optimize their learning.
Fettes offers various extra-curricular activities. I take part in SIPR (Scottish Islands Peak Race), where we train to run 30 miles up the Pentlands. The view is great, and although the training is hard, it is definitely worth it. Other activities include: rowing, Duke of Edinburgh Awards, tennis, etc.