We have made a great start to 2018 and I cannot believe it is half term already. The children have worked really hard this term to improve all aspects of their learning and I would like to thank you for all the support you give, making sure your children read at home and complete homework on time. Lots more children are now achieving ‘5X Reader’ each week which is already having a big impact on children’s reading and writing in school so thank you.
There has been some very exciting learning in school this term starting with an alien invasion with children using their detective skills to find clues about where the aliens had gone. We discovered that the aliens had gone all around the village and left a lot of gloop and slime as they went! This started us thinking about where we live, other places around us and across the world. Since then children have learned all about rainforests, who lives there, the climate and which animals live there. After half term we will compare the differences and similarities of the rainforest to where we live and then how we look after our planet.
Thank you to those parents who could make our parent forum. We had some good discussions around communication, attendance, open days and improving our school. Parents seemed very happy with the use of BLOOMZ, ParentPay and our improved website. As a result of the parent forum and feedback from parents, I will be organising regular ‘drop-in’ sessions for parents to come in and discuss any worries or concerns. But, please also come in and see me any time if you are worried or concerned. I would much rather you come in and see me than worry or be unhappy about a decision that has been made. Please also share what you are happy about too! These ‘drop-in’ session will just be extra times that I will make sure I am available. I would also like to invite you to pop in to school at any time to come and have a look at the learning around school. It is always good to see your child learning so please do come in.
There have also been some discussions this term, particularly around attendance and getting in to school on time. We have a duty to have a robust system of tracking attendance and working with families of children who’s attendance has dropped below the national average (96%). This term letters were sent out to let parents know and I would like to thank those parents who have contacted me to discuss their child’s attendance. We do understand that children are ill, especially this time of year and want children to be at home when they are poorly and this can mean that they have dropped below the 96%. There have been some very positive outcomes of these meetings but it has also highlighted the need to make sure everyone understands school’s duty around attendance and safeguarding protocol and procedures as well as reasons for our behaviour policy and restorative practice approach. So, I would like to invite you to come to meetings at 9am, 2pm and 7pm on Tuesday 13th March. A separate invite will be sent but please keep this date free. We now celebrate good attendance and being in school on time every week and the children love our ‘Classopoly’ board. With my own children a few years ago, where I have been racing with a pushchair with my children hanging on rushing to school to make sure they are in school on time, I do appreciate that mornings fly and would like to thank you all for making sure your child gets to school ready to learn on time. It is not always easy!
We have had some good sporting events too and there will be more next half term. The children have made us so proud and our aim is to provide every child with an opportunity to take part in a sporting event. We have also planned swimming sessions for our Year 4/5 and some Year 6 children too. Being able to swim is a key skill that we want all our children to master by the end of primary school and is part of our P.E. curriculum. A letter will follow with details as soon as possible after half term.
At the beginning of the term, I talked with the children about our key values of excellence, belonging, opportunities and respect. The children were very good at identifying what we had achieved and what we needed to work on. I said to them that we would provide as many opportunities for them to shine and challenge themselves. As part of that promise, we have arranged for our Year 6 children to go on an outdoor adventure residential at Robinwood in Lancashire in June (6th-8th) this year. We have also provisionally booked an outdoor adventure residential for next year’s Year 4/5 in October (3rd-5th) and next year’s Year 6 in June 2019 (19th – 21st) at Kingswood near Sheffield. Letters will go out very shortly via ParentPay with details of the trip and payments, if you would like your child to go. There will be a deadline for deposits so we can confirm numbers with the centres. These will be fantastic opportunities for children to work together and challenge themselves. I have been to Robinwood several times and still feel the ‘leap of faith’ is a real challenge for me! I hope all children can go and with that in mind we have tried to get the best price.
There is also a whole school trip planned to ‘Countryside Live’ at Ledsham in May. More details will follow on ParentPay.
Next half term we will also be able to give you an update on our plans for a new nursery and before and after school club. So far it is looking very positive and we hope that we have plans approved so we can go ahead in the summer term.
We are finishing off our half term today with a celebration of the Chinese New Year. Please come and join us from 1.30pm and share all the activities we have planned. It should be a great end to the half term!
Have a lovely half term everyone.
Many thanks for all your support and suggestions to improve our school even more.