Newsletter: 6th September 2019
Posted on September 6, 2019 | By Mr Cole
I hope you have had a wonderful summer break and that the first few days back at school have been happy ones! Everyone seems to be settling into their new classes really well and I know teachers have been much looking forward to the launches of their Wild Curriculum projects.
We have lots of new children starting with us this week, both in Reception with Mrs Oyarzabal and in every other class across the school. Particularly for those of you who haven’t had an association with the school before, welcome and please remember that we are a very open school – please drop in and ask if you have any questions at all; we know learning the idiosyncrasies of a new school can seem bewildering when everyone else seems to know what’s happening!!
As well as our re-modelled library and exhibition area, we have had new lights fitted in all classrooms in the main school building, as well as in the hall. This should lead to a very much brighter learning experience for your child, the old lights having become very dim over the years since they were fitted back in 1988! Simon has also worked incredibly hard over the holiday period to make sure the school is clean and repainted and that the grounds are ready for the term ahead. And of course, staff have had a mammoth task of moving their classrooms following the big shake-up of teaching staff at the end of last term.
So now things are settled (hopefully) and we can all look forward to an exciting term!
As you may recall, during the last school year we took the painful decision to mothball The Friends of Woolsery School, our Parent-Teacher Association because we just didn’t have enough support to continue, with just a handfull of families able to keep the charity running. At the time, I promised you that in the Autumn Term, we would all need to think carefully about the future direction of our PTA, what we want from it and how it can function -if at all- going forward. That time is now upon us.
Rather than try to unpick this at the AGM where you might feel worried about going to a meeting only to discover you come away from it as the Chair or Treasurer (!) I am proposing holding an open meeting to talk about where to go from here in very broad terms, to try to canvass support to keep things going and build a larger support base to keep the PTA sustainable into the future. This meeting will take place on the morning of Friday 13th at drop-off time (9am) in the school hall. If you would like to come along, you’d be very welcome, but if you’re not able to come but would like to contribute thoughts or ideas, please just drop me a line and I will represent your views at the meeting for you. All options will be on the table – from formally winding up the charity at the AGM through to a full re-launch with a new identity and new structure… and everything in between.
As I have said many times it the past, we will find it almost impossible to continue to offer the broad range of opportunities which Woolsery Primary School is well known for without a PTA of some sort.
I am hopeful that from this meeting, we will have a clearer view of where to go next – this really is the last shout-out for the PTA for the foreseeable future, so please lend us your support if you can.
School Voice is our school council and elections for roles in the four School Voice Teams will take place in Family Group time early next week. These are Community Voice, Charity Voice, Global Voice and Enterprise Voice. The different teams organise a wide range of activities through the school year, from our Harvest Assembly, Children In Need and our Edukid child sponsorship in Cambodia, through to running anti-bullying training and our Friday breaktime Tasty Tuck shop. Please talk to your child about whether they’d like to put themselves forward in their Family Group to sit on one of the teams and make sure they understand that by putting themselves forward, they will be committing themselves for the whole academic year.
Once the Voice Teams are in place, we will begin our annual programme – with Tast Tuck sales commencing on Friday. As always, this is a healthy snack pop-up shop with every item for sale at 50p. Weather permitting, the shop is held on the playground, but if it’s wet, in the school hall.
This term we welcome Mrs Sarah Appleton to our staff team. Mrs Appleton is well known to many in our school community as Alfie and Jenson’s mum, and she comes to us to replace Mrs Furse who retired in July. Mrs Appleton will be based in Ashmansworthy Class with Miss Butler.
Also joining us this term is Mr Matt Saltearn who is our School Direct Trainee Teacher on a year-long placement in Alminstone Class. Mr Saltearn has experience of working in schools already and also coaches junior rugby for Bideford.
Just to remind you, these are the locations of teachers and teaching assistants for the coming year:
- Sunflowers: Mrs Phillips, Mrs Monk, Mrs Walter/ Mrs Summers
- Cranford: Mrs Oyarzabal with Mrs Eavis and Mrs Walter/Mrs Summers
- Burscott: Mrs Kersey with Mrs Nicholls
- Stroxworthy: Mr Davies (MTW), Mrs K Stevens (Th, F) with Mrs A Stevens
- Alminstone: Mrs Farmer with Mrs Newell and Mr Saltearn
- Ashmansworthy: Miss Butler with Mrs Appleton
In addition, Mrs Phelps also works across the school four days per week.
After half term, we will have a vacancy in school kitchen as Tina will be moving to concentrate her time solely on the school office. Hours are 11:45am until 1:30pm daily, working under the direction of our chef Dave ward. Tasks include preparing the dining hall, serving food to the children and kitchen portering. Please call into the Office for an application form if you’d be interested in applying.
This half term, Sunflowers, Stroxworthy and Ashmansworthy Classes are having Forest School sessions. Stroxworthy’s sessions will be on Monday afternoons, Sunflowers on Tuesday afternoons and Ashmansworthy on Thursday afternoons. As always, we’re looking for parent helpers to support any or all of these sessions. you don’t need any experience of the outdoors, just some enthusiam to work with our wonderful children, a set of waterproofs and some wellies! Please let us know if you’re interested – thank you.
Aldi’s Kit for Schools
You may have noticed that Aldi are running a Kit for Schools promotion. This part of a drive to get children eating fresh food and by collecting 300 Team GB Stickers on our giant poster in the Library, we’ll also get a free school sports kit. Please let everyone you know know that we’re taking part in this promotion and encourage them to donate the stickers to our school. Aldi are giving them out for every £30 spent in-store from today until 3rd November. And by entering, we’ll be in with a chance of being on of 20 schools nationally to reveive £20,000 health leagacy funding…
Adventure International Residential
Booking for next summer’s ourdoor activity residential to Adventure International, Bude will open for our Year 6 children next week. Letters should already be in book bags with full details, but please remember there is a parents meeting about the residential on Thursday 19th September straight after school. Children are welcome to come along too and find out about the trip.
Please remember if a community group/activity you’re involved in has anything to put in our Newsletter, you can send it to me as an image file (jpeg if possible) and we’ll include it for you.
Family Group Tag Rugby
Following on from the success of last term’s lunchtime World Cup Football Championship, Mr Davies is running a Family Group Tag Rugby tournament during lunchtimes this term. Sign up details are by the children’s noticeboard by the playground door and the competition is open to all KS2 children, whether they’ve played tag rugby before or not.
Atlantic Coast Partnerships
As most of you will already know, our membership of the Atlantic Coast Co-operative Trust helps to ensure we continue to have access to a wide learning community and a good range of educational opportunities both for Staff and Children. One of our non-school Partners in the Trust is Northam Care Trust which was formerly known as Northan Lodge. The NCT run residential and day care facilities for adults with learning and physical disabilities and all schools in ACCT are involved to some degree in projects with them. I am delighted to say that our long term project is based in outdoor learning -something Woolsery Primary is proud to be a strong advocate of. Over the coming year, clients from Northam Care Trust, supported by their carers, will work with children across the school on a range of outdoor projects in our school garden and grounds. At times this will be at Northam Care Trust’s Rose Hill site, but mostly will see clients travelling to us for projects here. Initially this will be with Burscott Class as Mrs Kersey is the Project Lead for the school, but once established, the project will grow to encompass more and more classes.
Please remember we offer private music tuition here at school during the school day in the following instruments:
- acoustic guitar
- electric guitar
- drum kit
If you would like to find out more about tuition, please speak to Sue or Tina in the office and they’ll put you in touch with the correct teacher. School has a small selection of instruments which your child can use before you commit to the cost of getting them their own one.
Clubs begin from Monday 16th September and places can be booked for After School Clubs using the online form HERE. (or by visiting https://forms.gle/gDZFbbWZQfTPWxFm9) Please note that you do NOT need to complete a form for lunchtime clubs – your child just needs to sign up on the list which is posted on the children’s noticeboard by the playground door. The full menu of choices are below.
As always, we will endeavour to keep all clubs running but there may be times when they need to be cancelled. If this happens, we will let you know by SMS message. Someone will always be in school to supervise your child if you’re not able to pick them up at 3:15 should the club be cancelled.
These are After School Clubs and require permission to be given online:
|Club||Staffed by…||Day & time||Open to…|
|Coding||Miss Butler||Mondays 3:15 – 4:00||Y5, Y6
(Starts 16th Sept)
|Eco Club||Mrs Kersey||Mondays 3:15 – 4:00||Y3, Y4
(Starts 16th Sept)
|Running Club||Mrs Farmer||Mondays 3:15 – 4:15||Y4, Y5, Y6
(Starts 16th Sept)
|Little Cooks||Mrs Oyarzabal||Mondays 3:15 – 4:00||Y1, Y2
(Starts 16th Sept)
|Beginners’ Running Club||Mrs Farmer||Wednesdays 3:15 – 4:00||Y4, Y5, Y6
(starts 18th Sept)
|Ukuleles and Recorders||Mr Cole||Wednesdays 3:15 – 4:00||Y2, Y3, Y4, Y5, Y6
(Starts 18th Sept)
|Choir||Mr Cole||Fridays 3:15 – 4:00||Y3, Y4, Y5, Y6
(Starts 20th Sept)
These are Lunchtime Clubs and do not require parental consent:
|Club||Staffed by…||Day||Place||Open to…|
|Family Group Tag Rugby||Mr Davies||Various, weather permitting||School Field||Y3, Y4, Y5, Y6|
|Lego and K’nex Club||Mr Cole||Wednesday lunchtime||Library||Y1, Y2, Y3, Y4|
|School Band||Annie Gordon||Wednesday lunchtime||Music Room||Children having music lessons|
|Lads ‘n’ Lunch||Mrs K Stevens||Thursday lunchtime||Stroxworthy Class||Y4, Y5 boys|
|French Club||Mrs Kersey, Mrs A Stevens||Thursday lunchtime||Burscott Class||Members of Clovelly Twinning Group|
|Lunch & Laugh||Mrs Oyarzabal, Mrs Eavis||Friday lunchtime||Cranford Class||Y4, Y5 girls|
Parent Governor Vacancy
Following the Symons family moving out of the area over the summer, we have a vacancy on the Governing Body to replace Adam. If you are interested in taking on a wider role within the school on a voluntary basis and would enjoy having a part to play in its strategic direction over the coming few years, please consider putting yourself forward to join our Parent Governors on the Board. You can speak to any of our existing Governors about their role, but particularly our Parents Governors who can tell you a bit about how they manage personal feelings around the education of their children with the strategic business of the school as an organsiation. Being a school governor is a rewarding job, and an excellent thing to have on your CV. Training is offered both as a new Governor and as your interest develops in specific areas of school management. You don’t have to have been at the school a long time to qualify – in fact, a fresh pair of eyes is often very useful!
If you would like to find out more, please speak to anyone listed below:
- Tracy Buckley (Chair of Governors) – Parent Governor
- Ben Trevor (Vice Chair of Governors) – Co-opted Governor
- James Cann – Parent Governor
- Di Bennett – Local Authority Governor
- Siobhan Brennan – Parent Governor
- Sarah Broom – Foundation Governor for ACCT
- Sue Kersey – Staff Governor
With best wishes,
Matt Cole, Headteacher