Newsletter: 4th December 2020
Posted on December 4, 2020 | By Mr Cole
We are delighted that it’s been possible to arrange for some classes to go to RHS Rosemoor in the next few days to take part in some Christmas activities in the Education Centre and enjoy the gardens too. It has been nine months since we were last able to run an offsite visit for the children and this feels like a huge step back towards some sort of normality. I know parents (and teachers too) will be quite anxious about taking the children out, but we have worked extremely closely with the education team at Rosemoor to ensure the visit is as safe as being here in school. For example, each class will have their own classroom in the Peter Buckley Education Centre, and their own dedicated toilets too. There will be an abundance of handwashing and sanitiser for both classes to use throughout the day as well and there will be no crossover between the two class bubbles (or the public) at all. Transport to and from Rosemoor will also be in line with DCC School Transport policy following detailed discussions with Streets Coachways, our coach fleet operator.
As the trip takes place entirely within the school day on both occasions, we don’t need you to sign and return any consent for the visit. The slip on your letter was solely to book a school packed lunch if you needed one for your child. Please remember that although the children will be on paths all the time, these may be muddy in places so we’re asking children to wear old but comfortable shoes that don’t matter too much. Wellies won’t be suitable as the children won’t be able to change footwear when working in the Education Centre classrooms. Thanks.
Please check out the Blog pages on the Website to see the amazing creations the children make, later next week.
Christmas Tree Lotto Thanks
Thank you to all of you who have supported the FOWS (Team Woolley) Christmas Tree Lotto so strongly this week. There are already lots of baubles sold and I know Rachel and her team will be out at the lower gate this afternoon to sell the rest. FOWS will annouce the winner via their Facebook Page once sales have finished today and we’ll also put the news out via the school’s twitter feed. The tree will be out again next Thursday and Friday, and again in the final week of term.
Free School Meals over the Holidays
Families who are in receipt of Free School Meals will be contacted very shortly by Devon County Council with information on their Christmas Holiday voucher scheme. This will work in a similar way to the Department for Education national scheme back in the summer term, where all children on our Free School Meals register received a weekly cash voucher which could be exchanged in major supermarkets. This time around the scheme is being delivered by Devon County Council and they are using a website called Hawk Select. Once you have received your code for your £30 payment per child (£15 per child per week of the holidays) you will be able to go to the website, enter your code and either generate a scannable QR code which can be used directly from your phone screen in a supermarket, or you can download the voucher and print it off. If you have any difficulties with accessing the vouchers, or have any other questions, there is a DCC helpline number which will be open from next week: 0345 155 1019.
If you think you are eligible for free school meals (see last week’s Newsletter for details) but have not yet applied, you need to do it this weekend in order to qualify for the holiday payment. If you let Sue or Tina know in the Office that you’ve applied, they will be able to ensure your details are on the list DCC are working on to generate the codes.
This information is also on our dedicated Covid-19 Resource Page if you need to find it later.
Rotary Club Dictionaries
Today we presented our oldest children with their Rotary Club dictionaries. Usually these are presented only to our Year 6 children but Rotary have kindly supplied them for our Year 5 children as well this as part of our catch-up programme following school closure last term. These superb dictionaries are presented to our children each year and are extremely useful both in class and at home. At £15 per book, they are a very high quality publication which should last the children well into secondary school. We are hugely thankful to the Rotary Club for their generosity in donating these books, they are certainly something we coudn’t afford to buy at the present time, and we hope the children in Years 5 and 6 have a great time using them.
Although children can normally take them home, we ask that they are left in school at all times for the moment as they will form an integral part of their learning journey this year.
Preschool Session Bookings
Session booking for the Spring Term at Sunflowers closes on Monday so we can work out staffing allocations in order to meet demand. If you haven’t completed the online request, you will need to contact the Office staff by phone (01237431307) in order to do this and we will do our best to fit your required sessions in. Mrs Phillips will be in contact in the next week or so to confirm your allocations for next term.
Sadly, Mrs Nicholls will be away from school for the rest of the term for medical reasons. I am sure you will join me in wishing her well. Please be assured Mrs Nicholls’ absence is not Covid-related.
Just a reminder that FOWS (Team Woolley) present their Tinsel Trail next weekend on December 13th…
Please remember if you’re shopping online this season and use Amazon you can sign up through Amazon Smile to generate income for FOWS without any cost to you. As of last month, Amazon has paid £138.46 to FOWS through this scheme, so please add your name to the supporters if you can. Just visit smile.amazon.co.uk and search for Friends of Woolsery School. Once you’ve signed up, your Amazon account and app works in exactly the same way as before.
We are adding a semi-regular section to our Newsletter to give you up to date advice on issues around safeguarding. This week, I wanted to put something in about PEGI game ratings. These are the Pan European Game Information system which gives you advice on which games are suitable for your children – especially with Christmas presents in mind.
The numbered rating on a game indicated the age the game is suitable for…
- PEGI 3 is suitable for all ages
- PEGI 7 is suitable for young children
- PEGI 12 is only suitable for children aged 12 and over
- PEGI 16 is only suitable for children aged 16 and over
- PEGI 18 is only suitable for adults
This means that no child who attends Woolsery Primary School should be receiving a game with a PEGI rating of anything but 3 or 7. Please don’t assume that if your child is 11 years old they’re “nearly OK for a 12 rating” – the age of 12 has been chosen for a reason and there is a huge difference in the maturity of children in Year 6 compared to Year 8.
The black and white images also gives the buyer information about what type of content might be unsuitable. At the moment, there is a growing concern at a local authority level that schools are reporting an increase in bad language from children since returning from the Summer lockdown. Safeguarding Officers have investigated why this might be and have often traced it back to primary aged children accessing too high PEGI ratings and picking up bad languege through their gaming and then bringing that into schools.
Well done to everyone who received a Headteacher Award in today’s virtual assembly…
- Cranford Class: William – amazing writing this week!; Monty – amazing writing this week!
- Burscott Class: Arthur – excelling in mathematical reasoning; Scarlett – working very hard with home learning
- Stroxworthy Class: to follow
- Alminstone Class: Sophie – trying really hard with her literacy independently this week; Bluebelle – super work on her volcano book
- Ashmansworthy Class: Daisy – understanding the poet’s use of similes and metaphors in “The Highwayman” poem; Holly – making good progress with multiplication and division by 10, 100, 1000 in maths