Newsletter: 21st May 2021

Next Year’s Staffing

We are now in a position to confirm our staffing line-up from September. I’m delighted to tell you that the Governing Board have appointed Mrs Helen Morrison as the permanent teacher filling the vacancy created by Miss Butler’s departure earlier in the year. Helen is well known to families with children in Burscott Class as she has been based at the school all year whilst completing her Initial Teacher Training with Dartmoor Training School Alliance, of which our school is a founder member. She will bring many strengths to our staff team and we are all looking forward to working with her on a long-term basis.

So, from September teachers and support staff will be located as follows:

Class Year Groups in Class Teaching Staff Support Staff
Sunflowers Preschool N0, N1, N2 Mrs Kerinda Phillips (Preschool Leader) Mrs Laura Monk, Mrs Joanne Walter
Cranford Class Reception Mrs Sarah Oyarzabal Mrs Hayley Harding
Burscott Class Y1, Y2 Mrs Cathy Farmer Mrs Kirsty Newell, Mrs Lynsey Eavis
Stroxworthy Class Y3, Y4 Mrs Helen Morrison Mrs Amanda Stevens, Miss Kerry-Anne Grant
Alminstone Class Y4, Y5 Mr Carl Davies, Mrs Kelly Dobson Mrs Carole Nicholls
Ashmansworthy Class Y5, Y6 Mrs Sue Kersey Mrs Sarah Appleton

Where there are split year groups (i.e. Years 4 and 5) we are still finalising lists to work out which class children will be placed in. We will be in touch shortly after the half term break to let you know which class your child will be in.

Road Closure…

We were as surprised as many of you to discover the road closed between Woolsery and Clovelly this week. We have spoken to Devon County Council about this as we had no prior notification as would normally be the case. They have confirmed BT OpenReach plan to have that section of road closed until Friday 28th May. We know that this is having an effect on drop off and pick up times so please don’t worry unduly if the closure affects your travel time.

It turns out that the road closure is actually for the school’s benefit, though outside our control. We have received notification from the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) that they are funding a full fibre connection directly into the school along with a full upgrade of our WiFi to ensure we have the latest industry standard connectivity for our children. There was a problem in the under-road tube Openreach needed to feed the fibre cable through (it’s blocked!) and so they’re having to dig up the road and put a new tube in place. So we’re really sorry this work is having to be done, but also really excited to have super-fast fibre directly into school in time for the new school year!

Ashmansworthy Trip

On Monday, Ashmansworthy Class are out at our remote Forest School camp at Burford. We still have a large number of families who haven’t paid for this activity yet – please could I ask that you do so over the weekend so we are able to pay the bus company?

As Mr Wain has said in his letter to you, Burford Woods is extremely muddy following May’s constant rain so it is vital your child comes properly equipped for the day – if children don’t bring their own wellington boots with them, we will have no choice but to keep them in school for the day but due to Covid restrictions we won’t be able to place them in another class so this could be a very long and lonely day for them! Old clothes are essential and a spare pair of socks will be a really good idea too. Thanks.

Relationships Education

Next half term, many of the classes will be following our SCARF programme’s unit on “growing and changing”. For children in Year 3, Year 4, Year 5 and Year 6 this will include discussions around body changes in puberty at an age appropriate level. As we were closed this time last year, this will be the first use of our SCARF materials in this important area, and the lessons will reflect the changes brought in last September with the introduction of the DfE’s new Relationships & Sex Education curriculum.

If you would like to see the materials class teachers will be using in these lessons, please contact them directly and they will be happy to show you. Ordinarily we would hold a parents’ information session for this purpose but with current restrictions this clearly isn’t possible.

Does my child have to take part?

Since the introduction of the RSE curriculum, the right of parents to withdraw their children from these lessons has been clarified. The only element you can ask your child to miss is the content around actual conception and this is only planned for Year 6. I will write to Year 6 parents after the half term break to inform you when that piece of teaching will happen. The rest of the RSE curriculum is based in the KS2 Science Curriculum and is therefore statutory.

Toy Bank Thanks

Tina Pincombe, who has been helping with the running of the Christmas Toy Bank in Parkham since Becky Allmark passed away would like to extend the group’s thanks for all of the kind donations received in Becky’s memory. Your donations will really help in providing gifts for families who might not otherwise be able to afford them in the run-up to Christmas. Thank you!

Class Photos

H. Tempest Photography will be in school on Wednesday next week to take all class photos and also our Year 6 Leaver’s Photo. These will be available to order afterwards if you would like one. This year Tempest will be using a contactless system so you should receive information to your email account with previews and instructions for ordering if you’d like to do so.

All of the children enjoyed Sophie’s visit from Edukid this week. We were able to catch up on Leng Piseth’s progess at school in Cambodia and hear about an exciting fundraising event the school will be taking part in after the half term break.  Called Walk to the Moon, children and supporters from all over the UK are taking part in walks and adding up their collective miles in order to try to walk the equivalent distance to the Moon (238,900 miles). We will be doing much of the walking here in school and adding up class totals to keep track of the school’s progress as a whole. Once we’ve launched, your child can also count any walking they do out of school as well.

You can download a sponsor form for your child HERE and we will have paper copies available in school from next week. If possible, please encourage your child’s supporters to give online so that Edukid can also claim Gift Aid on your behalf. Instructions are on the sponsor form.

If your child reaises £10 in sponsorship they will receive an Edukid wristband so please keep track of all online donations on the sponsor form so this can be checked.

Money raised will go towards the school’s contribution to funding Leng’s education in Cambodia, as well as other very worthy projects in Uganda and Palestine where Edukid also has a presence.

Hello from Team Woolley!

As you have probably heard we are planning something rather spectacular this summer. WOOLFEST is landing in Woolsery on the 18th of July and it’s set to be just the kind of event we have all been missing.
We really wanted to do something special to mark the end of lockdown and hopefully the return to more normal times.
Woolfest will be a family fun day with lots of games and things to do, music, BBQ, teas and coffee and cake. Later on into the evening, the entertainment continues and the beer will be flowing with lots of local guest ales and ciders to sample.
Woolfest is an ambitious event that aims to bring the whole community together, our focus is to make it inclusive and enjoyable for all.
Lots of work has already gone on behind the scenes but what we really need is some more helping hands on the day. Luckily our school children have hundreds of parents and grandparents and it would only take an hour’s help from each family to make it work. There are lots of things that you can help out with, nothing to hard, whether it’s running a stall, serving tea or helping set up the barbecue.

This event belongs to us all and every penny raised will go towards buying exciting new equipment for our children in the school.

Rotas will be circulating soon so pop down your name to volunteer. Please don’t be shy, come and join in because it is sure to be lots of fun on the day.

Please chat to any of the team or drop us an email:

Rachel, Neil, Sarah F, Sarah P, Kate, Jane & Anna

You’ll remember that due to Mrs Dobson being taken ill last week we weren’t able to award Stroxworthy Class with their Headteacher Awards last Friday. Well done to these two superstars who have now received their awards:

Stroxworthy Class: Finley – developing his confidence at answering in class and great effort writing his story;  Georgia – super effort writing and editing her chapter story and excellent movement in dance

Well done to everyone who has received a Headteacher’s Award in today’s Virtual Assembly:

Cranford Class: Molly – drawing a fluffy chick; Monty – amazing independent artwork

Burscott Class: Alfie G – huge improvement in both reading and writing; Tommy – being helpful and kind to everyone in the class

Stroxworthy Class: Seren – excellent progress and confidence in saying her numbers in French and fantastic choreography in dance; George – outstanding effort in producing an amazing chapter story, ensuring there were no errors in his final book

Alminstone Class: Jackie – using some great mathematical language; Dexter – great maths work on Time

Ashmansworthy Class: Roy – helping his friends when he sees they’re having trouble with their work; Hope – Helping other people in maths when she has completed her tasks

Monday 24th May Ashmansworthy Class in Burford Woods all day
Tuesday 25th May
Wednesday 26th May Tempest Photography taking class photos AM
Thursday 27th May Library Service Van visiting to change book stock
Friday 28th May Break up for Half Term: School Reopens on Thursday 10th June


Hopefully summer (remember that…?) will return next week. In the meantime, have a great weekend.

Matt Cole, Headteacher

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