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ST PETER’S SCHOOL GOVERNORS

NEWSLETTER DECEMBER 2019

THE ANNUAL PARENTAL QUESTIONNAIRE

I wrote at length about this last year. I make no apologies for doing so again but, this time, to thank you all for such helpful responses. The Governors find this a very useful tool and we have a very high rate of return from you all – thank you. In particular, I am delighted that there were hardly any responses which required a personal follow up and, in such cases, almost all parents identified themselves so that the concerns could be followed up. However, do please continue to raise such concerns at the earliest opportunity, so that they can be dealt with immediately they arise. A reminder that if any parent has a concern, the best place is to raise the issue with the Head, Deputy, Mrs Reynolds or myself as we don’t like to hear of unhappy children and we are helpless to act when we do not know which child.

CONGRATULATIONS-AGAIN

I am delighted to be able to confirm that our Summer SATs results were excellent again, indeed, well within the top 10% in the Country, though we are still awaiting the final official analysis. The Director of Education for Essex has again written to congratulate us.

GOVERNOR UPDATES

 We had our last School Development Day on Thursday, April 4th, at which we established our Priorities for this current academic year.

All of our Priorities are supported by a careful Programme of Governor Visits and all Governors are involved in these. These provide the school with a critical friend so that we continue to implement meaningful change.

SCHOOL ASSOCIATION (SPSWSA)

My continuing thanks to all of you who continue to support the wonderful School Association in raising the funds to allow us to remain an Outstanding School. I must again pay tribute to the work of Vicky Dorrington and Kim Johnson and all the parents who work so hard to put on great events that ultimately make our children’s education better. I am advised that over £20k was raised this Autumn Term alone, largely aided by the wonderful Circus, Fireworks and Christmas Fayre. I cannot speak highly enough of the value of the work all the parents do in supporting your children’s school so well. THANK YOU. I am advised that the Association is undertaking some personnel changes in the near future so I would wish the new Team every success in continuing this excellent work

PARKING

Matters do seem to be improving and I continue to be clear that the vast majority of parents park really sensibly – and accurately! Still some do not!

Last year a team of parents upgraded the path alongside the church park down to the Cricket Ground at Weald Park. This is now passable for buggies etc. in all weathers. I recently walked it to check! Additionally, a parent, Mr Stefan Reade, continues to liaise with the Park and has the means of securing the “inner” park, so there is space for upwards of 50 cars every morning and afternoon.

We have supplied the Park with details of new parents who wish to use this facility after Christmas. Using this is significantly easing the pressures on the Church parking, especially when there are major Church events at the same time. I usually give parents some warning of these, such as the Thursday at 2 on the last Thursday of each month. There is a plan to enable us to use part of the field nearest the end of the path by placing a height barrier at the entrance. This has been delayed by the Park contractors as it was originally hoped that it could be in place early in the Autumn Term. I am meeting the Park Manager this Saturday to see if we can assist in moving this forward.

Sadly, with all this space, we still have irresponsible parking on Wigley Bush Lane, endangering the lives of our children. Please do not do this, especially when dropping off early in the morning. It is still dangerous though not illegal. I am sure no parent would be the cause of injury to another child – or their own

Please also think about using the walking bus.

In short, please think carefully about the needs and safety of us all.

STAFFING

There were only two changes in the teaching team at the start of this year. Mrs Reynolds, together with Mrs Ledgerwood, took over Ms Williams Y5/6 class and Ms Dewsall joined the KS1 team. All the new staff and the 60 new Reception children seem to have settled in very well in their first term, according to the reports which have reached me.

CELEBRATIONS-AGAIN

I am delighted to be able to report that we had a SIAMS (Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools) in November. This takes place every 5 years and looks at our provision of Worship and Religious Education. It also looks at behaviour and general approaches to looking after each other. The Inspection involves a full day visit when the Inspector looks at all aspects of the school’s spiritual life and meets key “players”, including, of course, staff, children, governors and parents. The Inspection was an unqualified success the school achieving the highest grade of ‘excellent’ in all seven areas. The full Report will be available after Christmas and will be published on the school website

FINALLY – CHRISTMAS 2020 AND ON

As I write, on Tuesday December 17th, I am fresh from the Infant Nativity this last Wednesday. What a delight this was, fitting for the West End stage with sound and video enhancement again provided by a parent, Gary Mahone and his team. We are really grateful to Gary as the sound enhancement makes a fantastic difference to Reception and Infant children. It was a quite extraordinary Performance by any standards but for it to come from every child, some of whom are still 4 and few are even as old as 7, was truly remarkable! The week had started with the lovely “Christmas Tree Festival” at the Church. It looked spectacular, as did the work and the Tree displayed from the school. Do book the date (December 5th/ 6th ) in your diary for next year as well as the Christingle (13th). I now look forward to the usual run of Autumn Star, Carol Service (19th), Nine Lessons and Carols (22nd ) and the regular Christmas services.  I hope that you will all manage something of a break over the “festive season” and be able to spend some time with your families. I can reflect on yet another splendid year.

It’s a wonderful school in which to be involved!

Chris Luck Chair of Governors

December 17th   2019

 

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