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Spring Term 2019 first half

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Happy New Year

Christmas is such a magical time to be involved with any school but even more so in a church school. We made Christingles, had an amazing nativity with fabulous children and amazing effects. We also had a magical Church Carol Service, brilliant Christmas parties and a truly remarkable Christmas Fayre that raised ÂŁ17,000. A lot of this was through matched funding- and hard work! If you know that your company does matched funding or community giving please let us know as for very little effort you can raise an amazing amount of money for our children.

The Christmas jumper day raised £228 for Save the Children. We also sent 74 Christmas boxes and raised £386 for the Poppy appeal. We are still waiting to see how much money was raised from the Christingles for the Children’s Society.

Inspirational children

We were so proud that Louis and Isabelle were given an award by Children Inspire. This is a charity that recognise when exceptional children have coped with exceptional circumstances. We are all so proud of them and they really are an inspiration to all of us.

Academic results

The school was fifth in Essex this year- out of around 400 schools and was the highest performing school in Brentwood. We are so lucky to have dedicated and talented teachers who work so hard with all our children. We are also really lucky that we have great children and really supportive parents as well.

Breakfast Club

We have a thriving breakfast club in school. You can drop the children off at 7.30am in the morning. We are constantly trying to lower costs. You can use childcare vouchers for the breakfast club which will save you the tax. We have also just introduced a new price for brothers and sisters who go to breakfast club. It is ÂŁ5.00 for the first child and then ÂŁ3.00 for every other child that attends on that day.

Parking

There is a really lovely family that live at The Springs House. They never normally complain and always support the school. However people have actually started blocking their drive so that they cannot get on or off their drive. They have very nicely asked if we can make sure that we do not block the entrance.

We have also sent warning letters to persistent offenders who park outside the Alms Houses. The next step unfortunately if they park there again is that they will receive a two week ban form the governors from entering the school grounds. I will be doing weekly checks to note down who is parking here. Please just park elsewhere.

I am still overwhelmed by the sense of community that was shown last term with the weekends spent digging and laying the path to the park parking. Thank you again to all who gave time, expertise or resources to make this happen.

Thank you to everyone who parks correctly and helps to keep the children safe. In particular the parents and grandparents who are on the crossing no matter the weather to ensure that the children can get to school safely.

Snow

I love snow at the weekend but hate it weekdays! My guiding principle is that we will be open if it snows. If you are a working parent then there can be nothing worse than having to sort out last minute child care. As long as the road stays gritted we will try our very best to stay open. We were the only school to be open all days last year. This happened thanks to the dedicated staff and also people who were prepared to come to school early and help clear snow from the paths and car park. If it snows and you live close by and could help clear paths at 7.00am your help would be really appreciated. I know that does not seem that appealing but it makes such a difference. Last year it was clearer around our school than Brentwood High Street.  Hopefully it will only snow in the holidays.

Uniform

Thank you for making the children at our school so smart. Please can you make sure that you label everything- including socks. If they have the children’s names in then there is a good chance that things will reappear. If they do not they end up in lost property and get recycled every half term.

We also have a great selection of pretty much new uniform in the second hand uniform shop.

Progress

Some parents mentioned in the feedback survey that they would like more regular updates on how their children are doing at school.  This is, therefore, just to reassure you all that, in addition to the parents evenings and reports that we send out during the year we also have internal meetings every term where class teachers review and discuss each individual child’s progress with the senior leadership team.

Where we feel that children would benefit from extra support we will plan interventions and invite you to an extra parents’ evening in the Spring term to discuss this with you.  If, therefore, you do not hear anything from us please assume that your child is making expected progress and be assured that we are continually monitoring this for every child – both within teaching teams and at governors’ meetings every term.

Holidays and absence

Year six have the worst attendance in the school. This is the year group that really, really need to be here so that we can help them get ready for secondary transfer. If they leave with an average attendance then it is easy to slip into bad habits at secondary school which can have really detrimental results in the children’s life chances.

The national average is 95% attendance. We have far from average children and the school’s attendance is 97.45%. We had 136 children who received a 100% attendance certificate for this term. This will be reset at the start of the spring term so anyone can get a 100% attendance next term. This is slightly different as to how we have done the attendance. This way if you have a day off in any term you still get a chance in the next term.

However if your child’s attendance falls below 90% then that means we have to inform Essex County Council as this is classed as persistent absence. 90% means that the child in question has missed at least half a day a week. When we look at the registers we also look for patterns of absence- do the children always have a Monday off? We have 3% of children who are classed as persistent absence but we also have a number of children who are just above this. I know that children get ill however there are days that some children have off where they would have been fine at school.

The school’s policy on actual physical sickness is that if a child is sick they must stay off for 24 hours after the last time they are actually sick.

 

 

Attendance definitions

 

 

 

 

 

 

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