Newsletter - Friday 1st December 2017
We are proud to say...
A message from Mr Barton
I would like to use my message this week to keep you up to date with the school's position regarding potential conversion to becoming an academy. You may well be aware already that the school governors have been looking at this for some time. In Bath and North East Somerset a rapidly growing number of schools have now converted to academy status and it is now the case that more than 50% of BANES schools are now academies. For us, this means that in practical terms the local authority is no longer able to provide much support for the development of teaching and learning in Pensford. The drop in number of schools makes their service less efficient to provide and this has been exacerbated by some dramatic real terms funding cuts to the local authority itself in recent times.
The governors and I are therefore continuing to explore the best options for the school. As explained at our open meeting for parents on 27th April, we are looking in particular at the Lighthouse Schools Partnership (LSP) as a Multi-Academy Trust that could support our school well. The Trust is based in Portishead but has links to Chew Valley, not least through the fact that its Chief Executive used to be the deputy head at Chew Valley School. The idea is that, along with other schools in the Chew Valley, we would form a 'hub' of this multi-academy trust and work much more closely together within it. At Pensford we are being cautious about exploring the options because we are very mindful that whatever structure the school has behind the scenes, it must be the best possible in terms of what it provides for the children. We want to be as sure as we possibly can that any move would have a positive impact on them.
At this stage, nothing specific has been signed or agreed to say that we will definitely join the LSP but I do want to remind our community that, for the time being at least, this is our direction of travel. This week I have learned that the earliest we might join is September 2018. I am very grateful to the Board of Governors for the work they are putting in to steering our school successfully through a time of change in the local educational landscape.
Meanwhile I hope you enjoy reading the rest of the newsletter and that you have a very good weekend.
Parentpay Is Here
As of today, all payments need to be made on Parentpay so the School Office will be unable to accept cash or cheques for school payments (we can still collect payments on behalf of external After School Club providers). If you still have to activate your account, can we ask that you do this asap.
All school meals/breakfast club and camp opening balances have now been added to parent's accounts so can we ask that you log on and check if you need to make any payments.
If you are a parent or carer who does not own a credit or debit card, please contact Sarah Millican the School Business Manager asap.
Similarly if you are experiencing problems setting up your account, please feel free to see Sarah and she will help you set up the account.
On Thursday this week, Dragonfly class bore more resemblance to Santa's Workshop than a normal classroom, as the children were busy designing and making Christmas gifts to sell at our upcoming Fair
Thank-you to all who have donated items to the Fair and we look forward to seeing lots of parents at the fair from 2:45pm until 3:45pm on Thursday, 14th December. If you still have anything to donate, it isn't too late! The list of items we need was in last week's newsletter, which can be found here.
Don't forget that, as well as through reading this newsletter, you can keep up to date with what is happening in each class by looking at their individual class pages. These give a really good picture of the learning and activities that have been taking place. The pages are under the 'Children' tab above and you can also find them here:
As a reminder, this will take place on Tuesday, 12th December at 6:30pm in Publow Church. Unfortunately, a small number of children have told us that they will not be able to perform due to other commitments. This is such a shame because the children are working so hard and enjoying learning the songs. If it is not possible for your child to be at the performance, please inform the class teacher by Monday. This will avoid last-minute changes with children have to learn others' parts and will help us to make sure that the children are well prepared for their roles. Please do make every effort to help your child take part in the performance, which should be an enjoyable occasion for all.
We are very grateful to Mrs Nagle, who has very kindly offered to buy a set of angel wings for all the angels! This generosity is very much appreciated, so we wanted to say a 'Thank-you' here in the newsletter.
Mr Miller would like to report that the football team who played Winford on Thursday were a great credit to the school. They played superbly against a very strong team. Winford are known to be a very successful side and we expected to be tested against them. The result of 1-1 was therefore an excellent one for Pensford and we are very proud of our team.
Please note that we WILL be running an extra film club session on Thursday, 14th December.
Next Thursday, the film will be chosen soon, and you can book in for the session as normal.
Radstock Museum: Accredited Learning Destination for the Children’s University.
FREE family event (EDUCATIONAL EVENT):
Saturday 9th December: A VICTORIAN CHRISTMAS, A FREE FESTIVE FAMILY EVENT: Somerset Coalfield Life invites you to step back in time and enjoy a magical Victorian Christmas. Visit the old Co-op shop and see what seasonal treats are on offer. Meet the miner’s wife in the cottage preparing for Christmas and try your hand at lots of Victorian themed crafts and activities. Then enjoy winter warming refreshments in the tearoom and discover unique Christmas gifts in the museum shop. All museum volunteers will be in traditional Victorian costume and this FREE festive family event will take place at Radstock Museum between 2 and 4:30pm on Saturday 9th December.
RISING SUN XMAS QUIZ MON 18TH DEC 2017 19.00
Prizes Sponsored by True Speed
Q and A session from 7pm
Quiz at 8pm
Join us for our annual Christmas Quiz – This year sponsored by True Speed!
Max team size is 6 - £2 pp All proceeds go to Pensford Tennis Club.
Mince Pies – Mulled Wine – Mulled Cider