Newsletter 30th September - issue 04
This week we are proud to say...
A message from Mr Barton:
It has been another very enjoyable week at Pensford. As we have now passed the half-way point in the term, it has been a good time for us to reflect (as we did in our staff meeting yesterday) on what the whole school has achieved so far. Parents, children and teachers have said that they are enjoying our online tracking of the school values, for example. It is certainly obvious to me as I walk around the school that the values are very well-known, demonstrated and celebrated. I am very impressed with the way in which the whole school community has embraced them. Once again, I am indebted to Mrs Spicer for her contribution of art work to support the values. This is what she sent me this week, and we now have a copy in each class and even in my office:
Other successes that we reflected on yesterday included some new systems that we have for assessing and tracking children. These will feed through to you as parents in the form of a revised format for end of term reports that gives you precise information about how well your children are doing. You can expect to receive this on the last day of term. We also noted the extremely high levels of very good behaviour that we see in school every day. For the three of us who have recently come from other schools we see this in a wider context and we are in no doubt that this is one way in which Pensford is already 'oustanding'. It was also pleasing to receive this feedback today:
"As a former parent I like to keep abreast of what is happening at Pensford Primary School, and I'd just like to say that I absolutely love your new website. It's so fresh and easy to navigate, and the information provided is excellent. Keep up the good work!"
Of course, if you disagree, it is particularly important that you get in touch so that we can make the necessary improvements. I hope that you have a very good weekend as we look forward to the second half of this term.
Roald Dahl Day Update
Some of you may have noticed that pictures from our Roald Dahl Day have made it into the Somerset Guardian this week. If you look at page 17 you will see some lovely photos and we are very grateful to Lisa Cains and Ros Anstey for taking them. We were also able to get across in the paper our message that reading is a key focus for the school this year. Some parents are acutely aware that our systems for children choosing and taking home books are under development. Mr Miller carried out an audit of this last week and will be working with an consultant to develop the very best practice in our school.
Meanwhile, the Roald Dahl reading challenge is going very strongly with his books being borrowed from the library at least 72 times since it began. This was celebrated in assembly this week, and Mr Barton also shared with the children our key development areas for the year. These are 'reading' and 'independence'. As parents, you may well be interested in seeing the one-page version of our school development plan, which can be found here and gives some more detail about our priorities.
The attendance target we have set ourselves this year is to be 0.1% above the national average. This means that we are aiming for 96.5% attendance across the year. You can see from this graph that so far we are nicely on track, and thank-you to all parents who have helped to play a part in this so far.
When children are too ill to be in school it is very important that they rest until they are well enough to attend. On the other hand, please be assured that if your child is a bit 'under the weather' they will be cared for in school and parents and carers will be called if necessary. Often, in the case of minor illnesses, children do not feel well when they first get up but do 'perk up' around 10:00am and could therefore be in school. We recognise that parents more than anyone want the best education for their children. We hope you feel that at Pensford we can support you in maximising your own child's opportunities to take part in school.
If you have looked a the plan linked above in the Roald Dahl update, you will be aware that as well as a focus on reading, we are keen on developing our communication with you as parents. Part of this will involve us publishing the minutes of Parent Council meetings. These are held termly and the minutes of last week's meeting can be found here. Don't forget that you can raise any issues with members of the council, whose names are on the minutes. You can also contact Mr Barton directly either through the school office or on Class Dojo.
This will be on Monday, when we are opening our doors from 7:30am to 6:00pm for any prospective parents who may wish to look around the school. If you know of any families with children who may want to join the school either next September or even sooner, please let them know that they can come and see us then.
We are delighted that some stories have started to come through from past pupils. You can read the first two of these here.