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Newsletter - w/c 21/10/2019

Dear parent/carer,


Please find below the weekly newsletter containing important information.  




Our tough stance on attendance has worked - this term, our attendance is the highest it's been for many years.  Still, parents and carers should be aware that we have sent a few notices to the local authority who will now issue fixed penalty notices to parents/carers of children who have 15 unauthorised absence sessions or more in this term or the previous term.  These fixed penalty notices can take anything from a few weeks to a few months to arrive depending on the local authority's backlog of fines.


A school like ours needs the children in every day and on time - we can't do our important work if children miss lessons regularly; it affects children's confidence, friendships and achievement.  


A big thank you to those parents/carers who always bring their children to school every day and on time, including those who may have to deal with some difficult behaviour in the home, on the walk/drive to school, and perhaps even in the school playground - we appreciate the effort you put in so thank you.   


Attendance Raffle!


Would you and your child like to win some prizes?  Prizes include games and a family ticket to Paradise Wildlife Park.

For each day your child attends, they will be given a ticket and their name placed in our prize draw.  The more days they attend, the greater their chance of winning.  We will announce the winning child on Friday 25th October 2019.  Good luck!  


Breakfast Club - November/December Bookings


Please remember to use the School Gateway app from 4:45pm on Monday 21st October 2019 to book your child/ren's spaces for after half term (i.e. from Monday 4th November 2019 onward).  There is a £1 per child, per day charge to help pay for additional staff and resources.  We require all payment in advance via the School Gateway app. 


For your information, there are 50 spaces per day which is more than we currently provide.  Once the spaces are booked, we cannot accept more children.  If spaces are being booked for a child but they are not attending, we will remove them from the register in line with our Wraparound Childcare Policy to give other families the chance to use the service.


If you have any difficulty booking, please speak to Mrs Chamberlain (Office Manager) as soon as possible.      


Parents and Carers' Evening - Thursday 24th October 2019, 3:30-9:00pm


Please click here and follow the instructions to book an appointment to meet with your child's class teacher this Thursday.  It is very important that an adult attends for every child so teachers may share children's successes as well as express any concerns about learning or behaviour so we may work together to get the best out of every child in our school.


If you have difficulty making an appointment, the administrative assistants in the school office can help you.  Please be aware that the early appointments (i.e. 3:30-4:30pm) tend to get booked up fast!  


The appointments for Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 are held in the children's classrooms.  The appointments for Years 3-6 are held in the main hall.  You will find your child's English and maths books outside their classroom or in the dining hall for children in Years 3-6.


Please also note that it is not necessary to bring your child to Parents and Carers' Evening.  If you do make the choice to bring your child/ren, please ensure they behave well and do not disturb the other appointments taking place.


Some of our School Governors will be present at Parents and Carers' Evening, handing out paper copies of the results from our recent Parent/Carer Survey.  We will also e-mail out the results electronically next Friday.  


Halloween Dress-up Day - Friday 25th October 2019


If your child brings in £1 to raise money for the school, he/she may dress in Halloween-themed costume on Friday.  If you do not celebrate this tradition, your child is welcome to attend in non-school uniform or school uniform if you prefer.  There will be prizes for the most creatively-dressed child in the EYFS/KS1 and in KS2.  


Sports News


In our effort to improve our performance at inter-school competitions, we made a change this year that some parents/carers may be unaware of.  All our teachers have been timetabled to run an 8-week after-school sports clubs that ends with the children partaking in an inter-school festival, tournament or match.  This was the right decision because just this week, our girls' tag rugby team won 4 out of the 6 games they played at a festival and our boys' football team beat Downfield Primary School 6-0.  Of course, it is the taking part that counts, but we are so proud of the results!  Hopefully we'll have more good news to report over the coming weeks and months.  Go Team Hurst Drive!

Please ensure your child brings their PE kit to school on a Monday and returns it home on a Friday for cleaning.  It is really hard for children to take part in PE wearing school uniform and school shoes!


Lockdown Procedure


Your child may have told you we practised our Lockdown Procedure on Wednesday.  As with any of our emergency drills, the children and staff behaved exactly as they should and the whole practice was completed in under 4 minutes.  We know us practising the procedure fills some parents/carers with worry as no one wants to imagine the very worst thing happening in a primary school; however, we believe it is important we prepare for every eventuality so we thank you for your support in the matter.  


Year 6 Parent/Carers

The deadline for all Year 6 secondary applications is Thursday 31st October 2019. Please do not forget to apply for your child’s place.


Half Term


Please note, we are a state maintained primary school so we do not decide our own school holidays.  We are very aware that our half term does not coincide with the half terms of some other primary and secondary schools.  We are sorry if that has inconvenienced any families.  Our school will be closed from Monday 28th October 2019 to Friday 1st November 2019.  Children will return to school on Monday 4th November 2019 where we have some exciting things planned which we will detail in next week's e-mail...  


Dinner Money


Just a quick reminder that dinner money needs to be paid in advance on a Monday. Our preferred method of payment is on School Gateway. If you are unable to pay on the School Gateway, please come into the office with the correct money in an envelope. The weekly cost of school dinners is £13.00 for five meals.


If you receive a dinner debt letter, please make sure this is cleared straight away to avoid your child having to bring in a packed lunch until the debt is cleared. Unpaid dinner debts could result in the cost of the school dinner charge being increased in the future which would be unfair for those parents/carers who always pay on time.


Yours sincerely,


The School Office Team 

Hurst Drive Primary School  

01992 624099