Headteacher Newsletter Issue 5
FORTNIGHTLY NEWSLETTER ISSUE 5: 12.11.21
All the children, from Reception to year 6, took part in Friendship Week last week. Each House Group came together to take part in friendship building activities with different adults from across the school. They have created word bricks for the graffiti wall, voted in new house captains, took part in various friendship building games which included the parachute and considered the importance of kindness within friendship. The children had a fantastic time helping and getting to know each other better.
Forest School – Years 1 and 2
On Friday, Class 1 and Class 2 went to Deer’s Park for their very first Forest School experience.
It really was learning and exploration without confinement! Children showed their wonderful listening skills when carefully digesting the rules of the forest from Mrs Thomas. They used excellent team building skills and communication skills to move logs, build dens and climb something tricky. Most of all they had lots of fun exploring Snail’s wood with their friends. Both classes enjoyed a nice snack together before a little more play and then returning to school. Before they left, they respectfully said thank you to the wood for allowing them to play
Last week, some children from Classes 3 and 4 went to Joyce Franklin to compete against other schools in a dodgeball tournament. One of our teams came 2nd overall and will be progressing through to the next round of competition in December. Dodgeball is a relatively new sport to the children, and they played very well and had a great afternoon.
School Council and Year 6 visit the village war memorial
On Thursday November 11th Year 6 and the School Council accompanied by Mrs Hall, Mrs Martin, Mrs Neal and Mrs Ford, represented the school at the village Remembrance Day service at the Christian Centre. As part of the service the House Captains and Vice Captains read out the names of the 28 local men who died in the First World War and the 6 local men who died in the Second World War. At school, a 2 minute silence was held in every class at 11 o’clock. Mr Mallam, our brass instrument teacher, played the Rembrance Day Last Post on the cornet.
Cheerleading – Year 2
Class 2 have had two special cheerleading sessions with Mrs Coleman. She has taught us the basic moves and formations. The children have really enjoyed putting together their final routine, using their new skills, ready to perform.
Friends of Clavering Neon Disco
The children had a wonderful time last night at the Friends of Clavering Neon disco. Thank you to all the members of Clavering that organised and supported the event.
Parent Governor elections
Notification will be sent out today regarding a Parent Governor vacancy. Toby Pellew has sadly completed his 4 year term which will leave a vacancy on the Governing Body. We would like to thank Toby for all his hard work and support over the years. If you are interested in applying please complete the appropriate paperwork in the given time frame.
Parenting Smart (Place2Be)
The children’s mental health charity, Place2Be, has launched a new website aimed at helping parents with typical situations they can find themselves in with their children. Advice can be found on over forty topics including: Understanding sibling rivalry My child is lying, what does it mean, what should I do? My child has trouble going to sleep My child says ‘I hate you!’ Cultural identity: who am I? The Parenting Smart website can found here: https://parentingsmart.place2be.org.uk/
Parking and supervision of children walking to school
It has come to our attention that while dropping off and collecting their children at school parents are parking across and blocking local resident drives. This is not acceptable and does not allow those residents to access their property hence causing delays and problems to their day to day life. Please be mindful when parking in the school vicinity.
May we also please ask you to supervise your children whilst walking to school, it can be very dangerous when children run on ahead, cross drives and run around parked vehicles. Young children are not always seen in vehicle mirrors and need to be with their parent until safely in school.
Thank you for your co-operation and understanding but the children’s safety is paramount.
Please could we make sure all uniform is named so that we can return misplaced items.
The school office should be notified on the first day of each absence before registration at 9.00am and this should be followed up in writing on the day of return.
If your child has been vomiting or had an upset stomach a 48 hour leave of absence from the last episode is required. For guidance on other illnesses please contact the School Office or refer to the document on the website in the ‘Attendance’ section – “Guidance on infection control in schools and other childcare settings”.
School starts at 8.50 a.m. We have noticed several children are consistently arriving late for school – ‘late’ is defined by not being within the school gates by 8.50 a.m. Please make every effort to be at school on time and if you know that your journey will be disrupted by road works, do allow time for this.
Please note that lateness is recorded on a per pupil basis.
Restrictions and protective measures have been reduced but it is vital that we are still vigilant and recognising and acting on COVID symptoms.
The main symptoms of coronavirus (COVID-19) are:
- a high temperature – this means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
- a new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours (if you usually have a cough, it may be worse than usual)
- a loss or change to your sense of smell or taste – this means you’ve noticed you cannot smell or taste anything, or things smell or taste different to normal
If anyone has any of the COVID symptoms, no matter how mild, they must stay at home and take a PCR test. If the results are positive then they must isolate for 10 days. If they have symptoms they must isolate whilst waiting for the test results. If anyone has a positive result on any test they must isolate.
Please inform the school if anyone in the household has COVID symptoms.
Our experience is showing that in many cases, early symptoms are presenting similar to those that you would expect of a cold – headache, sneezing, sore throat and a runny nose. I would strongly recommend anyone whose children are displaying these new symptoms, or indeed themselves, to get a PCR test, although these symptoms are not those listed by the government as requiring a PCR test. In our experience, test results are being turned around very quickly, usually between 18-24 hours.
As these symptoms are not those officially listed as requiring isolation whilst awaiting a PCR result, you are not required to do so, although you may find it prudent to await a result before returning to school.
I fully appreciate how frustrating this is when your child ‘just has a cold’, but any support you can give to helping our school run at full operational capacity is very much appreciated.
Local Authority advice – children to undertake twice-weekly lateral flow testing
We have seen COVID-19 infections in primary school-aged children in Essex increasing over the past few weeks. At this rate, it is expected that some primary schools could see significant numbers of pupils infected with COVID-19. Throughout the pandemic, regular household testing has been encouraged, but we would now like to strengthen that advice for primary age children.
From this half term, to help limit the spread of the infection within primary schools we are asking you to:
- Support your primary school child, if you are not already doing so, to undertake twice-weekly lateral flow device tests.
- Be alert to COVID-19 symptoms in your child (high temperature, new continuous cough, or loss of sense of smell or taste).
- Encourage good hand hygiene within your household.
Whilst we understand this is different guidance for some of you, we would strongly encourage you to begin this practice as a family, excluding any child/ren under the age of 2. This will ensure that as much asymptomatic infection as possible is picked up and will help schools to continue to operate at full capacity and minimise the spread of infection through the school and wider community. You can collect test kits from your nearest pharmacy using one of the new collect codes which can be downloaded from https://test-for-coronavirus.service.gov.uk/collect-lateral-flow-kits. You can then hand this into your local pharmacy, who will provide you with test kits. You can also collect test kits from your local library or order them online via this link: https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/testing/regular-rapid-coronavirus-tests-if-you-do-not-have-symptoms/.
If a positive result is returned, your child/young person will need to seek a confirmatory PCR test and isolate for 10 days according to national guidance. If the PCR test is negative, your child can return to school if they are well enough to do so. More information about lateral flow testing can be found here: Regular Rapid Lateral Flow Coronavirus (Covid-19) Tests.
We appreciate that the changes in guidance can cause anxiety for some, but it is important that the education of our children and young people is prioritised this academic year. The likelihood of serious illness in children is extremely low and after 18 months of serious disruption, the DfE and the Local Authority are committed to ensuring that all children and young people in Essex have every opportunity to catch up and exceed their potential.
Protective measures in school
We have had three cases recently in school. In order to manage the current climate and enable us to continue with whole school activities and having visitors in school, it is vital that we work together. We are putting extra measures in place around the official guidance to enable us to continue with the whole school way of working.
All visitors coming into the school will be asked to wear a mask and take a Lateral Flow Test (LFT), prior to visiting. They will sign a document to declare:
- that they have not travelled or transited through any of the countries or areas as per government guidance/restrictions
- that they do not have any symptoms
- that they have not been asked to self-isolate by NHS Track and Trace
- that they do not have anyone at home with symptoms or a positive COVID result
We would also like to see the negative LFT result – emailed photograph.
If we do have contacts (pupils or staff only) in the school setting then we ask that they do NOT come back to school until their PCR test is negative, despite the guidance, and that they take LFTs for the 10 day contact period. Staff will also be asked to wear a mask when they are not teaching or eating.
As per the guidance, all staff will continue to take Lateral Flow Tests twice a week. Ventilation, strong hygiene and cleaning routines will be in place. These measures will be increased if the virus rate increases.
PCR test can be arranged online by following this link: Get a free PCR test to check if you have coronavirus (COVID-19) – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk). If you cannot use the online service, call 119. Lines are open 7am to 11pm.
In order to decrease the testing time please opt for a face-to-face test as opposed to a postal option.
You can access a free LFT in a number of ways, including at the local LFT site in your district, by collecting a home LFT kit from a test site, or by ordering a home test kit online. More information about these options can be found here: Regular Rapid Lateral Flow Coronavirus (Covid-19) Tests.
Application for leave of absence for term time holidays
Guidance from the Local Authority:
“Leave of absence may only be granted by a person authorised in that behalf by the proprietor of the school. As from 1st September 2013, the Education (Pupil Registration) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2013 amended Regulation 7 to prohibit the proprietor of a maintained school from granting leave of absence to a pupil, except where an advance application has been made by the parent with whom the pupil normally resides, and the proprietor considers that there are exceptional circumstances relating to the application.
Taking your child out of school during term time could be detrimental to your child’s educational progress. There is no entitlement to parents to take their child out of school during term time, however, you may apply to the school for leave of absence if you believe there are exceptional circumstances.
If the absence is not authorised and the holiday is taken, the case will be referred to the Education Welfare Service who may issue a Penalty Notice for £120 (or £60 if paid within 21 days) to each parent for each child taken out of school.”
Please note occasional days for birthdays and treats cannot be authorised and cheaper prices cannot be considered to be a valid reason. No leave of absence will be granted during our assessment weeks or the first week of the Autumn term. Medical appointments, if at all possible should be made outside school hours. Siblings of children attending medical appointments should remain in school.
School Admissions – Primary and Secondary – Apply Now!!
To apply quickly and easily for primary and secondary school places go online to https://www.essex.gov.uk/admissions-to-essex-schools-for-the-next-school-year
Secondary school places for September 2022
From 10 September 2021 you can apply online for your child’s school place https://www.essex.gov.uk/apply-for-a-secondary-school-place
You must submit an application by the national closing date of 31 October 2021. Applications received after this date will be considered late and you may reduce your chance of being offered a place at your preferred school.
Primary and junior school places for September 2022
From 8 November 2021 you can apply online for your child’s school place https://www.essex.gov.uk/apply-for-a-primary-school-place
You must submit an application by the national closing date of 15 January 2022. Applications received after this date are considered late and will reduce your chance of being offered a place at your preferred schools.
Free School Meals Funding
You can register for Free Schools Meals Funding if you meet the criteria below.
If you have a child in Key Stage One and are receiving the free meal, which is part of the universal offer, you could be missing out on this additional funding for the school, which will support your child with their learning, if you meet the criteria below. You have to apply for this funding. If you think you meet the criteria below then please follow the guidance below and contact the school office.
DATES FOR YOUR DIARY
11.11.21 Friends of Clavering Neon Disco
11.11.21 Year 6 and School Council attend the village Remembrance
15.11.21 – 16.11.21 Bikeability
15.11.21 Odd Sock Day Anti Bullying Week
17.11.21 Dodgeball years 5 and 6 (pm)
17.11.21 Parents Evening
18.11.21 Parents Evening
19.11.21 Children in Need
19.11.21 Open Morning for new potential new parents
23.11.21 Individual School Photographs
25.11.21 Flu immunisation
1.12.21 Sports Hall Athletics years 3 and 4
6.12.21 Tray Day
13.12.21 Friends of Clavering Christmas Shopping Morning
14.12.21 KS2 Dress Rehearsal (for pupils) am, KS1 Dress Rehearsal pm and KS2 Evening Performance for Parents of years 3 and 4
15.12.21 Church Service
15.12.21 Christmas Lunch
16.12.21 Reception Nativity am, KS1 Performance pm and KS2 Evening Performance for Parents of years 5 and 6
17.12.21 Last day of term
4.1.22 INSET day – school closed to pupils
5.1.22 New Spring term begins
INSET Dates for the academic year 2022 – 2023
Schools allocate five non-pupil days for staff training:
Thursday 1st September 2022
Friday 2nd September 2022
Friday 21st October 2022
Monday 17th April 2023
Monday 5th June 2023
STAR OF THE WEEK
Week ending November 5th
Reception Luna – for her amazing peg rangoli pattern
Year One Jasmine – for showing great understanding of addition when solving fact family number sentences
Year Two Jake – for fantastic effort in cheerleading
Year Three Ella – for being kind and helpful throughout Friendship Week
Year Four Luke – for a good understanding of negative numbers and always being kind
Year Five Isaac – for showing great kindness and for contributions in class
Year Six Maisie – for consistent effort in Science
WRITER OF THE WEEK
|w/e 5/11/21||R – Alfie for trying really hard to form the letter ‘c’|
1 – Wilbur – for writing some great sentences all on his own!
2 – Teddy G – Super, neat, independent writing of his numbers
3 – Rory Phillips – excellent poetry writing
4 – Max Sullivan – for his super effort at editing his ‘Change of Heart’ story
5 – Matilde – for her exciting free write
6 – Charlie Williams – for his excellent science writing whilst creating a perfectly adapted plant
Each week the kitchen team present an award to the class or individual for good manners –
4.10.21 Class One – for exceptional manners
11.10.21 Kayleigh – for always saying thank you
18.10.21 Eve – for great manners
1.11.21 Consuello – for stacking the trays when they started to fall
THE ‘IT DIDN’T GO UNNOTICED’ AWARD
Year 2 especially Tilly, Hattie, Phoebe R, Ellie, Lottie, Matilda W and Minty for helping the Midday Assistants and Playleaders without being asked.
Look out for our next edition of ‘Friday Focus’:
The fortnightly Friday Focus is a chance for every class at Clavering to share their learning with the Clavering School community. It is a great opportunity to find out what each year group has been up to and engage in conversations around learning.
If you have any questions at any time then please feel free to make an appointment.
Have a good weekend.