Message from Mrs. Castell
We have been busy but had lots of fun in our first full week under near normal conditions since March 2020. The children have settled back well and it is lovely to meet all our new EYFS children in person. The children have had assemblies together, eaten in the hall, Dolphins and Turtles have had Forest School days and Sharks have met Lola, our reading dog! Parents of children in Years 1 and 2 have had Meet the Teacher sessions and EYFS parents are welcome to join us for a coffee morning on Monday, when their children start full-time.
Clubs begin next week for Year 1 and 2 children - if you haven't yet booked, please contact our professional sports coaches directly, or fill in the ParentMail form for staff clubs by midnight tonight. We are so pleased to be allowed to offer these opportunities again!
There are two wonderful news stories from our staff to share. Firstly Miss Williams, last year's teacher in Sharks, gave birth to a son on Monday. Hugh Michael Ross Williams weighed 9 lbs 1oz and we can’t wait to meet him! Secondly Miss Wakeling (pictured) has been named in the GB Women's Olympic Ice Hockey team! They are competing in the Olympic qualifiers in Nottingham next month in advance of the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympics. As both a former pupil and now one of our fabulous teaching assistants working across the school, we are hugely proud of her and will be supporting her all the way to Beijing! Absolutely amazing!
Just a few reminders as we revisit procedures that haven't been in place for 19 months!
- School doors close at 8.55am. We have kept the doors open a little longer this week, as we all get used to the return to school, but please make every effort to be here by 8.55 so that staff can return to their classroom duties.
- As clubs may be held on the playground on Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays, we will be asking you to leave promptly after school pick up on those days, so that we can lock the gate to keep children safe.
- A display in our hall lists essential information about all children with food allergies in school. This is for the children's safety as members of school staff and our catering team can vary from day to day. If you would prefer your child’s picture not to be displayed in the hall, please let me know.
- Class email accounts are not routinely monitored during the day as our teachers are teaching, so urgent notes about pick up arrangements, lunch changes or medical issues must be referred to the office by phone call or firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Please do not use any of our old email accounts ending in writtle-inf.essex.sch.uk. These are now defunct and your email may be missed.
I hope I have contacted all parents who have volunteered to help in school, (apologies if I have missed you, please let me know if you have not received that message) to say that I am holding a short meeting at 9.00 on Tuesday 14th September for you all. If this time is not suitable let me know and I can arrange to chat with you separately.
If you or any of your family are interested in supply teaching opportunities at the school, please let me know. You would need to have the usual checks including references before starting any employment at the school.
Shooting Stars and HIPIP
After extensive discussion we feel that offering Shooting Stars once a week to only a handful of children does not fit with our commitment to ongoing praise and rewards for all children. Our Behaviour and Relationship policy outlines the ways in which we might offer praise and rewards in school throughout the week:
- Celebrating and promoting pro-social experiences, feelings and behaviour
- Praise for individuals and groups of children;
- Presentation of work or pro-social experiences to the class/rest of the school
- Celebration of pro-social behaviours linked to our HIPIP values
A number of parents have also shared their concerns as to the length of time that children can wait for a publicised reward. Therefore we have decided to trial a move away from Shooting Stars and instead extend the HIPIP rewards, which are linked to our school values. Staff and children throughout the week will nominate children for a HIPIP award. We will celebrate these in our Friday assembly and send you the certificates via ParentMail. We also love to share details of achievements out of school in our Friday assemblies. Please email me or if children want to bring in badges, certificates etc on a Friday it is lovely to share.
Have a lovely weekend!