Infant 5/9/14

05 September 2014

Dear Parents,

Happy New Year! Great excitement this week in both schools as children returned or started for the first time. A real thrill was seeing the new reception children arrive for the first time. It was smiles all the way and one little boy told his teacher, “I enjoyed that so much please can I come tomorrow?” It was just the same at the junior site with children appearing to be ready for anything and quickly settling in. Today the new year 3 children have a day in the woods (the Chantries) with their year 6 buddies having a picnic, playing outdoor games and building dens. I expect your children are still excited and tired after their first few days. A little girl at Pewley told me first thing in the morning all that she intended to do in school that day. Her parents sent me a photo of the same girl after the first morning – thumb in and falling asleep in her father’s arms. It’s a tiring business – school.

At the beginning of a new school year it may be a good time to re appraise your career and vocation. Have you ever considered being a teacher? It is a really great job! Shaping young people’s lives, great variety each day, opportunities to be creative, and much more. I can honestly say that I have loved my teaching career and am looking forward to continue working in Teacher Training after I finish here next summer. A good few years ago I helped set up the Surrey ITT programme which has now become the Surrey South Farnham SCITT (School Centred Initial Teacher Training). Helen and I continue to work for this organization with Bec, Gillian R and Clare B helping with lecturing the students. This programme is for Primary and Special Education. George Abbot also run a programme for Primary which Ginnie and Julia (our two Senior Leaders in Education) are helping to set up, as well as a well established secondary programme.

I would be really pleased to chat to anyone interested in making this career change. Entry requirements are a degree and passes in English, Maths and Science at GCSE. These are one year school based training schemes. There could be a possibility of training at either of our sites.

Ian Hollingsworth, who was my head when I was Deputy at Northmead, runs the SSF course. He will be holding a seminar to give information at Holy Trinity School on Tuesday 7th October 5-6.30 and at the Holiday Inn Saturday 11th October 10 – 11.30 and 12 – 1.30. Have a think and give me a call.
With best wishes, Richard

Meet the Team evening, Tuesday 9 September, 7.00pm
: We look forward to seeing you all at the ‘Meet the Team’ evening next Tuesday. This is an opportunity to meet the teaching staff and find out what your child will be doing in the year ahead. Please go straight to your child’s classroom on arrival. This will be followed by the FOPS AGM at 8.00pm in the hall.

Information Evening on Phonics & Reading, Tuesday 16 September, 7.00pm
: This evening is for parents of children in Year R.

Packed Lunches: Just a reminder to parents that we are a nut-free school so please ensure, if your child does bring a packed lunch to school, that all the ingredients are nut-free. Also, because we emphasise healthy living we would ask that lunch boxes do not contain sweets.

Sainsburys vouchers: All the lovely vouchers you saved for us last term have been turned into brilliant resources for our school, which we have gratefully received. We have lots of new cooking equipment so we can cook in larger groups and more frequently. We also have some new playground equipment (including hoops, ropes, bats and balls) which the children have already started to use in the front playground, keeping them stimulated and active at playtimes. We also have 4 new scooters for use in the Rainbow room to replace some broken ones and a few trowels to use in our outdoor areas. Thank you all so much - it really makes a difference to what experiences we can offer your children.

PE - Extra budget: We have bought some new PE equipment with some of the money we have been given to help promote health and fitness: football goals for the field, netball/basketball goals for the front playground, storage boxes for the playground toys, an athletics kit, a cat ladder to add to our gym equipment and a variety of balls, ball bags,swimming hats and some jump sacks! We are very excited to have such amazing resources to use. The children will be having opportunities to use this equipment as soon as we have it.

Change4life club: Irma Patel, one of our teaching assistants, will be running our new Change4life club this term. This club aims to promote a healthy lifestyle for everybody. Some children will get a chance to try different sports using the special bags of equipment that we can borrow from the scheme, practise some of the skills we learn, think about how to be fit and healthy including eating healthily. It will run during school time on a Monday afternoon, by invitation for some children in years 1 and 2. Different children will be chosen each term.

We will be talking to the children about the new equipment and especially making sure that they know how to look after these excellent new resources. We would very much value your support in this to ensure that playground equipment is only used in school time and not before or after school.


Class Representatives: Your class reps this year are as follows. Huge thanks to those who have kindly volunteered to do this.
Beech: Stephanie Henley
Oak: Steph Devers
Willow: Cat Allan, Nicci Holliday & Layla Johnson
Hazel: Linda Britain & Davina McAleely
Your class reps will be getting in touch soon with class contact lists. If you haven't done so already, please could you provide them with your contact details if you would like to be included on the class contact list.
If you have a child in Year 1 please consider stepping up to join Steph and Stephanie as class reps. Many hands make light work.

WANTED!! YEAR 2 CLASS REPS!!: We do not have any class reps for Chestnut or Walnut classes. Year 2 is an exciting year with lots of things to plan and organise. Without class reps it will not be possible to hold the special events which Year 2 children have enjoyed in previous years. We already have volunteers to work on a yearbook for the children. If you have a child in Year 2, please consider putting your name forward for this important role.

Notice of PTA Annual General Meeting:
The Annual General Meeting of the school PTA, called the Friends of Pewley Down School ("FOPS"), will be held on 9 September at 8pm in the School Hall after your Meet the Team meetings. All parents, carers, teachers and staff are automatically members of FOPS and are very welcome. At the AGM we will present the Chairman's and Treasurer's Report and elect the Committee for the 2014-15 school year. The meeting is quite short and there will be refreshments so please come along if you are able to.

If you are interested in getting involved with PTA activities, there will be a sheet for you to express your interest at the AGM. There are lots of roles, big and small, all of which contribute to a school community both socially and financially. For example, perhaps you could organise a social event, help on the school fair committee, find raffle prizes, organise gardening parties for the Wild Place or make hot chocolate for the Bedtime Story?

We are still looking for a volunteer to chair the PTA this year. If you would like to find out what this involves please speak to Emily Bourke ( (who feels she has hogged the limelight for too long now and should allow someone else this excellent opportunity!!)

We are looking forward to an exciting year of events and fundraising. FOPS meetings are notified in advance in the newsletter so watch this space for details of the first FOPS meeting.

Coffee Morning for Year R parents, Monday 15 September after drop-off. Further details to follow.