Goodbye Class of 2021!
We have reached that sad time of year when we must say goodbye to our Y6 pupils. This week they have really enjoyed a lot of rites of passage including the ‘signing of the school shirt’, a non-uniform day at their request; and it’s a pizza and chips dinner on their last day finishing with graduation at the end of the day on Friday!
The ‘pièce de résistance’ though during the final few weeks was definitely the opportunity that they had to visit London last week – we are so pleased that they got to go on this as it was a really memorable experience and many haven’t stopped talking about it since our return.
We always wish them well, telling them that we hope they have CVPS wings with which to fly, and CVPS roots to ground their values. They have shown resilience and resolve to manage their online learning – and their SATs scores (despite Covid) were the best in the school’s history! Well done Y6 we know you are truly going to ‘rock’ wherever you go next! We wish you well, thank you for making your mark with us, and we hope to see you revisit us in the future!
During the transition weeks we have decided to continue with all of our existing Covid control procedures given the substantial positive test results in the community at the moment. This means we will continue to respectfully request that all adults who come onto site to visit school (even in the school field for the sports celebration days), will be asked to wear masks and respect the social distancing arrangements. To keep our staff and existing bubbles as safe as possible we ask that only one adult per child attends the sports activity afternoons, and that both older and younger siblings don’t attend.
I appreciate this is disappointing, but we do feel that we are on a knife edge managing not only potential Covid transmission, but also the significant numbers of staff that have been subject to the legal isolation requirements.
The end of isolation….Hurray!
Once we get to August 16th – we will no longer need to isolate any child other than those who test positive for Covid. This will mean a lot less disruption in the future and we are so looking forward to that! We are proud to have only lost 23 school days in total throughout the current academic year in terms of the days when we have closed bubbles. Huge thanks to you all for playing such significant part in that
– it’s definitely been a team effort.
Final day pizza and chips with three cheers for Chef Lynn!
Year 3 bubble closure
It was absolutely heartbreaking to have to send Y3 home this week due to a positive Covid test in the class. The children were really looking forward to their showcase of their fairground carousel models at The Discovery Museum. However these situations happen through no fault of anyone, and so we have to show resilience and model that to our children. We are trying to link with Cheree and Michael to be able to get them to repeat their planned Discovery experience as soon as possible or for an alternative treat if that’s not possible.
The more frequent sound of ambulance sirens outside are a reminder that we must still play our part as a school in adhering to the guidelines to minimise transmission rates of the virus for as long as possible.
Around the rest of school there’s definitely been mixed emotions this week. Some children have been slightly nervous (understandably) about moving to their next classes. Some have been excited. Some have been rather more wistful than usual, and some have been more tetchy and unsettled than is usual. We have tried to keep things as much to our usual routine as possible, and openly talked about reflecting on the positives at the end of this year. Then starting to think about the new things we’ll be excited about in our new classes. I’ve been surprised that the children seem to have been more impacted this year about the change, with them all having been so settled where they currently are. I think some of the unseen impact of lockdown, uncertainty and Covid means those things which are certain (teachers, classrooms and routines at school) are more precious to us.
Reflections : huge thank yous and goodbye…
As we arrive at the end of another busy year, we take time to reflect and take stock of the events and special activities that have taken place.
Our three key themes and topics this year have certainly been a great springboard for many widely varying experiences and the children have exceeded our expectations in many ways. The topic
entitled ‘Does Art change the world?’ brought about some fantastic responses from KS2 working with our artist in residence, Jane Lee McCracken. Jane has continued to do some work with some of the children who showed exceptional gift in art. I was delighted to have received an image this week created by one of our Y6 pupils Tallulah Dowden who was inspired by Jane to use biro for this beautiful tiger drawing. A true artist already! Well done Tallulah!
Then in our topic in the spring term we reviewed the question ‘Is it good to be different?’ This brought about some excellent discussions about human rights, and we were able to explore diversity, socially as well as culturally at age appropriate levels.
After nearly a full term in lockdown in the spring, we returned to school just before our Easter break to be able to launch the summer term ‘Can we be fairground experts?’ This gave us an amazing opportunity to be able to get the children out and about after what felt like a year of being inside! With bookings for coaches and fairgrounds we enjoyed a fantastic trip to Ocean Park Pleasure Beach and had a great time. We wove into the theme all our science curriculum looking at forces, motion, electrical circuitry, history as well as some cultural appreciation. Seeing the delight on the children’s faces as they spent time at the rides on a glorious spring day was worth all the planning.
And so we reach the end of another brilliant year. Thank you so much for all the feedback forms that have been completed – we really appreciate the time taken to share your views and the encouraging words for the hard working staff team are a real boost at the end of a busy year. We will close the survey on Weds 21st July so please add your comments by then. Click here.
There’s a bitter-sweet time at the end of every school year when we must say goodbye to some of the wonderful staff who have supported the school throughout the year and who are moving on. It’s bitter because we know we will miss them, but sweet as we know they are moving on in their career or to just do something different that they’re looking forward to.
This year we are thankful to both Amy Biggins in Y1 and Christy Shirley in EYFS who have both come to the end of their contracts with us. They have had a hugely positive impact, on supporting the children’s emotional well-being and pastorally providing the children with everything they have needed and more. The children have loved their time in their classes and they have been highly valued members of the staff team. We will miss them both and wish them well for the future.
Then we have three more staff who have shouldered leadership responsibilities at CVPS for around 25 years between all three of them!
Ashleigh Galloway leaves her role at CVPS to take a career break to support her husband’s increasingly successful business. Ashleigh has been instrumental in developing the forest school provision at CVPS and has inspired our children over the ten years since she has (more or less continuously) led our distinctive forest school offer. She created a progression of skills and unique badge system and has taught many children the skills for bushcraft and fire-making. Ashleigh has developed our forest school ranger recognition programme for those children who have a real passion for learning in the outdoors. The children have loved Ashleigh’s leadership in forest school and have really benefited from her many creative ideas, highly skilled knowledge of tools, fires, nature and the environment. As a staff team we will miss Ashleigh’s ice breakers at staff training days – especially the hungry hippos! We wish Ashleigh and Lee well and every success with their business and want Ashleigh to know that we will protect her legacy as Paul Leedham takes over the forest school coordination ably supported by Debbie Thompson next year.
Lisa Brown steps away from CVPS this coming year after being a key player in the early development of the school since before it opened! Lisa has left a legacy throughout the school within both early years and our phonics provision across school. Our early years basic skills have been pioneered by Lisa, and she pioneered some home grown Little Angels approaches to risk management and conflict resolution with the youngest children such as our ‘Hazard Harry and Safety Sue Risky Business’, and ‘Bother and Best’ programmes. All the children who came to us in reception during the early years of our school opening, have been part of Lisa’s classes and they enjoyed the creative teaching activities she provided them. Who can forget the letters the reception children received from The Giant or the Bears?
Under Lisa’s beady eye, the children learned to read, write and to have excellent recall of number facts alongside lots of baking opportunities and fun games which were innovative and exciting . Her skills supporting parents with ideas for home learning and her experiences of providing potential solutions for and advice for families in early years have always been very welcome. She has shown outstanding judgement in her role as our designated safeguarding lead and has held many tenacious conversations. With Lisa going it’s definitely the end of an era and we are so grateful to her for galvanising the many routines, systems and culture that we have in school. Her passion and commitment to the profession putting the children at the heart of everything we do will follow her wherever she goes and will be sorely missed!
And finally Sarah Koratzitis came to us as a trainee teacher in 2014, and has excelled throughout her time training with us. She leaves us for a promoted post as a deputy headteacher at a first school in North Tyneside. We are hugely excited for her taking the next step in her career and we wish her well despite her leaving very big shoes to fill! Sarah has an adept warmth to her teaching style that inspires children no matter what their ability. Her astute focus on perfecting her teaching styles through many creative ways has been an absolute gift to the school that many of our remaining team have used as a model. I am delighted for Sarah to be innovating teaching and learning in a new environment and look forward to see her taking on a headship in the future!
The departing team as well as the arriving team will be at school throughout the transition weeks, ensuring an effective handover time and a great opportunity for staff training and making plans for next term. Some parents have asked if they can give end of term cards and gifts, and we have relaxed our approach to this.
We also say hello to new members of the team this term. And are delighted to have welcomed two of them many months ago as they first joined the team earlier in the year. Alice Sutton joins the early years team as the classroom teacher for reception children. Mark Watson joins Y3 and Alison Jones joins Y6. We are excited to be coming together as a new team and have lots of exciting plans for the next academic year. I’ve enclosed a summary of next year’s teaching teams and their personal updates so you can read them together.
Arrangements for arriving and departing during transition weeks: Please note the following start and finish times:
8.30 to 2.30 for Y1 to Y6 Monday to Thursdays
8.30 to 2pm on Fridays
Arrival and departure arrangements for transition weeks
Our new reception children will be informed separately about the drop off and collection points.
Y1 and Y2 will enter the side gate (next to Little Angels) using the same one way system we have done since lockdowns.
Y3 and Y4 will enter school at the side gate half way along the school field.
Y5 and Y6 are asked to come into the school grounds independently through the side gate at the start of each day.
Kindness Champions – Elizabeth Rutherford and Katherine Doris
Children achieving gold this week – Y3 – Kain Usher
Footballer of the week – Zack Thompson (Y5) and Joseph Collins (Y6)
Ashleigh’s outdoor idea and tallest sunflower winners
Ahoy there! This week I would like you and your family to create your own treasure maps to solve. You could then take turns following the maps you have all created to find the treasure good luck!
Ashleigh announced the winners of the sunflower growing competition as follows:
KS1 with 130cm height was Joseph Collins
KS2 with 130cm height was Kain Usher