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Newsletter 5- Friday 8th November
Dear Parents/ Carers,
The first half term of this academic year was certainly a challenging one. Whilst the most important thing for us to do is help the children settle into their new classes, it is important to set the learning and expectations for progress and attainment for the rest of the year. We obviously want to continue our upward trend in respect of educational outcomes in all areas of the school and our super teaching team is key to this. I have been thrilled with the new additions to the staff team and, like I say to parents (and other visitors) on tours of our school, it is the teachers and staff in the classrooms that are the real driver behind standards and I am very proud to lead them. Talking of our super staff team…
Mr Hodgkinson- a new Inclusion Leader for Tudor Primary
Inclusion and the ability to meet the needs of ALL learners is a key part of any school. We are proud of our community of learners and we are constantly looking at how to evolve and refine our approaches. This area of our provision has been led by Mrs Donley in the past few years and she has helped Tudor make huge progress. When I arrived as headteacher, I immediately recognised that the role required more capacity and I made Mrs Donley non-class based to help her carry out the multitude of tasks that such a role requires. The provision at Tudor in regard to Inclusion has really improved and I am much more confident that the individual needs of children (and families) are being met. It is sad to say goodbye to Mrs Donley but I wish her well in her new position at South Hill School. Good luck Mrs Donley!
Whilst Mrs Donley is looking forward to a new challenge I am delighted to share information about our new Inclusion Lead. As well as having experience as a highly successful county advisor and specialist teacher in Inclusion, Mr Hodgkinson has a fantastic reputation in Dacorum (and further afield) and I know that he is thrilled to be the newest addition to our team. A number of local heads have even contacted me to say how fortunate we are that Mr Hodgkinson will be fully part of #TeamTudor. His passion for helping children succeed was so apparent in his interview and this was obviously an important factor in his ability to get the job over a number of other highly experienced candidates in the interview process. He has already been into school a number of times and he looks forward to meeting you all soon when his position ‘officially’ starts.
The staff will all keep looking to improve themselves…
It is not just the children that learn new things at Tudor and I continue to be pleased with the reflective approach of our teaching team. There is a real energy in our team and the fact that we have a real balance of ‘experiences’ is one of our key strengths. From Miss Foy (our most recent newly qualified teacher) to our more experienced members of staff, there is a real passion to excel. On Monday of this week, the staff INSET day was all about performance management and all of the team were able to set challenging targets for their own development as well as the progress and attainment of children in their care. Next week is our monitoring and evaluation week and the leadership of the school will be looking at how the new approaches to marking and feedback (that were introduced by Mr Munro) have been supporting the children. If you are interested in our approaches to different areas of the curriculum, I do encourage you to look at our website- there is a wealth of information on there!
Schools will always aim to support and supplement the role of parents
It was pleasing to hear positive feedback from parents in respect of the last newsletter and the section on the role of parents. To remind you, it mentioned the fact that 81% of a child’s ‘waking’ life by the time they are 18 is spent OUTSIDE of the classroom. We continue to offer many additional opportunities and the most recent addition is our breakfast learning club for children in year 6. Whilst some schools aim to catch up through ‘booster classes’ or narrowing the curriculum to pure test practice in certain year groups I am determined to ensure that EVERY day is a fun and worthwhile experience for all our pupils- and that is why EVERY DAY COUNTS at Tudor! Sorry- I could not resist one mention about attendance ;)
PE kit and school clothing- children being prepared!
We are very proud of our PE provision and we are starting to experience real success in inter school competition. This week alone saw our football team win 9-0 and our girls team win 7-0! Sport and activity is such an important part of growing up and we want the children of Tudor to enjoy as much of this as they possibly can. It is good to see lots of sport going on in school but it is frustrating to see children not in the correct kit on occasions. Please do support the school in helping your children be prepared for ALL lessons.
This is the time of year when our pile of lost property can really increase in size. With changeable weather (and temperatures!) the children are more likely to be taking jackets, scarves and gloves off and they are not ‘always’ successful with putting them on again! Please be assured that our team do endeavour to reunite children with the correct clothing but this becomes much harder when items are not clearly named.
Some VERY important news to share about Tudor Pre-School… understanding the detail!
As I have informed you in previous newsletters, the school has been able to take a more pro-active role in the support of the Tudor Pre-School. Prior to this academic year, the previous management lead of the pre-school was not keen to work in partnership and it was disappointing to read that they subsequently experienced some concerning feedback in an Ofsted inspection. Since September though, Maggie and her committed team have made fantastic strides in transforming the provision in the pre-school. We have taken part in joint training and Maggie has now been enabled to make a number of important changes for her young learners. Ofsted have now inspected the setting again and whilst an inadequate judgement remains in place (for a management issue unrelated to the current team), the judgements for all the other areas are GOOD. I have read the complete report and I would like to congratulate all of the team at Tudor Pre-School for the wonderful improvements made.
And finally- The run up to the end of year is always a busy time in school and we look forward to the festivities that December brings. Dates for the Christmas performances are all on the website and we hope everyone enjoys what should be a great end to 2019. I hope to see many of you tomorrow at our ‘Friends of Tudor Fireworks Spectacular’. Next Tuesday (12th Nov), Mrs Donley will be leading a ‘Rules and Boundaries’ workshop. Do contact the school if you would like to attend. As this newsletter shares in a number of ways, we are stronger when working together.
Mr Rob Weightman/ Headteacher