Newsletter 25 – 12th April 2013

Dear Parents

Welcome back after the Easter break – and an especially warm welcome to the new families in our school.

Mosque and Kew Garden Trip We are very excited about the trip to Hounslow mosque and Kew Gardens which will take place on this Monday, the 15th April. It is very important that all children are here in school by 8.10am since we have to leave very promptly. We will not wait for anyone who is late. Please note that school uniform must be worn and please ensure that your child has a packed lunch which they can carry and manage easily on their own. We hope to be back at school by 4.30pm – we will update you by text if we are running late. Please do not park in the layby since there are three coaches that need to park there both at the beginning and end of the day.

A small handful of children will be staying at school since their parents do not want them to go on the trip. They will be under the supervision of Mrs Abbott, Miss Nisbeck and Mrs Edwards.  These children should arrive at school at the usual time and school will end for them at 3.00pm as usual.

My thanks to all those parents who have sent supportive messages into school commending us on arranging this trip and asking us to continue to provide exciting and ambitious learning opportunities for their children. Whilst it is an enormous responsibility and a tremendous amount of work, we do know that our children benefit so much from these trips that it is worth continuing to arrange them – the support from our parents is invaluable in this, as in all areas of school life.

Chair of Governors We are very sorry to say good bye to Diane Gilpin who has been our Chair of Governors for some years but has now resigned from her position as Chair. She has always been a tremendous support to the school, an excellent example of the “Critical Friend” and has always had the highest ambitions for the school. She led the governing body as we converted the school to an academy and has helped to ensure that our outcomes in all areas continue to be judged outstanding. We hope that she will be able to continue as a Trustee of the academy. I add my own personal thanks to those of the whole school for all that she has done for the school. 

Bloodhound engineering club This club is not about dogs! The Bloodhound SSC is a rocket and jet powered car whose aim is to break the land speed record and reach 1000mph. We have been invited to have a club at school through the summer which will help children to design and build small model vehicles and to test them (though we do not expect any of our little designs to break the land speed record!). We hope to inspire the next generation of engineers with this club. Please have a look on their website for more information at The club will be running at school on Wednesday afternoons, starting on Wednesday 12th June and continuing for 6 weeks. The cost is £1 per afternoon and will include all the materials and expert tuition. If you would like your child to join this club, please sign up on the form below.

Sports Club on Tuesday Afternoons This club will not run this coming Tuesday 16th April – further information will be published when plans for the summer sports have been finalised.

Oxenwood A reminder that payment is now due for this trip, if your child is in year 3, the amount is £58 and if in year 4 it is £68 (this is because the year 4 children do an extra activity). A kit list for your information and a medical form to be completed and returned to us has been sent home today with your child – please look out for them!

Swimming Silbury class are going swimming this term and letters have been sent home. Avebury class are still “owed” one session and this is expected to take place on Thursday 6th June. We shall let you know nearer the time.

Fire Drill We have regular fire drills in school and we had one on Tuesday this week. We can evacuate the school completely in just over a minute and complete the whole drill including roll call in just over two minutes. Children are very good at leaving the school calmly and quietly and standing quietly in line to be registered.

SATS and other tests Our Year 6 children are working towards their end of Key Stage tests which will take place in May. They write three separate maths papers, a reading comprehension paper and the new “Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar” test. All of these tests are set by the government and sent off to be marked externally. Writing is teacher assessed now. All these tests are for Year 6 children working between Level 3 and Level 5. Those children who are able to tackle the level 6 papers are given this opportunity as well. The government expects that the average child will be working at Level 4 by the end of KS2 but many of our children achieve well beyond this expectation. We ensure that the children have had enough test preparation so that they do not feel alarmed by the test situation (which is very different from anything they have experienced previously). We find that the children rather enjoy SATS week – they get the chance to show what they can do, and they enjoy the freedom of being “Off Curriculum” during that week.

All the other KS2 children (Years 3 – 5) will be doing little tests during this week as well. These are nothing to be worried about and you do not need to do any preparation for them, other than to continue with the usual homework of reading, tables, spelling and the written assignment each week. These tests serve to support and secure the teachers’ own assessments of the children’s work through the year.

Children’s Movie Night… Come and enjoy food, film and fun with friends, Friday 12th April from

6-8pm in Erlestoke Church. All are welcome but children under five must be accompanied by a parent/guardian. A light supper and pudding will be provided; donations of £1 for food are gratefully accepted.

Spring Bingo   Come and join us for some games of Bingo on Saturday 13th April in Erlestoke Church. Doors open 1.30pm and eyes down at 2pm. Refreshments and raffle available, all welcome. All proceeds go towards Erlestoke Church.

Edington Under 5’s Group are holding  table top sale this Saturday13th April at the Parish Hall from 11am until 2pm. There will be a variety of second hand children’s clothing and toys and “Popcorn, Punch & Pizza” available. Why not pop along for a bargain!!

Cake Sale Great Cheverell Pre-school are holding a ‘Cake Sale’ in Holy Trinity playground at the end of school on Friday 19th April. We look forward to seeing you there!

Devizes Rugby Club is offering regular coaching to girls in years 5 to 7 in the Devizes area. The club is looking to start up a new girls section to support their successful ladies team and this free 6 week project will build on tag rugby provision in schools and the Devizes Tag Rugby festival in March. It starts on Monday 8th April, 5 – 6pm at the rugby club and coaching will be delivered to suit the experience and ability of the girls. For more information or to book a place, please contact Alex Muse, Sports Development Officer for Wiltshire Council on 01380 826315.

Best wishes,

Mercedes Henning

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