Dear parents and carers,
As you know, we decided to use the best learnings from lockdown/pandemic to try and improve the school experience for all children, yet further, whilst keeping them safe whilst on site.
Over the past 2 weeks, during our return to school, I, along with other leaders have spent time monitoring both pick up and drop off times. This has also meant listening and reacting to feedback where possible from the community and using it to improve what we are doing.
However, it has become apparent from ongoing feedback, that whilst morning drop off is working successfully, with children benefitting from a quick start to their learning, developing their independence and settling really well; pick up, has been a point of contention. It has never been my intention to put anybody at risk or to make any of our systems more difficult for parents and carers. It has also been important to me to listen to our community, which makes our school the school it is - 'the best kept secret in Poole'. The continuing rising rates of virus both nationally and locally have always been a key priority in any decisions I have made in the best interests of those working and entering the site.
It is for those reasons that I have decided to change the way we operate our pick up.
From Monday September 20th, we will invite parents back onto site to collect their children directly from classrooms, in the hope that this will then provide the reassurances that parents and carers have been requesting over the past few weeks.
I would ask that parents do not enter the school buildings, in line with our risk assessment to keep everyone safe, including those that are deemed vulnerable. I politely request that parents and carers leave the site as quickly as they can to enable us to secure the site at the end of the day.
Although there will be an opportunity to see the teacher informally as you collect, should you wish to have a more indepth discussion with the teacher, please phone/email the office to organise a meeting at a convenient time.
This system will remain in place unless we are directed nationally to 'step up' where we will return to our previous lockdown routines.
We would appreciate if you will familiarise yourself with the following information to help us reintroduce this change and keep everyone safe.
Please note that mornings will remain the same.
From Monday 20th.
Senior leaders will open the 3 gates (Library Rd, Cecil Rd, Recreation Rd) at 3.15pm.
Please enter the school via your designated year group gates where possible (EYFS and Key Stage 1 - Library Rd, Years 3 and 4 - Cecil Rd, Years 5 and 6 - Recreation Rd)
We politely request ask that you wear masks and maintain social distancing on site and adhere to social distancing where possible.
Please enter the grounds and go directly to your child/children's classrooms to collect - if you have more than 1 child you will need to collect from each classroom, your children will be kept in the classroom with the teacher until you arrive
Please remain outside classroom, unless a previous appointment has been made or arranged (via email/phone call to the office)
All 3 gates will be closed at 3.30pm to ensure the safety of children still on site for after school clubs. If you are going to be late collecting, (3.30pm), please inform the office. Your child will be sent to the office to wait.
Early Years parents - please collect any older siblings first from their classrooms as this will reduce the number of parents collecting from the Early Years gates. Early Years children will be dismissed from the Early Years outside area via the blue fence/gates; Cherry class will be dismissed from the far end gate/The Burrow area.
Changes to Year 6 transition
June 21th 2021
Dear Parents and Carers of year 6 children,
I am writing to update you on the DfE guidance that has recently been shared with schools in relation to secondary transition in response to the rising covid variant rates nationally.
It now appears that transitional arrangements for the vast majority of secondary children in the BCP area on July 2nd will not go ahead as planned, due to the challenges of social distancing and potential variant spread.
Sadly we have also been forced to cancel our traditional ‘Come and Explore’ plans for the new September intake.
As a result if this decision, Heatherlands is now making contingency plans for all year 6 children to remain in school on July 2nd.
For information, July 2nd is our traditional internal transfer day where children move up to meet their new teachers, this will still be able to go ahead, although current year 6 children will need to vacate classrooms for the day, to enable current year 5 pupils to move up. On this day we will be making good use of the school grounds with our current year 6 children.
Whilst this is a disappointment for all of us, as we understand the value and importance of children having the opportunity to visit their new secondary school, it does reminds us that we are still in challenging circumstances and disruption remains inevitable at this time.
It is my understanding that the secondary schools are contacting all parents and carers directly to clarify their arrangements and provide any further additional information for September 2021.
Email from Mr Churchill
Good morning Parents and Carers
I am writing to inform you that Heatherlands has been asked to host a CLP recruitment event on Thursday 27th May.
This means we will be welcoming many trainee teachers looking to secure their first teaching job in schools across the CLP partnership and local headteachers who will form part of the interview panel.
Over the coming days we will be organising and preparing the school to ensure everyone gets to see what we already know, that Heatherlands is a truly special place.
To help us a little, can you please ensure your children are dressed in their full school inform - those children who will be having PE on this day will need to bring in their kit and change. This change will be just for this day.
On Thursday morning some of the children may get to meet the candidates where they will share a 20 minute teaching session as part of the interview process. I’m sure the children will enjoy seeing some new faces and different teaching styles.
We are looking forward to an interesting day where Heatherlands will be in the spotlight for the day and our guests for the day will be luckily enough to interact with our greatest asset - The amazing Heatherlands children!
As part of our commitment to ensuring all children wear the appropriate PE in line with school policy and expectations, should any child not be wearing appropriate kit, we will be reminding parents through phone calls or letter.
As you know we have high expectations of our children in all that they do and that includes the wearing of correct school uniform. Parents and carers support is essential and much appreciated to reinforce this.
Gate Opening Arrangements from 19th April
EYFS will change to 8.50am opening.
Year 1 will change to an 8.40am opening.
Year 2 will be remaining the same at 8.30/8.35am.
End of day exit times will remain the same.
All other year groups remain the same and will not be affected by these changes.
Collection times for Thursday April 1st 2021
We are obviously coming to the end of the this term and as you are aware we finish school on Thursday 1st April. The aim is to ensure the children are ready to leave school after they have eaten their lunch but we still need to maintain a staggered exit on all 3 gates.
The staggered exit timings for Thursday will be:
Year 2 - 12.35 -12.40 - Library Rd gate
Year 1 - 12.40 - 12.45 Library Rd gate
Early Years - 12.45 - 12.50 Library Rd gate
Years 3 & 4 from 12.45 Cecil Rd gate
Years 5 & 6 from 12.45 Recreation Rd gate/Rec
Siblings will be collected as usual and leave at the gate they normally use.
Relationship, Sex and Health Education Parent Consultation Survey 2021
As part of your child’s education, we teach them about skills to support their own emotional literacy, self-esteem and knowledge of who they are and how they relate to each other in the world in a positive and healthy way. As part of our PSHE (Personal, Social, Health Education) curriculum, we use the Jigsaw scheme of work, from Early Years to Year 6. Statutory Relationships and Health Education and non-statutory Sex Education are integral to Jigsaw.
Nationally there have been changes to what primary schools must legally teach and we would like to consult on these changes and what this means for you as a parent. With school and home supporting each other, the more effective the provision of PSHE (including Relationships, Sex and Health Education) we can provide for the children in our care.
Please click on the link below and complete the attached survey by March 31st:
Please find attached the draft policy for RSHE which gives more detail on the Jigsaw programme.
Thank you for your time.
Letter from Mr Churchill 12.3.21
Dear Parents and Carers,
As we draw to the close of our first full week back together after lockdown, I wanted to thank all of you for your support by following the systems we have in place including the timings to help get the children to where they need to be and on time. Transition back to school has gone really well.
Like many of the Heatherlands staff, I have spent the week asking the children how they are and providing reassurances. However, in many ways this approach was not really required because the children have returned excited to be back and generally full of smiles. The power of familiarity and being with your friends cannot be underestimated particularly at this time.
I would also like to continue to strongly encourage everyone who is involved in 'pick up and drop off 'to wear a face covering, as it provides reassurances at this time and offer another layer of safety. Additionally, I want to thank everyone for continuing to show sensitivity to our community by parking considerately or choosing to walk or park at Branksone rec. We know the school site is congested, so by working together we can avoid any accidents and keep everyone safe. Please however be aware that the BCP Parking Operations Department are active and encouraging people to report contraventions of parking restrictions. The camera will also be deployed to investigate these parking complaints.
I want to also again remind everyone that our main priority at this time, is the emotional well-being of the children, because we know that if you feel ok, secure and happy, everything else should follow, including academic progress and development. Therefore, as a school, we will all continue to provide the warmth and understanding the children need right now, as they adjust back into school and begin to hopefully return to 'childhood'.
It is also important to recognise that this week, the children have been simply amazing, and it is very clear they have really missed school (and we have missed them).
Let's hope that this is now the start of our journey back to some kind of normal.
Hubbard said, ''the best way to prepare for life is to begin to live.”
So, at Heatherlands, we intend to start living again!
Have a good weekend
We arrived at school this morning to a mini flood in Year 1, which resulted sadly in the classrooms having to be temporarily closed and the children returning for one day only to remote education! The Year 1 team have been in their wellies all day, mopping and drying whilst ably supported by some industrial machinery. It has been quite a sight but we will be open Monday and my thanks must go to all the families of Year 1 children for their support and understanding today. No flood will keep us down as the show must go on! See you all on Monday with a hopefully less soggy Year 1 base.
Reminder email and notes on homework 5.3.21
Entry and exit details
Early Years children
EYFS children will enter through the main Library Road gates between 8.55 and 9.05am
They will leave by the same gates between 3.20pm and 3.30pm.
Year 1 children
Year 1 children will enter through the main Library Road gates between 8.45 and 8.55am
They will leave by the same gates between 3.10pm and 3.20pm.
Year 2 children
Year 2 children will enter through the main Library Road gates between 8.35am and 8.45am.
They will leave by the same gates between 3.05pm and 3.10pm.
Year 3 and Year 4 children
Year 3 and Year 4 children will enter through the Cecil Road gates (off Argyll Road) between 8.30am and 8.45am. CECIL ROAD GATES WILL CLOSE AT 8.50am
They will leave by the same gates between 3.15pm and 3.30pm.
Please remember that a member of staff will be stopping cars from driving down Cecil Road from Monday. This is to ensure the safety of the children walking into school.
Year 5 children
Year 5 children will line up at the Rec from 8.30am to 8.45am, rather than on the roads/pavement. They will be collected from the Rec and walked safely across the road to enter.
RECREATION ROAD GATES WILL CLOSE AT 8.50am
They will leave by the same gates and go to the Rec between 3.15pm and 3.30pm.
Year 6 children
Year 6 children will enter through the Recreation Road gates between 8.30am and 8.45am and line up on the playground. They do not need to line up at the Rec.
RECREATION ROAD GATES WILL CLOSE AT 8.50am
They will leave by the same gates between 3.15pm and 3.30pm and be taken over to the Rec for easy dismissal.
In Year 5 or Year 6. If your child will be walking to/from school alone, they will still need to adhere to the same timings and social distancing guidance. Otherwise, 1 adult only should accompany each child.
NB. From 8.45am and from 3.15pm, the crossing outside the Recreation Road gate will be used to enable Year 5 and Year 6 to enter/exit school. The staff will be stopping traffic at the time, until all classes have crossed the road safely. We appreciate, this may cause a minor disturbance, however, we believe that this will take no more than 5 minutes.
We have decided to utilise Google classroom as a tool for sharing homework following the full return to school. It is something the children have become familiar with and it will enable us as a school to reduce our carbon footprint. The teachers will be uploading any phonics, spelling, maths, homework tasks, knowledge organisers, information sheets etc on a Wednesday and they will also be able to add video clips to model a task or explain what the children need to do in more detail. Children in EYFS and Key Stage 1 can continue to complete their work in their homework books if they choose to, otherwise, work can be uploaded to their google drive. (This could include video clips, photos and written work.) Children in Key stage 2 can continue to use any textbooks that have already been sent home to supplement their learning and everyone can continue to use 'Bug Club' to support reading development.
If you are unable to access Google classroom for any reason, please let the office know that you would like to 'opt in' to a printed copy. We will only print the small number required and these will be sent home on a Wednesday.
Dear Parents and Carers
Your school would like to hear your views about their remote learning arrangements
The spring term has seen schools further refine and improve their approach to teaching pupils who have been learning from home. They have worked hard to provide a high-quality learning experience.
Whilst we are delighted that all children will be back in school in the near future, Covid-19 is still with us. It is therefore possible that pupils and staff will need to self-isolate from time to time and, if this does happen, schools will once again provide remote education from home.
With this contingency planning in mind, schools wish to keep their remote learning plans under development so that they can keep getting better. Your school would therefore like to invite your feedback on your child’s experience of remote education during the current period of lockdown. Your school is keen to seek your views as these will help it to evaluate the offer provided to date and identify areas to improve further: pupils who have to isolate in the future will then have the best possible learning experience.
Parents of children that have been learning from home during this lockdown are invited to complete a short online survey that can be accessed by following the link below. If you have more than one child attending the school, please complete a separate survey for each child.
Completing the survey should take no more than a few minutes and will help your child’s school to shape its future offer.
You can access the survey by following the link embedded on this page.
Please note that the survey will close at 4pm on Friday 12th March
Christian MaloneHead of Learning and Achievement, Coastal Learning Partnership
January 22nd 2021
So It’s official, Heatherlands is coming back together and the waiting is nearly over!
No amount of time and space can now separate the children from important people who are meant to be in their lives any longer.
Tomorrow I’ll be dusting off the magic wands, organising good weather, readying the spring clean and ordering a truck load of Heatherlands magic dust, known for inducing smiles and calm amongst returning children.
This is a fresh start, so we intend to make it a positive and enjoyable experience for all.
I’m delighted to end this quick update by saying, we look forward to seeing you all on Monday March 8th.
I will be in touch with further updates in the coming weeks.
January 4th 2021
Dear Parents and Carers
Following tonight's announcement by the Prime Minster that England will enter a new lockdown from Midnight, Heatherlands will now be closed to most pupils.
As you are aware from the previous lockdown we are in a position to offer a remote education to the majority of children in all Year groups. In some cases, particularly with our younger children, a paper based approach may be more suitable and age appropriate.
Given the timing of the announcement tonight we will need to prepare and organise our approach so I have designated tomorrow ( Tuesday) as a day for all staff to use to get things ready to deliver learning.
Therefore we will not be providing any learning tomorrow but we do have some resources on our website for you to access and additionally children should have reading books and some homework tasks to help you through the day.
Although this is not where we all want to be at this time, we will do our very best to offer a positive learning experience for all our children in the short term.
As suggested the school will be open for some groups in line with guidance for those children which are deemed vulnerable and those of key worker families. Please note, we will be contacting parents who may fit into the categories below tomorrow morning to clarify the position and establish places from Wednesday.
Vulnerable children and young people include those who:
Parents whose work is critical to the coronavirus (COVID-19) and EU transition response include those who work in health and social care and in other key sectors outlined in the following sections.
This includes, but is not limited to, doctors, nurses, midwives, paramedics, social workers, care workers, and other frontline health and social care staff including volunteers; the support and specialist staff required to maintain the UK’s health and social care sector; those working as part of the health and social care supply chain, including producers and distributors of medicines and medical and personal protective equipment.
This only includes those administrative occupations essential to the effective delivery of:
This includes those involved in food:
This includes those who will keep the air, water, road and rail passenger and freight transport modes operating during the coronavirus (COVID-19) response and EU transition, including those working on transport systems through which supply chains pass and those constructing or supporting the operation of critical transport and border infrastructure through which supply chains pass.
Thank you for your support and understanding at this very difficult time for all.
I hope we can return to school in the near future just a little safer.
Until then I wish you and your families well.
December 31st 2020
Good morning Parents and Carers
I hope you have managed to enjoy a good Christmas despite the restrictions and the on going COVID-19 backdrop which I know continues to be a worry for all.
Despite this, I wanted on the back of the governments announcement yesterday to clarify and reassure you that Heatherlands will be fully open as usual on Monday in line with government guidance.
However as you may be aware we do have some staff members who are clinically extremely vulnerable, which means they are directed to work from home. This means some of the children being taught in a slightly different way, although still classroom based. We operated this approach successfully during the previous lockdown. Separate information will be shared with you in due course should your child be affected. Please note, children should still come to school as normal as we will have contingency measures in place to ensure children receive a good quality education.
Tier 4 of course does signal an escalation in events so we will all need to continue to work together as we have previously done by being extra careful and vigilant which enables us to operate within these restrictions and ensure the children continue to receive a quality school experience. The safety of everyone in our school community is our main priority going forward.
Finally, I would like to wish you all, especially at this time, a happy and healthy New Year and look forward to welcoming you back on Monday.