A message from the Headteacher
Election Day – a reminder that we are closed to the children on Election Day - Thursday 12th December
News from the Governors
After serving as a governor for 11 years and taking the role of Chair for six years, Chris Wrigley has decided to step down from the school’s governing body. Chris was exceptionally generous with the time that he devoted to the school, accompanying educational visits and visiting classrooms and attending special events. We are grateful for all his support over the years and wish him well in the future.
We are pleased to announce that Julia Simmonds, previously the Vice Chair of Governors, has been elected to the role of Chair of Governors. Julia first became a parent governor when her daughter joined the school in 2000 and has been a member of the governing body ever since, more recently as a co-opted governor.
In other news from the governors, we want to thank Emma Cowley, who has recently completed her term as a parent governor. Emma has been committed to the work of the governors and particularly supported the development of ICT at The Ridge. The governors have taken the opportunity of this vacancy to look at the constitution of the governing body and reduce the size of the board in line with national guidance. As a result, we will not be seeking to elect a new parent to join the governors.
Keeping Our Children Safe
Safety in Gregory Road – Again, we remind you of the need to manoeuvre and park safely and considerately in Gregory Road.
Operation Encompass - Our school continues to participate in a Police-led initiative called Operation Encompass, a scheme which ensures that we can we can better support any child where a domestic incident at home has been reported to the police. Following a domestic incident, the Police will make contact with the school via telephone and communicate relevant information to a nominated, fully-trained member of staff. This ensures that we are made aware of the support that a child may need and help them to feel safe, supported and listen to. Each school has a member of staff called a key adult who is trained to liaise with the police, when required, whilst ensuring support is available to the child. The key adult at The Ridge is Mrs Hudson.
If you would like to speak to someone further about the initiative, or require any additional information, please do not hesitate to contact me. We are committed to working in partnership with local relevant organisations to safeguard and protect children and provide the best possible care and support for our pupils.
Please remember that when children have had an episode of sickness and / or diarrhoea, they are unable to return to school until they have been clear for a period of 48 hours. There are some nasty bugs about and we want to do all that we can to stop them from spreading to others. To help limit the spread, please reinforce with your children, the importance of handwashing routines. Thank you.
E-mail Contact with Staff
Over recent years, we have encouraged parents and carers to use e-mail to contact staff with anything that they wish to share about their child. This has been very successful and especially valuable to those who are unable to catch staff to talk to at the start or end of the day.
Unfortunately, recently a number of staff have had communications from parents, some sent late at night, where the tone of the message has been inappropriate and the content appears to question staff professionalism and integrity.
If you have a concern or matter of significance that you wish to discuss with a member of staff, please do not use e-mail, which can be open to misinterpretation, but phone to talk the member of staff directly or make an appointment to see to them.
The governors have recently adopted a new Complaints Procedure and this can be found on the school website.
A Reminder - Online Christmas Shopping: Think 'easyfundraising'!
In common with most schools, we are feeling the squeeze of funding pressures.
But you can help! Over the past two years we have received over £1000 from easyfundrasing and this has made a real difference! Every penny mounts up and means that we can continue to fund our school to be the best that it can be.
Many of you will have begun to think about Christmas shopping and if you are buying gifts online you can attract donations to our school easily and at no cost to yourself Or perhaps you are thinking about booking a break away?
How does it work?
There are over 3,00 retailers easyfundraising including big names such as Amazon, Ebay, Argos and Marks and Spencer. Starting your online shopping first at easyfundraising and check if the retailer that you want to use is part of the scheme, then go to the retailer’s website from easyfundraising and shop as normal. retailers make a small donation to say “thank you”. easyfundrasing also rewards searches on comparison sites (don’t forget those insurance renewals!) and many holiday companies such as Bookings.com and Travelodge. (Maybe travel for work and could raise funds for us?
Once you are signed up codes are sent through, which gives a donation when you recruit a new member to easyfundraising – so please spread the word to grandparents and friends.
Christmas is Coming!
Christmas starts early in school and the children are busy preparing for our celebrations. The sound of Christmas music has been in the air for some time and we are looking forward to seeing you at our performances !
As you may be aware, our fire risk assessment means that admission to all the Christmas productions and Carol Services is strictly by ticket only. The number of tickets available is limited by the number of children taking part in the event and we do not have the flexibility to have extra people standing at the back unless they have been allocated a ticket.
To make this as fair as possible, we issue tickets on the following basis.
Key Stage One Performances - two tickets per performance per family (4 in total)
Key Stage Two Performances – one ticket per performance per family (2 in total)
Please feel free to make your own arrangements to swap tickets with other parents and carers. There will be a limited number of additional ‘Standing Tickets’ available. Further details of how to obtain additional tickets will be sent out with your invitation to the relevent performance.
Please could we emphasise that no-one will be allowed entry without a ticket so please make sure that you have it with you before leaving home.
Photography at School Events for Use on Social Media
With our Christmas performances quickly upon us it is useful to remind you about photography at school events. We are delighted that you want to capture happy memories, however, please do not post photos on social media of children other than your own, unless you have explicit permission from the parents of any other children appearing in the photo. For some pupils in our school, photos on social media could constitute a safeguarding risk. Thank you for your support
Please see separate letter for details.
Breakfast with Santa
School Christmas Lunch
This will be on Friday 13th December – on this day the children may come to school wearing a Christmas Jumper (if they have one) with their school trousers or skirt. The children can also wear festive colours, reindeer antlers or a Santa hat: please don’t feel that you need to go out and buy a Christmas Jumper if your child doesn’t have one.
Wednesday 18th December – Reception and Key Stage 1
Thursday 19th December – Key Stage 2
The children can bring party clothes in a named bag to change into after lunch.
Virgin Radio Competition - Twelve Schools of Christmas
We are delighted at the achievement of Harry Cox in Year 4 who made it through to the final two of 'Twelve Schools of Christmas', a competition run by Chris Evans on Virgin radio.
Harry's song, which he wrote himself, came 2nd in the competition, and as a result he has been invited to join Chris Evans and the breakfast show at the winning school, St Matthews Primary School in Ipswich, on Friday 20th December, where he will sing his song live on the radio!!
We are so very proud of you Harry – really really well done!!
End of Term
A reminder that we close at 2.00 p.m. on Friday 20th December