Dear Parents and Carers,
Another half term at St George’s is flying! Just a reminder we break up on Friday 18th February and return to school on Monday 28th February.
I want to start by thanking Mrs Mc Donnell for agreeing to cover the summer term as head teacher, Mr Lake as deputy head and Mrs Rolf covering Class Five full time – I really appreciate this and know it will give St George’s continuity. Helen Mac Connell and the Governing Body have been absolutely brilliant and have a clear plan in place. Once again, the team at St George’s are amazing and makes the school the successful school that it is! Thank you everyone.
With the issues schools have faced recently regarding Covid we have taken the decision to replace our face to face parents’ evenings with a 5 minute phone call. The two evenings will be on Tuesday 15th and Wednesday 16th February from 4pm – 6pm. The booking system will go live from tomorrow, Saturday 5th February at 9:00 a.m. Bookings are available through the school website.
Mr Lake and I had the pleasure of having lunch with 12 children (2 from every class Y1 to Y6) on Wednesday and it was absolutely wonderful. Every class had a task to discuss the school curriculum and two children from every class were given the responsibility to feed back to us.
We were so impressed and extremely proud how they spoke and answered the following questions:
1) What do you enjoy about our school curriculum?
2) Is there anything about our curriculum which you dislike?
3) What would make our curriculum even better?
4) Is there anything you would change about our curriculum?
5) How do you find home learning? What do you like/dislike?
It was clear from the feedback that the children at St George’s enjoyed a broad and balanced curriculum. They like the opportunities they are given at the school. Every subject was mentioned at some point.
Unfortunately we have had to close our forest school area due to a family of badgers! We are awaiting advice from the local authority to see if there is anything we can do.
Just a reminder that we are inviting all children to wear a scarf to school on Friday 11th February to support children’s mental health week. In what has been a challenging time for everyone it is something very important and we want to support and raise awareness.
Swimming at St George’s
I cannot thank the many parents enough for the positive comments about swimming at St George’s. The children are really enjoying their swimming lessons both during the day and also after school. I was really impressed and delighted with the groups I observed last week. The enjoyment, water confidence and progress was evident! It is important that all children have their regular swimming lessons during the day at St George’s as it helps with their development, it is part of our curriculum and it is good for their well-being.
Both lockdowns in 2020 and 2021 meant we had to have pool closures and this has resulted in many children missing out on regular swimming. It reiterates the importance of all children having a regular opportunity to swim.
Mr C, Mrs Ely, Mrs Rolf, Mrs Buck and Mrs Thomas are all fully trained swimming teachers and have made such an impact in such a short space of time.
We are planning changes for after school swimming and will be asking parents to pay for a block of lessons. This is the case for many after school sports and swim clubs. We cannot afford to have a pay as you swim as we have staff and additional costs that we have to factor in.
I am also delighted that the school pool is now being used by several other schools throughout the school week. I was delighted to receive the following paragraph from Nick Gilding – The head teacher at Cotford St Luke:
Swimming at St George’s has been a fantastic experience for our staff and pupils. The swim coach (Mrs Ely) is brilliant – she is extremely knowledgeable & inspiring and has carefully tailored sessions to ensure that our pupils develop confidence, vital skills and, most of all, a love of swimming. We are very grateful to be able to use the hall also, as this enables us to make the most of the trip out to St George’s. Thanks to the whole team at St George’s School – you are superb!
Receiving such an email emphasises to me how fortunate we are to have such a wonderful facility! Schools often plan for one term of swimming throughout the seven years at a school and also need to factor in charging for transport. We offer swimming fortnightly and for the whole 7 years!
I have estimated that our children receive approximately 5,320 minutes swimming at St George’s compared to 520 minutes if a school only offers just one term in total for the whole time they are at primary school. That is a difference of 4,800 minutes!
This leads me onto costings for swimming – The Governors at St George’s are keen to keep the costing of swimming for curriculum lessons as low as possible. We have been told that £30 for a whole year of swimming – approximately 760 minutes of swimming is very fair. We do ask that parents and carers make the annual £30 per pupil or £10 per term swimming donation so that we can continue to offer the swimming opportunities and continue to improve the facilities we have. Payments can be made at the school office or online by visiting the swimming section of our website.
We still have some Tea towels left which you can purchase from the school office for £4.00. The tea towel includes a self-portrait of every child at the school.
Best Wishes and enjoy your weekend.