The retaining wall for the new pitch should be completed by the end of the weekend and the process of levelling the ground begins next week. Once this has been completed the shock base layer and the tarmac will be laid. The development of the field continues in earnest and should be completed by the end of term. It continues to be a source of enjoyment for the children and staff and the final outcome will be something very special. Watch this space for further updates! Unfortunately the new gates have been damaged this week and a Parentmail was sent out to everyone yesterday informing you of this. Please do not try and squeeze through the gap between the gates, this will only cause further damage to them: we hope to have them fixed next week. Rehearsals for the Christmas production are underway and the sound of children singing carols reminds us all that Christmas will be upon us once again very soon. Our school football and netball teams were in action again this week and had mixed results. The boys drew 2 -2 against Mandeville in a very entertaining game and the netball teams both had resounding victories against Cunningham Hill; 21 – 1 and 7 – 1.Thank you to everyone who represented the school so competitively. Please remember to send your child to school in a warm coat and a school jumper or cardigan during the cold months.
Safeguarding Catholic Education – The following message is from the Diocesan Education Service:
The Government will be shortly making a critical decision on whether to overturn the admissions cap which prevents Catholic schools from allowing all Catholic pupils to attend. The Secretary of State has acknowledged this policy has been ineffective and has adversely affected Catholic families. The next few weeks will be critical for convincing the government to honour the promise made to the Catholic community to remove the cap.
Although the CES have been actively working to lobby and influence behind the scenes, a very public final campaign is now needed to ensure our voices are heard. Each Bishop will be writing to each parish to encourage members of the congregation to write, email or call local MPs and the office of the Secretary of State.
Please do encourage your school communities, governors, staff and parents to make their voice heard. A very easy way to do this is through the following CES link http://www.catholiceducation.org.uk/guidance-for-schools/item/1003640-safeguard-the-future-of-catholic-education
The word of the week is – KINDNESS – A small act of kindness no matter how small is ever wasted. How do you show kindness to others in your own life?
Hurst Children’s Theatre Group Assembly – Two fantastic representatives from this excellent theatre company brought their boundless energy to Monday morning’s assembly. They taught the whole school community (including parents) how to warm up their voice using a particular technique and some children even got to act on stage. Their understanding of the task was very funny. Further information about the Hurst Children’s Theatre Group can be found at – http://hurstchildrenstheatregroup.com/
Future Dates – SUNDAY 26TH NOVEMBER – FEAST OF CHRIST THE KING
Monday 27th November – The Passage Charity to assembly 9:10am / PTA Meeting 7pm @ The Junior School
Tuesday 28th November – School Tour for prospective Year 3 parents – 9:30am
Thursday 30th November – Advent Assembly 9:30am – ALL welcome
FRIDAY 1ST DECEMBER – INSET DAY – SCHOOL CLOSED TO CHILDREN
Monday 4th December – Greek Day for Year 5
Tuesday 5th December – Tudor Day for Year 6
Thursday 7th December – Children to wear their own clothes to school in exchange for a donation to the Passage Charity / Cake Sale after school
Sunday 10th December – Joint Schools Advent Mass – 9:30am
The Big Question – “Should the Earth’s resources be shared more equally?”
Attendance – Congratulations to the children from Class 2 who had the best attendance this week with 99.3 %
2nd Place – Class 6 – 98.7%
3rd Place – Class 1 – 97%
The Weekend Tune – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P75P0CY09gQ
Christ the King
Thank you God for sending Jesus to be our saviour and our friend.
Thank you also that he is a King.
Help us always to follow him, honour him, and serve him in his Kingdom.
Thank you God that we are “children of the kingdom.”
In Jesus Name, Amen
HAVE A LOVELY WEEKEND!!
The delivery of 300 tonnes of stone this week meant the preparation for the laying of the pitch is well underway. In just under a month’s time the new MUGA pitch will be ready for the children to use. Everyone has been a little mesmerised by the work and we look forward to the pitch coming to life over the next few weeks. The PTA hold the first disco of the year and we look forward to welcoming the children. Please remember that children should not bring coats to the disco. Rehearsals for this year’s Christmas performance begin next week and classes are already learning carols for the event. Please keep abreast of forthcoming events, we have a very busy few weeks ahead. This year’s theme for anti bullying week as “all different, all equal”. The children spent time in classes learning about the impact and effect bullying can have on a person. Please see the website for further information about this very important aspect of life at school.
The word of the week is : PRAYER – A life of prayer brings great riches but how persistent are you in your prayer life, even when you are tired?
Poppy Appeal – I received the message below from the local area Community Fundraiser-
Dear Mr Soyka,
I’m writing to thank the staff and children of Ss Alban and Stephen Junior School for their incredible support of the Poppy Appeal this year.
The school raised a total of £277.21.
The money will go straight to our beneficiaries who include old and young veterans, their families and bereaved families. It can go towards mobility aids for the injured, or holidays for bereaved families, and it makes a real difference.
Thank you for your kind support!
Thank you to everyone who contributed to this year’s appeal; your donations have been gratefully received and helped the children to have a deeper understanding of this important annual appeal.
Dance Conference – Please see below for further details regarding this exciting opportunity.
Free School Meals – Are you eligible for Free School, please follow the link to see if you are entitled.
The Big Question – “If both hands fall off a clock is it still a clock?”
The Weekend Tune – https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=green+fields+of+france+you+tube
Future Dates – Friday 17th November – School Disco 6:30pm – 8:30pm
Monday 27th November – PTA Meeting @ the Junior School 7.00pm
Thursday 30th November – Advent assembly – 9.30pm
Sunday 10th December – Joint Schools Advent Mass – 9:30am
Wednesday 13th December – Christmas Dinner for Children
Thursday 14th December – Christmas Production 7.00pm
The Serenity Prayer
God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference.
Living one day at a time;
enjoying one moment at a time;
accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
that I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
forever in the next.
HAVE A LOVELY WEEKEND!
Anti Bullying Week 2017
This year’s Anti Bullying Week theme was – “All Different, All Equal”. The slides on the document can be shared with your child about the feelings they have around bullying. Bullying is a serious issue in schools and one we work hard to teach the children about in terms of the impact such behaviour can have. It is never something any one should experience but by teaching the children about the ways it can be stopped and dealt with it should help them to feel confident to speak about it. We hope that you find the information useful.
School Christmas Carol Service at Ss Alban and Stephen Church 7pm 14th December 2017 – Backing Tracks 2017
Carol 1 – O Little Town Of Bethlehem
Carol 2 – My Lord, He Is A Comin’ Soon
Carol 3 – Riding On A Donkey
Carol 4 – Child In A Manger Born
Carol 5 – Shepherds’ Dance
Carol 6 – We Three Kings
Carol 7 – The Christmas Children
Carol 8 – Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
The results from the recent questionnaire of the school’s vision statement can be found below. It was a positive exercise and identified key areas where the school needs to improve in order to help the children have a fuller understanding of its meaning. Thank you to everyone who took part in the exercise and we hope that you found it useful.
VISION STATEMENT QUESTIONNAIRE RESULTS
5th November 2017
Earlier this term I was asked by the governors to review the school’s current vision statement – Nurturing every child to grow and flourish in Christ. I would like to explain a little of the background as to why it was created.
Very shortly after I was appointed it was felt that there was a need to review and update the old vision statement after a series of lengthy discussions with different stakeholders. A working party was formed and consisted of representatives from the teaching staff, the governors and the parent body. The children were also consulted about the process and played an instrumental role in its creation. A questionnaire was distributed to a number of stakeholders which asked them to identify their thoughts and ideas about the future of the school. After a long process of collaboration our new vision statement was born.
The governors felt in September at their board meeting it was time to review the vision statement eighteen months after it was introduced. This is why a questionnaire was sent out earlier in the term. The results were very positive but identified two statements which needed further work in order to help the children to have a fuller understanding and appreciation of its message:
1. The vision statement describes the school’s efforts to prepare the children for life in the 21st Century
2. My child understands the vision statement
Ofsted make it very clear that part of a school’s purpose is to prepare pupils for life in the 21st century. The church also instructs its Catholic schools to ensure that pupils are rooted in the person of Christ to prepare them for life in the 21st century. Whilst our vision statement places Christ at the centre of everything we do, it is through his teachings that the children will be able to take their place as fully formed citizens of the 21st century.
One of the first lessons all children complete when they return to school after the summer holiday is to look at the school’s vision statement and to discuss what it means to them on a personal level. From a management perspective I have led assemblies about the school’s vision statement and Mrs Porter put up an interactive display in the school dining area which encouraged the children to share their thoughts about the vision statement. We will continue on our mission of nurturing every child to grow and flourish in Christ.
Thank you to those of you who took the time to complete the questionnaire and I hope that you found it a worthwhile exercise
There were 58 responses out of a possible 240 which is a return of just under 25%. It was an anonymous exercise so some responses may have been from families who have more than one child at the school.
Statement 1 – 94.6% of you either Strongly Agreed or Agreed that:
A school’s vision statement is central to its purpose and is an important way for the school to communicate its aims
Statement 2 – 87.6% of you either Strongly Agreed or Agreed that: Our vision statement of “Nurturing every child to grow and flourish in Christ” is clear and easy to understand
Statement 3 – 92.8% of you either Strongly Agreed or Agreed that:
I understand what the school is trying to achieve through its mission statement
Statement 4 – 53.3% of you either Strongly Agreed or Agreed that:
My child understands the vision statement
Statement 5 – 54.3% of you either Strongly Agreed or Agreed that:
The vision statement describes the school’s efforts to prepare the children for life in the 21st Century
Statement 6 – 79.2% of you either Strongly Agreed or Agreed that:
The current vision statement is appropriate
Welcome back to another busy half term. The redevelopment of the school field is gathering pace and for the first time in many years it is level! The work on the drainage system has started and will be completed over the coming weeks Thank you for your understanding during this very busy time and adhering to the health and safety procedures when dropping off and collecting your child. Fr TJ celebrated mass for the feast of All Saints on Wednesday morning for the school community. He spoke to the children about how to live like a saint by following in the footsteps of Christ. It was a wonderful way to start the half term and my thanks to Mrs Porter and the children who helped prepare the liturgy. There are still a number of children coming to school without a jumper or a coat; please make sure that over the winter months your child wears warm clothing to school and is labelled clearly. Thank you.
The word of the week is HUMILITY – it is quite appropriate on the feast of St Charles Borromeo that this is the word to reflect upon. He was the joint founder of the Oblates of St Ambrose who took the latin form of the word humility as their motto. How do you put others above yourself so that you too can be humble?
Teacher / Parent Consultations – It was good to see so many of you on Tuesday evening at this important event. These meetings are an opportunity for you to meet with your child’s class teacher and discuss with them how they have settled in to their new classes. They also offer an opportunity to look through your child’s books and have an understanding of their progress to this point in the school year. I hope that you found them insightful.
Redevelopment of the School Field – for the first time in forty four years the school field is level! After a great deal of digging and rolling of earth the complicated work can begin. The drainage system was delivered to school this afternoon and the work on digging the trenches is underway. Over the coming weeks you should see the pitch begin to take shape. Keep watching for further updates.
House Points – Congratulations to the children from Mark who were this week’s winners with 254 points
2nd Place – Matthew 253 points
3rd Place – Luke 224 points
4th Place – John 208 points
Attendance – Congratulations to Class 6 who had the best attendance with 99.30%
2nd Place – Class 7 – 97.19%
3rd Place – Class 2 – 96.67%
Showing God’s Love
Help me, Lord to show love.
May I never give up loving: may my faith
and hope and patience never come to an end.
HAVE A LOVELY WEEKEND!!