Friday, 25 September 2015

You are wonderful!

A huge thank you for your amazing support with the Macmillan Cake Sale and Coffee morning - you raised a massive almost £300 in one day for this very worthy cause... and provide many very delicious cakes.

In the newsletter this week:-
  • communications update
  • Y1 clubs update 
  • Forest Schools
  • Travel to School
  • Coats and wellies

Communications Update

I would love to be able to tell you that all is now well with our phone connection and our number is.... but I can't.  This week we have lodged a complaint with OFCOM, involved Justin Tomlinson, our MP, to see if he can further our case and been in touch with BT, who own Open Reach, and escalated our complaint with them.  Whilst this feels like we are doing something, it doesn't solve the problem but, if we don't speak out, then nothing will change and others will be in the same situation.  If you feel strongly about this, the email address of the CEO at Open Reach is - feel free to drop him an email asking him when there will be a landline and broadband connection to your child's school and explaining to him the inconvenience this is causing you and the impact that this is having on you and your family. Open Reach will not talk directly to customers (this may be the reply you get) and tell us to take our complaint to our service provider... but our service provider is doing an excellent job of chasing Open Reach on our behalf and any help we can give them will be much appreciated.  In the meantime please continue to use my mobile 07733264202 - texts are fine - if you need to contact the school urgently or send an email to

Y1 Clubs Update

Clubs have started and seem to be going very well.  There are a few spaces left in Football and Art on Tuesdays; Construction, Multisports and Drama on Wednesdays and Film Club on Thursdays.  Those children attending football club need shin pads if possible please; those attending cooking club need a plastic box for taking items home and £1 each week to cover cost of ingredients - thank you.  

Forest Skills

Our first groups of Y1 have begun Forest Skills.  Over the course of a year all the children will have this opportunity - you will low when it's your child's turn as a letter/email will come home with instructions about what they need on Forest Skills day.  They go to the woods across the road from school in small groups of 8-10 children and spend half a day exploring the great outdoors and taking part in forest activities.

Travel to School

Please only park in the lay-bys on the road outside school or in the car park to the right of the side of school as parking on the kerbs causes difficulties for pedestrians.  If your child is scooting or cycling to school make sure they stay close to you as some of the driveways on the way here don't have good visibility for small children moving quickly!

Coats and Wellies

We go out to play in all weathers so, as the weather is very changeable now, please make sure that, even when it's sunny on the way to school, your child still has a coat with them.  Wellies kept in school really help too in making sure your child can be appropriately dressed for learning outside.

Have a good weekend
Jane Leo
Tadpole Farm CE Primary Academy

Friday, 11 September 2015

Welcome Back! Welcome to the New Build!

It has been an absolute joy to see the school filling with children and to hear their happy voices resounding along the corridors and learning burrows.  You, and we, have waited a long time for this to happen and we want to thank you for your continued support and patience.  There is still, sadly, no news on the phone line and wifi connection.  I have written to the CEO at Open Reach and lodged a formal complaint and have been told things are moving as fast as possible... hmmm watch this space.  In the meantime, please continue to bear with us.  Contacting us by email is a good first option as we hot spot from our phones and a 3G router with limited capacity - - or for more urgent messages you can continue to use my mobile for text and calls, which is 07733 264202.  We will inform you as soon as we have a connection; we do understand how frustrating it is for you and we share your frustration - you don't realise how reliant we are on the internet and a phone until you don't have it!

In this week's blog:-
  • The Opening
  • News about extra activities 
  • Clubs for Year 1
  • News from the School Office
  • Can you help us?
  • FOTF update

The Opening

Thank you to all of you who came along to our official opening and the Blessing.  There is already reports of it on the BBC Wiltshire Facebook page and will be articles in other local press this week.  When we have photographs available I will share them with you all.

News about extra activities 

Your child may come home talking about extra activities that their class are doing.  The children in Owls and Squirrels will be having weekly drama sessions with Aaron, who works for the Sixth Sense Theatre company.  The children in Badgers and Foxes will be having weekly African drumming sessions with Toby, from Swindon Music Service,  and will also be doing 3 sessions of Forest Schools, in groups of about 10 children, between now and Christmas with Rachel, from the Wiltshire Wildlife Trust.  The first group of children doing Forest School have taken a letter home today so please check your child's bag.  All the children will have an opportunity to do Forest Schools during this academic year.

Clubs for Year 1

Clubs will be open to Year 1 only until next Easter.  Clubs will run, for terms 1 and 2,  in the weeks beginning 21/9, 28/9, 5/10, 12/10, not the 19th or 26th, 2/11, 9/11, 16/11, 23/11. Children who attend Lily Pad can come along to a club and go to Lily Pad afterwards. If your child is at Lily Pad and you wish to use the Lily Pad space when clubs are not on, then you will have to continue to pay for Lily Pad on those days.

Dance Club - max 12 pupils - provisional day awaiting confirmation, run by Gabriella Webb (Mrs Honour's sister, who is a dance student) along with a member of staff.
Football Club - max 20 for girls and boys - run by Miss Evans
Art Club - max 16 - run by Mrs Smith

Construction Club - max 12 pupils - run by Mrs Flynn
Multiskills Club - max 16 pupils - run by Miss Grindley
Cooking Club - max 10 pupils - run by Miss Milsom and Mrs Holt
Drama Club - max 20 pupils - run by Mrs Leo and Miss Davidson

Film Club (part of national network, children watch films over period of weeks and then submit reviews to a Film club website) - max 40 pupils - run on a staff rota basis

Pick up for all clubs will be from usual Year 1 entrance at 4:30. Sign up sheets will be available on Monday 13th September.

News from the School Office
Emergency Contact Sheets and other info
Thank you for returning your Emergency Contact and information sheets. If you haven't already done so please return yours asap so we can contact you if needed.
Open days for looking around Nursery and Reception
These proved very popular last year so, if you know anyone who is interested in joining us in 2016, please let them know we will be holding drop-in sessions every Friday in October at 10:00, 11:00 and 1:30.

Can you help us?
I like to spend as much of our income as possible in providing an inspiring education for your children but that has left us short of a caretaker this year. We need help with the following things:-
1. Unpacking the Hobbit House - the Hobbit House is still in one of the blue containers. It took 7 fencing installers to put it in there; it defeated the removal team - can you help us take it out of the container and put it in the Reception outdoor area. We are going to attempt this at 3:45 on Friday 18th September - all strong helpers gratefully welcomed.
2. Shed - we have been provided with a new shed as moving the one from Redhouse proved too expensive. It needs treating inside and out before the winter and sealant put in around the windows and doors. Any offers of help to do this would be gratefully received.
3. Regular Testing - currently Niki and I carry out the regular weekly testing of the safety equipment here - would you be interested in joining a team to do this on a rota basis. Niki and I will hold a meeting for interested parents at 3:00pm on Friday 18th September.
4. Volunteer register - we often have opportunities that come up, both regular and one-off, for helpers to support the school. If you would be interested in joining our register then email Niki or pop in to the office and let us know what skills you can offer and what availability you have.

FOTF Update

Our first meeting of the year is on Thursday 17th September in school at 6:00pm all welcome.  

We will be holding Coffee Mornings on a Wednesday, starting Wednesday 16th September, in the small hall at school from 8:50 - 10:00 - all parents, carers, grandparents and pre-school children welcome. Come along, via the main school entrance, and share experiences, make new friends and have a relaxing cuppa!

On Wednesday 23rd September the coffee morning will be in aid of Macmillan World's Largest Coffee Morning and we will have cakes for sale in the morning and after school. Please bring in cake donations (no nuts please) in the morning. Could we ask that the children bring in a voluntary donation, we suggest 50p, and they will take part in the morning at break-time. Our value that we are studying this term is Generosity and supporting a national event, such as this fits, in with this value very well.

Jane Leo
Tadpole Farm CE Primary Academy