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Parent Council Minutes September 2014

 St John’s Parent Council Meeting

Minutes 1st Sept 2014

Present; Marie Canning, Kathryn Jones, Elaine Stewart, Allison Cassidy, Andrea Brogan, Louise Hutchison (LH1), Suzanne Healey, Michelle Ross, Louise Hunter(LH2), Jennifer Capaldi

Church rep; Margaret Higgins

School Reps; Annemarie Gordon, Elaine O’Donnell, Laura Mc Pherson

Council Reps; Apologies Cllr Hay

Apologies Mary Leonard, Joanne Jackson, Lynne Kilpatrick.


  1. Opening Prayer ; MH
  2. Vice chair opened meeting, thanked all for attending, welcomed new members, all members introduced themselves.
  3. Previous minutes read & approved. Alteration to plan to hold meetings in St Johns, this isn’t acceptable to ERC, future meetings will be held in St Luke’s High.
  4. ES asked all members to read & sign Code of Conduct, all complied. MC explained slight change to running order of agenda.
  5. MR was introduced and she explained her role as member responsible for ensuring all PVG are carried out. MR issued application forms to JC & LH2. MR will also contact other parents that have expressed interest in being involved with school events. PVG can take up to 6 weeks to be approved & returned.
  6. Correspondence received; letter from pupil council thanking Parent Council for money for wet play boxes. £30 per class, 8 classes, £240 spent by pupils, who were very grateful.
  7. Chair, MC, read the Annual Report, it is available for all to see, AMG will highlight to parents that it is available on website.
  8. HTR; Copy enclosed. LMcP explained School Plan & thanked AC & LH1 for taking part in the process to make it more parent friendly… EOD outlined the steering group of P7 for Equality & Rights Respecting Schools. Volunteers will be required for Anti Bullying Training, 2 members of PC.

Shopper’s night confirmed for 7th November. Pupil council elections taking place.


  1. AC gave Treasurers Report. Previous Balance was £1879.

Since then there has been numerous expenditure, including Easter Eggs, Communion & Confirmation gifts, Reading Books, Various gifts for Head Boy & Girl, Parish Priest, PC members, Mrs Kennedy, Wet play boxes, Liability Insurance.

Balance £274.94. Invoices from ES & MC to be deducted.

Mrs Aitken had requested playground equipment, but as LMcP has applied for a Tesco Community Grant, it was agreed to wait & see outcome of application before issuing any money. MC received word that £335 was available from Cluster Club for P7 trip.

10 Annual Audit, new member LH2 is a qualified accountant and has agreed to audit books. PC extends thanks to Louise for this service.

11 AOCB; MH raised a concern from Fr Paul that children’s liturgy at 10am mass is poorly attended & asked school to encourage children to attend. Several members expressed concern regarding the amount of dogs being brought into school playground. Signs will be erected on fences and community wardens will be asked to attend school to advise parents / carers that ERC do not allow dogs on school property.

A P7 leaving parent was concerned that their child did not receive an award at Award Ceremony. EOD explained whole system & PC are happy that it is a fair & equal system. P7 parents present, MC, SH & ES also expressed their thanks for assembly and could find no fault.

12 Following Office Bearers nominated & accepted.

Chair- Marie Canning, Vice Chair- Elaine Stewart, Secretary- Kathryn Jones, Treasurer- Allison Cassidy, Louise Hunter.

As a new PC member Louise will assist AC for next months before taking over.

13 Closing Prayer; MH

Next meeting 1 December 2014 in St Luke’s High School.

Parent Council Minutes December 2014

St John’s Parent Council Meeting


Date of Meeting:  Monday 1st December 2014


Present:             M Canning, K Jones, E O’Donnell, L Hunter, J Jackson, L McPherson, A M Gordon,

S Allison, M Higgins (Church rep.), E Stewart, Cllr K Hay, L Hutchinson, S Healy


Apologies:           J Capaldi, A Cassidy


1 Opening Prayer

MH led the opening prayer to begin the meeting.


2 Welcome & Introductions

MC welcomed everyone, including new members Joanne & Stephanie as it was their first meeting, and also

thanked Cllr Hay for attending.


3 Previous Minutes

Signs have been put up regarding the rule of no dogs in the playground. The children’s liturgy at Sunday’s 10am mass was mentioned in the newsletter, encouraging children to attend.


4 Correspondence Received

MC noted that not much had been received; the parent council insurance which was previously paid annually is changing as it will now be covered by the ERC block insurance – money paid will be refunded back into the bank account.


5 Head Teacher’s Report

  • Feedback from parent’s night was positive; parental feedback is always sought after events, scoring slightly lower recently in the view of ‘I have a say in school’.
  • World of work week was held recently and was a great success with over 30 visitors to the school from a variety of backgrounds; considering inviting the visitors back for a reception to thank them for their contribution and also to help keep them involved with the school community.
  • Mrs Heron is going on maternity leave in January and will be replaced by Miss Webster.
  • Mrs McIntosh and Mrs McBride are also going on maternity leave, long-term supply coverage has been requested.
  • Mrs Kelly has joined the staff.
  • The current format of summative reports to parents consists of the report card, 2 parents nights, discovery days, Christmas fayre, coffee mornings – all of which are ways of letting parents see what’s going on in class and school in general. Considering changing the report card, possibly making it more inter-disciplinary rather than subject based. LMcP showed examples from St Cadoc’s and St Mark’s as comparisons to the current format. Possibly bring in parents in the new year to discuss format styles.
  • P6 pupils have been invited to take part in the pilot Pope Francis award, they will be attending mass tomorrow (2nd December) as part of their ‘enrolment’, this will be part of their work building towards their confirmation in P7. Non-catholics can also take part meaning no pupil is excluded (there are different levels of award depending on whether the pupil is catholic/non-catholic or practising/non-practising). Parental consent is required for the programme.
  • ‘God’s Loving Plan’ is the new health and well-being resource which replaces ‘Education For Love’. In this method the children sign a contract and Miss McPherson has a script to work from and not deviate. The resources will be on display at March’s parents night for parents to view and will be taught in term 4.
  • Efficiency savings are being discussed with £20 million pounds to be saved in the authority. Discussions have been had with staff including re-allocation of staff, pupil support assistants – with the result that Mrs Ritchie is now working 4 days a week and Mrs Donaghy is working 4½ days a week, which does mean that there will be less PSAs in the playground. Further decisions will be made in February. AMG noted that staff have been very cooperative and flexible with their working hours and recognised how important the PSAs are to the school. It is also looking like support for learning could be affected. The breakfast club could also be stopped – which is important for many children providing a meal in a stable environment. Cllr Hay strongly encouraged parents to get involved in the consultation before the budget in February as it is important for parent’s opinions to be included and considered.
  • AMG discussed the possibility of more parental involvement with practical things around the school eg painting – which currently has health and safety implications. This could potentially be a creative way of improving the school with volunteers thus saving money.
  • The school Christmas fayre raised £2667, with money going towards the summer ‘kid’s big day out’ – the children are consulted as to where they would like to go. AMG thanked the parents/family who helped. The grotto was a great success with many admiring comments; the photos with Santa were also very well received by all. AMG to host an afternoon tea on the 18th December to thank the helpers with reserved seats at the Christmas show also as a gesture of appreciation.
  • The parent council was asked to fund the purchase of a new urn for future occasions.
  • P4 and P5 will attend church for the first Friday mass this week.
  • Peter Pan panto is coming to perform in the school in January, a grant has been applied for to help fund this but the outcome is not known at this point.
  • The second week in January will see the registration process for the new P1s – currently looking like a potential intake of 25 in August.
  • January will also feature Scottish theme week and Scottish assembly.


6 Equality

  • E O’D attended the equalities forum on the 18th of September, unfortunately this wasn’t well attended. The update on racist incidences monitoring showed a small reduction in primary and an increase in secondary events.
  • ‘Show racism the red card’ is a tailored programme for P6 and P7, featured in world of work week.
  • A further diversity day is planned focusing on the Barrhead and Neilston cluster schools, usually in early September.
  • Bi-lingual support assistants were discussed with checklists to be used for children who have English as an additional language, hoping to lead to strategies to be used with these children depending on the stage that they are at.
  • Dyslexia awareness week was held in Mearns Primary, with 2 former pupils involved helping with presentations about transition. Also 3 P6/P7 pupils attended.
  • E O’D is working with the Respect and Equalities teams on anti-bullying measures.
  • E O’D was unable to make the Respect conference in Glasgow, KJ attended along with Miss Dunsmuir. Both joined different workshops which covered a variety of bullying issues and strategies for a range of situations. Hopefully some of the information can be fed back to the pupil Respect group with the possibility of a pupil conference.


7 Treasurer’s Report

  • The total raised from the family night was £783.02
  • The total raised from the shopper’s night was £694.46
  • The account’s current balance is: £1687.46


8 Fund-Raising Update

The cluster quiz is on January 30th in St John’s church hall, targeted at P6 parents as money raised helps towards costs of buses for the P7 trip to Lockerbie.

Easy Fundraising is a great way to raise funds for the school via online shopping, no money will be released to the school until £15 is raised, need to promote this to parents – perhaps a text to parents to inform them of how to get involved.


9 Any Matters Arising From Parent Forum

  • Halloween party – maybe rethink prize giving with regards to best costume/best dancer.
  • The shopper’s night in November had several issues including access problems, insufficient tables – possibly rethink the night; discussed running a race night as a fundraiser at some point.
  • Try and continue to encourage new parents to come and join or help at events.
  • Cllr Hay added the P7 children were to be commended for their behaviour and involvement in the recent debate, E O’D’s daughter also noted excellent manners and behaviour of children.
  • Also welcome extended to V Brown, appointed in the school office.


10 Closing Prayer

MH closed the meeting with the final prayer.