September 2018 Issue 1
Welcome back everyone! The start of a new and exciting session 2018/19. All pupils have come back to school fresh and full of energy…ready to learn. Primary 1 pupils have settled in very well and are enjoying a great variety of learning opportunities in class. As always, please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions, queries, worries or concerns. We are looking forward to a BUSY BUSY term! Read on…
School Improvement Plan
Every year all schools in Glasgow create a school improvement plan. This plan takes into consideration all evaluative feedback we receive from pupils, parents/carers, staff and partners. We also assess our performance in line with the National Evaluation Framework ‘How Good Is Our School 4’. This process is on-going throughout the year. I have analysed results of last session evaluations and these are displayed in the main foyer or downstairs at the main door.
This year we have several priorities. We aim to continue improvements in mathematics under the guidance of our highly trained and skilled Mr Steer. He will lead us in our developments again this year. Mathematic attainment figures are increasing across the school and our pupils are skilled in this area – we need to continue to improve and be able to sustain those improvements. We also have on our plan a focus on reading and writing. We look to ensure all pupils are able to read at their own specific level at all times and this is facilitated with high quality resources. We are exploring our writing assessment process in order to moderate our writing expectation across the school. We also have on plan a focus on parental engagement as we know this supports pupil greatly in achieving to their potential. There will continue to be a focus on health and well-being for all pupils – ensuring they are mentally and emotionally stable and ready to learn.
Please do not hesitate to get in touch if you would like to read the improvement plan or want further information.
Staffing at present is stable and all classes are settled with relevant and appropriate staff. As always, we will welcome teaching students and possibly volunteers over the course of the session, but at present we do not have information about this.
Last session we had a little growth in our attendance and I would really like to see that increase. The growth was 1% from 93% up to 94%. Our target this session is 96% and I aim to get to that. Pupils need to come to school every day. They may have a very short period of ill health which may result in an absence, but if this is prolonged, they should have a medical certificate. I worry about pupils with very sporadic attendance, pupils who have odd days off randomly. This is hindering your child’s progress at school and must not occur. If you wish to speak to me about attendance issues, please do pop in or give me a call. There may be things we can do to help and support.
Stay and Play
Stay and Play sessions will continue this session in term 2-4. These are opportunities for you to see your child ‘at work’. You will see the types of learning they are engaged in, and observe how learning and teaching happens in this current school system. You may also get some ideas for things you can do at home to support your child’s learning. These are open opportunities for you and I would encourage you to attend. In order to support more parents/carers to attend, especially those with work commitments, I have noted the dates for sessions below. I have made sessions more flexible so that you can have some selection in the day you attend. I am aiming for 100% attendance!
Stay and Play Sessions
- 30th, 31st October and 1st November 9.15-9.45am
- 29th, 30th and 31st January 9.15-9.45am
- 30th April, 1st and 2nd May 9.15-9.45am
You can chose one day that suits, or you could come on more than one day! If this is still unsuitable for you, please do get in touch and we will make alternative arrangements.
Pupils attend Credit Union on a Wednesday at 11am. This is up at Spireview offices. Credit union is a type of savings facility for the pupils and they can deposit as much or as little as they/you wish. This will re-start on Wednesday 5th September. If you wish your child to join, please ask them to request an application form from the office. It is very easy to get involved.
Parent Pizza Party!
This sounds very flippant for what is an important event for your diary! As we strive to get 100% attendance from parents/carers at our events, we have engaged in some research into human behaviour and engagement. This has told us that if we provide food, more people may come!! We will give it a try…and if nothing else, there will be pizza!
At this event, all class teachers will be available to chat informally with you about your child’s experience in their class. They will explain some of the strategies they use, describe some learning and teaching techniques, show you some resources and give you some to take away and answer any questions you may have.
This will take place Tuesday 11th September 2-3pm.
Assessment, attainment and testing
In order to evaluate your child’s progress in attainment and achievement, we have developed a suite of summative assessments. These assessments allow us to explore progress, impact of strategies being used and create appropriate and challenging future learning. Assessment progress will be reported on at the first parents’ appointments on 20th November. I will also devise a way of reporting these to you at regular intervals – this is a work in progress. Pupils will undertake formal assessments in spelling, reading, maths and writing. They will also complete some health and wellbeing progress trackers and primary 1, 4 and 7 will undertake national assessments for completion of a level. This gives us a broad scope from which to see how well pupils are progressing, but also to explore our effectiveness as teachers.
Please do ask teachers next week if you want more information, or pop in to see me.
All pupils in primary 1-4 are entitled to government funded school meals. This does not mean that you should not apply for meals and clothing grant if you think you might be eligible. It is still very important to make the application as this affects the amount school receives in budget.
Please speak to me or office staff if you are unsure of the process.
Glasgow Learning Hub
We have some new residents in Royston Primary this session. Staff from Glasgow’s Learning Hub are on our top floor. This service is fully staffed by teachers who have full disclosures and PVG checks. This service is a key training provider in Glasgow, and undertakes research. They also support work in different schools across the city and engage with the directorate on government policy in relation to Glasgow practice. We already have a very positive working relationship with the staff and know our will gain from having them so close at hand!
This is the reason why roads around the school are increasingly busy. I do hope this will settle down in time. Please do let me know if you are concerned and I will do what I can to help.
Water and Snack
We have a water only rule as part of our health and wellbeing policy. Pupils are not permitted to bring fruit shoots, capri suns, fizzy drinks etc to school. They may get these as an occasional treat during school but this happens rarely. Pupils should bring water or flavoured water to school. Only plain water can be consumed in class time. Flavoured water may be consumed at play or lunch time. We also encourage pupils to bring healthy snacks. If pupils bring a healthy snack, they win points and on Friday, they may get a certificate if they have had healthy snacks all week. Please do support your child in making good healthy choices.
Balornock Uniform Bank
You may have seen our hanging rail in the main foyer outside the school office. This rail of professionally dry cleaned pre-loved uniform is free for you to help yourself. If you can find something that is suitable for your child, please do take it. There is no expected charge for any item, but if you are able to give a very small amount of money to school fund, we would be very grateful – even if this is just a 50p or £1. I would actively encourage you to take what you need from the rail. In addition, if you have any uniform items that you no longer need, please do donate them to the bank. There is a donations box sitting beside the rail.
PE Kit and indoor shoes
I have sent out a letter indicating PE days for each class. Please do support your child in being prepared for this. All pupils need shorts/leggings or jogging trousers and P4-7 need a change of T-shirt also. P1-3 can wear the school polo shirt that day.
All pupils must have indoor shoes. These do not need to be new shoes! A pair of shoes which are cleaned or put in the washing machine will be fine. Indoor shoes are worn every day in school, to try to protect our carpets and also for PE. Please bear in mind that your child’s feet will grow and shoes will get too small. If your child comes home with indoor shoes it is fairly likely that the child has said they do not fit.
A few things from the diary so far…
Fruit and Veg barra is returning on Monday 3rd September, and every Monday thereafter. It will be situated in the front playground.
Primary 1 pupils will have their photograph taken for the Evening Times Primary 1 special. This will happen on Wednesday 5th September.
Primary 7 pupils will get the opportunity to learn keyboard from a tutor working at St Roch’s Secondary. Ms Sinclair will attend every Wednesday morning to give instruction.
Primary 7 will start cookery lessons on Thursday 6th September. This will run for term 1. There will also be parent and child classes after school every Thursday – please see letter sent home on Friday. I am also looking for interest in an adult only class on a Thursday morning – this cannot be confirmed until I have possible numbers for attendance.
Primary 7/6 will attend the Davis Cup practice session on Wednesday 12th September. This will run all day and pupils require to take a packed lunch.
Primary 1 and 2 will soon have a dance coach for term 1. This will commence Thursday 13th September.
Primary 5 pupils will take part in Ready to Run annual event. Mr Steer will begin training sessions this week. The event will be on the 28th September.
We will this year, take part in the ‘BIG BREAKFAST’ event on 5th October. All proceeds will go towards children’s charities. More information to follow.
Primary 7/6 will be studying the Titanic this term and I am exploring a Belfast visit in relation to this learning. I have nothing confirmed and cannot give you detail, but there may be a minimal cost for this.
Week Beginning 10th September is Maths Week. We will be focusing heavily on maths that week and looking at some creative uses of maths!
Dress down days are always the last Friday of the month. There will rarely be additional opportunities for dress down as it is a very important part of school to wear uniform. We expect pupils to wear uniform every day. If pupils wear additional clothing for warmth, we do expect them, and ask them, to remove this inside school. Pupils should not be wearing non-uniform hoodies in class.
Breakfast club runs in the dining hall from 8-8.45am every morning. Please do get in touch if you would like further information.
This is a key focus for us this session. We are listening to your views as given in evaluations and also in discussion. We have some ideas of our own too. However, we need to know what works best for you in order to provide the best service we can. Please do tell us what you like and what doesn’t work…or if there are other ways you would like to be involved. Some people may feel they are involved enough and this is OK too. We continually look for ways to improve so please do help.