Dear Parents and Caregivers
As Governors we really appreciate the difficulties that all families are facing and we understand all the pressures you are under. However the one thing we do know is that the leaders and staff at Elmhurst are doing a brilliant job in supporting your children and you as families. Hopefully it alleviates some of the pressures for you.
We recently had an extra Governor meeting over Zoom to ensure that we, as governors, are all up to date with the latest developments. We were heartened to hear about the successes such as the new laptops, new procedures and plans, and the fact that there has been much continuity in school, despite the pandemic. We also love to see the children’s work shared each week on the Elmhurst website.
At the meeting we also heard about all the extra pressures put on the school and how well the leadership team are managing these. Please be assured that everyone is working in the children’s best interests.
As we approach the half-term holiday with more uncertainty ahead, we hope that you will be able to enjoy some extra times with your children. The SCARF activities in last week’s newsletter are worth looking at again. Despite the weather, we are lucky to live in such a beautiful area where we can walk in countryside locally.
We will get through this. Let’s continue supporting each other as best we can.
With very best wishes
Claire Axten and Andy Shepherd
Co-Chairs of Governors
Communications – a reminder
Please make sure you read the newsletter. If you know of anyone who can’t access it, please share it with them. This is our only way of communicating with all parents and caregivers.
We will add links to any message posted on the website during the week. It should be your first port of call for whole school matters.
Class Dojo and Google classroom should be your first port of call for all classroom matters.
General questions about whole school queries can either be posted on the Facebook page or you can call the school office. If it is a matter of urgency, please call. Facebook messages may get missed.
Any safeguarding concerns should be directed to the Designated Safeguarding Lead, Mike Lawrence. The contact number for out of school hours is 07751 760627 which is also on the front of the website. During school hours please use the school number, 01458 442979. You may also email firstname.lastname@example.org at any time. Please remember that if you believe a child is at risk of significant harm you should telephone 999. If you are unable to contact anyone from the school the telephone number for Somerset Direct, where you may share any concerns, is 0300 123 2224
Website posts you may have missed:
Thank you to all the children and parents/ caregivers who have responded to the survey. The closing date for both surveys is Monday 15th February. The link for the parent survey is above and the children’s can be found on Google classroom or here if children are unable to access the online classroom:
We will share the results of the survey in the first newsletter after half term.
We still have a few Chromebooks which we are able to loan out. If you would like to borrow one, please contact the school (01458 442979 or email TEdwards1@ejsch.co.uk) and we can arrange collection for tomorrow.
The Five Steps of Emotion Coaching
Emotions…we all have them. Everything we do and everything we learn is shaped in some way by the way we feel. Feelings are a natural part of who we are. But how do children learn about emotions? How do they learn to understand their sadness or joy? What is the appropriate behaviour when these feelings are strong? What can a parent do when a child explodes in anger or hides in fear? Parents spend lots of time teaching children important things such as reading or tying shoes. Taking time to help children learn to understand their feelings is important too.
This week: Step 2: Connect with your child. Use emotional moments as opportunities to connect.
- Pay close attention to a child’s emotions.
- Try not to dismiss or avoid them.
- See emotional moments as opportunities for teaching.
- Recognize feelings and encourage your child to talk about his or her emotions.
- Provide guidance before emotions escalate into misbehaviour.
If you can, focus in on these points over the course of the week. What do you notice?
Parent Pay refunds
All ParentPay refunds have now been actioned. If you were expecting something but haven’t received anything please contact the school office today and ask for Mrs Katie Twitchen.
Free School meal vouchers – a reminder
Further to the Government’s announcement that Free School Meals will be funded through the February half term, and for the first 2 weeks thereafter, Elmhurst Junior School will issue a £15.00 Wonde (schoolvouchers.com) voucher on Monday 15th February to cover the half-term break. We will then raise another order for the next two weeks with Edenred on Monday 22nd or Tuesday 23rd (this is dependent on Edenred). This will cover your entitlement up to 5th March.
We will of course keep you updated with any changes going forward in line with any revised government guidelines regarding school re-opening and free school meal provision.
Test and Trace – February half term – a reminder
Whilst we hope that everyone has a safe half term break, we still need to have a plan in place should a child or member of staff have a positive test result in the first 48 hours of the half term.
The guidance says that, where a pupil or staff member tests positive for coronavirus, having developed symptoms more than two days since being in school, the school SHOULD NOT be contacted.
In this instance, parents and carers should follow contact tracing instructions provided by NHS Test and Trace.
For the first two days after teaching ends, if a pupil or staff member tests positive for coronavirus having developed symptoms within two days of being in school, the school is asked to assist in identifying close contacts and advising self-isolation, as the individual may have been infectious while they were in school.
If this is the case, you will need to inform the school. We have set up a Google form for parents to complete:
We will check our emails twice daily during this period. We will only be responding to test result emails during this time. All other emails can wait until we return to school.
We will then contact any parents and staff who are “direct contacts” in order to inform them of the need to isolate.
Half term treasure hunt
Such a great idea!
Photos for the website gallery
Please email photos (JPEGs) of any work completed through to me, Tracy Edwards at TEdwards1@ejsch.co.uk. Alternatively, if easier, you can send via Messenger. By sending them in, you agree to share them in the Elmhurst gallery on the website. Thank you in advance.
You can have a look at the gallery here: Elmhurst Lockdown Gallery 2021
Free tutoring from Flossie Willis
I am a former Elmhurst pupil and am now in year 10 at Crispin. I am currently working towards my Bronze Duke of Edinburgh’s Award. One element of the award is volunteering. Due to Covid restrictions I am looking to offer some informal tutoring remotely. If you have a child in year 5 that would find it useful to have some free extra help with their schoolwork (outside of school hours) please get in touch with me via my mum on email@example.com.
And finally.. Hello from Mrs Edwards
A final note…get involved in the treasure hunt! A perfect outdoor activity!