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2013 September Newsletter

Mudeford Junior School 
23 September 2013 
Dear Parents
Welcome back, I hope you all had a wonderful summer break. We are delighted with the way the children have settled into their new classes. There is a feeling of calm and purpose throughout the school. It promises to be a really good year.
Attendance Targets 
The Government have set every school attendance targets. Of course we are keen to meet our targets which means reducing the percentage of unauthorised absence from school. We would welcome your support by informing the school by telephone as soon as possible on the first day of any absence from school and by writing a letter on your child’s return. This enables us to code the absence as authorised.
Attendance – Important Changes 
The government has recently changed the legislation regarding parents requesting time out of school for their children. The legislation makes it clear that from September, headteachers may not grant any leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances. It is extremely unlikely time out of school for a family holiday will be considered exceptional circumstances. It will be the same for requests to spend time with visiting relatives or for birthday celebrations. As a school we fully understand and support the government’s drive to ensure pupils miss as little school time as possible. If it is absolutely necessary for you to take your children out of school then a written request should be addressed to the headteacher. Parents who take their children out of school may be liable to a financial penalty notice.
Thank you for making sure that the children arrive at school on time. We encourage the children to arrive between 8.35 and 8.40 am when a member of staff will be on each playground to supervise them. The bell is rung at 8.45 am. Any children arriving after this time should access the school through the front door.
Year 6 Parents - Important Information 
The admission procedures for your child entering secondary school in September 2014 are available on posters in school. You are requested to apply on-line at (there is also a Parent’s Guide available at this address) or you can telephone 01305 221060 for a paper form. The closing date for secondary applications is 31 October 2013.
Cycling to School 
We actively encourage children to cycle to school. Ensuring that children arrive safely at school is paramount. Therefore, if they are cycling independently, we ask that a copy of their Bikeability Certificate is presented to the school office. Otherwise we ask that parents accompany their child to school. Wearing a cycling helmet is highly recommended. Please ensure that children do not cycle on the school grounds as the pathways are very busy.
Safety in the School Car Park 
The school car park is a very busy place. We have allocated a section of the car park for visitor parking where children can be collected and dropped off.
In order to safeguard the safety of the children please do not:
? drive into the staff car park to drop off children.
? allow the children to cross the car park, insist that they use the pavements
? use the school drive in order to turn around
? obstruct the main blue gates restricting access for emergency vehicles
If you bring or collect your child by car, please only park on the school side of Mudeford Lane and never stop on the raised area opposite the gate to allow children crossing the road to have a clear view either way.
Please be aware that the Nelson Drive entrance is for pedestrian use only and parents are requested to avoid parking on the pavements, turning or dropping children next to the gate.
Please continue to help us ensure the safety of all our children and show consideration for our neighbours.
Extended Services 
If you would like further information about the Breakfast or After School Clubs please contact St Claire’s After School Club on 01202 429880.
Staff training days 
Staff training days have been arranged for Friday 4 October, Friday 2 November 2013, Monday 2 June and Friday 4 July 2014. 
If your child uses an inhaler can you please ensure that you complete a form from the office and provide us with an inhaler to keep in school.
School Uniform 
We welcome your continuing support and assistance in promoting the wearing of school uniform, in particular the correct shoes. We do not encourage the children to wear trainers or shoes with high heels. Could I also ask for your help in labelling all items of clothing especially at the start of a school year when many things are new. Please note pupils should not wear nail varnish.
Please check that the children bring their kit on the appropriate day. This information is provided in the year newsletters. If your child is not able to take part in PE or games could you please write to the class teacher explaining the reason. Thank you for your help.
We are finding more children are wearing jewellery to school. As part of the school’s health and safety policy the children are not allowed to wear rings, wristbands or friendship bracelets, necklaces or ear-rings. Children are allowed to wear ear studs but they must be taped up for PE and games and removed for swimming. We welcome your support in keeping to these essential safety rules.
Parent Evenings 
Parent evenings for all classes will be held on Tuesday 1 October 3.30-6.00 pm and Thursday 3 October 5.30-8.00 pm.
School Photographer 
We have arranged for the photographer to visit on Tuesday 15 October this year so that the photographs could be used as Christmas presents.
2014 SATs Please be aware that Year 6 will be taking their SATs week commencing 12 May 2014.
Sending Money into School 
When the occasion arises to send money into school could you please send it in clearly marked envelopes showing the child’s name, class, the reason and the amount included.
At this time we are collecting swimming contributions for Year 3 (£30 per term); Year 6 payments for Osmington Bay can be handed in weekly at the office if you wish to spread the cost (letter to follow shortly). Payment is due for peripatetic instrument lessons - £50 per term.
School Nurse Drop In 
The school nurse has arranged to be in school on the following dates this term for parents who would like to discuss their child’s health or well-being: Tuesday 8 October, Tuesday 5 November and Tuesday 10 December, 9.00 to 9.30 am.
Use of the trim trail 
Due to Health & Safety regulations, the Trim Trail can only be used when the children are supervised and is therefore not in use at the beginning and end of the school day. Please do not allow younger children to play on the equipment, especially in the afternoon when collecting children from the Lower Junior classrooms. Thank you for your support.
Yours sincerely
M Partridge
Dates for Your Diary 
Tuesday 1 October Parent Evening 3.30-6.00 pm
Thursday 3 October Parent Evening 5.30-8.00 pm
Friday 4 October Staff Training Day
Tuesday 8 October School Nurse Drop In 9.00-9.30 am
Friday 11 October School Disco
Tuesday 15 October School Photographer
Tuesday 5 November School Nurse Drop In 9.00-9.30 am
Friday 22 November Staff Training Day
Saturday 30 November Christmas Fair 12.00 – 2.00 pm
Tuesday 10 December School Nurse Drop In 9.00-9.30 am
School Terms and Holidays 2013/14 (all dates inclusive) 
Autumn Term 2013 Monday 2 September – Friday 20 December 2013 
Half Term Monday 28 October – Friday 1 November 2013 
Christmas Holiday Monday 23 December 2013 – Friday 3 January 2014 
Spring Term 2014 Monday 6 January – Friday 4 April 2014 
Half Term Monday 17 February – Friday 21 February 2014 
Easter Holidays Monday 7 April – Monday 21 April 2014 
May Day Monday 5 May 2014 
Summer Term 2014 Tuesday 22 April – Tuesday 22 July 2014 
Half Term Monday 26 May – Friday 30 May 2014 
Summer Holidays Wednesday 23 July – Friday 29 August 2014 
Staff Training Days (school closed) 
Friday 4 October 2013 
Friday 22 November 2013 
Monday 2 June 2014 
Friday 4 July 2014 
(one more date still to be allocated) 
2014/15 Autumn Term begins Monday 1 September 20