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Tuesday 20th July 2021

Mr Eardley, the Head Teacher, writes...

Dear Parents and Carers

I often tell the children in September that they are at the start of a year -long race and that they need to have their sights on the finish line.  

Now that we are reaching the end of the school year, I feel a little bit more like the year is actually a marathon and the final few days are a sprint towards the end. Every year has its own highs and lows and I always count myself very fortunate to be head at such an amazing school. I smile when I hear people say that they imagine that primary schools start winding down from the middle of June and that the last few days are paradise. July is perhaps the busiest time of the school year. There’s always so much to do, some statutory things such as writing reports and getting new classes together, and other things that we do because we want the children to have a great time at school. 

For reasons that you can probably imagine, this year has been particularly challenging, and I’ve often thought that one of the consequences of COVID is that we’ve had to have a more hands-off relationship with parents. It still feels strange to greet you at the school gate wearing a mask and to realise that you can’t see that I’m smiling when I say hello.

I know it might have been difficult for many of you that you haven’t been able to come into school to enjoy all the wonderful family activities that normally make up our school year. But I hope that you also understand that our priority is always your children. Not only have we wanted to make sure that they are safe, special and valued, but we have also wanted them to enjoy a rich and varied curriculum. Sadly, you have not been able to be part of this as much as we would normally hope, but we should keep our fingers crossed that in the new school year, we can welcome you back into the building and that you can share activities with your children. 

As you’ll see from this newsletter, once again the parent questionnaire results are impressive. I’m grateful to all the parents that gave their time to complete the questionnaire and to those that also added comments. Although it may not be possible to please everybody all the time, that doesn’t stop us wanting to do our best. In the last year, or in fact in the last 18 months, your relationship with school has had to change and I know that this has been difficult. Despite this, I am grateful that so many parents believe that we are still doing a good job and this is reflected in the questionnaire results. 

I always have mixed feelings when I’m putting together the last newsletter of the year and finalising arrangements for the last few days because saying goodbye to friends and colleagues as well as Year Six children and children in other year groups is always part of the end of the year. 

We will be sad to say goodbye to our Year Six children but know how fortunate their new schools are to have such wonderful children about to join them. I’ve known many of these children since they joined the school as nervous and excited four-year-olds and to see them now as young people ready to take the next step in their academic career fills me with pride, so I can only imagine how proud their parents must feel.

I wish them all the very best of luck as they move on to their secondary school and I look forward to hearing of their future successes, as I am confident that they will go on to do us proud. When you read the nominations for this year‘s PRIDE Award you will appreciate just how hard it was for staff to vote for one winner. I hope that all the nominees feel proud that their achievements have been recognised and I hope this year‘s winner realises just what a fantastic achievement it is to be singled out as the winner of our most prestigious award. 

So, as we work our way towards the end of term, with a disco to round off what has been another wonderful, if challenging year, I wish you all a very restful summer. With everything that is being reported in the news I’m not quite sure what sort of summer is in store for us all, and it may be that I must write again in August to let you know if there are any changes to our plans. But for now, I plan to switch off, turn off emails, pick up a good book, spend time with family and friends and to unwind, and I hope that you can do the same. 

Take care, 

Simon Eardley

Headteacher

Photo by Huong Ho on Unsplash