Newsletter 9th May
This week, a lot of the focus has been on the Year Six SATS tests.
Firstly, let me say how exceptional the children have been. They have been calm and kind to each other and have shown great resilience and and focus. At the end of the day we can't control how the tests suited or didn't suit this child or that child, we can't control the preparation that other schools have chosen to make and we can't control the grade boundaries which are more or less a political whim. What we control is the experience the children have as they grow through our school and the experiencethey have of SATS week. Our children have shown such a lovely character and such a will to do what they can - it has been genuinely quite moving.
A big well done has to go to Mrs Armstrong, whose belief in every child's potential really shines through at this time of year. Well done to her and to Mrs Ramoutar who have prepared the children so well and thanks to everyone else who has helped out this week - you know who you are.
Exams and tests are a part of our lives, for good or for ill, and it's important we prepare children to represent themselves as well as we can. At the end of the day, however, it isn't a result in a SATS test that defines our children. When I look at Year Six I see talented musicians , I see keen sports people (so many cross country runs), I see children who can write and tell amazing stories, I see children who can make me laugh even when I'm feeling down, I see children who spot when I'm feeling down and know how to ask me how I am, I see children who can play hilariously one minute then come into class and settle striaght down, I children who have learned to settle their own disputes with grace and help younger children to do the same, I've seen children who can speak up in front of the school and in front of other adults. And I remember that this is a group of children who missed so much of their school journey due to the pandemic. They are a special bunch of children and we love them three dimensionally.
Well done to every one of you, Year Six. Absolutely regardless of any standardised score, I want you to know that, to us, every one of you is a absolute champion.
Census Day Special Menu
Next Thursday, May 18th, is the summer census day. We have three census days each year and they are an important snapshot used by the government to monitor the number of children in attendance at our school. They use the statistics generated by the census to decide elements of funding.
Amongst other things, the number of children who take a school dinner on that day is used to define how much funding our catering receives in the following year. More dinners on the day means more funding to provide dinners.
To encourage as many pupils as possible to take up the school meal on that day, Marie is offering her all time most popular menu. That's hot dog and wedges for mains and Chocolate Cracknel for dessert. As an extra special treat to entice you to use the service we will be permitting the children - for one day only - to eat their pudding before their mains!
Three Hares Local Stakeholder Board Chair’s update
I would like to pass on my thanks to everyone who took the time to contact me in relation to the Trust’s proposed restructure. I have collated all of the various stakeholder voices – those of parents, staff and communities – and this has been submitted to the Board of Trustees for their consideration. I would like to assure you that every voice has been heard. This is a key role of the LSB, and we recognise the importance of that. Whatever the outcome of the Trust’s decision, as always, the LSB will continue to work to support the schools, the principals, the staff and the pupils as best we can.
As you know, SATs have been taking place this week. I was fortunate enough to see a couple of schools “in action”, and I must commend your children on their resilience and the coping mechanisms they demonstrated. All of the pupils I saw remained calm, and observed the rules of the test situation perfectly. They were a real credit to you as parents and carers, and to the staff that have nurtured them over their school journey. I hope they all enjoy their well-deserved “end of SATs” treats!
Celebrating the Earth - Tuesday 23rd May
Our next 'Celebrating the Earth' event is on 23rd May at the Church of St Michael the Archangel. We be thinking about the ponies that live on the moors around us - what we can learn about them and what we can learn from them.
We hope to take a good party of children along so do get it in your diary now. We shall be singing 'Widdicombe Fair' and we'll be practicing the song in assembly a few times each week until then so that every single child is familiar with it and can join in confidently.
The event will start at 5:30 and go on no later than 6:30. There is generally a more formal part of the event for about half an hour at the start followed by an opportunity to stay in the space to reflect - this means that anyone who needs to leave a little early can do so without disturbing anyone.
You can listen to Widdicome Fair here - we will be singing the first three verses only!
Chagstyle - Designer Clothing and Accessories Sale
Freinds of the school are putting on this brillaint event to rasie funds for Cancer Research - a cause very close to many of our hearts. I'm told there have been some very cool donations so it will be worth going along to havea fun time and maybe pick up a special bargain or two.
Free Lunchtime Concerts
Free lunchtime concerts spice up the Dartmoor town of Chagford every Friday this summer. Chagford’s Summer Music Series begins on June 9th and continues until the end of August with more than twenty musicians performing across twelve entirely different concerts in the historic parish church. Musical genres span classical, folk, jazz, world music, mediaeval, klezmer, and even sea-shanties!
Last year’s inaugural series captured the hearts of audiences with its eclectic mix of exceptional musicians and its informal, convivial atmosphere. Tea and coffee is available and audiences are welcome to bring a packed lunch into the church. Many of the thriving cafés in the town offer a delicious choice of takeaway food for ‘munch and music’. Of course you can also enjoy lunch before or after the concerts in one of our many cafes and pubs. All concerts begin at 1.10pm and last about 45 minutes, they’re free to attend, and there's a retiring collection for those who wish to make a donation.
Thanks to the generosity of local businesses and private individuals, Chagford’s Summer Music is able to present some top-notch professional musicians including rising star violinist, Joel Munday; international harpist, Elizabeth-Jane Baldry; popular local sea-shanty crew, ‘Mariners Away’ and long-established performers, Nigel Shaw and Carolyn Hillyer whose evocative music is inspired by the Dartmoor landscape.
Full details of the Chagford Summer Music Series can be found online at chagfordmusic.com
Story Spaces - Storytelling Events in Okehampton and Moretonhampstead
Story Spaces — Skylarker
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