It was great to see more parents in this week for our PACT sessions. I have had some really positive feedback from parents and pupils who have enjoyed showing mums dads and grandparents their maths work. There will be another opportunity on Tuesday to visit your class this time for some hints and tips on helping your children with their maths homework. You can also come and have a chat with me at the parents forum on Thursday morning st 9am in the hall, or during the parent consultation evenings next week.
I met with Karla Hobbs this week to discuss the ongoing success of St Teilo’s Fun Club, our after school provision. At the moment it is well attended and being well run by the dedicated staff. As a school we know it provides valuable after school care – especially useful for working parents. I know as a working mum myself I could never have managed without after school clubs and also breakfast club too. Thankfully my 2 are older and a bit more independent now!
We had a visit from Andy Rothwell who is supporting us with one of our Estyn recommendations- improving certain aspects of our ICT provision. He met with Mrs Collins who is our ICT lead and gave us lots of help and support to ensure we can meet the recommendation and more importantly improve our ICT provision in school. You should be able to follow our progress if you are using the SeeSaw app. Any issues with this app please let either me or Mrs Collins know and we can help you out.
Other highlights this week included visits from Father John Hughes who is relishing his link Governor role and working closely with our Year 5 class; Mrs Tufty who reminded our Foundation phase classes of the importance of road safety and making sure they’re easily seen; our grounds maintenance staff who are looking to repaint our netball court and cycle track and also provide us with a quote for the gates to block off part of the car park at play and lunch times for our footballers; Cerian Jones who talked to two fascinated year 3 and 4 classes about a Celtic Handfasting ceremony; Year 1 pupils visited St Teilo’s church; we had a finance subcommittee meeting and full Governing Body meeting and finally ended the week by raising over £160 towards our ‘gate appeal’ by not wearing school uniform – thank you for your donations.
What a busy week!
Mrs Joanne Bayton
I’ll start today at the end of the week – another fantastic display of the talents of the Llantilio Pertholey school choir, and of course not forgetting Mr Oram! They took part in a joint concert with Blaenavon Male Voice Choir held at St Teilo’s church on Saturday evening and they were, as always, amazing! It was a really lovely evening – a big thank you to all involved.
It was great to see so many Year 1 parents joining their children for a PACT (parents and children together) session this week. Our focus for PACT sessions this term is maths and the sessions lead up to a homework workshop on the 7th Feb where parents will have the chance to gain some hints and tips for helping their children with the maths homework.
On Friday we gave out our first ‘Writer of the Month awards’. As writing is a focus for improvement this year it was great to see children who had made good progress in writing, presentation, pencil grip, enthusiasm and perseverance being rewarded for all their efforts! We will be displaying some of their work via the SeeSaw app and also on our new look website which we hope will be up and running in the next few weeks.
As mentioned on the newsletter this week, we are having a few issues with our uniform at the moment, mainly concerning the use of our new logo. I was hoping that we would have seen this appearing on uniform from September but that hasn’t happened! I am still happy to run the old logo for as long as necessary but keen that any new uniform ordered from now on will have the new logo on it. We are also hoping to sell a few more items such as book bags, fleeces and cardigans and also coloured T – shirts with the house names on that can be worn for PE lessons and Sports.
I had the chance to hear some readers and listen to learners this week too. I randomly choose a few pupils from each class and chat to them about their learning experiences and school in general. This is a really good way to gain the pupils’ perspective in a lot more detail than a questionnaire does – they are brutally honest too which certainly keeps us on our toes!
Mrs Joanne Bayton
The two leadership days Mrs Balkwill and I took at the end of last week were hugely successful. We were able to plan all our self evaluation and review events as well as all our learning evaluations, reporting arrangements and opportunities to gather evidence for our Estyn revisit for the rest of the year. Now I can spend more time in classes, working with children and alongside staff to continue to raise standards and help pupils achieve their targets.
I met with all the primary Heads in Monmouthshire on Tuesday at our half term lay MAPS session. We were joined by Sharon Randall Smith and Will McClean who gave us some information on the authority’s review of additional learning needs.
We welcomed our challenge advisor Jayne Arthur and her deputy, Helen King from Risca Primary to our staff meeting on Monday evening. They gave an account of how they have improved standards of writing in their school over the last few years and shared some ideas with us. As you know improving writing was a recommendation from Estyn so any advice and support is always welcome.
This week sees the start of a fortnight of our PACT sessions where parents are invited in to spend a session with the class. If you haven’t received a letter from your child’s class teacher yet you soon will! There will also be a homework workshop held on the 6th Feb after schoool, a parents’ forum meeting on the 9th at 9am and then parent consultation evenings in the week beginning 13th Feb so plenty of opportunities to come in and see us!
Mrs Joanne Bayton
Lots of meetings this week and our first glimpse of the white stuff! Let’s hope it’s the last.
I met with Sian Tinnuche from the EAS Welsh advisory service to discuss how to improve the Welsh oracy in school as per one of our Estyn recommendations. She will be working closely with the staff over the next couple of terms suggesting resources and activities that we can use to increase the pupils’ use of Welsh outside the classroom. This will include training sessions and, as suggested in the last parents forum, possible sessions for parents too.
The Abergavenny cluster heads also met this week. Items on the agenda for this half term included provision in school for More able and talented pupils; cluster sports events and creating policies for things like attendance and the use of Social Media that are consistent across all schools in Abergavenny.
Mrs Pugh and I met this week to plan ways forward to improve pupils’ writing skills. As literacy coordinator Mrs Pugh leads the staff in making changes and securing improvements. We will also get support from the EAS and our challenge advisor Jayne Arthur.
I have also met with several parents this week to discuss various issues such as attendance, punctuality, dinner money debts and in class support. Anything on your mind please come and see me – we can sort most things out with a chat!
Finally I met with a representative from Trutex regarding our new school logo being available on our uniform. Hopefully from now on all items should be embroidered with the new badge – we will not however be expecting people to replace all their uniform now but will be running both logos for as long as it takes.
Mrs Balkwill and I are taking two days leadership time on Thursday and Friday this week to plan staff meetings, training, Pupil Progress Reviews and the budget for next year. We also have two leadership days planned at the end of March too. We will obviously stay in close touch with school so any issues can be dealt with.
We will endeavour to get the newsletter to you as soon as possible this week too! Blame the white stuff!
Mrs Joanne Bayton
Happy New Year!!
It was good to return to school this week if only to get away from my fridge! I had a fantastic family Christmas and feel quite rested and ready to face the challenges of the new term.
Quite a short week but busy nonetheless, the major job of this week was to finalise the post inspection action plan. This has to be produced 20 working days after the publication and sets out the schools plans for achieving the recommendations set out by Estyn.
Mrs Clarke and I attended a budget meeting in County Hall in Usk on Tuesday morning to monitor our spending on this year’s budget and start building a budget 2017 / 2018. Things are looking a little tight as expected so we will be having to tighten our belts a little I think!
I’m keeping a close eye on the weather forecasts, fingers crossed we don’t get any of the white stuff this term! If we do then we will keep you informed through the website and regular texts. Anyone who changed their phones over Christmas please give the updated information to the staff in the office.
Mrs Joanne Bayton
Probably the hardest term in school, ever.
A huge thank you to all the hardworking, patient, talented and dedicated staff at Llantilio who have given the children the best possible experiences and opportunities this term and all managed to make it to the end!
Also to the PTFA and all friends of the school for all their support both financial and in person for everything they have organised and supported this term.
Thanks too to all in St Teilo’s for helping the children to make the Christingles and for the lovely service in the church which was a fitting end to our Christmas celebrations in school.
I’ve just returned from the 9 lessons and carols service at St Teilos where Mr Oram and our brilliant school choir played an important part – well done especially to Millie for her solo and Connie and Apphia for their reading.
Finally, may I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a happy and peaceful New Year, see you all on January 3rd.
Mrs Joanne Bayton
I am never more proud of our school than when watching the children perform on stage. The Foundation Phase classes put on two amazing performances of The Aliens at Christmas and I was amazed at their confident delivery of the lines and the quality of the singing. Their costumes looked great and all the pupils, even our youngest reception class, all joined in and thoroughly enjoyed themselves!
The juniors did a fantastic version of Scrooge – again the singing was amazing and all the pupils who had lines or solos were incredible. My only disappointment was they I only got to see one performance! Many thanks must go to the staff who have worked do hard to ensure such successful performances and also to all who supported the children by watching, providing costumes and helping their children to learn lines.
The class hamper competition was a huge success again this year. Thank you for all the donations- I’m sure you will agree that they looked fabulous as usual and we raised over £700 which will go towards providing extra resources for the pupils and their Christmas celebrations. The winning tickets are on display in the school so please check to see if you have won. You will need to bring your ticket with you when collecting your prize.
It was great to see some new parents join us for the first parents’ forum of this academic year. Topics of conversation included our recently published Estyn report, ways we could encourage more people to walk to school and more clarity as to how the money raised in our various fundraising activities will be spent. We will work on these during the New Year.
Also this week, Mr Rees and I spent Monday in Beechwood House in Newport at the launch of a new maths initiative from Singapore. It was a really interesting day which explored some of the methods that maths teachers use to improve reasoning and problem solving skills.
I also attended a meeting of the Education Improvement Board on Tuesday with the challenge advisor Jayne Arthur and Head of Service Sharon Randall Smith to discuss our progress and our post inspection action plan. The festive week was rounded off with our Christmas Jumper day and Christmas lunch on Friday.
A 4 day week next week and then we can all enjoy a well deserved rest after such a busy term! Don’t forget our Christingle service at St Teilos on Thursday evening starting at 6pm.
Mrs Joanne Bayton