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Headteacher's News 12.09.22

All the most recent news from Edith

Monday 12th September 2022

Dear parents and carers of Stepney Park Primary School,

We have had a really good start to the term. The children have returned to school happy and they have started this year very settled.  We have spent a lot of time talking about the school learning behaviours, class charters, and have re-established routines; everything is going very well. On Friday, it was lovely to see so many children who have already been awarded for their excellent behaviour with a special school postcard.

Bank Holiday - School Closure, Monday 19th September

Following the announcement from Buckingham Palace of the death of our sovereign, Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II, a period of National Mourning has started and will continue until the end of the State Funeral. This is a period of time for reflection in response to the death of our Queen.The official date of the State Funeral is 19 September 2022. This day will be a bank holiday and schools have been asked to close on this day as a mark of respect. Our school will therefore be closed next Monday, Sept 19th.

Children will attend a special assembly this week to reflect on the years of dedicated service Queen Elizabeth has given our country. 

Dropping off items:

The admin team has told me we have a significant number of parents who come to school after 9.00 am with items which children have forgotten to take to school. They include: PE kits, water bottles, Chromebooks and book bags. Bringing these items to classes is placing a significant additional burden on admin staff, so we respectfully ask parents to ensure that they check for these items before leaving home. Your help is appreciated. 


We believe homework needs to be targeted on specific knowledge and skills. As such, three forms of homework (daily reading, Maths and Family Homework) are the only homework expected in Stepney Park. However, where teachers feel that additional homework may be helpful for children (e.g. additional handwriting practice or additional maths practice in year 6), they have the autonomy to choose and set this.

In addition to the daily reading, which I wrote about in my last newsletter, we would like parents to support their children with the following homework:

  • Maths Homework. Maths homework is focussed on children memorising number facts that form the foundation for later learning, and practising basic skills:

    • Years 1 and 2. Children learn number bonds of a progressively complex nature. This homework is generally set on Numbots.

    • Years 3 and 4. Children learn their times tables, generally using Times Tables Rockstars. Children should practise their times tables daily, which is checked by teachers to ensure engagement is high.

    • Years 5 and 6. If children are not yet secure in their times tables (scoring 25/25), they must continue to practise their times tables daily. For those whose times tables knowledge is secure, children have a weekly set of arithmetic questions to practise and embed basic skills to ensure accuracy. This is completed on Google forms to ensure it is manageable. To prepare children for secondary school, any children who do not complete their homework will be monitored and asked to complete their homework during break times. 

  • Family Homework. Family Homework is set over most holidays. This provides a wide range of ideas for activities around a theme that children can do with their families at home. This homework is optional, and families may select the activities they wish to complete.

Trips and visits:

We want children at Stepney Park to have the widest possible range of experiences as they move through our school, particularly given the enormous wealth of opportunities that London has to offer. Our children visit the world-class museums and galleries available in the capital and receive visitors and workshops as part of the curriculum to help develop their cultural capital.We have developed a programme of trips and visits across each year group that we believe offers a fantastic breadth of experience. Importantly, our starting point for developing this programme was to consider the best things for children to do and see in London. As such, though many of our trips link to what is being studied in school, others are offered purely to build children's cultural capital and to expose them to what London has to offer.

Our current programme of trips includes the following:

We will always strive to limit the cost of trips, and understand that the cost of living has risen significantly in recent times. We will generally ask for a maximum of a £5.00 voluntary contribution from parents for non residential trips. We are very grateful for these parental contributions, without which it would be difficult for us to fund the trips. 

Meet the Teacher:

All parents and carers are invited to meet their class teachers over the next two weeks.  These meetings will be held in the halls, and then you will be able to go and see the classrooms.

We look forward to sharing information about your child's year group, the curriculum and other important information about the school year with you.  This will also be an opportunity for you to ask any questions about the year ahead.

We hope that all parents can attend, however for those who cannot, we will be sharing all the information with you via your child's classroom account on their Chromebooks.

Please see the timetable attached below. 

We look forward to welcoming you into the school.

The Nursery parents meeting, which was scheduled for Monday Sept 19th will be rescheduled.

School Uniform:

There are an increasing number of children who come into school not wearing the correct school uniform. Leggings and tracksuit bottoms are particular issue

Please remember to send your child into school wearing the following, labelled uniform clothes:

  • Purple T-shirts and jumpers or cardigans with school logo 

  • Grey trousers or skirts/ dresses (not black)

  • No tracksuit bottoms (not even on PE days)

  • Tights or leggings allowed if under a dress or a skirt 

  • White shirts allowed if under a purple jumper or cardigan 

We are more than happy to support you if you have any worries or concerns about sourcing or buying the correct uniform. 

Please let us know if we can help you 

Year 6 School Journey to Mersea:

We wish all Yr 6 children who are going to Mersea this week a fantastic time. Teachers will be posting photos on our website, so please have a look to see what the children have been doing. This is the first year the children will go camping in tents, adding further excitement and challenge to the trip. Two of our school values are Resilience and Independence; this trip will give children plenty of opportunities to develop both!

Thank you for reading this newsletter.

Kind regards

Edith Philipsen

Headteacher- Stepney Park Primary School.