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Headteacher's News 19.1.24

All the most recent news from Edith

Friday 19th January 2024

Dear parents and carers of Stepney Park Primary School.


A belated ‘Happy New Year’ to all of our families. I hope you have all had a wonderful and restful break.

The children certainly came back to school with a new ‘bounce’ in their step; I can tell that they are happy and excited to see what the new term will bring.

School attendance.

On 8 January, the government launched a national campaign to remind parents and carers of the importance of school attendance. The campaign strapline is “moments matter, attendance counts”.

The campaign message is to reach those parents and carers whose children are taking preventable odd days of absence – or “avoidable absence” – rather than children who face greater barriers to attendance, such as those with long term medical needs.

Some children are classified as persistently absent; their attendance since the start of the school year has fallen below 90%. This is equivalent to missing ½ a day per week. All children were given an up to date record of their current attendance earlier this term, so you should know what your child’s current attendance % is.

The link between attendance and attainment is clear. In 2018/2019:

  • ust 40% of persistently absent children in KS2 achieved expected KS2 standards, compared with 84% of pupils who were regular attenders.

  • Only 36% of persistently absent children in KS4 got 9 to 4 in their English and maths GCSEs,  compared with 84% of regular attenders.

However, attendance is important for more than just attainment: regular school attendance can help positive peer relationships, which is really important for your child’s mental health and wellbeing.

The following posters are a great illustration of why you should send  your child to school , even if they are a bit worried or if they have a minor illness:

Of course we would call you to let you know if your child is unwell whilst at school, but more often than not they are fine! The following advice will support you when you need to make that tricky decision in the morning: ‘is my child too ill for school?’ 

Term dates for school year 2024-2025.

In order to help you plan your family holidays, I have included a website link to next schoolyear’s term dates. As always: please do not book any holidays in term time, as not only is this against the law, it will impact on your child’s academic progress, as illustrated above.  Website Link (Please scroll to the bottom of the webpage)

Dropping off forgotten items.

From time to time, parents come into the school office during the day to drop off forgotten items such as water bottles and PE kits. Up until now, it has generally been an admin staff member's task to take this item to the relevant class. In some cases this is a very long trip to the top of North building. When admin staff are unable to take the item up, a phone call to the relevant class during lesson time is made and a member of staff is asked to collect the item.

In order to support admin staff and protect learning time, we kindly ask you to ensure that your child comes to school ready for learning, which means that they have all their resources with them, including their PE kit, water bottle and chromebook. Other than essential items, we ask you to not drop off forgotten items from now on. 

We ask for PE kits to be taken to school on Mondays and taken home again on Fridays, so that they can be washed over the weekend. Thank you for your understanding.

School Uniform give-away/ lost property.

Please check the lost property box in the south playground if you have lost an item of clothing. We will collect all remaining lost items of clothing on Friday 26th January and arrange for them to be washed and neatly packaged. We will then have a ‘school uniform give away’ in the playground at the end of the day in the week beginning Feb 5th.

Frozen- the Musical.

We have been given a fantastic opportunity to apply for cheap tickets to see the musical ‘Frozen’. Tickets for this musical from the West End box office would normally cost between £30 to £140, but we are hoping to secure a number of tickets for just £10 each. If successful, we will offer the tickets to KS2 children on a first come/ first serve basis and the school will pay for staff to accompany the children. Please check your child’s bag for a sign up letter if you would like to express your interest for your child or children to have the amazing opportunity of seeing a live West End show.

Kind regards.

Edith Philipsen

Headteacher- Stepney Park Primary School