Dear Parent/ Carers,
We have had a wonderful start to Module 3. Attendance has improved from 89.90% last term to 94.25% already this term which is a fantastic improvement and our children have been so excited to receive their Golden tickets on a Friday if they have attended school all week. We look forward to seeing which children will win our prizes for this at the end of term and we know that our children really can’t wait either!
We would like to remind all parents that Mrs Drogomirecki, our SENcO and Assistant Principal runs a SEND surgery regularly that you can sign up to attend to discuss any concerns you have around SEND support or well-being needs for your child. You can still arrange appointments to meet with Mrs Drogomirckeci outside of the SEND surgeries and she also offers appointments during parent evenings too. Mrs Drogomirecki works on Monday, Wednesday and Thursdays at PEPA and puts a termly feature around information to share with parents on our newsletter. Mrs Drogomirecki also works individually once a term with our teachers and TAs to discuss individual support plans for our SEND children and monitors interventions that are taking place. Mrs Drogomirecki is also trained to provide ELSA (Emotional literacy support) support for children and this means she will work with them on strategies to aid them with emotions and social interactions. You can find all of the information about what we provide and how to contact Mrs Drogomirecki by clicking here.
We have ensured that well-being is a high priority within the school. Children from each year group are included in a termly well-being group where they share ideas of how we can improve pupil well-being throughout the school and also offer feedback on what is currently in place and how this is working across the school. All classes have a worry box where children can post their worries in and these can either be named or nameless from children and class teachers check this regularly. We also have class well–being displays where children can indicate how they are feeling each day. If they indicate that they are feeling sad, scared or worried then this will be picked up by an adult to talk this through with them and to offer support.
We are also a Thrive based school and this means that we deliver bespoke interventions to children that may have anxieties or trauma including experiencing a loss in the family and the approach is underpinned by research based around child development and neuroscience. As well as having specialist staff trained for Thrive, we use strategies for the whole class to help our children be ready to learn and we will be sharing some strategies that you could use at home on our weekly newsletters. Our staff keep up to date with relevant training to ensure that we offer the best support and strategies for our children and this includes drawing and talking therapy or lego therapy as some examples of what our support staff have specialist training in.
We complete regular opportunities for pupil voice on different key areas within school, such as safeguarding. This means that we can find out how our children feel or know about areas like safeguarding, bullying, maths lessons and so on. We then share our findings with staff to ensure that we continually act on feedback and can improve any areas that we need to. We do add features onto the newsletters so parents get to see children’s feedback too, such as the recent safeguarding pupil voice. We also work with our school council at least termly, which includes our Year 6 Head boys and girls plus their deputies to look at how we can improve targeted areas of the school, such as developing outside areas, with fundraising and communicating with our local MP.
In October 2021, we became an accredited IB World School, since then learning throughout the school has only gone from strength to strength. The children are engaged in their immersive curriculum which allows them opportunities to focus on a wide range of topics beyond the confines of the National Curriculum. Our pupils are leaders of their own learning, with a strong focus on voice, choice and ownership. We help to guide the children to ask inquisitive questions, think critically and develop their knowledge of the world around them. We regularly refer to the strong belief we have about sharing children’s learning with their adults, which we believe helps children to understand the importance of their lessons and outcomes but also gives them a great sense of pride when sharing this learning with those around them. We have continued to hold open afternoons, as an opportunity for children to showcase their work and understanding, with our next one, for KS2, taking place on Monday 6th February. We ensure that there are at least two features on the newsletter each week as a way to continuously share the learning that is taking place within our school. On our school website there is a wealth of information about the PYP and our approach to education at PEPA, these include our curriculum maps and PYP Programme of Inquiry. You can find more information by clicking here.
Our IB learner attributes filter into school life here at PEPA, it is an integral part of our reward policy and behaviour policy, each term we focus on two learner attributes which form part of our assemblies and the certificates from our celebration assemblies. This helps us to highlight the characteristics and behaviour, associated with each learner profile, in more detail. International mindfulness helps to contribute to the educational offer, exposing our children to the wider world and the variety of things to do and explore. With this approach and being an IB World School, we take pride in regularly discussing anc resting learning opportunities around diversity through regular assemblies and PSHE lessons.
Beyond this, we have had the Future Hoo team in to work with our children on local projects and to help get their say in the development and rejuvenation of their local community, recognising the importance of where we are and the world around us. We have also been able to add further value to the children’s educational experiences by having specialist teachers from The Hundred of Hoo Academy to further support the delivery of both French and PE. We are also scheduled to have the Kent Fire and Rescue team in to visit the children too.
It has been great to see so many parents coming in to take part in maths lessons with their children within Key Stage 2. I know that parents have fed back that they find these so useful as they learn what strategies children are taught here for maths and have fed back that they feel it helps them to support their children further with maths at home. We will also be opening up our KS1 and Reception classrooms for maths lessons later in the year. We are lucky to have had some great resources for maths for our younger children from the Medway Maths Hub and how these will support our children with their basic number skills, these will also be shared with parents next term. You can find more information about our Maths teaching here.
As mentioned in a previous letter this academic year, we are a school of the future in providing our children with a 1:1 Chromebook in their learning within Key Stage 2 classes and our younger children receiving some learning time on ipads. We have a strong computing curriculum which has enabled our children to be confident and proficient in using technology and it has been amazing to see what different programs on Google and beyond that our children are able to use to present their work on. We did invite parents in to look at how our children use the Chromebooks here and the many different ways that children could present their learning and show their computing skills. Back in Term 1, we held an open day for KS2 parents to look at how we use the 1:1 Chromebooks everyday as part of the children’s learning. Parental feedback that was shared said how impressed parents were with how confident our children were using them and how they were able to navigate around a variety of online resources. It is wonderful to see how our children can use Google Classroom within their class learning but this can also be accessed at home and parents can see what their children are learning at school.
MCAS and Facebook
We hope that you are enjoying using the MCAS app as this is a really quick and easy way for us to be able to send communications to you and for you to have the latest news and events at your fingertips. We do keep our Facebook page updated with recent news of events and reminders for parents so please do ensure that you join our page.
INSET Day- Friday 10th February
We would like to remind families that the Academy is closed for an INSET day on the 10th of February.
Mrs L Rimmer