News and Events

Samuel Lucas News

Newsletter 4 – 16th January 2017

Dear Parents and Carers

Welcome back to a new term and Happy New Year to you all, it is lovely to see the children back in school ready to learn.

Term Dates

You are invited to come in and find out more about what your children have been learning. Outcome dates, to which parents are welcome to attend, are:

EYFS Early Years Hall “What a Wonderful World” Wed 29th March 9.30am – 10.00am or 10.00am – 10.30am
Year 1 Year 1 classrooms “Out of the Toybox” Tues 28th March 9.00am – 10.30am
Year 2 TBC “This is our House” TBC TBC
Year 3 KS2 Hall “Building the Bronze Age” Thurs 30th March 1.45pm-3.00pm
Year 4 KS2 Hall “Ruthless Romans” Thurs 23rd March 1.45pm-3.00pm
Year 5 KS2 Hall “Building Kingdoms” Thurs 30th March 9.15am
Year 6 KS2 Hall “The Land of Fire & Ice” Wed 29th March 1.30pm–2.10pm or 2.30pm– 3.10pm

Please check the calendar on the school website for upcoming events.

New School Staff

I would like to welcome Mrs Ferridge, the new School Administrator and Mrs Cosgrave, the new School Business Manager, to our staff team. I hope they both enjoy working in the Samuel Lucas school office.

Exciting News

I am sure you will join me in congratulating the safe arrival of Mrs Andreas’ baby, Charlotte, who arrived in time for Christmas.

Lost Property

Please ensure your children’s uniform and belongings are clearly labelled with their names. We do our best to re-unite children with their missing belongings but can only do so if we can identify who they belong to.

We will be putting out lost property items in the KS2 playground, after school, on Friday 20th January (weather permitting). If it rains this will be inside in the KS1 gallery area. If your child is missing any uniform, please come and take a look. Any unclaimed items will be disposed of after this date.

School Closure in the Event of Bad Weather (Everbridge)

We will always try to keep the school open and only close if we don’t have enough staff able to get to school or if we consider the school site unsafe.

If we are open and it does snow, children will be able to go out at playtimes and lunch times if they are dressed appropriately – in particular footwear.

The information below shows the ways in which we will communicate any necessary closure due to bad weather. Please check regularly for updated information as follows:

We will send a message via Everbridge – If the school is closed for any unscheduled closures (e.g. snow, flood, broken down boiler) we will send a notification out using this system.  To sign up please go to https://member.everbridge.net/ index/892807736725489  and click the “Sign Up” button at the top right hand side of the page on the grey strip and from there follow the instructions, you will then receive notifications of closures by SMS and email.

If the school is closed, BBC Three Counties 103.8fm/92.1fm/90.4fm/630mw/1161mw, Heart 96.9FM or 97.6FM and 106 Jack FM radio stations will be notified and should broadcast a message accordingly.

You will also find information about any school closure on: http://www.hertsdirect.org/services/edlearn/schlife/schoolclose/

SLPA DISCO

You should have now received a letter in your eldest child’s bag this week for the SLPA Disco on Friday 3rd February. The closing date for returning your reply slips and money is Friday 20th January.

Sainsbury Vouchers

Just a reminder that we will once again be collecting Sainsbury school vouchers from 25th January. The collection box will be put in the porch, by the school office, or you can send the vouchers in via your children.

Willow Classroom

Just a reminder to parents to please close the white front door behind you when coming in or out of Willow classroom, thank you.

Free School Meals

I just wanted to remind you where to check for eligibility for free school meals.  Here is a link to the web site: https://beta.hertfordshire.gov.uk/services/schools-and-education/at-school/free-school-meals/free-school-meals.aspx.

This funding enables the school to claim for additional funding known as Pupil Premium funding for the year, to support your children’s learning, whether they are an infant child or a junior child.

Yours sincerely,

Tracy Thomas – Headteacher

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UPDATE: Procedures for notification about school closure due to snow

The information below shows the ways in which we will communicate any necessary closure due to bad weather.

As always, we will not put a message out if the school is open. Please check regularly for updated information as follows:

We will send a message via Everbridge – If the school is closed for any unscheduled closures (e.g. snow, flood, broken down boiler) we will send a notification out using this system.  To sign up please go to https://member.everbridge.net/ index/892807736725489  and click the “Sign Up” button at the top right hand side of the page on the grey strip and from there follow the instructions, you will then receive notifications of closures by SMS and email.

If the school is closed, BBC Three Counties 103.8fm/92.1fm/90.4fm/630mw/1161mw, Heart 96.9FM or 97.6FM and 106 Jack FM radio stations will be notified and should broadcast a message accordingly.

You will also find information about any school closure on: http://www.hertsdirect.org/services/edlearn/schlife/schoolclose/

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Newsletter 3 – 13th December 2016

Dear Parents and Carers

We are coming to the end of a long and busy term and it appears to have flown by. We are looking forward to a well-earned rest. School is a very exciting place to be this time of year. So many Christmas activities are going on; lots of preparation and rehearsals for our Christmas plays and carol concert.

We look forward to seeing you all at our performances. We will be donating money this year to North Herts Sanctuary for the Homeless. There will be collection buckets at the end of each Christmas performance.

We thank you for your Harvest Festival donations. We raised £372.00 for Youngminds: a charity that supports mental health and wellbeing for young people.

Term Dates

Just to remind you that the term will end on Wednesday 21st December at 2pm. The first day of term for the new children is Monday 9th January.

Staff Goodbyes!

We will be sad to say goodbye to Mrs Millar, who will be leaving us at the end of the term. Mrs Millar has done a very efficient job in our school office for a number of years, and we wish her every happiness for the future – thank you Mrs Millar. A new office team will be joining us in the New year.

We will also be saying goodbye to Mrs Dulai. Although Mrs Dulai has only been with us a short while, she has fitted well into our teaching team and we will miss her. It is Mrs Dulai’s intention to move back to her home town. We wish her every success for the future. We are pleased to announce that Miss Painter, our Deputy Headteacher, will be teaching Year 5 next term!

Exciting News

I’m sure you will join me in congratulating Mrs Mead, who is expecting her first baby. She will be leaving to go on maternity leave in March. We have appointed a new teacher, who will also be a member of the leadership team as Key Stage One leader. Mr French will be joining us initially to cover Mrs Mead’s maternity leave.

I hope you all have a relaxing but Merry Christmas, thank you for your continued support and I look forward to seeing you all next year.

Yours sincerely,

Tracy Thomas – Headteacher

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UPDATED: Prospective Parent Visits for Reception Classes 2017

If you would like to come along to one of the visits listed below, please contact the school office by email: admin@samlucas.herts.sch.uk or by telephone: 01462 456737 to book a place.

Date of Visit Time
Monday 14th November 2016 FULL
Tuesday 15th November 2016 FULL
Monday 21st November 2016 FULL
Tuesday 22nd November 2016 FULL
Thursday 24th November 2016 FULL
Tuesday 29th November 2016 FULL
Tuesday 10th January 2017 FULL
Tuesday 10th January 2017 2.00pm

There is a limit of 10 families per visit.

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Newsletter 2 – November 4th 2016

Dear Parents

Welcome back to the second half of our Autumn Term!

The first half was a very busy one that ended with two wonderful Harvest Festival celebrations. We were very proud of the children’s performances.

During the last week of term the whole school took part in Book Week using Anthony Browne’s ‘Willy’s Stories’ as a stimulus for art and writing. The children were excited to show parents and their families the outcome at our whole school exhibition this week. It was lovely to see so many of you admiring the quality of our work. Thank you for your very positive comments.

We were particularly impressed with the home learning that was undertaken during half term! Well done everyone for such outstanding contributions – we struggled to find space to display it all at the exhibition! Thank you parents for your support with this. The home learning will be circulated around the school and placed in the class reading corners for everyone to read and enjoy.

Children in Need Day

On Friday 18th November we will be raising money for Children in Need. Please bring a £1 donation to school and wear something dotty!

Free School Meals

Following our recent Parent mail to you, I just wanted to remind you where to check for eligibility for free school meals. Here is a link to the web site: beta.hertfordshire.gov.uk/services/schools-and-education/at-school/free-school- meals/free-school-meals.aspx.

This funding enables the school to claim for additional funding for the year to support your children’s learning.

Sweets and Treats

I would just like to remind you that we are unable distribute any food or sweets to children brought in from home. There are children in school who have a range of allergies and we have protocols we have to follow to ensure the safety of these children. Thank you for your support with this matter.

School Car Park

Please do not use the school car park unless you are collecting or dropping off your children from Play Aloud. We are concerned about your children’s safety.

School Playground

Thank you for supporting us by asking your children not to ride their scooters or bikes in the school grounds. Please can you ensure children keep off the play equipment before and after school.

Staffing

We are pleased to announce that Mrs Oke will be covering Mrs Andreas’ maternity leave in Willow class. She will be starting on Monday to work alongside Mrs Andreas to ensure smooth transition. We look forward to working with her.

We are very sad to be saying goodbye to Mrs Charter. She will be leaving us next week. I’m sure you will join me in thanking her for her valued contribution to the school. We wish her every success with her new career venture. The school office is ‘under construction’ at the moment. We will be short staffed in the office for a while; we thank you in advance for your support during this time of transition.

News from Mrs Barley

Parenting courses

Hertfordshire County Council have developed a directory of parenting courses, which is available on the website at www.hertfordshire.gov.uk/parentingsupport. The parenting directory lists all courses that are available to parents/carers in Hertfordshire and cover a range of topics including: parenting a child with additional needs; healthy relationships healthy baby programme; confident fathers programme; caring dads and understanding teens. You are able to view the courses you are interested in by district, type of course and also see if there are any costs involved. If you are interested in attending one of the parenting courses, speak to Mrs Barley, Inclusion Coordinator at school or contact the course provider directly.

Thank you to the SLPA

Many thanks to the Parents’ Association who kindly funded the purchase of a number of Lego sets last half term. These will enable children to take part in some short Lego therapy sessions in school; the benefits of this work may help increase confidence, team building and listening skills, among others.

CELF-5 (Clinical Evaluation of Language Fundamentals) standardisation project

In the summer term, several parents agreed to their children taking part in a research project. The Speech & Language Therapist who conducted the assessments asked us to thank the wonderful children, parents and staff for their participation and time.

As a result of this project, school has received £220 of gift vouchers. School Council will be asked to spend the money wisely to purchase games and equipment for the lunchtime Quiet Club.

Mrs Barley

News from SLPA

We held our SLPA AGM (including Wine and Cheese!) on 6th October, during which we said goodbye to our Chair and Vice Chair, Kerry Haynes and Roz Grennell respectively, who have both stepped down after leading us for 2 years. Thank you to you both for all of your hard work and dedication you will be missed. We voted in our new chair Natalie Gray, and vice chair, Kate Turner and we know that we are in great hands going forwards.

We have also been spending money that we have raised. Last month we paid £100 for Lego therapy which has been helping all children in the school with their social skills. We also paid £500 for the artist Jane Bower to come in to school for book week and spend time with the children which was a fabulous and educational visit.

This year we are planning some amazing events kicking off with Film Night for years 1 – 6 which will be on 18th November, so look out for letters in your children’s book bags soon. We can also confirm this years Christmas Fayre with the theme of “Santa’s Little Helpers” will be on Saturday 3rd December, more information to follow so watch this space…

As always we welcome any new members, help and support, if you would like to get involved or are interested in finding out more information about what we do you can contact us at our email address: enquiries.slpa@gmail.com. We are a friendly bunch!

SLPA

Yours sincerely,

Tracy Thomas – Headteacher

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Cross Country at Knights Templar School

Well done to all the Year 5 and 6 children who competed in the cross country competition this afternoon. They gave their all in the half mile (Y5) and mile (Y6) course and should be really proud of their achievements. They ran against 16 other schools in the area and demonstrated great resilience around what was a challenging course, with a tricky uphill section right at the start! p1000993 p1010011

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SLPA Autumn Newsletter

Dear Parents

Welcome to our Autumn Newsletter – we thought it would be good to outline what we are planning for the coming year and how you can get involved in the Samuel Lucas Parents Association – happy reading!

AGM

Thank you to everyone that attended the SLPA AGM on Tuesday last week – we enjoyed hearing about all the great fundraising and events delivered in the last year. For those of you that were unable to attend, here is the Chair’s report and the Treasurer’s report.

We also voted in the 5 elected roles on the committee. We are pleased to announce that for the current academic year, the roles are to be undertaken by the following parents:
Chair – Natalie Gray
Vice Chair – Kate Turner
Secretary – Louise Burgess
Treasurer – Ellen Vipond
Finance Officer – Melissa Horne
If you would like to contact anyone on the committee please feel free to come and find us in the playground or email enquiries.slpa@gmail.com

Next SLPA Meeting

The next SLPA meeting will be held on Wednesday 19th October (note change in date) at 8pm. The venue is to be confirmed shortly. If you are interested in attending or would like to know more about the SLPA, please do come along – we cannot run events without the ongoing support of parents so your involvement is vital to us!

2016 Events

Looking forwards, we are now planning lots of exciting events for the children and families. Please save the following key dates in 2016:
Wednesday 2nd November – Bags2School – bring your unwanted clothes, sheets, towels etc and raise funds for the school.
Friday 18th November – Film Night for Years 1 – 6
Saturday 3rd December – Christmas Fayre

We will need lots of help both pre-event and on the day itself so if you are able to give a few hours of your time please do get in touch.

Your help required

We are always thinking of new ways to raise our profile, raise funds and create fantastic events for our children. To this end we would like to ask if any of you can help us in the following ways:

Match Funding – if you work for an organisation that operates a match funding scheme, please do let us know. This scheme allows companies (often larger organisations like banks, retailers, insurance) to support PTAs through a charitable donation by financially matching what is raised at events. We will send out a more detailed communication about this later in the year but please do ask your employer if they have this scheme as it is a very easy way for us to double funds raised!

Printing – if you work for or own a printing company we would love to hear from you. We have various printing needs throughout the year so any help with the cost of this is greatly received.

Heavy lifting – we always need help with erecting marquees, carrying heavy items etc at some of our events. If you are able to assist us with this please email us or come and speak to one of the committee members.

Music – if you have a budding musician or other performer (dance, gymnastics, baton twirling etc!) please let us know as we need this kind of entertainment from time-to-time at events. We also love to have group performances at the Summer Fayre so please ask the dance/gym etc teacher to contact us). If you have experience or equipment for discos, sound, microphones etc please let us know.

Raffle prizes – we need great prizes for our raffles at the Christmas and Summer Fayres plus sometimes at other events. If you are able to donate any prizes we are always very grateful. This can be gift items, vouchers, food, drink, toys etc.

Get Involved

As you have probably guessed, it takes a lot to run the SLPA. We are a group of parents that give up our time to organise great fundraising activities for the benefit of the school. However we cannot run any of these events without the input and ongoing help from new members – if you are able to commit a few hours every term to get involved, we would be really appreciative so please do come to the next meeting or email us to let us know how you can help.

We look forward to another successful year!

All the best

The Samuel Lucas Parents Association Team
enquiries.slpa@gmail.com

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Newsletter 1 – 9th September 2016

Dear Parents,

It has been lovely seeing the children arriving punctually in the mornings in their new school uniforms ready for learning. It has been an exciting week in Reception as we welcomed our new children into our school – a great start to the term!

Early morning routines

Just a reminder about our early morning routines. In reception classes the doors will open at 8.45am and children and parents are welcomed into the cloakroom where they can help their children prepare for their day. At 8.45am children in the rest of the school will be met by teachers from the playground. This is the time for parents who need a quick word to speak to the teachers as they will not be available once they have taken the children into class. All children will then be in class ready for registration at 8.55am. All external doors throughout the school will be closed at 8.55am. If children arrive after the doors are closed they should go to the school office. They will be marked on the register as late. Please help your children to be in school on time and ready for learning.

Playground safety

With our ever growing school there are more people in the playgrounds in the morning and after school. Please can you help us to keep our children safe by reminding your children to dismount from their bikes and scooters when they enter the school grounds.

Please don’t allow your children to play on the playground equipment before or after school.

Parent Communication

We are looking forward to our Parent Information Evenings – Reception, Year one and Year two, 15th September 7.30pm and the rest of the school on Wednesday 21st at 7.30pm. We have made sure this year there are no clashes with meetings at other schools and made the start time a little later. It is important that you attend the meetings even if you have children higher up the school as there have been some changes. It is a great opportunity for you to meet all the staff who work with your children and to gain the relevant information for the year.

We are presently updating our school website, keep looking as we will soon be blogging!

We are looking forward to an action packed year with lots of opportunities for you to come into school to find out what your children have been learning. We will be having our autumn whole school exhibition, and in the summer our junior school production to name but a few so look out for the diary dates!

I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your continued support and I look forward to working in partnership with all of you over the coming year.

Yours sincerely,

Tracy Thomas – Headteacher

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Newsletter 10 – 15th July 2016

Dear Parents,

Welcome to the last Newsletter of a very busy academic year.

It was lovely to see so many of you at the Open Evening, enjoying the children’s work and musical talents. Please see our blogs on the website for more details.

I would also like to extend a big thank you to all staff, parents and children for all your hard work and support this year and we hope you all have a very relaxing and well deserved summer break.

Finally, could we say an enormous thank you to the very hard working members of the SLPA who made it possible for so many people to enjoy two very memorable events, the Circus and the Picnic. Well done to everyone who worked so hard and to all the parents and children who came along to support both events and join in the fun.

Staff

We bid farewell and wish the best of luck to our leavers; Mrs Fernandes our Y5 teacher, Mrs Pietersz, Teaching Assistant, Mrs Cruise our Lilac class teacher, who will be starting a full time teaching post in Letchworth in September, Mrs French, Teaching Assistant who is leaving to work at Breachwood Green Primary School, Miss Briddon, our student who has worked so hard for us this year and is returning to university and Miss Costin, our Admin Assistant who is leaving us to work for a private medical practice. We will miss them all!

Athletics

A large team of athletes from Years 2-6 took part in the North Herts Schools’ Athletics Finals this week. The events consisted of sprints, relays, middle dis-tance running, standing, long jump and ball throwing. We were very unlucky with the weather and everybody got wet! The chil-dren and adults coped admirably with the appalling conditions and we finished in 4th place in the county which is a great result as we were competing against some much larger schools.

Well done everyone and thanks to all the parents who came along to support.

Y3 Celtic Harmony trip

On the 6th July, Y3 had a living Iron Age history day at Celtic Harmony near Hertford. We dressed up as Iron Age settlers and set off on our learning adventure. We learnt about Iron Age life and took part in lots of hands on activities. We had a fun day full of learning new skills including, how to grind flour, make bread, trade items, dye and weave.

Y4 Ashridge Estate

On Tuesday, Y4 went to the expansive Ashridge Estate. Despite the rain, we had a fantastic time listening and looking for wildlife. We learnt more about woodland and pond habitats and saw a wide range of mini-beasts including newts, lesser water boatmen and phantom midge larvae! We then had an opportunity to create our own “beetle”.  Whether you go for a dog walk, a run or a cycle, we highly recommend you visit Ashridge Estate – only 50 minutes by coach!

Y6 Yanomamo Production

I am delighted that we participated in this joint venture with the Boys’ School. The weeks of planning, artwork and re-hearsal really paid off on the evening. Ms Hetherington has visited our school this half term to ensure that, with Mrs Footer’s help, the singing was up to its usual beautiful standard. The acting from Samuel Lucas was fantastic (as it was from the Boys’ School) and the projection of artwork we have created in class really complemented the songs and storyline.

A huge thank you to Y6, all of you who attended this enjoyable evening and to Mrs Footer whose commitment and enthusiasm is boundless.

Y6 Crucial Crew

Y6 enjoyed participating in a variety of health and safety activities when we visited “Crucial Crew” at Hitchin fire station on July 6th. We shared the learning with Highover School and returned with enthusiasm to complete the accompanying booklets. The afternoon was superbly organised by the team; the strict timings for each of the ten activities enabling us to maximise the experience. Y6 responded wonderfully to the questioning and situations in which they found themselves.

HGS Potion Roadshow, Y4,5 and Y6

Years 4-6 were lucky enough to have the Potions Roadshow from Hitchin Girls’ School in to visit last week. They performed a range of experiments with dry ice, colour changing water and explored a number of chemicals resulting in several loud explosions!

For more information, please see the class blogs on the website.

Star Performer

Congratulations to Nathaniel Edwards who passed his Grade 2 Alto Saxophone with merit, Ottilie Summerhayes who passed her Grade 2 Flute with merit, Scarlett Lait who passed her Grade 1 Clarinet with merit, Finn Scourfield who passed his Grade 1 Piano with distinction and to Holly Dermont who sat her Prep test and received very positive comments from the examiner. Well done to everyone for all your hard work this year.

Reminders

New Uniform

All new Reception children will be purchasing the new style school uniform and PE kit from Hawkins for September. However, this is just a reminder for everyone else that you do not need to replace perfectly good old style uniform that still fits! Please just replace items as and when they no longer fit.

If you have purchased the old style uniform recently Hawkins will exchange this for you provided it has not been worn.

Lost Property

All lost property will be placed in the porch by the school office for the whole of next week. We will endeavour to return all named property to its rightful owners but if you are missing unnamed items, please remember to come and check the boxes. Any unclaimed clothing will be used as spare uniform or put in the next Bags2School collection.

Please can you make sure that for next term, all property is named. With the increasing numbers of children in the school, it is becoming more difficult for everyone to identify missing items as their own.

Thank you for your help with this.

Last few dates to remember!

18th July – Y6 Leavers’ BBQ 5-6.30pm 19th July – Sports Day

20th July – Reception picnic

22nd July – Y6 Leavers’ Assembly 1.30pm (Parents welcome)

PLEASE REMEMBER THAT SCHOOL FINISHES AT 2PM ON FRIDAY 22ND JULY AND THE NEW TERM BEGINS ON MONDAY 5TH SEPTEMBER!

From the SLPA

The last month has been a busy one with both the Picnic and the Summer Fayre (including the Circus). We would like to say a massive thank you to all the SLPA members and parents who have volunteered their time to help make these events happen. Thank you! We cannot host these events without your support.

The Picnic

On Friday 24th June we hosted our first big event on the school field. Thank you to those of you who braved the wet weather at the start and joined us in what turned out to be a fabulous evening. We appreciate all of the feedback we have received, it was a great success! Special thanks go to the SLPA Picnic sub-committee for all of their hard work, effort and energy in making this a real night to remember. We are very pleased to con-firm that we raised a profit of £2,152.40 – an amazing amount!

The Summer Fayre/Circus

On Sunday 10th July we held our Summer Fayre combined with Happy’s Circus. It was a well attended, successful event and it was lovely to see the big top on the school field. The children’s happy faces and hearing their screams of laughter made all of the hard work worthwhile.

At present we are still processing the amount of money raised and will confirm this in the next Newsletter.

We would also like to thank Kerry Haynes (Chair) and Roz Grennell (Vice Chair) who are both stepping down from the SLPA committee this year. They have both made a huge contribution to the success of the SLPA events and their ideas and enthusiasm will be sorely missed.

We are always looking for new members of our committee – if you are interested in joining us in September (we are a friendly bunch!) please email and register your Details with us on enquiries.slpa@gmail.com

Here’s to next year!

From the SLPA.

Yours sincerely,

Tracy Thomas – Headteacher

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Ofsted letter to parents

Inspection of Hertfordshire County Council local area’s effectiveness in identifying and meeting the needs of, and improving outcomes for, children and young people who have special educational needs and/or disabilities from 4 July 2016 to 8 July 2016

Hertfordshire County Council has asked all schools to share this letter from Ofsted with parents. You can view/download the letter here.

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