November and December Community News (Parish News article Jan 2020)
December was a time of celebration for the children. Class Y6 enjoyed their traditional visit to Beaulieu for a Victorian Christmas feast, while Class 1 had a toy workshop led by the museum team from the Priest’s House in Wimborne. The whole school enjoyed our annual panto, Robin Hood. Our younger children invited all their grandparents for a Christmas sing-a-long around the Christmas tree. The hall was absolutely packed for their rendition of Little Donkey, Jingle Bells and other favourites.
Christmas Charity – Save the Children
In addition to the usual Christmas parties and Christmas dinner, this year the children were invited to wear a Christmas jumper in return for giving a donation to our Christmas charity, Save the Children. Over £160 was raised for this worthy cause.
Town Litter Pick
As part of our work towards our Global neighbours accreditation and Eco Schools, our intrepid Eco Committee carried out a litter pick around Christchurch.
We were pleasantly surprised at the lack of rubbish in the park – it was spotless after we left!
Another highlight worth mentioning was the excellent ‘Christmas Journeys’ interactive experience at St. George’s Church led by Heidi, the children and families worker. The children made crafts and travelled from one tent to another as they heard a dramatic retelling of the Christmas story. Children in Year 3 and 4 had a lovely time and developed in their understanding of the very first Christmas.
Finally, we are aware that the Priory church’s Mission of the Month for February 2020 will be raising money for the purchase of special leavers’ Bibles for our Year 6 pupils. We are very grateful to you for doing this and I would like to take a moment to explain why it is so important.
Our pupils spend seven years at the school, during which time they benefit from the special partnership which we have with the Priory Church. In July, their time at primary school will come to an end, as they prepare to make the big step up to secondary school. To mark this occasion, we dedicate our End of Year Service to our leavers, and because of your generosity each pupil will receive a very special gift. The Bible is a life-long gift that will help to remind the children of the Christian values learnt during their time with us: love, forgiveness, respect and aspiration. We hope it will be their guide for life. So, on behalf of our Class 6 of 2019-20 and indeed all of us at Priory School, thank you very much for your support.
September & October Community News (Parish News article Nov 2019)
School Curriculum – Community Visitors
We continue to improve curriculum provision based on our ‘LOCKS’ teaching principles—to ’lock’ learning into the long-term memory. This focus is part of the new Ofsted framework, released in September 2019, to ensure the children ’learn more and remember more’. It means we focus on active learning, which gives pupils real options and choices. There is challenge and content has to be significant. We are going to be focusing on ‘clarity’ over the next term – do the children have a good understanding or model of what ‘success’ looks like in any lesson? In particular we want to see the children using and applying the key vocabulary.
To give you a flavour of what this means, in the last few weeks Y3 ‘experienced’ an earthquake in the classroom to introduce their fragile planet project. Y2 heard a real air traffic controller talk about their job as part of their ‘flight’ project. Y4 had a visit from Southern Electric to explain the risk of working with electricity and Y5 discovered alien eggs in the playground to help them write a police report on UFO landings!
Bournemouth in Bloom Winners
A select group from the Eco Committee attended the Bournemouth in Bloom Awards Ceremony at the West Cliff Hotel on Thursday 16th October to receive our biggest trophy to date! As the winners of the school’s competition, we were asked to do a short presentation at the start of the evening. Members of the eco-committee shared all that we have been doing to over 200 guests, including the Mayor and Leader of the BCP Council.
RHS Big Soup Share & Soup Kitchen Volunteers
One of the outcomes we hope for our children is that they will want to make a positive contribution to our hurting world.
The Eco Committee made soup for all members of our community with donated vegetables. I had a delicious curried apple and parsnip combo!
Even more pleasing was that 2 of our Year 6 pupils gave up their weekend to help homeless guests at Christchurch soup kitchen.
The girls spent Saturday preparing food for the Christchurch Soup Kitchen; they baked Brownies, made a Chicken & Chorizo Pasta, Garlic Bread, Salad and sandwiches—enough to feed 15 people. They then spent a happy hour dishing up the food and handing it out to the homeless service users at the Soup Kitchen. They even helped with the clearing up…the homeless service users and the volunteers all complimented them on their hard work and delicious food!
Thank You to Mrs Maureen Whiles – 40 years service!
Maureen, who has been part of the Governing body of the Priory School for the last 40 years, has decided that the time is right to step down. Her knowledge and experience will be greatly missed!
Soon after her eldest child, Claire, started school in 1974, when Mr Adcock was Headteacher, Maureen started getting involved by helping some of the children with reading. When her son, Gavin, started at the school, she was approached by the then Vicar of Christchurch, The Reverend Canon Basil Trevor-Morgan and Mr Tony Rees, Headteacher, to be a Foundation Governor for the school. After her youngest, Melanie, joined the school, she started a handy-craft stall with a group of Mums to help raise much needed funds. This group also used to make costumes for the school plays, many of them being held at the Regent Centre. Some of their Nativity costumes still remain and are worn by Class 2 children each year at the School Nativity in the Priory Church.
As time went on, Maureen took on more responsibilities and has played an important role in administering the school’s Admissions, Appeals and in championing opportunities for SEN pupils as the SEN Governor, alongside Mrs Jenny Sibbald, the school SENCO.
In fact, the school is still benefiting from the fundraising she did over several years back in 2006 when she raised over £45,000 for SEN so certain pupils could go on programmes to help them with their additional needs. Those children who were fortunate to go through these programmes, found that their lives were transformed forever, many going on to successful careers and University. Just last year, this legacy enabled us to purchase a new Dyslexic Screening test and the remainder will be used to buy sensory resources for ‘The Hub’ to help benefit our children with special needs.