Emailed to all families 30th September 2021
Dear North Tawton Families
I am writing to inform you that we now have four confirmed cases of Covid19 in our school. The cases are in Y1 and Year 3, we also have a child from year 2 who has tested positive on more than one LFT , but not on PCR tests.
The pupils and staff are isolating and, thankfully, none are seriously ill.
Earlier today, I rang the DFE help line to report this number and have been advised to continue our safety measures to reduce possible spread. They have sent me a 'Warn and Inform' letter which I have attached to this email.
I realise that this is a worrying time for you and your families and would like to reiterate that we are following our risk assessment closely and doing everything we can to ensure good hygiene and ventilation in school.
Looking at clubs today and tomorrow, we only have 8 children for Choir, so they can be distanced safely inside and Netball and Saints Sports can go ahead as they are outside, we will review clubs for next week and be in touch.
Our risk assessment and contingency plan can be found on our website.
Please be assured that I will keep you fully updated on the situation moving forward,
With best wishes,
Dear North Tawton Families,
Farewells and Welcomes
This week we sadly said goodbye to Mrs Adams and to Rev Weldon. We wish them both the very best in their careers ahead and hope they take many happy memories of the school with them.
We have welcomed Mrs Aston who has been working alongside Mrs Adams this week to learn all about our office systems. We also welcome Mr Cutler who we already know well, he will step in until we have a new Reverend at the church.
If you have a message for a member of staff, please email [email protected] and Mrs Aston or Mrs Cassels will make sure this is passed on. Staff do not monitor Dojo when they are teaching, so important messages can be missed.
It’s easy and free to use your library! You can borrow books, take part in activities and use our computers or Wi-Fi.
It's free to become a member of the library, either join online or by visiting staff in the library.
We have a range of free resources that all library members can access online:
Book Amnesty 8 September – 8 October
Got an overdue book on your conscience? 📚
Couldn't face returning that DVD after losing it down the back of the sofa three years ago?
Return your horribly overdue items to your library during our Book Amnesty, and your fine will be waived, no questions asked
Saturday 2nd October ~ Okehampton Fun Palace 09:30-12:00
Fun Palaces is a national campaign to put culture in the heart of local communities. It is an annual weekend of action - arts, science, craft, tech, digital, heritage and sports. We are offering a creative community morning of free taster activities. If you would like to take part, sharing a skill or learning a new one, please contact Okehampton Library.
Current activities include ukulele and patchwork.
For more info about Fun Palaces visit their website. funpalaces.co.uk
Tuesday 5 October ~ Celebrating 'Libraries Week'
08:00-10:00 ~ A cuppa and a croissant. Pop in before school for a book.
18:00-20:00 ~ Late Night Library Opening, with light refreshments.
View our local history collections, including the Wardhayes picture collection, which is located throughout the library building.
All our usual library services will be available, and staff will be on hand to tell you about all our digital services.
Half Term Event, 25th - 30th October - TBC, please check our Facebook page or website for details: www.devonlibraries.org.uk/okehamptonlibrary
READING WELL Collection for children - Books to help you feel better
A collection of books free to borrow from Okehampton Library.
Reading Well for children recommends reading to help you deal with worries, feel better and boost your mood. The books have been chosen by children, carers, health experts and librarians.
Devon Libraries is part of Libraries Unlimited
Libraries Unlimited is a registered charity. Every penny raised goes directly towards library services that help make a difference to people’s lives and communities. To donate, please visit librariesunlimited.org.uk
Every Tuesday 13:30-14:30– Knit & Natter
Bring along your knitting, stitching, crochet or other portable project, for a chat with
like-minded crafters. Tea and coffee available at 50p a cup. Knit and Natter takes place in the children’s area of the library. A small selection of baby toys will be available during these sessions.
Children and Young People
Tuesdays 10:00-10:20 & 11:00-11:20 - Bounce & Rhyme
For under 5s and their carers
Free – booking in advance essential
Wednesdays 09:30–10:15 - Duplo Builders & Storytime for ages 0-5
Free - no booking necessary
Saturdays 10:30–11:30 Lego Builders for ages 5+
Free - no booking necessary
Book Track for ages 6+ during library opening hours
Free, ask staff for further details
Children under 8 must be accompanied to all events by a responsible adult
Please see our library website or Facebook page for any additional events and library services www.devonlibraries.org.uk
FONTS AGM (Annual General Meeting)
Tuesday 5th October
Straight after school pick up – in the hall
Everyone is welcome, children can come too (with something to occupy them if poss J)
Please come to the AGM and support FONTS, we are facing closure without people to carry on the good work. We need to come back together after the last couple of disrupted years. Our school needs FONTS!!
We are all busy, but this is our school, and the events held and the money raised by FONTS helps make our children’s experience all the better.
The main committee roles are Chair, Treasurer and Secretary. In order for FONTS to continue there has to be people in these roles. However these are not the only roles, Class Reps for each class would be great too. Also, just knowing that the committee have people willing to help out is great.
Please talk to Julie Steward (Chair / Treasurer) Philippa Sims (Secretary) about the roles, or send FONTS a message.
Email [email protected]/ message FONTS on ClassDojo
Dear North Tawton Families,
It has been an absolute joy to see the children back in school. They have made a fantastic start to the new school year. Across the school I have seen lots of learning and laughter in classes and at playtimes it has been wonderful to see children of different classes playing together again.
Thank you for all of your support with our new morning and after school routines.
Dear North Tawton Families,
I hope you have all had a good holiday and are ready for the new school year! A special welcome to our new families we look forward to getting to know you!
The Nursery and Reception building work has started but unfortunately the project is not completed due to the national lack of availability of building materials. The new extension for outdoor learning and the side entrance will be built later this term. In the meantime, we will be using the old Nursery and Reception space for safe outdoor learning and play. We are looking forward to the arrival of lots of new resources thanks to Friends of North Tawton fundraising.
Year One and Year Two have newly decorated rooms to move in to, and Year Three have a break out space as we now have a partition dividing that long room (the original hall)
Year Four, Five and Six are also in new classrooms this year, so as you can imagine we are busy moving furniture and resources across the school buildings so everything is ready for the children on Wednesday.
I am sad to let you know that Debbie Stoneman, one of our brilliant teaching assistants, will be leaving at the end of the week. Those of you who have had children in her groups and classes will agree she is an excellent educator; calm, patient and incredibly knowledgeable. We wish her all the very best in her future endeavors.
Also, our administrator Lyndsay Adams will be leaving in three weeks’ time. She has a new job which is a wonderful career move for her, but obviously will be a great loss for us. We are very sad to say farewell to both of these staff.
I am in the process of recruitment for both posts and will let you know as soon as we have new staff in place. In the meantime, Danielle Day will move up with Reception in to Year 1 and Verity Heffier from Year 1 to Year 2. Lyndsay will be with us until 23rd September, I aim to have recruited before then for a handover of all her knowledge and skills.
We are introducing a new curriculum in Early Years and in Key Stage 1 and 2. The staff have been busy looking at the new resources and planning for the children. We are still teaching the same subjects, just in a different way. Our INSET days and staff meeting times will be devoted to working together with our other DMAT schools to make our curriculum exciting, challenging and progressive across the year groups. We (and the children!) will tell you more about this as we introduce this.
If you have ordered new uniform, please ring the school office on Monday afternoon to arrange collection.
While Covid 19 is still a concern, we are now able to make some changes which will make school life more ‘normal.’
We are able to have children together for play times and assemblies (with ventilated rooms and sensible distance) We will continue to have hand hygiene as a priority and make sure we are all following the ‘Catch it, Kill it, Bin it’ regime. Staff will continue to test twice weekly and we will wear masks when in close proximity with others.
If staff or children have symptoms, we send them home for testing. People are still being infected, but with sensible hand washing and sanitizing, vaccines available for staff and testing we should prevent spread. There is more detail on the school website in our current risk assessment and contingency plan.
Arrival and Collection
On Wednesday, please be patient as we welcome in new children and families.
Parents please walk with Nursery and Reception children to the entrance of the building on the left of the carpark (where year 5 and 6 were last year)
Parents can walk Year One and Year Two children to the entrance on the right of the playground by the ramp. (where Nursery and Reception were last year)
Key stage two children (Year 3,4, 5 &6) will walk up past Year 1 and Year 2 to the infant playground where they can walk in to classes with their class mates. There will be plenty of staff around to help direct children. If you have more than one child, please drop off older children first.
At the end of the day, Year 6 children can go home unaccompanied only if we have written consent from a carer or parent.
Parents to collect Year 3, 4, 5 & 6 from the infant playground where they will be with their teachers, Year 1 and 2 from the area by the ramp outside their rooms and Nursery and Reception from the main entrance to their building. (Nursery will have their own entrance when the work is finished)
Please collect KS2 children first as they will be waiting outside.
Children who go home by bus or taxi will be collected by a member of staff and will wait together in the shelter in the playground until the bus and taxi arrive when the will be walked down by a member of staff.
If you need to collect or drop off a child at a different time, please ring the office staff and we will arrange to meet them at the gate.
We ask parents to please wear masks at drop off and collection, and no parents to enter the buildings.
We will keep reviewing our plans and let you know of any changes.
As far as possible, please call or email any questions or messages to our office staff, they will make sure important messages are passed on tot he relevant staff. The office email is [email protected]
If you need to go to the office, please enter one at a time so the area is not congested.
On behalf of all the staff, we look forward to seeing all of the children on Wednesday and starting an exciting new year.
All the best