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St James Primary School

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St James E-News 

24th June 2022

Welcome to the St James Primary School's E-News, a weekly roundup of the latest goings on at the school.

Latest Headteachers Blog

Dear Parents,

Thank you so much for joining us yesterday for our first proper sports day in two years!  It was lovely to see so many of you and I hope you enjoyed watching the children race - they were all outstanding.  Everyone tried their very best and for most of the afternoon there were only a few points between Reffold and Ellis, with the lead swapping several times, but congratulations definitely go to Reffold for a great win. 

Next week the children will perform The Lion King and I hope you will come along and watch them.  Having watched a few rehearsals the performance standards have been impressive. The Y2 class from St Mary's School in Shackleford are also coming for the dress rehearsal performance and are very excited! 

Finally, several parents have asked about making an application for a nursery place at the school, and if you follow the link to the website here, you will find details of how to apply. 

Best wishes for a lovely weekend,

Valerie Elliott

School Notices 

  •  STOP PRESS!  School Dinners - We expect hot school meals to be reinstated from Monday 4th July.  We will send more details very soon.
  • Authorisation of Absences - From September, our Leave of Absence Policy will be reinstated and  we will no longer routinely approve family holidays that were missed due to the pandemic. 
  • Music Lessons - Is your child a budding musician?  We hold private music lessons at school for keyboards, piano, ukulele, guitar and drums.  Please follow these links of our current music providers to find out more: 
    Music Works
    The Rock And Pop Foundation
    Surrey Arts
  • Polio Vaccine Reminder - You may have seen in the news that polio has been found in London sewage water – although this represents a small risk to the public, it’s a timely reminder to ensure children are fully up to date with their vaccinations. Polio vaccine is part of the routine national immunisation schedule.  If you or your child are not up to date with your polio vaccinations, it’s important you contact your GP to catch up or, if unsure, check your Red Book.
    Find out more about childhood vaccinations   Immunisations - Healthy Surrey.
  • Raising Funds For Yulia - Yulia is the  sister of Artem and Kristina pupils in Y2 and Y5.  The family have moved here to escape the war in Ukraine with the result that Yulia was not able to sit the exams she had studied hard for.  She cannot be accepted to study for A-levels in September unless her English improves but she is too young to be accepted into any local language schools.  Through a family member of Richelle Smith, a Year 2 parent, she has been offered a fantastic opportunity to attend a residential language course designed for her age-group at cost price. Richelle has set up a Crowdfunding page to raise the funds needed for her place.  Please click here to see the crowdfunding page and donate if you can.
  • Little Ducks Nursery - Bookings for places at the nursery are now live.   Please check the website here
  • Swimming - We are delighted that the pool is open once again.  The Swimming Letter remains on the Parent Portal, please read and respond as soon as possible if you haven't already done so.  There is an option to notify us if you need to pay by donation or extend the deadline.  The children may get opportunities to use the pool unexpectedly so please ensure that they have clean and dry swimming kit in school every day unless the class teacher says otherwise.
  • Summer Reading Challenge 2022 - Starting from 9th July until 17 September, Surrey Libraries are excited to launch the Summer of Reading.  Organised by the Reading Agency, the theme this year is Gadgeteers, and has been developed in partnership with The Science Museum Group, whose leading exhibitions inspire over 5 million visitors each year.  This year's Challenge will be a celebration of reading, science, and innovation.  Gadgeteers will inspire children to discover the science in everyday things like music, fashion, sport, and cooking. Children can join the free Summer Reading Challenge at their local Surrey Library, help six fun characters and become a party-planning science visionary!  Please see the letter under Whole School Letters on the Parent Portal for more information.
  • Drop in sessions with our Home School Link Worker, Helen Owen - The role of the Home School Link Worker (HSLW) is to support families with a range of issues at home or at school. 1:1 sessions are available on Wednesdays. To book an  appointment, email Helen on or ring the school office to request a call back.

Letters This Week 

The following classes have had letters uploaded to the Parent Portal this week.  Note: You will need to login to view this area.

  • Penguins
  • Eagles
  • Whole school   

PTA News

Please click on the link below to find out about activities planned for this term.

View the latest PTA News  

News Blogs

Click below to view all the latest News Blogs:

View recent blogs  

Dates For Your Diary

 View the school calendar for the latest information

View Full Website Calendar  

School Meals

View this week's school menu

View menu  

Safeguarding Information

Keeping our children safe is a partnership between school and home, so if we have any worries or concerns about your child we will always speak to you first to see what we can do to help.  If you would like to speak to a member of staff, in confidence, about a safeguarding concern about a child at St James Primary, or seek help or advice, please contact either Mr McArthur or Mrs Elliott via the office, they are the school’s Senior Designated Safeguarding Leads (DSL). 

If you would like to speak directly to Surrey Children’s Safeguarding Services, their contact details are 0300 470 9100 

There is also plenty of support and advice that parents, carers and families can access for further help and we’ve listed the main ones below. 

Helen Owen, our Home/School Link Worker, can signpost to further agencies who can support with a range of issues including financial hardship, housing issues or offer practical support with problems at school.  

The Surrey Family Information Service offer a free impartial information and signposting service on all aspects of family life for parents, including parenting advice and courses. 

Mental Health 

The Surrey website Mindworks offers a huge amount of advice for young adults and parents on a range of mental health issues. 

Online Safety 

The NSPCC website contains information and advice on many safeguarding issues, including keeping your child safe online. Information includes talking to your child about online safety, looking after your child’s online wellbeing and how to set up and manage parental controls.  

School Policy on Granting Leave of Absence

 Absences will be authorised for illness, and parents are requested not to send their child to school when they are unwell.  Apart from illness, absence will be authorised for medical appointments; attendance at religious festivals; visits to other schools at the age of transfer or when moving; and for exceptional circumstances.  

Absence will not be authorised for such reasons as looking after others at home, visiting friends or relatives, birthday treats or shopping trips. Unauthorised absence is also recorded if the child arrives after the close of registration at 9.15am unless for exceptional reasons. Parents are requested to arrange medical appointments out of school hours whenever possible.  

Parents should be aware that due to the pressure on the curriculum, absences may mean that children miss vital learning activities that will not be repeated.

Family Holidays 
There is a clear link between attendance at school and good progress.  

Children do not have a right to be withdrawn from school for holidays. School holiday dates are published a year in advance and parents should arrange their family holidays during these times. If an absence in term time is unavoidable, an Absence Authorisation form must be completed well in advance to gain prior authorisation. Forms are available from the school office and website.  

On submission of the form, the Headteacher will decide whether or not to authorise the absence having considered:  

· the child’s record of attendance  

· the ability of the child to catch up the work that they have missed  

· the reason why they are taking the time off during term time  

· the timing of the holiday, ensuring that it would not prevent the child from taking any important examinations or assessments.  

Leave may be requested in advance for attendance at religious festivals, visits to other schools at the age of transfer and for exceptional circumstances. Please note that Year 6 will not be granted leave of absence during the Key Stage 2 Standard Assessment Tests (SATs) week.  

The Headteacher reserves the right to issue parents with a Penalty Notice for unauthorised absence This can include parents who take their children on holiday during term time without getting authorisation from the school. The penalty is £60, rising to £120 if not paid within 28 days.   

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