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Minutes, 01/10/19

Sully Primary School

Parent Forum Meeting – 1st Oct  2019

Attendees: Miss S Harries, Katie Armitage, Vicki Judd, Becky Turner Apologies: Emma Evans

As no agenda open forum style meeting.

BT raised issues on clubs and poor communication surrounding a child’s success of getting into the chosen club. Several parents assumed as their child had put their name down for a club that they were doing it and therefore didn’t collect child only to be telephoned to say their child hadn’t ‘made the cut’ and that they needed to collect child. SH advised that all children who want to do a club should get a turn, but they can’t all do it at once. It is usual practice that a permission slip will always be sent to parents if their child is doing an after-school club. BT advised that this was not clear at that she wasn’t the only one to have done same thing. SH confirmed that they will tweak messages in future.

VJ raised a parent query about sanitary products and bins in new KS2 toilets. Apparently, bin and sanitary products are not in same cubicle which doesn’t make sense. SH advised of new toilets and facilities. She advised that she will look into this, the bins are on contract and was her understanding one per cubicle, but she will clarify. (UPDATE:  Bins and sanitary products are now in all cubicles).

Discussed whether action points from last meeting in May. Recalled discussion was mainly surrounding school budget. Budget is looking healthier for a variety of reasons. Still not great but not as dire.

Discussed the lifecycle of financial concern. SH confirmed that Governors are still willing to answer any parental common questions if they are raised.

VJ mentioned that the PTA are planning to do a nativity/Christmas play/Christmas jumper sale so would be grateful for early notification of productions and casting so a sale date can be arranged.

Discussion of last year’s productions success. Agreed that the Foundation phased worked well. The fact that KS2 production practice was done outside of school went down better with pupils and parents.

Children to be given a voice as to how they see this year’s production evolve and timing of same.

VJ advised enjoyed the leavers’ assembly but still feel like we need to celebrate achievements outside of music and dance. What about sporting achievements?

VJ asked whether some clubs could be at lunch as her daughter was disappointed not to be able to do choir due to day change. Unfortunately, due to number of choir members there is no hall space at lunch time.

KA raised likelihood of school benefitting from new houses. VJ explained re 106 monies and that a proportion will be set aside for education but when and how much who knows. SH confirmed that whilst a new classroom is very much needed it is also the knock-on effect of needing a bigger hall etc as we struggle to fit all the children in as it stands.

BT raised daily mile and how pleased she was that this is being done a lot so far this year. Wondered what the aim is, as in is it daily, when done etc. SH confirmed it is difficult to always facilitate due to weather restrictions as certain times of year the field is out of use and the playground is used throughout day for PE and learning activities. Teachers try to coordinate time slots for doing it but sometimes it’s when opportunities arise, but it is attempted as much as possible.

Music lessons provided by Cardiff and Vales Services: discussion raised as teachers changing a lot, days changing and not knowing when lessons have started or on what day (to know when to bring in instrument). Recognised that this is an external service and nothing to do with school. SH confirmed that they have agreed to mix timings up on the agreed day so that children don’t miss the same lessons each week.

SH advised that we had 44 responses to the parent questionnaire sent at the end of term. Obviously unable to gain quantitative data from so few responses but we concluded perhaps should be seen as a positive, in that people don’t have any issues they wish to raise!  The vast majority of responses were of a positive nature.

SH mentioned the new curriculum and significance it gives to immersion days at the start of a topic/term conclusion with a celebration of the topic at the end. What are the parent’s thoughts on trips out etc? VJ advised that if related and affordable can’t see a problem. Raised issues with number of authors’ visits last year and pressures to buy books seemed excessive. VJ mentioned acknowledged increased coach costs so must be mindful that trips remain affordable as possible.

Enrichment weeks will be back but tweaked. Details to follow. They are likely to be condensed into a week as they were initially but intertwined with usual lessons.

Pupil voice – concerns raised as to whether some children will also choose the easier spellings or are, they gently persuaded to push themselves? SH confirmed that trying to move away from ability groupings as this isn’t conducive to pupil wellbeing. Instead children are encouraged to challenge themselves. There is always a pre-test of spellings and teacher will assist them in ensuring they are setting themselves an appropriate challenge!