I hope you all had a very relaxing and enjoyable holiday! We have started back to school with a bang and have a very busy few weeks ahead of us beginning with the PSA’s circus event after school today. It promises to be a great evening and I am very much looking forward to seeing the show as I have never seen a live circus before. I know the children are excited about it too. I want to thank the PSA for their hard work in making sure the show has come together and also to the large number of you who have had estate agent boards up in your gardens over the last few weeks. It is much appreciated.
I want to start with some other thank you’s this week beginning with the netballers who have a new kit. This was only made possible due to donations from some of our families and we are very grateful to them for helping us to get a completely new kit and training tops for our netball teams. I am sure they are going to look amazing in them and they can’t wait to wear them for the first time. Thank you to one of our parents who works for Harris and Hoole who raised over £250 pounds during a crowdfund event for QE held in the Tesco coffee shop. Again, contributions like this are invaluable and really help especially in the very difficult financial situation we find ourselves in.
Being the first week back, I would like to give a reminder out about the standard we expect in terms of uniform. I have noticed a number of children this week with nail varnish on or wearing trainers or coloured socks. We have a very high expectation of the children’s uniform and do not allow any of these things. A list of uniform and the rules around it is on our website, so can we ask you as parents to be more vigilant in what your children wear to school. Taking pride in your uniform is very important to us at QE and the staff and I will be cracking down on this more next week.
You will undoubtedly have heard over the Easter weekend the major teacher unions discussing the possibility of more industrial action over the
coming months. It is clear we face an unprecedented period of change in school with little chance the upcoming election will change the ongoing situation. We are expecting a number of staffing changes before September and I will write to you more formally about that when the teacher resignation deadline is up at the end of half term in May. We are also considering our budget very closely and looking at ways we can both maximise our income and reduce our expenditure.
Over the holidays you will have heard about the Isle of Wight court case regarding fixed penalty noticed for holidays during term time. Now we have a clear High Court decision, we are expecting Surrey to advise us to re-instate penalty notices for unauthorised absences during term time. Since the ruling, our attendance figure, which we are judged on by Ofsted, has dropped massively. As soon as we know the revised advice from Surrey I will pass it on. Have a great weekend!
Mr Blackburn & the QE Staff