Newsletter September 2013

Available as PDF Download

I apologise for the length of this bulletin but please take time to read it thoroughly as it contains very important information and dates.

Dear Parent,

Welcome back to a new school year. I hope you had a restful summer holiday and are ready for another busy autumn term. Over the summer many pupils have been busy and I would like to take this opportunity to mention the achievements of some of our pupils. A special mention to the children who participated in the Antrim Show, I am delighted to inform you that the school came third in the School’s Art Competition. Well done everyone!

*Stars in Our School*
The following are awards achieved by pupils over the summer break.
Jack Craig gained his Piano Step 2 Distinction.
Tim Bailie gained his 4 Drums Merit, and was Player of the Week twice at Football Tournaments.
Tyler McTrustry was awarded Goal of the Season and 3 Medals at Football.
Sophie Allen achieved her Grade 2 Harop.
Timothy McClure was Player of the Year at Carniny FC.
Jenny Hunter was chosen for the NEELB Orchestra and achieved her Bronze at the Vault in Gymnastics.
Jacques Moss was awarded a Bronze Trophy at Football.
Bethany Wilgaus was awarded the Endeavour Shield and Most Pleasing at Irish Dancing, she also gained 2 seconds in Irish Dancing competitions.
Reuben Finlay was chosen for the NEELB Orchestra and gained his Goldfish 3 Swimming award.
Libby Ellis gained 2 seconds in Irish Dancing.
Peter Bailie won a medal at Football.
Lily Williamson gained her Octopus award at Swimming.
Skye Dawson won a medal for Horse Jumping.
Brooke Law achieved her 600m Badge and Shark 1 and 2 Badges for swimming
Rachel Finlay gained her 10m Badge for swimming.
Sophie McAllister was placed 3rd on box in a Gymnastics competition, received her 6th and 7th Badges and came 5th in Horse Riding.
Ella gained her Level 1 in Horse Riding.
Jenna Millar achieved her 2 and 3 metre Swimming Badges.

Children’s Responsibility
I would like to ask you to support us with events in school and ensure all notes and permission slips are returned as necessary.

School Times
Lessons START each morning at 9.15 a.m. and FINISH at 3.00 p.m. (2.00 p.m. for Primary 1
and 2). Primary 3 will remain in school until 3.00 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays.

Dinner Money
The cost of school dinner is £2.30 per day. School meals are prepared at Antrim Primary Kitchens
and transported to school. The children will receive a fortnightly menu which they return to school
with their preferred dinner choice ticked and the appropriate money first thing on Monday morning.
School Dinners start on Monday 2nd September.

The cost of School Milk for the term 2nd September – 20th December 2013 is £14.04 (78 days @ 18p per day), to be paid by Friday 6th September. If you would like your child to take milk it is important that you complete the appropriate reply slip and return it to school with the money. Please note that it is not possible to allow credit for milk not drunk due to absence. Surplus milk will be given to children in attendance free of charge.

Naming of Uniform

Please ensure that your child’s name is on all items of his/her uniform.

School Holidays for 2013 – 2014 Holidays (Inclusive)
School starts Thursday 29th August 2013
Autumn Half Term Thursday 31st October – Friday 1st November 2013 – 2 days
Christmas Vacation Monday 23rd December – Thursday 2nd January – 9 days
Winter Half Term Monday 17th February – Friday 21st February – 5 days
Easter Vacation Tuesday 15h April – Friday 25th April – 9 days
May Bank Holiday Monday 5th May – 1 day
May Bank Holiday Monday 26th May – 1 day
School finishes Friday 27th June

Exceptional Closures
Wednesday 30th October 2013 – 1 day
Friday 3rd January 2014 – 1 day
Monday 6th January 2014 – 1 day
Monday 14th April 2014 – 1 day
Tuesday 27th May 2014 – 1 day
Monday 30th June2014 – 1 day

Breakfast Club
Breakfast Club runs every morning from 8.30am starting Monday 2nd September 2013.

Piano Lessons
Piano lessons will start on Monday 2nd September for those children already taking lessons. If your child is in P3 or above and would be interested in taking piano lessons please complete the appropriate form below.

HOP Club
HOP Club starts Monday 2nd September and runs every Monday and Wednesday afternoon.

more info & reading

The school swimming programme will commence on Tuesday 3rd September, and continues weekly until Christmas. The cost is £2 per child and transport is provided by NEELB. The children will be accompanied by their class teacher and instruction will be provided by Mrs. L. Coulter. Children are required to bring a waterproof swimming bag containing a towel and bathing costume. Since children use the school changing room no money is required for lockers. Break can be eaten at the Antrim Forum after swimming.

P3 – P4 Visits to Antrim Library
Starting Thursday 5th September P3/P4 pupils will be visiting Antrim Library the first Thursday of every month. They will be transported to the library by bus. The cost of each visit is £2. As the bus can only carry 16 if anyone can help provide transport please speak to me at your earliest convenience.

Social Running Group
The social running group for adults will start up again on Thursday 5th September at 7.00pm.
All welcome

Violin Lessons
Violin lessons will start on Friday 6th September 2013. If anyone from P3 – P7 would like to start these lessons please speak to me ASAP.

Tots & Co
Tots & Co will start on Friday 6th September 2013. This runs from 9.30am – 11.00am.

Bumps and Buggies
Bumps and Buggies will be held on Monday at 9.30am. All welcome, no need to have a buggy.

P1 Parent’s Meeting
This will be held in the school on Wednesday 11th September at 8.00p.m. and is the first in a series of meetings to be held throughout the school year. These meetings will give an overview of the Revised Curriculum that your child will be following throughout their school years. In the past these meetings have proved to be very useful and feedback from parents has been very positive. I would therefore encourage you all to make this a priority in your diary as it is when the school and home work closely together that your child benefits most from their education.

Good News Club
The Good News Club will commence on Thursday 10th September for 6 weeks. The P2-P3 children can attend this club from 2.00 – 3.00p.m. (P1 children can attend these sessions from Tuesday 1st October) while P4 – P7 can attend from 3.00 – 4.00p.m. There will be no charge for this club.

A series of 6 football coaching sessions will be held after school starting Thursday 12th September. P2/P3 children can attend from 2.00 – 3.00pm and P4 – P7 from 3.00 – 4.00pm. The P1 children can join starting Thursday 3rd October. If you wish your child to take part please complete the consent form below. The cost is £12 per child per session. The cost for P1 children is £2 per session.

Craft and Craic
The ladies social group Craft and Craic will start again on Thursday 12th September at 8.00pm in the school. Come along and bring your current craft project and enjoy a night of craft and Craic. Friends welcome.

P1 –P4 PE
PE lessons will continue every Friday at Parkhall Senior (Massereene) Campus. The pupils will be transported to Parkhall by Antrim Community Transport and the charge of £1 for the bus applies. Please ensure that your child brings appropriate footwear. If it is more suitable for you to collect your child from Parkhall at 2.00pm for P1/P2 and 2.45pm for P3/P4 please complete the form below. PE starts Friday 13th September 2013.

P3 – P4 Parent’s Meeting
A meeting will be held in the school on Monday 16th September at 8.00pm. This meeting will provide information about your child’s curriculum and what you can do to help your chid throughout the year.

P5 – P7 Parent’s Meeting
A meeting will be held in the school on Wednesday 18th September at 8.00pm. This meeting will provide information about your child’s curriculum and what you can do to help your chid throughout the year.

P2 Parent’s Meeting
A meeting providing information on Literacy throughout the P2 year at school and home will be held in the school on Wednesday 25th September at 8.00pm.

European Day
The school will be celebrating European Day on Wednesday 25th September. Each class will choose its own country and your will be informed nearer the time what that country is. Children are encouraged to dress in the colours of the flag or anything relating to the chosen country. Please send 50p with your child as they will be enjoying some European food.

MacMillan Coffee Morning
A coffee afternoon for MacMillan Cancer will be held in the school on Thursday 26th September from 2.00 – 4.00pm. Please support this worthy cause.

OSM Collection
This will take place on Friday 27th September and is a collection of black bags with old clothes, bedding (no duvets), curtains, shoes, belts and handbags. This is a thoroughly worthwhile project as the clothes are given to charity while the school earns money. At the last collection the school earned £200. Please bring your bags to the school on the Friday morning and leave in the playground.

P1 Children
From Monday 30th September P1 children will remain in school until 2.00p.m.

Parental Interviews
These will be held every afternoon of the week beginning Monday 21st October 2013. All children will go home at 2.00p.m. during this week. Details of interview appointments will be sent nearer the time

Once again we will be continuing to support the shoebox appeal for Romania. Shoeboxes should be sent in by Monday 28th October 2013. More details will be provided nearer the time.

Harvest Service
Our special Harvest Assembly will be on Tuesday 29th October 2013 and will be held in Creevery Gospel Hall at 9.30am. Parents and friends are invited. Children may bring a small gift of flowers, fruit or vegetables, which will be given to Ladyhill Nursing Home.

Harvest Scavenger Hunt
A scavenger hunt will be held on Tuesday 29th October from 1.00 – 2.00p.m. Pupils are asked to bring Wellington boots and a warm coat with them, as this activity takes place outside. School will finish at 2.00p.m. for all pupils.

Halloween Holidays
The school will be closed from Wednesday 30th October – Friday 1st November 2013. inclusive.

Christmas Fayre
A Christmas Fayre will be held in the school on Saturday 30th November 2013. Details to follow.

Open Day/Night
An Open/Night will be held Thursday 5th December 2013. Details to follow.

Christmas Celebration
For your diary we hope to hold the Christmas Celebration will be held on Thursday 19th December 2013.

Break Time
For the last few years, thanks to a couple of volunteer Mums, we were able to sell toast 3 mornings a week. This proved to be very popular with the children as well as providing them with a healthy break. It is hoped that we will be able to provide this again if enough Mums or Dads volunteer. If you feel that this is something that you can help with on a regular basis, please complete the appropriate form below. I will notify you in due course which days we are able to provide toast. I would be grateful if you would help support the school on the appropriate days either by letting your child buy toast, (20p a slice) or bring in something healthy to eat.

During the year your child may be photographed participating in school activities such as school trips, sports events, classroom activities etc. These photographs may be used for display purposes in the school, our yearly scrapbook, publication in the local press, school prospectus etc. Photographs may also be included on our school website. As a school we feel it is important that pupil achievements are recognised so that pupils feel happy and successful. However we are also sensitive to those pupils who may not wish their photograph to be taken or used for any school purpose. It is important therefore that our school record is kept up to date. Please fill in the permission slip attached.

Transporting Pupils
As you are probably aware, there are times when we rely on parents to provide transport for children for a variety of activities and we really appreciate the support of many parents in this regard. We must however, adhere to the Child Protection regulations. If you would be available and would be prepared to help in transporting children should the need arise, please complete the attached slip and return it to school.
If your child is under 135cm tall and you are not transporting but would like your child to participate in a trip please ensure that your child brings a booster seat with them as it is illegal to transport them without one.

Story Sacks
In previous years the P1 and P2 children have been encouraged to enjoy Reading and Numeracy through the use of story sacks and maths games. These should be sent home and returned on a weekly basis. If you would like your child to have the opportunity to borrow these please sign the consent form below. Any parents willing to help sign the story sacks in and out on should contact me as soon as possible.

Children in P3 and upwards will be learning to play the recorder and regulations no longer allow us to lend recorders to pupils who do not have one. Would you please ensure, therefore that every family has one. They can be purchased in Nicholl’s (Ballymena). Please mark either the recorder or it’s bag in some way to identify it.

P1/P2 Wellies
As outdoor play forms a part of the Revised Curriculum, the P1/P2 children are encouraged to keep a pair of wellies in school. Waterproof tops and bottoms can now be purchased from me for £10. These would be kept in school and worn when the children are playing in the field.

School Rules
I would appreciate it if you could take the time to read the school rules with your child and sign the appropriate form to indicate that you are aware of these rules.

Please remember that the school is collecting Nestle cereal box tops, mobile phones and Tesco & Sainsbury tokens.

As in previous years children will be allowed to wear non-uniform on their birthday.

Records Update
To help update school records I would be grateful if you would complete the attached information slip. This will enable us to contact you, or a responsible adult nominated by you in the event of your child taking ill or an emergency situation arising at school. It is important that these records are kept up to date as any cancellation of after school clubs etc will be made directly to you by text. Please note that due to recent events it is imperative to let the school know if your child cannot attend school for any reason.

Yours sincerely,
M. L. Dunwoody (Miss)