Tips: New Parents

PA
You are automatically a member of the PA – There will be an OGM in October in which we can introduce ourselves. As a class hopefully someone will volunteer to be a class representative who will then liaise with the PA. However anyone can attend a PA meeting to see what is going on – and to see where they can volunteer. As mentioned previously, we have a website which is well worth looking at – www.gaspa.org.uk which contains all latest events and information.

School Uniform

Reception welcome coffee morning
The school organises a Reception parents coffee morning in September/October so that all new parents have an opportunity to meet each other and the class teachers.

Packed Lunch & School Lunch
Even the child with the healthiest appetite can become distracted by a large hall and a wish to get out into the playground for a game of football etc.. If you have a concern about how much of their lunch your child is eating then speak to the class teacher or teaching assistant. Also do not spend a fortune on fancy water bottles – a sports bottle of water from the newsagent will suffice! The children tend to be quite hungry when coming out of school – make sure you are armed with a treat! Invariably a number of children – both already in the school and new each year suffer from a nut allergy, so ensure that your child’s packed lunch does not have any nut products in it. School like to encourage healthy eating so please no sweets in packed lunch boxes. If you are interested in hot meals then please ask at the School office for a menu and order form.

As it can be a bit noisy, new Reception children are led by classes into the small hall for their lunch and are supervised by the lunch staff.

Notice Boards
NoticeboardThere are two useful notice boards: the school notice-board is located just inside the pedestrian gate and the GASPA notice-board is located on the drive-way leading up to the school pedestrian entrance. Teachers also put requests for help or class information on the classroom window so make sure you look at them to catch up on any useful information.

School trips or helping in class
There will be occasions when as a parent you are invited into the classroom or out on a school trip. In such cases the teachers are grateful for your help but please note that you must have a current CRB check which is valid for Grand Avenue. If you have a CRB for another club or institution unfortunately you still have to obtain a new CRB for our school. Please ask the school office who will be able to provide you with the latest information.

Lost Property
There is a trolley in the foyer of the main entrance were the staff will put any lost property. If your child has lost anything you should check the trolley first to see if the lost item is there. Please remember to name all articles of clothing (including hats, gloves, scarfs), lunchboxes, water bottles, bags, swimming and PE kits etc..

Parent Consultation Afternoon/Evening
There are 3 parents’ afternoons/evenings a year, one in the autumn term, one in the spring term and one in the summer term. You will need to book a time slot to see your teacher. A note will advise you of the date that the booking forms will be available in the school hall. A list of times is listed in the foyer of the main school office and you need to write your name against an available time that suits you.

The consultations are held in the main hall either in the evening after the school day or in the afternoon in which case school finishes slightly earlier that day. Whilst waiting to see the teacher a selection of your child’s work books are made available for you to look at outside their classrooms. At the appointment the teacher will discuss your child’s development and targets with you for your child. At the end of the summer term parents receive a Record of Achievement which gives a written report of his or her progress.

Illness
If your child has a bout of sickness or diarrhoea then you must keep them at home for 48 hours to avoid the risk if spreading infection. Parents/carers can notify the school of a child’s absence (due to illness or for an appointment) via email (absence@grandavenue.kingston.sch.uk) at any time.  Parents can also telephone on the day of absence from 0815 onwards and leave a message on our absence line or speak to someone in the School Office.

Stickers
Well done Stickers – Your child will regularly come out with a sticker on their jumper – as a sign by their teachers, playground supervisor, music teacher that they have done well. Or the inevitable “I hurt myself today please look after me”! This covers minor trips and bumps – anything serious and the teaching staff will let you know what happened.
Minor Accident Stickers – If your child has a bump, graze or scratch whilst playing in the playground etc at school, school staff will stick a sticker on your child’s clothing detailing the injury and the time it occurred.

Talking to the teaching staff
If you need a quick word with your child’s teacher please do come through the main wooden gate. The best time is 8.30am before the bell is rung. Should you need a longer appointment please come into the school office so a convenient time can be arranged.

Parking near School at drop-off and collection + Driving onto and Parking on school property
entrance1At no time during school hours should any parent drive onto site unless pre-arranged with the school. Consideration should be given to residents neighbouring and residing in roads around school. Please do not park over drives, opposite other cars (should an emergency vehicle such as 

entrance2

ambulance/fire engine need to get through you would delay response times), on double-lines (you will get a parking

ticket!) and on bends.

The school encourages children to walk, cycle or scoot to school so please make an effort to do this. We have had many complaints from residents and the local Community Police often patrol school at pick-up and drop-off so your co-operation is appreciated.

Scooters and Bicycles on the premises
Children are encouraged to scooter or cycle to school but as there have been several near misses, please note no scooting or cycling is permitted on the pathway leading up to or in school.

Please ensure that all scooter and bicycles are securely locked and clearly named with a permanent pen.

Drop off and collection at the school gate
At 8.30am
There are 2 members of school staff on gate duty each day from 8.30am. Parents are welcome to leave children in the playground under the teachers supervision. Teachers ensure children do not come back out through the gate. At this time a red sign is displayed meaning ‘Stop and Play’.

Parents of course are welcome to wait with their child until the bell goes but please do not obstruct the pathway as Key Stage 2 children need to come into school, enter the playground safely and easily.

At 8.45am
A hand bell is rung to show that it is time for Key Stage 1 children to go into class. The red sign is then changed to green meaning ‘Time to Go In’.

At 3.05pm
Please come through the main wooden gate and wait outside your child’s classroom door. Teachers ask that you do not enter school until 3.05pm as faces at the window can be distracting for our children making it difficult for teachers to complete the tasks for the day.
The teacher will only allow a child to leave the classroom when a designated adult has arrived at the door. Please also be aware that our playground is not supervised by staff after school. The playground, trim trail and Quiet Area are therefore closed. If you are waiting for older children please ensure your younger child is supervised, they are your responsibility at this time!

Christmas production
At Grand Avenue the Christmas productions are split into Key stage 1 (Reception to Yr 2) and Key Stage 2 (Yr 3 to Yr 6). The teacher will send home a note a few weeks before the performance asking for a particular costume for your child (it can be home-made or shop brought depending on your budget) and your child may have a few words or a song to learn. The note will also have a date by which the costume has to be at school so that the children can have a dress rehearsal before the big day.

There are two performances for both Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2. Each child is entitled to 2 tickets. Younger siblings are allowed so long as they sit on your lap.

Mufti days
We have quite a few “mufti days” at school, whether its collecting for items for the school fairs (cakes, chocolates, bottles, money or gifts) or supporting a charitable event such as Children in Need or something similar. So each mufti day your child can wear their own clothes to school in exchange for a particular event. The items are collected at the school gate as the children walk through – and it should be something that matches your budget, no one is judging you on the amount spent.

World Book Day
To celebrate World Book Day we are ask children to come to school dressed as a favourite book character. This should be a character from a book your child particularly enjoys so that they are able to talk about who they are dressed as and why. The costume can be as simple or elaborate as you wish! The day is aimed at celebrating the joy of reading and discussing favourite books and characters. As part of the day the children usually receive a £1 book token which can be used to buy a range of £1 books in a variety of book shops. If you have any questions about this event please feel free to ask your child’s teacher who will be happy to help.

World Thinking Day
It has long been a tradition for Girl-guiding members to be allowed to wear their uniform to school to celebrate World Thinking Day when Girl Guides and Girl Scouts throughout the world remember each other and reaffirm their commitment to international friendship and understanding. Grand Avenue supports this day and therefore if your child attends Rainbows, Brownies or Guides they are allowed to come to school on that particular day dressed in their uniform.

After-school clubs
We are very lucky at the school to have a very full after-school club timetable. After-school clubs are provided by outside organisations at a cost and others by staff on a free and voluntary basis. Details of the clubs and their forms can be found on the school website or by speaking to the school office.

School Closure
During extreme weather conditions every effort is made to keep school open for as long as is safely possible. In the event of adverse weather the final decision to close the school will be taken by 7.30am, for that day, to give as much chance of opening the school as possible. Any decision taken the night before, unless the weather is particularly bad, may well result in the school closing unnecessarily. School appreciate that finding child care at short notice is very difficult for a lot of parents and carers but would ask that if the weather forecast suggests bad weather is on the way that you make a contingency plan just in case.

Once the decision has been made to close the school this will be published on the school website (along the scrolling message bar) and also on the answer-phone at 7.30am.

Buddy Benches
In the playground there are a couple of “Buddy Benches” which encourage community and friendship. The seat is intended for a child to go and sit to chat about problems or find someone to play with. An older pupil or staff member who has adopted the “Buddy” role then helps the younger child.

Out of School Club
The Grand Avenue Out of School Club provides care for children of the school before and after school hours. The club comprises of a breakfast club opening at 7.45am and an after school club which closes at 6pm hours. Both ends of the day operate Monday to Friday during the school term. The club aims to provide good quality childcare in a relaxed setting for the pupils of Grand Avenue School. Our aim is for all of the children to be fully involved in the club, choosing the type of activities they would like to do and those that the club to provide. We are based within the school premises and provide indoor and outdoor activities.

The club is fully compliant with Ofsted’s National Standards (The National Standards are a set of outcomes that providers must achieve. Each standard describes a particular quality outcome) and has been registered. The current registration is for 30 children. The ratio of staff required is 1:8; it is usually the case that there is an additional member of staff at the club above the ratio requirement.

All children attending the breakfast club are escorted to the room by a parent/carer. The breakfast club runs a contact book for the school which is handed to the school at the beginning of the day and collected at the end of the school day. The children attending the after school club are collected from the school by club staff and escorted to the club. Breakfast club children are delivered to the classroom if they are in year 2 or below, and into a teacher supervised playground if they are year 3 or above. After school club children are collected by parents, guardians or an authorised person from the club before 6pm.
Any parents wishing to use the club should contact the Club Manager to register, after which and subject to availability can book regular requirements or adhoc/short notice placements. Please contact the school office.

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