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It is lovely to be back after the summer holiday and it has been a happy, positive start to the new school year at Bowmansgreen.  Pupils have settled quickly into their new classes and have been working hard, demonstrating a calm, purposeful attitude. The focus for the first week has been about setting and reinforcing standards and expectations – of uniform, attendance, learning and behaviour – and pupils are already aiming high. Pupils have been reminded of our three school rules – be kind, be safe, be respectful – and the expectation that they are demonstrated by every member of our school community, at all times.

We have welcomed lots of new families to Bowmansgreen this week, with new pupils joining classes across the school. I know that they are being made to feel very welcome and helped to settle in by their peers and I hope that they have enjoyed their first few days as part of our school community.

Our new reception pupils have made a confident, settled start to school life at Bowmansgreen. They spent their first full day at school yesterday yet looked like they have been attending for weeks! They have been busy learning and playing well together, forming new friendships, having fun and becoming familiar with their new environment. I am sure that some will sleep very well this weekend…

I am sure that you are aware of the recent media headlines about RAAC (Reinforced Autoclaved Aerated Concrete) and that some schools have been affected by the presence of RAAC in their buildings. RAAC is a lightweight form of concrete which was used in schools and other building construction from the 1950s until the mid-1990s. After some time and in some circumstances, this concrete can collapse. I can reassure you that Hertfordshire County Council had the school surveyed by appropriately qualified building surveyors in the last few years and I can confirm that there is no RAAC at Bowmansgreen and therefore no risk to pupils or staff. I can only begin to imagine the disruption, upset and stress experienced by the many school communities who are affected by RAAC and feel so sorry for those who have been denied a settled start to their school year.

Mrs May, our new school SENCO has been busy getting to know pupils, during her first week at Bowmansgreen. I look forward to working closely with Mrs May during the coming weeks, to ensure a smooth handover of information and to support her getting to know families and the needs of pupils with SEND across the school.

This half-term’s school value is kindness. Staff will be looking out for examples of pupils going over and above to demonstrate kindness towards each other, acknowledging and reinforcing the importance of kindness within our school community, both as a value and one of our non-negotiable, three school rules. Some pupils have already been mentioned frequently during the first week, regarding their excellent attitude and kindness towards others. Some early contenders for class recognition boards, I am sure.

Yesterday’s celebration assembly started with our new Bowmansgreen school song and finished with three excellent piano solos, performed by Isla, Reef and Zara. Mr Bronstein expressed how proud he was of all three musicians who recently passed their Grade 1 piano exams with flying colours! Congratulations to all three and I look forward to their next performances.

Parents and carers are once again welcome to attend Friday celebration assemblies whether or not your child is receiving an award. Pre-covid, Friday assemblies were a lovely community occasion, well attended by families across the school. Please feel free to join us, 9am every Friday. We do have limits and regulations to follow regarding the number of people allowed into the school hall at once so we may have to cap numbers if attendance is high. Celebration assembly usually lasts between twenty and thirty minutes. Please enter via the breakfast club/dining room door, where you will be able to wait from 8.35am.

Family adults are also again invited to join their children at our breakfast club each morning. Breakfast costs £3.00 per person (£3.00 for the first child and £2.00 for each sibling) and is served between 7.30am – 8.15am. Mrs Stanley and her team offer a range of breakfast items and a tasty, hot breakfast, every Friday. Come and join us – Mrs Stanley would love to see you there!

Congratulations to the pupils in Year 5 who completed their first aid course with St John’s Ambulance, at the end of last term. Yesterday, they received their hard earned and well deserved certificates. Their course included learning about CPR, choking, treating burns and stemming bleeding – invaluable knowledge and skills that could one day be used to help others, even prevent a death. Thank you very much to Miss Russell who organised and led the course and has helped train many Bowmansgreen pupils in first aid, over the last few years.

During the next two weeks, all classes will take part in Forest School. You will receive a letter notifying you of when your child’s session takes place and what they will need to bring.

Please be reminded to park safely and respectfully on the roads around school, at all times. Neighbours have been upset and inconvenienced during our first week back, with driveways having been blocked and some inconsiderate parking, ignoring the parking restrictions.

Pupils in Y4, Y5 and Y6 can enter and exit school grounds via the back gate, as independent travellers. Please collect a form from the office if you would like your child to become an independent traveller for the first time.

We have a vacancy on our governing board for a parent governor. If you are a parent or carer of a pupil currently on roll at Bowmansgreen, with a keen interest in supporting the school’s leadership, school policy, financial matters and educational outcomes, you might be interested in joining the school’s governing body as a parent governor. Look out for next week’s letter detailing the nomination and election process and procedures.

Upcoming key dates: KS1/KS2 Meet the Teacher events – during week beginning September 25th 2023; Open Morning – Saturday September 30th, 2023; Family Consultation Meetings – October 3rd and 5th, 2023;

Enjoy your weekend.