Weekly Newsletter 6th October 2023

Welcome to DSJ Weekly!

It's been another lively week at Dodworth St John's, and the first month of the academic year has been as busy as you'd expect! I took a little bit of time this week to reflect on the positive aspects of this year so far, and one of them has certainly been the support from our lovely community. Walking around school I'm greeted with hugs, handshakes and smiles from the children, which is just lovely! Equally, I really appreciate the communication that you as families have given to me, and some of the very kind words along the way. Schools are busy places to be, but these little moments make it worth it.

Mrs Whiteley and I were fortunate enough to attend training on Monday around building a robust and expert Phonics team in school. We're very excited to be launching Read Write Inc phonics within school later this month. The benefits of this scheme will be profound, and we shall communicate with you how the scheme works, and ways that you can support at home. We want ALL children to leave school being able to read confidently and fluently, and this is a key part of that vision.

Thank you to everyone for their attendance at church this week for the Harvest festival. It was my first Harvest festival at this school, and it was so nice to see church so well attended. Little things like this make a big difference to children, and it's an important part of our community offer as a school.

Today we've had a couple of important visitors to school on behalf of St Mary's Academy Trust. Our visitors loved our Celebration Assembly, and were highly complimentary of the children, some of whom were asked to take part in a little activity with them. It wasn't a surprise for me to hear that the manners of these children were excellent!

Our building works are progressing at a great pace, and everything is proceeding on track. We will hopefully be back in our original classrooms before the end of the half term; as soon as I have a date for this, I will let everybody know.

Our census day was a great success. Thank you to all for your support with this, and thank you to our marvellous kitchen staff, who handled the extra demand really well. Remember, all children in EYFS and KS1 are entitled to a free school meal. You may also be eligible to claim for Free School Meals even if your child is in KS2. Please see more at https://www.barnsley.gov.uk/freeschoolmeals

Have a great weekend, and we'll see you next week.

Mr Smith

world mental health day

Tuesday 10th October is World Mental Health day.

We are marking the day with a non-school uniform day to raise awareness. Children are invited to come to school wearing bright colours to mark the occasion. There is no donation necessary for this - the awareness raised is enough!

Class Dojo

Thank you again for the excellent uptake we have had on ClassDojo. I have had some very positive feedback about school communications on this platform, and really appreciate how eagerly we as a community have pulled together on this important aspect of school.

In addition to your child's class teacher, you should now also be able to easily contact me, Mrs Harper (PSA) and Mrs Wood (SENCo) on ClassDojo for help on a range of issues.

working together

In the near future, I will be hosting an assembly within school on what children can do when disagreements inevitably happen.

This will be based upon the ideas below. Any conversations around this at home are much appreciated, as these are important skills for outside and beyond school as much as they are within the school day.

Sports Events

It's been great to have the opportunity for our school to take part in handball competitions at Darton Primary School this term.

I'll repeat the big WELL DONE to our Year 5s and Year 6s for their participation (and victory!) in their competition. We had a little bit of an unfortunate mishap with the coach last week for Year 3s and Year 4s, but I'm glad to report that we had no such issues today. They are there as I write this - I can't wait to hear how our little superstars have got on!

Attendance matters

This week's attendance is as follows:

EYFS: 91.4%

Y1: 93.7%

Y2: 93.2%

Y3/4: 91.6%

Y4/5: 86.6%

Y6: 95.2%

A huge well done to this week's attendance winners, Year 6!

Half Term Activities

Follow the link below to find out what activities and events are happening in Barnsley over half term. We are sharing this early as a few sessions require pre-booking, and spaces are going fast!


sickness and absence

Please see the handy guide below for guidance on how to respond to particular illnesses, and how long it is advised to keep children off school. (Best viewed in landscape on mobile devices.)

Diary Dates

Tuesday 10th October

World Mental Health Day

Junior Wardens - Year 5

Thursday 12th October

Year 6 Swimming

Friday 13th October

Key Stage 1 Handball at Darton Primary - details to be passed to families next week!

INSET DAYS 2022-23

Our INSET days for 2023-2024 are:

Monday 23rd October

Monday 19th February

Monday 22nd July


(Best viewed in landscape mode from mobile device)

Useful Links