2nd February 2024

Save the date

Thursdays: Tiny Tiddlers: 9am

Monday 5th – Sunday 11th February – Child’s Mental Health Week

Tuesday 6th February – Tea & Talk: Safer Internet Day – 8.50am

Tuesday 6th February – Safer Internet Day

Friday 9th February – Year 6 cake sale

Thursday 15th February - Tea & Talk: Developing Positive Relationships – Yr 5 & 6 – 5pm

Friday 16th February – Break up for half term 3.10pm finish

Monday 26th February – Return after half term

Tuesday 5th March - Tea & Talk: Nursery Phonics 8.50am

Wednesday 6th March – Tea & Talk: Connected Curriculum 8.50am

Friday 8th March – World Book Day

Tuesday 19th March – Tea & Talk: ODL and Art 8.50am

Tuesday 19th March – Springfest 3.30pm – 5pm

Thursday 28th March – Last day of term

Monday 15th April – Return after Easter break

Considerate parking

Thank you to those parents who continue to park considerately and safely each morning and afternoon.

We have recently seen an increase in communication from our neighbours and families regarding parking and irresponsible driving. We encourage families to walk to school wherever possible and politely request that parents and visitors to the academy, park in surrounding roads with thought and consideration for the children, other adults and the local community. Please follow the restrictions and road markings that are in place within the highway code.

Please think before you park!

  • Walk to school if you can.
  • If you travel by car, try to share trips with neighbours or friends, observe the traffic regulations and park safely a short distance from the school to avoid congestion near to the school so that children can cross safely.
  • Do not park, or wait, on the yellow ‘KEEP CLEAR’ markings. These markings are self-explanatory and are there to keep children safe.
  • Do not block driveways with your vehicle. This is classed as an unnecessary obstruction and could result in your vehicle being ticketed and even removed.
  • Once your have dropped off or collected your child, please be aware of other families around you when pulling away in your car.

Please do not drive in the academy grounds if the gates or barriers are open at any time. This should also be observed after school hours during collection from Little Mariners or an after-school club. Parents that have permission for parking are known to staff. Other vehicles are not to use the site.

The safety of the children is our priority and this includes their journey to and from the academy.

We appreciate your support in this matter.

Message from the Principal

Dear parents/carers,

This week has been full of inspiration. Around the academy children have been immersed in learning. They have been active in their learning and thoughts.

I loved being invited to year 2 to hear their song – your imagination. It not only filled me with joy but sparked my imagination too with creative planning taking shape. They sang beautifully with parts and lines for groups. Soon they will be adding instruments to the song and I hope to go back for a final performance.

I have also enjoyed seeing the new PE fitness programme in action, with adapted circuits that include a variety of stations. Children are loving the new challenges and improving their scores and fitness levels. Perhaps Mr Felton should run a parent session one day?!

During celebration assembly I was delighted to share that we have some budding illustrators within art club. They entered a competition for designing perfect pets with some of our children’s entries published in the book. Blue’s picture made the front cover! Take a look at the Perfect Pets section below.

In year six I spent time with classes considering the significance of architecture and art in religions and culture. Children shared their views and beliefs openly demonstrating our British values of respect and tolerance of others faiths and beliefs. I also had the pleasure to teach Strand class with a focus on the importance of healthy relationships. We made links to on and offline relationships in readiness for Safer Internet Day and Children’s Mental Health week, next week. We have a Tea and Talk about Safer Internet Day on Tuesday 6th February and would love to have as many parents come along. If you have not signed up for this and would like to come, please let the office know.

On Thursday 15th February, Mr Williams, from Belfair’s Academy, is coming to Darlinghurst to hold a special Tea and Talk with Upper Key Stage 2 parents to talk about ‘positive relationships.’ This will include how older children navigate friendships and influences with links to secondary education. I know that for some parents secondary school can seem like an unknown place with their children growing up. Book on and find out more.

We held a Tea and Talk this week, with members of the Eco Team attending to share their actions and knowledge with parents. Thank you to those that came along and to Mrs Powell and the team for their time and passion.

We continue to welcome new families to the academy and it has been lovely to see new friendships grow and parents also welcoming new parents. We look forward to getting to know everyone a little more with plans for Tea and Talks and future events to share that sense of belonging.

With health and wellbeing in mind, I have been asked by several parents to mention road safety again. I know that front of the school is busy during pick up and drop off, but parents have raised concern to cars parked or pulling up outside of the school creating hazards. Our children’s safety is paramount and we ask that you use neighbouring streets, respectfully or park away from the academy and walk in to reduce congestion. Car parks are used by parents with agreement with the academy and blue badge holders.

I want to end with a huge thank you to staff and parents for going along to Young Voices again this year. This event literally makes memories and those that go along experience the magic of an arena full of children singing. Members of our choir went along and sang to all the songs. They had a prime spot and waved the Darlinghurst flag with pride. It is a long day and a late night for all involved. The children loved it and it couldn’t happen without Miss Salter, the team and parents too.

As always, enjoy your family time together.

Mrs Nicholls

In The Spotlight

Around the world and family favourites

This term we are celebrating foods from around the world and our favourite meals.

On Thursday 15th February the catering team will be hosting a food festival for Chinese New Year with Chinese chicken Noodles or Veggie chow Mein with Noodles on the menu. This will be followed by the desert, Sticky upside-down mandarin cake.

We would love to find out more about the customs and cultural cuisines that you enjoy at home and would love you to share this with us. Aspens are also keen to find out what is the most popular meal on the menu and our children’s overall favourite meal. They plan to have a favourite food day to celebrate in Spring 2.

During celebration assembly children were shown the wheel of fortune and classes were provided a voting slip. We look forward to finding out and sharing with you the most popular choice and what will be served on favourite food day!

Please send images and information to general enquiries, subject: family cuisine or family favourite. You could include photographs or the recipe/description of your meal. Should you wish to send in a little taster I am sure some staff will happily have a taste test!

Young Voices

On Wednesday, the choir took part in an amazing opportunity singing at the O2 as part of this year’s Young Voices choir. With over 9000 children from schools across Great Britain, the children rehearsed this year’s Young Voices songs throughout the day and later performed them to thousands of parents in the evening. With incredible seats right near the stage, we had the perfect view to watch this year’s special guest including the incredible 13 year old drummer Nandi Bushell and MC Grammar.

The choir worked incredibly hard to learn the words and the dance moves, alongside the urban dance troop Urban Strides. Some of the childrens favourite songs in which they performed were the Matilda Medley, Pop Medley, and a mash up of Moana songs.

They all gave 110% throughout the performance, demonstrating all aspects of Darlinghurst’s key values. They all shone like stars and definitely made us all (teachers and parents) proud. It definitely was a great day!

Perfect Pets winners

I am delighted to announce that Fox , Inas, Emme, Estella and Nika, (KS1 AND KS2) have had their designs which they drew in Art Club printed and published in a Perfect pets book. Even more exciting, is that our own Blue has had hers chosen for the front cover of the book and has won a goody bag with her own printed sketch book as well other art supplies. The children had to design a perfect pet and if possible write a short story alongside and book has many other schools work included, so this is a fantastic achievement. I am extremely proud of all the children that entered and thank you for all parental support.

Mrs Buckley

Art/DT Lead

Tiny Tiddlers

Tiny Tiddlers is a weekly session that is hosted at the back of the Academy in the Harbour during term time only. Initially, the group was formed to introduce pre-schoolers to the Academy, get to know some of the staff and experience the wonderful outdoor space we have to offer. Since then, the group has grown to so much more and is now attended from babies in arms right up to Reception starting age. It’s a fully inclusive group that provides the opportunity for all that attend the chance to discover, create and do and for families to come together and form friendships and community groups, even planning trips to the park and organising events during the holidays, so the children can still see each other outside the group. The sessions runs on a Thursday from 8.50am (after the main school and Nursery have started school) till 10.45am and is only £2 a session, paid via parent pay or cash on the day and entry is via the Brooke gate.

Each week, when I open the gate, I am greeted with smiley faces, huge hugs and eager toddling children, ready to come in a explore Tiny Tiddlers. Each week we sing songs, tell stories and make something to take home too. At each session snack is provided, with some weeks the children making their own snacks to share, including icing their own biscuits or cakes. The children sit for snack and learn table manners and practise some of the skills they can transfer to when they start Nursery. Tea and coffee are provided for adults and a safe space to talk and let their children learn and explore, developing their social skills, their fine and gross moto skills and developing their imagination and language. There are also plenty of Miss Wise cuddles to go around! The children are already demonstrating the academy values of A to D and are a real credit to the families that bring them each week,

Here is what some of our parents say about Tiny Tiddlers

“Tiny Tiddlers is absolutely amazing and we enjoy coming every week. It is a lovely relaxed environment with lots of things for the children to do”

“We’re so happy to have discovered Tiny Tiddlers – what a lovely spaces to play and meet new friends. We’ve only been a couple of times so far but will definitely become regulars!”

“It’s a lovely, friendly space for the children to play and adults to chat. Thank you for having us!”

“We love being part of this wonderful group and great playful environment. It is wonderful to be able to get to know the school better which will help my son to settle in when starts nursery soon.”

“This is such a friendly, easy-going group. Lots of lovely activities for the children to engage with and the chance for grown-ups to sit down and have a chat. We look forward to each week.”

If anyone is interested in attending Tiny Tiddlers, please email

It really is a lovely group! We have lots of fun and I look forward to it every week. So, grab a friend and come along and see for yourself and I look forward to seeing you there.

Eco Committee

This half term, the Eco Committee have been focusing on air pollution and continuing their efforts to reduce waste and litter. We have some key dates coming up that we’d like you to add to your diary.

On Sunday 12th February, we will be having a Community Day to help improve our outdoor areas including the allotment and planting trees.

On 11th-17th March, we will be taking part in the Big Plastic Count. For this national research, we ask that you record any types of plastics you throw away and share the information with us. You can find out more information here:

Finally, 15th-31st March is the Great British Spring Clean. The Eco Committee have planned some ideas for what we can do for this event in school. We would also like you to save the date – Saturday 16th March - for a Litter Pick with the community group Litterless Leigh on Two Tree Island at 9am. Please RSVP at We’d also love for you to share your photos of any litter picks you take part in outside of school during this time period.



Penguin – 98.1%


Mayflower – 98.8%%

Proud To Be Me

Get in Touch

Darlinghurst Academy

Pavilion Drive

Leigh on Sea




T. 01702 478379

F. 01702 509207