Weekly Newsletter 20th October 2023

Welcome to DSJ Weekly!

Welcome back to our interactive newsletter! Apologies that I was unable to publish this version of the newsletter last week. As with most things technological, it is wonderful...until it stops working!

I am very pleased to report that Phase 2 of our school works is complete, meaning that the renovation of our Key Stage 2 classrooms is all done and dusted! We will be moving Year 3/4 and Year 6 children back in to their original classrooms as soon as we're able to do so next week. At the risk of sounding like a broken record, I have to say a big thanks to all the children and staff for accommodating this change over the last few weeks. The contractors on site have been superb. From our perspective, other than the obvious (having to decamp two of our classes) you wouldn't even know that they've been here, which is quite impressive given that they have replaced the ceilings, installed a new heating system, upgraded the lighting, and installed up-to-date fire protective measures. Mr Kaufman and I have rolled up our sleeves and got to painting the classrooms as well, and all of these things add up to a quite remarkable change! I'm very glad that we've been able to do this for the children; they deserve the best learning environment possible, and this certainly a huge step in the right direction. Next up is the hall, the library, and some of the communal areas in school. All being well, this will be done by the end of half term before we move on to the Year 1 and Year 2 classrooms. I shall provide more information on how this will impact those classes soon.

I was lucky enough to accompany the Junior Wardens on their visit to the National Coal Mining Museum on Thursday. It's always a great experience going down the mine! The conditions down there were incredibly tough, and as it's such an important piece of our local history, it was great to see some of our children experience this for the first time.

As I write this, we are hosting an inter-school competition for various St Mary's Academy Trust Schools. This week it's Key Stage 1 Multi-Skills, and if the level of noise is anything to go by, the children are having a great time!

All in all, it's been another busy week but we've enjoyed every moment.

Thanks to you all for your ongoing support, and see you next week. Have a wonderful weekend

Mr Smith

INSET Reminder

A quick reminder that Monday 23rd October is an INSET day that we are using so staff can receive vital training on the Read Write Inc phonics scheme.

I can't wait to see this scheme be rolled out across school and for the benefits to really take hold. Reading is so important, and this is a fantastic piece of the puzzle! Thank you for your cooperation and understanding in helping us to achieve this goal.

Dojo Points

Thank you very much for your feedback so far on all things ClassDojo, and particularly around the Dojo Points element. As is often the case when it comes to new systems, sometimes unforeseen complications can arise, and your feedback has been important in allowing us to recognise them.

We want Dojo Points to be a positive thing for all children to earn, and for them to be a motivating factor in their learning.

We are currently looking at ways we can ensure that we have a consistent approach across school when it comes to giving out these points, and will communicate in the near future how we intend to do this.

Thank you for your patience and understanding.

This week's assemblies...

This week, I hosted the second in a series of assemblies in school all about behaviour and kindness in school. In order to keep you in the loop with some of the messages I'm giving to children, I will be summarising the content of these assemblies in the newsletter.

While the theme of last week's assembly was '100% Respect, 100% of the time', this week was all about 'thinking about each other'.

I encouraged the children to think about when they have felt hurt on the outside and when they might have felt hurt on the inside.

To stop people from being hurt on the outside, we take health and safety measures to minimise risks: we remove trip hazards, we ensure that all equipment is in good working order, amongst much else! However, when we do fall over in the playground, or hurt ourselves in some other way, this is easy to see and usually easy to fix; a trip to First Aid often does the job!

However, when someone feels hurt on the inside we don't always see this, and it isn't always obvious. Some people might put on a brave face; others might become visibly upset. We thought about how we might help someone when they feel hurt on the inside: we can be supportive, caring, and use kind words to help someone feel better.

To stop people from becoming hurt on the inside to begin with, we can think about how we speak to each other, the words we use, and the impact they might have.

The children seemed to engage really well with this message, and I'm looking forward to next week!

Flu Immunisations

It's fast approaching that time of year where seasonal colds and flus start to pop up. If you would like your child to have a flu immunisation this year and missed out on the opportunity when the clinic came to school, it isn't too late. Below there is a list of clinics offering this service if you'd like your child to take part in this scheme.


Good attendance at school is vital to ensure that a child has the best possible chance of success in life.

Here is this week's attendance:

EYFS: 93.3%

Y1: 97.4%

Y2: 92.9%

Y3/4: 92%

Y4/5: 91.4%

Y6: 97.2%

Half Term Activities

Follow the link below to see some of the activities that you can book on to during the upcoming half term break. Some of these require booking, so act fast!


Dinner Menu for Next Week
Diary Dates

Monday 23rd October


Tuesday 24th October

Junior Wardens Trip for selected Y5s

Friday 27th October

Break up for October Half Term

Monday 6th November

School opens for Autumn 2