Wednesday 9th January 2019
I cannot tell you how pleased I am to finally be here with all of you and your children. Everyone has been so welcoming, in both schools - I really do feel very lucky. Whichever school I am in, I will endeavour to be on the school gate, trying to desperately learn names (if I am honest - not my forte) and getting to know everyone a little bit better. Although, I have to admit, I did make a small, tactical error on my first morning: my lanyard was trapped inside my coat so I was merrily saying “Good morning”, but no one knew who I was! A few parents were more than a little disconcerted, and more than a touch wary, of this strange man!
We are in the incredibly fortunate position where both schools in The Strawberry Line Federation are already high achieving and places where children flourish. Moving them forward and in new directions is going to be so exciting and a challenge I cannot wait to embrace.
Just to put some ‘flesh on the bones’, I am a family man with two gorgeous (?) children, a little boy who is in Reception and a slightly bigger girl who is in Year 4. Originally, from Weston-super-Mare, I have spent much of my career teaching in Reading and then moved back to the South West five years ago to take up my first headship at Wraxall CE Primary School. In my spare time, I love to watch sport, absolutely any sport will do, but I have a particular passion for Bath Rugby, Tottenham Hotspur Football Team and Somerset Cricket (my viewing of sport does not drive my wife mad at all!).
If I have not had the opportunity to chat with you yet, please do find me in the playground; I would love to make your acquaintance.
Mr Ben Tucker
Sandford continues to be a hive of exciting activity and it is such a joy to be here everyday. Already our KS1 pupils have enjoyed a visit from one of the Exmoor Zookeepers along with many creatures and creepers! This was such a fun way to support their learning about the rainforest. Class 4 had a great time at the Bristol Museum to consolidate work about Ancient Egypt. They plan to design a Family Trail for the museum to improve the exhibit further. Class 5 are getting excited about their forthcoming visit to Cheddar Caves as a part of their topic about the Stone Age, I wonder what they'll find down there? And Class 3 are planning a World War 1 themed day, with a special visit from a soldier from the trenches!
One of the highlights of the term so far has been Parliament Week, where the pupils were educated by their school council representatives all about what Parliament does and the 100 Years celebration since women got the vote. To make the week more interactive, the pupils were asked to vote in a Referendum! "Should we ban single-use plastics in our school?" The YES vote won 122 - 22. I guess we now need to help to prepare our parents for this change in January, while our councilors write to our school catering company for support with our school packed lunches.
With the deadline for Reception 2019 admissions coming soon, in January, we have been very fortunate to be inundated with visits from prospective parents. There have been so many that we are planning to look into an Open Evening next year to accommodate busy parents' schedules.
Finally, I read this article recently which is very powerful reading. It really helps to explain the importance of children reading everyday. Check it out:
For your information, our Designated Safeguarding Lead across the Federation is Mrs Victoria Sheppard with Miss Angie Stevens deputising in her absence. If you have any safeguarding or child protection concerns, please do not hesitate to contact either of them.
Angie Stevens, Andrea Muxworthy
Co-Acting Executive Headteachers