Parent Handbook – L

We understand that even the best organised households can have mornings where things don’t go to plan and that can cause a child to be late to school.

However, regular lateness can have a huge impact on children’s education. A few minutes every day soon adds up and there can be additional concerns for children involving feeling disorganised, uncomfortable and different from their peers that last much longer into the day than for the period of lateness itself.

The school day at Grange Farm begins at 8:55am (with children welcome to enter classrooms from 8:45am).

We monitor lateness over time and, where we have concerns, a child’s class teacher will have conversations with their parents in the first instance. If the concern continues, our Learning Mentor and/or Deputy Headteacher will increase the formality of the discussion and if necessary we will pass on the concern to the Attendance team from the Local Authority. Consistent issues with lateness are treated with the same seriousness as consistent issues with attendance and parents need to be very clear of their responsibilities to ensure children are in school every day, on time.

Please see our Attendance Policy for further information.

A learning objective tells everyone in a lesson what the purpose of that lesson is. It helps to focus teachers, other adults and children towards the learning intended for the session. Learning objectives at Grange Farm usually focus on a skill that the children are working on which they are then going to be able to transfer and use in future lessons.

Although they will sometimes include technical vocabulary, we share learning objectives in language that the children can understand. It is normal practice for us to use the Learning Objective as the title for any given piece of work (you will see L.O. recorded next to titles when you see your child’s work) and when we mark we are focussed on whether children have achieved the objective for that particular lesson (even though the children may also have been practising and consolidating other useful skills as part of their learning).

Leave of absence during term-time is strongly discouraged and can only be authorised by the school in exceptional circumstances.

The process for making leave of absence requests is explained in our Attendance Policy.

In brief, parents are asked (at least three weeks in advance of the requested absence) to complete a leave of absence request form (available from the school office). This is then considered by a Leave of Absence Panel including the Headteacher, the Learning Mentor and a Governor. A decision will be provided by the panel as soon as possible after the request is made.

Parents should not expect any request to be authorised and are strongly advised against booking any element of a proposed trip without first seeking authorisation. Parents may still choose to remove their children from school without this authorisation but must be aware they could be subject to a fine for doing so.

Most letters are sent out via email – please make sure we have your up to date email address and that you keep us informed if this changes. We can send to two email addresses (e.g. where parents live apart). General letters are always also posted onto the school website and it is worth keeping an eye on the diary (on the newsletter and website) to check that there are no upcoming events you are not expecting.

Some letters are sent out in hard copy format with children, e.g. where they have a reply slip. It is well worth checking the bottom of book bags (and all other bags) on a fairly regular basis – a common hiding place for letters!

The school has an emergency lockdown procedure in place to ensure children would be moved to their classrooms and accounted for as quickly as possible in the extremely unlikely event of any significant threat within the school grounds.

Lost property is collected in a container in the main reception area. Parents should allow some time for items to reach here if they have been lost as any member of staff finding lost property will first attempt to find out who it belongs to. It goes without saying that this is much, much easier if all items of clothing that children bring into school are named.

The amount of lost property in school never ceases to amaze us – please, please, please – name your child’s clothes!

School meals are cooked on the premises every day by our lovely kitchen staff team and are available for any child, any time they want one.

Children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 are entitled to a free school meal every day and can choose whether they want to, and which of the menu options they would like, on a daily basis. They make their order when they do the register with their class teacher in the morning. If they wish to bring a packed lunch that is absolutely fine (see below for our advice on lunch boxes).

Children from Year 3 and above can also choose on a daily basis whether they would like a cooked meal and which option they would like or alternatively they can bring a packed lunch (again, see below). However, from Year 3 and up meals are charged at £2.20 per day, payable either online through School Gateway or at the school office.

Menus are available on our website (here) so that parents can see what options will available in advance and discuss them with their children. The menus also give all appropriate allergy advice – we ask parents to update any allergy, intolerance or other dietary requirements each year and to inform us of any changes midyear as soon as possible so that we can respond to these effectively.

Lunchtime supervisors monitor what all the children are eating as closely as possible but if you ever have any concerns (e.g. whether your child is eating enough) please just ask us and we will keep a more careful eye on them.

Some children whose families are in receipt of certain benefits will be eligible for Free School Meals regardless of their year group. If this is the case, we thoroughly recommend registering as, even if your child does not take up the offer on a regular basis (or even ever), the school still gets additional funding (Pupil Premium) for them.

We do not inspect individual packed lunches but we do ask parents to follow these guidelines:

  • We have children in school who suffer from severe nut allergies – please avoid giving your child foods that include nuts
  • Aim for a healthy balanced lunch for your child – a treat can be lovely but one treat should be enough!

Aim to give your child a sufficient amount of food but not too much – talk to them about how much they want to eat. No-one likes the idea of their child going hungry but too much food can over-face children

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