We are now in our fourth week following the return from the summer break. I am very pleased to share with you that the return to school has been very successful. Our new P.1 pupils have settled very quickly, as have our new pupils who have joined other year stages. I am also pleased to share that our newly started members of the staff team have settled in very quickly and are adding great value to our school.
As stated in a previous communication, this is the first start to a new session, since 2019, we have been free from COVID restrictions and implications. The following information is a return to some of the pre-pandemic events and initiatives where parents/carers can visit the school and participate in school initiatives.
Our school community continues to work towards realising our values – HAPPY – POSITIVE – SUCCESSFUL.
Many parents/carers of our older pupils will be aware that the two separate schools; Haddington Infants and Kings Manor, merged to form Haddington Primary School in September/October 2018. We now operate as Haddington Primary School in two campuses: Infant Campus and Upper Campus. In addition we have a Nursery class provision. To develop and create a ‘one school ethos’, we planned and initiated a ‘buddying’ programme. Year stages met to undertake joint activities to ‘connect’ the two campuses, thus creating a one school ethos. This was evaluated as a very successful initiative with activities involving different stages and ages, different activities, family siblings working together, older children modelling good practice and younger children observing good practice.
Regrettably, the COVID restrictions and operating in ‘groups’ and ‘campuses’ halted this excellent initiative. I am pleased to confirm that we will soon be recommencing our ‘buddying’ initiative and year groups will work together as follows:
- Nursery and P.6 (next academic session, our present P.6 stage will assist with the transition of nursery children to P.1)
- P.1 and P.7
- P.2 and P.5
- P.3 and P.4 (activities involving these two year stages will add value to transition from Infant Campus to Upper Campus)
Pre-COVID, we enjoyed several Open Mornings. This provided the opportunity for parents/carers to visit both campuses. Parents/carers were invited to ‘walk around’ both campuses, observing the school/classes on an operational basis. Parents/carers observed the focus/engagement applied by the pupils, observed aspects of learning and teaching, experienced the positive ethos, and afforded the opportunity to view samples of work and displays. A ‘visitors’ book’ invited parents/carers to write comments of evaluation. These evaluative comments provided evidence of a very positive school ethos.
I am pleased to inform you that Open Mornings will operate on the following dates:
- Tuesday 1st November 2022
- Thursday 9th February 2023
- Wednesday 10th May 2023
I will issue more specific details nearer the these dates.
Pre pandemic, we enjoyed school focus weeks. These weeks involved a week of specific learning and teaching activities on a whole school focus. Following these focus weeks, opportunities were provided for parents/carers to view and discuss the work undertaken and tasks completed.
I am pleased to inform you that we will be operating three focus weeks as follows:
- Focus Week 1 – ‘WORLD OF WORK’ – I will be inviting parents/carers/relatives/neighbours/friends to visit school to share their work/profession/occupation experience with groups of children/classes. More details will follow closer to the date. This will take place for the duration of the week beginning Monday 28th November 2022.
- Focus Week 2 – ‘WRITING FOCUS WEEK’ – the main curricular development priority in our Improvement Plan focuses on WRITING. During this week we will focus on several genres of writing, writers’ craft and producing a completed piece of writing. This will take place for the duration of the week beginning Monday 30th January 2023.
- Focus Week 3 – ‘FESTIVAL OF THE ARTS ACTIVITY WEEK’ – during the week that our P.7 pupils attend Benmore Residential Camp, the other classes will undertake a ‘festival of the arts activity week’. Classes might focus on the following; music, art, drama and physical activity, a combination of some or all. This will take place for the duration of the week beginning Monday 22nd May 2023.
Dates for Forward Planning
- Friday 16th September 2022 – School closed for Autumn Holiday.
- Monday 19th September 2022 – School closed for Autumn Holiday.
- Wednesday 21st September 2022 – East Lothian Courier take photographs of P.1 classes for their P.1 supplement.
- Week beginning Monday 26th September 2022 – East Lothian Council Full School Review – more details and information to follow.
- Tuesday 11th October 2022 – 4.00 p.m. to 7.00 p.m. – Parent/Carer Consultations.
- Wednesday 12th October 2022 – 4.00 p.m. to 7.00 p.m. – Parent/Carer Consultations.
- Friday 14th October 2022 – School closes for October mid-term holiday.
- Monday 24th October 2022 – Staff In Service Day. Pupils should not attend.
- Tuesday 25th October 2022 – Pupils resume from October mid-term holiday.
I hope this information is helpful. Finally, I thank everyone in our excellent school community for their continued help and support.
Best wishes, Willie