The Parent Council needs your help. We are always on the lookout for parents/carers who can help with a variety of parent council initiatives. If you are able to come along to meetings, help on a one off basis or even offer your services in other ways then all help is welcome.
If you are interested please contact the Parent Council through the PPS Parent Council email address.
Brief Update, following AGM June 2018
At our AGM in June, both Carol Snow and Ralph Averbuch stepped down after many years of working on PC. Both Averbuch children have now moved on to high school and Carol chose to leave PC and offer her talents to our new Community Choir. Many thanks to both. Neill Russell also stepped down but will continue to support PC around tech / IT and communications through website etc as a member of the parent forum co-opted for his expertise and status on blog.
The vacancies were quickly filled by Paula Baillie, Catherine Ramsay, Ian Archer and Joanne Kerr, but Joanne later made the decision to step down again. At the start of the new term, Joanne Gibson volunteered and we received a note of interest from Clare-Ann McShane.
The new reps and/or parent contacts* for each year group are therefore:
Nursery – Catherine Ramsay; P1 – Vivien Dykes; P2 – Dave Osborne P3 – Flor De Voto (Jackman); P4 – Paula Baillie; P5 – Loreen Pardoe *; P6 – Jim Fraser and Ian Archer; P7 – Joanna Gibson. Loreen Pardoe continues as Clerk. We are delighted to also share that Erica Burberry is our new Chair – and special thanks to Paula for also taking on Vice Chair.
Clare-Ann will attend when possible and has interest in intergenerational / dementia friendly work.
The Play sub-group* also hopes to meet again soon, which includes PTA, PC and parents / carers from wider parent forum.
Gardening – interest also noted from Jenny Atkinson who previously co-ran the Gardening Club with another ‘former’ parent.
[Co-opted members for this session therefore are Neill Russell, Clare-Ann McShane and Jenny Atkinson, with *working group for Play being absorbed into wider school plans meantime].
Brief Update, following AGM June 2017.
A few changes to note to the information below and an invitation!
Both Kerry De Vos and Sara Noble resigned as P7 and P5 reps respectively. Many thanks to both and best wishes to Kerry, Cameron and Jenson as they leave PPS.
Sara may still stay involved, but needs to hand the mantle over for the coming year.
So – all the other reps will move up with the same classes. Ralph P7 & Community Council rep, Flor and Jim P5, Neill P4, Loreen P3/Clerk, Erica P2 and Dave P1. Carol Snow is continuing as Chair for another year too – so lots of familiar faces.
“We’re now actively looking and encouraging anyone interested in joining us. Particularly if interested/involved in Nursery or P6 for the 2017/18 session. It’s really very interesting to be a part of the PC and there will be a warm welcome from the rest of us already involved. Continuity is great, but new blood is always wonderful, so we’d love to have you on board.” Carol Snow. Chair of Pencaitland Parent Council.
There’s been a change to our Local Councillors too of course, following the elections in May and the change to ward boundary, as we are now in the Haddington and Lammermuir Ward. We still have Shamin Ahktar (local mum too), but we now also have John McMillan (Provost), Tom Trotter and another local resident, Brian Small, whose son attended PPS once upon a time.
Further Update: MANY THANKS to Vivien Dykes, who has volunteered to become Nursery representative and has already rolled up her sleeves and joined the PC crew of 2017/18.
Pencaitland Parent Council 2017-2018
The Parent Council is comprised of parent representatives of children at Pencaitland Primary, from Nursery up to P7. In addition to parents, the Head Teacher and a Teacher representative attend meetings, as well as a Community rep and locally elected councillors. Loreen Pardoe is both Parent Member and the current Clerk to the Parent Council. Update regarding current members will follow asap, however, in brief, the current Chair is Carol Snow and parent members who are aligned to different year groups to maximise visibility and encourage good communication are:
David Osborne (P1), Erica Burberry (P2), Loreen Pardoe (P3), Neill Russell (P4), Jim Fraser and Flor Jackman (P5), Ralph Averbuch (P7 – and Community Representative). VAT – Viv Added to the Team comes in the very delightful form of Vivien Dykes – who has taken on the Nursery Rep mantle and can oft be found between Nursery and P1 with her 2 children.
The Parent Council meets approximately six weeks during term time. We are the ‘sprinkles on the doughnut’ – all parents and carers of children in PPS being ‘the delicious doughnut’. Together with staff and pupils, inside the broad spectrum of Scottish Education, we sprinkle on our varying insights and talents great or small, strengthening partnership between school, community and home so that we can maximise the experiences of children during their Primary and Nursery years. The doughnut would be wonderful without us, but we do our best to add a little more. We also regularly attend the East Lothian Association of Parent Councils and are supported by ELC Senior Business Manager Val McIntyre & colleague.
If you have a concern, question or interest of benefit to share, please contact your class rep or any other parent member. Where there is a group concern or wider issue requiring clarification or understanding, your parent council will work towards informing and addressing the issue for the school body. We liaise with the Learning Council too, to ensure good communication and understanding of where we can support our pupils. There is also an excellent working relationship with the PTA, giving PPS a strong, secure support system.
To find out more about the Parent Council, why it exists and what we need from the wider PPS Parent Forum, of which all parents and carers are automatically a part, to work well – have a little look here.
2017/2018 members of the Parent Council
Carol Snow, Parent Council Chair
Carol Snow first joined the PPS Parent Council in 2008 and stepped down after three years as chair. Carol served as East Lothian rep on the National Parent Forum of Scotland from 2010-2015. In 2015 she became chair of the Parent Council for the second time. Carol has lived with her husband, Russell McWilliam, in Pencaitland since 1999. They have three children. Robert and Duncan are at PPS. Andrew is at Knox Academy. Carol works full-time as a solicitor and has been actively involved with other local organisations over the years, currently on the Pencaitland Community Council and on the Committee for Pencaitland Scouts Group. When she is not doing those things, she finds time to play the keyboard and sing with local groups.
Jim, hubby to Lynn and Dad to Cissy, is an occasionally employed person in the advertising industry. If you want to speak to him in person, he is often to be found in the playground at drop-off/pick-up, or on a Thursday morning in the Winton Arms for fine coffee, cake, and conversation about school matters (you’re buying, though). His main interest on the parent council is mysteries: Where is the invisible line in the playground that children dare not cross? Why do the Council think coleslaw or tuna is an acceptable choice of filling on a school lunch baked potato? Is the Named Person idea one of the most evil things ever to happen to Scottish society (Daily Mail) or quite a good idea (NSPCC)?
Ralph Averbuch, Community Council Rep
Originally from Edinburgh, Ralph Averbuch moved to Pencaitland in May 2003 with his wife Sheila, after having lived in London and then Dublin for nine years, working in digital media and Internet start-ups. Ralph has two kids currently attending both the local primary school and Ross High School, Ben and Sally. With Sheila he runs a home-based digital marketing communications company with two further offices in Ireland. Actively involved in local issues, Ralph joined Pencaitland Primary School’s Parent Council in 2009. He joined Pencaitland Community Council in March 2011, becoming Chair in June 2011.
Loreen Pardoe joined this Parent Council in November 2015, but she originally joined PPS PC when it first formed in 2006. Glutton for punishment, she also was a member of Ross High PC at the same time. Loreen moved to Pencaitland in 1992 and said then, she wouldn’t be leaving until she was pushed out on a zimmer frame. So still here, and loving being here, with 5th of five kids now in PPS, she is back on PC and was part of the 40th Anniversary Team. In Aug Loreen also stepped up to being Clerk. Married to Stu, chief doggy walker to Jake and as mum to many, life is very busy, but Loreen is normally to be found in the playground at drop-off and pick-up times. Her youngest two are both in PPS. Loreen has assumed the mantle of a class rep and currently the Haddington Cluster Lead for Support from the Start. Among other roles, she is also a Trustee of East Lothian Play Association (ELPA) – so her background in Childcare, Education, Additional Support Needs and Nursing are all still in use, even in these volunteer roles. Only her sanity is in question.
Having it all isn’t all it is cracked up to be. Erica, mum to Robyn and Alistair, prefers when at all possible, to conceal her polished professional manner beneath a thin veneer of scruffy mum-ness. A child counsellor and manager for a local childrens charity, when not at work Erica can be most commonly found hiding out in her garden in the Boggs. Originally from Perthshire, she relocated from Edinburgh to Pencaitland nearly two years ago following a long house renovation saga. She hopes to bring to the Parent Council a listening ear and a particular interest in anything that is not on the agenda.
David Osborne is new to the Parent Council, and also fairly new to the school in general. Married to Karen, they have 2 daughters, Esme and Isla. Originally from Inverness, David arrived in Pencaitland about 7 years ago via Edinburgh and can often now be spotted holding up village traffic with his bicycle. Currently a software engineer, David has previously been a salmon smoker in small-town US, a spanish student in Guatemala and underemployed photographer. His main pastimes these days are moving small children around and arguing with the internet about politics.
Neill Russell has lived in Pencaitland, with his wife Papiya, for over ten years. His son Luke attends Pencaitland Primary School. Neill is a self-employed web developer, who works at home simultaneously fixing and breaking the internet… the proverbial hacker in a hoodie. He can be found dropping Luke off at school in the morning, walking his dog in the woods, or loading a surfboard into his car. He has a strong dislike for acronyms, meetings and bureaucracy so he’s not entirely sure why he’s joined the Parent Council. That said, Neill sees his role in these kinds of things as a reluctant Han Solo type hero and will help to get your message across or problems raised but he won’t fix your computer or your WiFi.
Florencia Devoto Jackman
Florencia Devoto Jackman, born in Argentina and British by choice. I’m the mum of Dante, Brisa, and Delfina – the little one with the big smile who goes around asking for food! I have a background in different areas of work. At the moment I’m a childminder but more than anything I’m an artist and was involved in some artistic projects for the 40th anniversary. I come from a country where we talk a lot about everything and I believe that I can bring something of that to the school because I feel it’s important to express ourselves and teach our kids to do the same. My main concern is, and always will be, the emotional side of our kids in school and how this is going to affect them for the rest of their lives and I feel that being part of the parent council lets me understand better how this is managed within the school. I’m always there at dropping off and picking up time and if you need to talk with me – just follow the little one with the huge smile and you’ll find me!
A leaflet has been produced to highlight the role of your Parent Council and explain how you can get involved. You can view the leaflet here. (Please note, the leaflet is intended to be printed and folded into 3).
Other (non-voting) members of the Parent Council include:
- Kirsty Robertson (Teacher Representative)
- Nicola Wilson (Head Teacher)
- Councillor Jim Gillies
- Councillor Ruth Currie
- Councillor Donald Grant
- Councillor Kenny McCleod