September 3rd 2021 Medi 3ydd

Dear Parents and Carers / Annwyl Rieni a Gwarchodwyr,

We are very much looking forward to welcoming the school community back on Monday and seeing familiar and new faces, as we begin the new academic year. Staff have been busy this week preparing and finalising plans for what I’m sure will be a positive year as we continue to move towards what we once called normality! I hope everybody has had an enjoyable summer, is suitably refreshed and ready to play their part in ensuring we have successful year. As I traditionally ask in this first newsletter, please take a moment to read the information below carefully, to help ensure that all runs smoothly here from the outset.

Covid Arrangements Going Forward – I would like to take the opportunity to update you on the following protocols which will be exercised by the school as we continue to keep our community safe in the light of updated national guidelines.
• Staff will continue to take twice-weekly Covid tests.
• Keeping pupils in bubbles/contact groups is no longer expected. However, we will continue with the same drop off and pick up arrangements.
• We continue to request that adults in the school community wear a face covering for drop-off and pick-up and also while visiting the main reception area.
• Pupils in the Juniors will still have their designated play areas and toilets. The Infants will now play on the new yard.
• All pupils will now eat in the school hall, regardless of whether they are being served with school lunches or eating a packed lunch. Pupils will continue to be seated in their groups in separate sittings for Infants and Juniors.
• Regular hand washing, keeping the building ventilated and regular cleaning will continue to take place.
• Pupils will continue to come to school in PE kit on designated days.
• Pupils will need a water bottle with their name on for use during the day.
• Any pupils identified as contacts will no longer be required to self-isolate unless they display symptoms. Instead they will be offered a PCR test on day 2 and 8.

New Parents – There are a number of new families joining us at the beginning of term. These includes parents of Nursery pupils and also in other classes. I understand that due to the lack of familiarity with the school that you may be confused, but please do not worry. There will be staff about at the front of school each morning to guide you in the right direction.

School Lunches – Please note that the new price of £2.40 per day for school dinners is now effective. Please top up your Parentpay with the correct amount of £12 per week if your child has meals every day. Many thanks.

Reading Challenge – There is still time to complete the reading challenge and we look forward to celebrating our pupils’ involvement in this initiative as the new term begins.

Clock Tower Project – Before the summer, pupils in the Juniors took part in a competition to produce artwork, based on the clock tower in St. Peter’s Square. Winners will be presented with prizes next Friday, but there is an exhibition of the entries opening at the Old Court on September 4th, open 10-4pm each day and then in Ruthin Library from September 20th until October 2nd.

PE Kit and School Uniform – May I please remind pupils that the Rhos Street PE kit is a plain white t-shirt, black shorts, black/white/grey socks, ‘subtly’ coloured trainers for Juniors and pumps for Infants. Joggers and a school sweatshirt can be worn over their kit during the day. Please ensure that your child complies with this expectation. Could you also ensure that pupils’ names are written/sewn onto all items of school uniform, so that we can return any misplaced garments to the correct owner promptly. Finally, may I also remind pupils that jewellery, nail varnish and toys are not permitted. Once again, I ask for parental support in ensuring that the pupils comply with these wishes. Many thanks.

PE Timetable – PE Days are as follows:
Nursery – Thursday (No PE kit needed)
Reception – Tuesday & Thursday
Year 1 – Monday & Wednesday
Year 2 – Monday & Tuesday
Year 3 – Monday & Thursday
Year 4 – Tuesday & Friday
Year 5 – Wednesday & Friday
Year 6 – Wednesday & Friday

New Yard – It will I’m sure, be of great excitement to the Foundation Phase pupils to be able to play on the new yard, now that is has finally been completed. It has taken a long time, but we are grateful to the local authority for delivering on their promise!

Walking to and from School – Pupils in the Upper Juniors are often given permission by parents to walk to and from school independently. If this is the case, please ensure the consent form shared next week is filled and signed by yourselves, so that we know we are safe to release them from school in this manner.

Use of Mobile Phones – The extensive use of the mobile phone is an undeniable part of modern society. However, we do not see a place for their use here in school by pupils, other than for those who are walking to and from school independently. Any pupils who need to bring in a mobile phone for this reason must give it to a staff member for safekeeping. Mobile phones are not to be accessed by those pupils on site without express permission. Please be aware that any mobile phones are sent into school at your own risk.

Unofficial Online Communication – One area of concern, particularly as a result of lockdown, has been the increase of issues as a result of inappropriate communication between pupils online, off-site and out of school time. It is a particular worry, because this is a matter very much outside of the school’s control and jurisdiction but does subsequently cause problems within school. While we take our responsibilities seriously in educating and guiding our pupils on how to use the internet responsibly, the responsibility of monitoring pupils’ use of the internet out of school lies with parents. I appeal to you to keep an eye on your child’s use of the internet please, particularly in respect of messaging groups, which have been known to cause problems. Additionally, pupils have also set up groups with ‘Rhos Street’ used as its name or as part of the name. This is problematic, as any such groups are in no way affiliated and should not be identified with the school. I’d be grateful if you could ensure the school’s name is not associated with any unofficial online groups set up by members of the school community. Many thanks. Also, in respect of any unofficial groups, the most accurate information about school activities is to be found via the school’s official channels, as highlighted below.

Twitter – Twitter has increasingly become one of the main modes of communicating information across the world and the school’s account @rhosstreet has become a highly useful and very popular tool to share information, photographs and particularly any updates that need to be shared urgently regarding school business. I would highly recommend, if you are not already a twitter member, that you join and follow our account, to help you keep abreast of the latest news.

Further Lines of Communication – The newsletter is published and emailed each Friday. Foundation Phase classes also provide a weekly update which is posted to Twitter at the end of the week and also sent home by hand. Remember that the school’s news and more can be found by logging on the school website at Photographs of activities can also be viewed on our Flickr page. The PTA Facebook page is another source of important information. Links to all of the above can be found on the website.

Medical Information
– If there is any medical information that you need to share with us regarding your child, then please do so, as a matter of urgency, so that we may update our records.

Personal Information & Contact Details – If you have recently changed your address, mobile telephone number or any other details, could you please inform us, so that we may update our records accordingly? Many thanks.

Wellingtons – Could all Junior pupils ensure that they bring a pair of wellingtons to keep in school? Mr Davis’ wellie racks, built during lockdown will keep them safe and dry! Many thanks.

Hockey Taster Sessions – Please view the attached image for information about free hockey taster sessions that are available for our pupils here in Ruthin on September 14th.

Yours sincerely / Yn gywir,

Bryn D. Jones, Headteacher / Pennaeth