Minutes for Parent Forum Meeting of Tuesday 28th April 2015
Carol Jane Wood
Minutes were proposed by Mandy McDermid and seconded by Claire Ross
Update from Elected Members
The 3-18 Campus has been approved by The Highland Council and is now being considered by the Scottish Government for approval, this consultation should be finished around 8th May ’15. If approved the next step will be to form a Stakeholder Group, this will include ALL the Parent Councils, Craighill, Knockbreck, TRA and St Duthus School, staff, parents, members of the community, Highlife Highland, local council and counsellors where all will have an input on the design. It is hoped there will be a site visit to one of the existing 3-18 Campus’s to get some ideas. (MMd) queried the location of the new school, this is not yet finalised.
St Duthus Special School currently on target for their move in June. They will move directly to from there to the 3-18 campus.
(EH) brought up the parking and traffic situation, we are currently putting together a School Travel Plan and have set up a Junior Road Safety Officers group with the P6’s, who have undertaken traffic counts and a hands up survey, there was also a survey sent out to parents asking for their habits and concerns. There were a lot of concerns about parking around the school, although following a letter to parents there has been a reduction in parents using the car park and the side gate has been locked, it is hoped this will discourage the rest. Hugh MacLeod has been to assess the car park for either barriers and/or signage, although nothing further has been done. (FR) will contact him again.
(GM) and (EH) made mention to the fact that there will be a further increase in traffic once the nurseries have moved up to the school. (KC) enquired about the 20mph signs at the Health Centre – this has been brought to the attention of The Highland Council. (EH) wanted it noted that there will be interviews held on Thursday 30th April for a lollipop lady at the Scotsburn Road crossing. (AMk) had spoken to Andrew McTaggart who highlighted that the school was defined by 2 areas, in school and outwith, the car park falls into the in school area and needed a Traffic Management Plan, this is a Health & Safety document which will highlight and address the main problems. (ROJ) noted that she had witnessed minibuses in the car park and (EH) will talk to Christine Dodd about this again. (KMk) enquired about children walking through the car park and if their use of the front door was an issue, the children are not encouraged to use the front door, so probably not a factor. (CR) enquired as to whether it would be feasible to have the children leave at staggered intervals, (KMr) has experience of this and it really doesn’t make any difference. (NF) noted that some of the residents of Mansfield car park were upset about the parking of parents but it was noted that as it was a public car park they had no grounds. She also wondered if it would be possible to put a note on the side gate advising that it was closed and to use safer path out. (SR) asked about having a walking bus, (EH) said that parents would have to be PVG approved or alternatively have an informal arrangement between ourselves.
Pupil Council Report
Isaac gave a lovely introduction to Fern and himself. They both went on to tell us about the new Behaviour Policy. They told us how they worked with parents and staff and in groups in order to get a clear understanding of the behaviours that would be Red, Amber and Green, and then they worked on suitable punishments/rewards that would be implemented on the behaviour. The behaviour policy is now up and running and working well.
They are now working together to identify what they would like or need for Rainy Day Play.
Head Teachers Report
The school have been working on their Behaviour Policy which is now in practice. So far the results have been promising with a decrease of red letters over the last 7 weeks.
They have been working on meeting Additional Support Needs, tailoring plans to the specific needs of children. They have had Alan Stewart coming in to discuss online tools which cover all aspects of the curriculum and Rhona Steele giving English as Additional Language assistance.
A format for planning pupils’ learning is now in place to cover all aspects of the curriculum. There will be a letter home detailing work which will be covered and the children will become involved. It will include following the literacy progressions for reading and writing that the ASG has in place for all the children from nursery onwards into secondary. Individual pupil’s progress will be tracked against these and this will be used to identify where any appropriate support or challenge is required.
Nursery – (EH) had a copy of the plans for the changes involving the nursery. From August 2015 the infant area of the school will be modified to hold the nursery and two portacabins being delivered in the summer will house the gaelic nursery, P1-3 gaelic, p4-7 gaelic and one of the English classes. On the in-service day (1/6) the staff will begin moving furniture and classes in preparation for this works. (GM) asked where the children would be going (EH) answered that as there is currently space in the middle area for the P3 & P3/4, P5 will be moved back into the infant area, minimising furniture to be moved at the summer. (MMd) asked why there had not been a consultation. (EH) said that it was all in place when she started at the school therefore could not answer further. It was asked why the nursery were not put in the portacabin as was previously believed – this would have involved a custom built cabin and we have been allocated two rentals more suited to classroom use only. (EH) to meet with nursery parents to discuss this.
2 new members of staff have been appointed to the nursery, and are currently awaiting PVG approval.
Etta Matheson is retiring on Friday 1st May
Moira Savage will be retiring at the summer holidays
Blair MacKay and Katie Orwin leaving at the summer holidays following their probationary year
Julie Gordon returning following her sabbatical leave
Classes have started to be planned for the next year and parents will be notified soonest.
Due to the extortionate cost of transport rather than having class trips this year the school would like to hold an Activities Day for the children on 9th June. This will involve a selection of activities being held throughout the day for the children to select, it is hoped we will be able to include Andy McKechnie – Street Dance, Mobile Gym, football among others. Ideas still welcome. (EH) asked of the parent council would be able to fund this.
(WP) also asked whether the parent council would be able to release some funds for the p7 Craggan trip. They are still planning a bag pack day but would like to ensure that the bus will be covered.
(AMk) asked whether the dictionaries were to be funded this year.
It was agreed that the parent council would give £1,500 to the school.
(SR) asked if there was to be a sports day. (EH) said yes there was and there will be a note with further dates coming out in the next week.
There was a brief discussion on fund raising and it was hoped there would be a Summer Fayre (SR) is going to arrange a meeting with Ann MacDonald to discuss this. The disco was noted to be a great success, although there was not a figure available it was hoped there would be another one.
There was no activity to report. The balance was sitting at £2,072.96
Date of Next Meeting
Tuesday 1st September. If anything comes up before then concerning the 3-18 Campus Stakeholders Group a meeting will be called earlier.
Meeting closed at 8.40pm
Andrew Mackenzie (AMk)
Alan Mohan (AM)
Iona Mohan (IM)
Fiona Robertson (FR)
Eileen Henderson (EH)
Birgit Schwartz (BS)
Karen MacRae (KMr)
Morven Moir (MM)
Mandy McDermid (MMd)
Claire Ross (CR)
Gill Mitchell (GM)
Katrina Corbett (KC)
Nickey Fraser (NF)
Trisha Torrance (TT)
Katrina McKenzie (KMk)
Roslyn Oliver-Jones (ROJ)
Wilma Patience (WP)
Samantha Ross (SR)
Stefanie Anderson (SA)
On behalf of the Pupil Council