Staffing Updates for Parents Academic Year 2017/18
Dear Parents and Carers
As we move rapidly towards the new academic year, I am now in a position to update you with some changes to the school, in particular the staffing structure.
Teaching staff changes
Welcome Mr Brooks
In September, we will be welcoming Mr Brooks to the teaching team. Mr Brooks, an experienced practitioner and former Early Years teacher, will be working in Key Stage 1. He was selected from a very strong group of candidates and will be a great asset to the team.
Farewell Miss Odell
As we welcome one teacher, we say farewell to another. Miss Odell will be leaving us at the end of this year, next Wednesday being her last day. We are sad to see her go as she has been a wonderful teacher to the children and colleague to the staff; however, another professional opportunity has arisen that has led her to move on to a different teaching setting. I am sure you will join me in thanking her for her work and wishing her all the best for the future. She will be missed.
Support staff additions:
Learning Support Assistants (LSA/TA)
Two years ago, when I arrived at the school, a long term plan was established to improve the support staff structure in the school, linked to a model for increased numbers of high quality teaching staff, single year groups, smaller class sizes and an improved focus on early intervention. This has been a substantial undertaking in the current education climate, but I am delighted to announce that this process will now be completed in September with the employment of four Learning Support Assistants. This will further enhance the experiences children have, through more precise early intervention and with LSA support in all classes, every morning for the core subjects of English and mathematics.
We had an overwhelming number of applications for the post resulting in two days of interviews for the shortlisted applicants. We were delighted with the high quality of the successful candidates.
In September, we will be welcoming Mrs Welch, Mrs Butcher, Mrs Corrigan and Miss Taylor to the LSA team. They have a wealth and wide spectrum of experiences and skills, including SEN specialisms, sports coaching and high levels of subject knowledge / expertise. We have been fortunate enough to have worked with some of the new staff in the past, and it is a pleasing to see that their experiences working at the school have resulted in a desire to join the team on a more established basis. We are excited to have the opportunity to work with them and look forward to them complimenting our already well established and hard working teaching support team.
Support staff: Office
As many of you are already aware, we have made changes to the office structure over the last year and said our farewells earlier last term to Mrs Smith who was working as Finance Clerk. Mrs Skivington and Mrs Graham have since taken on the role left by Mrs Smith, and as a result, we have been recruiting for two more office staff.
Earlier in the term, we interviewed for the vacant office posts and appointed Miss Shah and Mrs Wilkins to these roles. Both are experienced administrators and will further strengthen our already effective office team. They will be key personnel at the school and for many be the first point of contact when you visit or call the school. Parents and visitors alike have recently been commenting on the efficiency and friendliness of the office staff, and we are confident that our two new staff members will support the positive and respectful atmosphere we aim to provide.
Farewell To Mrs Prentice – Chair of Governors
After many years of commitment to the Governing Body of Ashgate Primary School, Mrs Eryl Prentice will be retiring as Chair of Governors at the end of this term. This is a planned step as she takes more time with her family, especially her husband who has recently retired himself. Mrs Prentice has been a keystone in the governing body and has supported the staff, pupils and governors over a sustained period. She has been a genuine asset to our robust governing body and we thank her for all her work and commitment.
Mr Hulse, who has been our Vice Chair of governors, will be our interim Chair of Governors; however, Mrs Self (Parent Governor) has been elected as the permanent Chair of Governors and is currently preparing for the change through a training and transition process. Both Mrs Self and Mr Hulse are fully dedicated to ensuring that the handover process is successful and that the governing body continues to challenge, support and hold to account all that we do at the school.
More information about the school governance is available on the school website.
And finally -I wish to add…
Staff and Governors at Ashgate Primary School are amongst some of the most hard working individuals I have ever had the pleasure to work with, both within and outside of education. My staffs’ dedication is second to non and I have the confidence that those joining us will further strengthen our drive for continued improving standards across all aspects of school life.
Always moving forward and aiming high.