Dear Parents/ Carers,

Another busy term has flown by at Bracken Leas and Christmas is now here. All of the Christmas shows here over the last two weeks have exemplified the positivity and enthusiasm the children display every day at school. It is always my favourite time of year listening to the beautiful singing and watching the children perform with confidence.

The FOBL Santa Day was another example of tremendous teamwork at Bracken Leas. Each year the FOBL team add in more to make the day special and the Santa’s Grotto this year looked like Winter Wonderland. Thank you to all of the volunteers who gave many hours to making it a success and thank you for all of your support coming along and donating your money. Every penny really counts and your money helps us with the extras that make the difference. We are going to invest in more reading books next term and lunchtime play equipment.

Curriculum news…

We continue to implement new ideas in moving the curriculum forwards and Maths Week was our new initiative this half-term. Mr Alder started the week with an inspiring assembly which led to creative homework across the school, looking closely at how Maths is all around us in day to day life. The first Inter-house Maths Competitions created a buzz as well as the daily Maths problems posted around the school. Thank you to the parents who attended the Year 3/4 Maths information evening and we look forward to the Year 1/2 evening to follow in January.

Our curriculum development days this term have focused on how we teach Science and Humanities across the school. Curriculum leaders have been looking closely at the skills and knowledge children acquire across the school as they progress through the years.

Attendance Matters…

Despite a difficult term with bugs and illnesses, we have maintained good attendance overall (96%). Well done to Year 4 who have the highest attendance of this half-term closely followed by Year 6. We will continue to monitor attendance carefully in the new year. All children should be in school every day unless there is a valid reason given for absence. Please make sure that we know if a child is absent due to illness by leaving a message with the school office. We can only authorise absence due to illness or other exceptional circumstances. Term time holidays will not be authorised. Please see our website for further information.


Today we say goodbye to Miss Caines who has been teaching in EYFS covering Mrs Castle’s maternity leave. I would like to thank Miss Caines for all of her hard work and commitment to Bracken Leas. Mrs Castle has returned today and we welcome her back to her teaching post in EYFS working with Mrs Hancock in the Den.

Thank you as always for all your support this term. I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. We will look forward to welcoming the children back on Tuesday 7th January.

Mrs Harwood – Headteacher

Christmas Jumper Day – Save The Children

A huge thank-you to everyone for your kind donations to our Christmas Jumper Day in support of Save the Children. We raised a fantastic £364!

Year 5 Swimming

Year 5 will be swimming from Wednesday 15th January. Letters will be coming home this week via ParentMail.

School Clubs

We are currently compiling a list of clubs for this term. Information about our clubs programme will be sent out in early January.

Please remember to order your meals by the 31st December for our first week back in January.

Key Dates for Next Term

  • Monday 6th January – Teacher Training Day
  • Tuesday 7th January – School Term Begins
  • Tuesday 7th January – Extra Dodgeball (re-scheduled from 13th December)
  • Thursday 9th January @6pm – Year 1/2 Maths Workshop
  • Tuesday 14th January – Year 5/6 Trust Rugby
  • Tuesday 15th January – KS1 Boccia
  • Wednesday 15th January – Year 5 Swimming Begins
  • W/C 20th January – School Club begin (TBC)
  • Thursday 23rd January @6pm – Year 6 SATS Evening (details to follow)
  • Friday 24th January – School Panto ( M & M Productions)
  • Monday 27th January – Yr 5/6 Football Competition
  • Wednesday 29th January Yr 3/4 Cluster Football
  • Wednesday 29th January – Year 6 Trip to Boy in a Dress
  • Monday 10th February – FOBL Valentine’s Bake Sale
  • Tuesday 11th February – Safer Internet Day
  • Thursday 13th February – FOBL Valentine’s Disco
  • Friday 14th February – Last Day of Term
  • Monday 24th February – School Term Begins
  • Monday 24th February – Year 5 Trip to Cotswold Wildlife Park (Details to follow)
  • Thursday 27th February @6pm – Year 6 Kingswood Meeting
  • Friday 28th February – FOBL Staff Vs Parents Quiz
  • Tuesday 3rd & Thursday 5th March @3.30-7pm – Parents’ Evening
  • Wednesday 4th March – Year 3 Swimming begins
  • Friday 6th March – World Book Day Celebrations
  • Friday 13th March – Sport Relief Day
  • Tuesday 17th March – Class Photos
  • Friday 27th March – FOBL Easter Bingo
  • Monday 30th March-3rd April – Yr 6 Kingswood Residential
  • Friday 3rd April – Last Day of Term
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