School News

Thank you for all of the care and help that you gave to the school at the Christmas Fair.  The café was full of the most delicious things and was set up and packed away by Ben’s class parents very professionally.  I do hope that the servers’ feet have thawed out by now!  I loved listening to Frankie play her guitar and sing her own songs as I sipped mulled wine and chatted to Budgie face painting in the café.  

Rob has been passing his pizza oven expertise on to Dale so that the tradition of pizza making can continue even when Cian leaves in the summer.  Rob and Emma have been at the school nearly as long as me (9ish years) and have been at the pizza oven nearly every fair.  In fact Rob helped us to rebuild this one a couple of years ago.  Needless to say the pizzas were scrumptious.


The children’s games room was a roaring success with so many interesting and creative ideas.  Rudi, Finn and friends even had a game which involved a fan, a bin and paper balls to throw which was so much fun.  Joel’s treasure game was very clever – and I won a prize.  James had a spider game with chocolates and Jo’s doughnut stall was a great hit.  Mark managed to guess the number of sweets in Rose and Esther’s HUGE jar and we had various guess the cuddly games.  Kieran made a mini skittles game and Cian and Aikin had their usual ‘How many hats can you wear at once’!  I only managed 8 but Hamish got the record (14).  Well done to all the children who put so much effort into these games- and for those who helped to tidy up afterwards.


We had a lot of toys and books donated which Rachel and Oli displayed beautifully and must have frozen trying to sell!  Thank you for helping take all the left overs off site for Monday.  That really, really helped.


Your generous donations for the hamper made a really delightful gift for Tori this year.  Jeremy, Oli and Kirsty gave us some wonderful stories around our camp fire to end a very special night.  As the last few things were put away and the classrooms were restored I did feel that we had all given a beautiful gift of kindness, time and growing friendship together.  And the takings came to £794.50.  Fabulous!


Thank you to Sarah (Louie and Darcy’s Mum) and Sarah (Esther’s Mum) for collecting and decorating our beautiful Christmas Tree.


During the summer term we had a photographer come to school to take photos of your child.  I know that he took some very good shots which you ordered.  What you may not remember is that he donates a certain amount of money for each order taken.  We have now been given a cheque for £70.63 towards school funds.  I hope to be able to ask him to come back next year.


The music room is due for a repaint which Martin will do in the holidays.  In anticipation of this, when I was offered a newish sofa and armchair from two ex-parents,  I agreed.  The room already looks better.  It was so nice talking to these parents whose child left over 10 years ago because they had such fond memories of Park and what it offered to them as a family.


We have been doing a lot of Christmas activities with the children recently.  We went on a greenery walk on the Estate to collect decorations for the fair.  The children loved cutting bits of holly and dragging long trails of ivy back through the woods to school.  They spontaneously sang all the Christmas carols that we have been learning as they went.  It was magic!  We have also been doing candle dipping, telling the Christmas story, tissue Maths stars and Martin’s fruit and popcorn decorations.  All the classrooms look beautifully Christmassy!

All of the children drew some wonderful pictures for the fair posters.  This year Tilly, Louie, Lara and Ishka’s pictures were chosen to be made into the posters.  Didn’t they look stunning?!

We went to the Great Hall to join in with 4 local schools at the Dartington Carol Concert this week.  We sang ‘So here it is Merry Christmas’ by Slade with lots of actions.  Kate and Richard have been kindly helping us with our singing this half term as Lucina is no longer able to do this.  I am in the process of looking for a new singing teacher.  I feel singing is such an important part of anybody’s life.  Lucina will still be teaching piano and recorder and is also able to offer guitar lessons.  Come to the office if you are interested.


The food garden is looking very neat and tidy at the moment!  Very asleep!  But Dyane and her team and Ben have been very busy preparing a new bed for a tree nursery.  We have been given 80 saplings to look after for 3 years and then they will be planted elsewhere.  The trees arrived this week and are being dug into the ground as I write.  Dyane has also been showing the children how to grow mushrooms in bags inside – which will be very exciting when they start to grow.


The Early Years are getting ready for their little Nativity and there is great excitement for what Dylan calls ‘The Camel Story’ – especially as he is the camel!  They have also been drawing some gorgeous pictures of the ‘Nutcracker’ which are up in the Early Years entrance.


There had to be some data lines put right across the Early Years garden for the new classroom and it made quite a mess.  We are looking into re-turfing it a.s.a.p.  In the meantime Martin has made some willow hurdles to protect the area.


Mark’s class finished their amazing 3-D space models just in time to use as decorations under the covered way at the fair.  They are pretty amazing – and some nearly took off when the wind blew!  They were made using willow from the school grounds.  Next term they will begin work towards a class play – which they have chosen already.  It will be ‘The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe’.


A message from Tabitha

I absolutely love my job as cook at the school and really want to continue doing it, however I have been making a loss as I work on a self-employed basis and this is clearly unsustainable.  The price of lunches hasn’t increased for over two years whereas food prices have.  As I don’t want to compromise on the high quality of ingredients I use and I want the lunches I provide to help nourish and energize the children so they are focused on their learning, I have decided to increase the price  as of January to £3, £3.50 for special dietary requirements and £2.50 for under 4’s.  I sincerely hope parents will support this as it is a valuable and integral part of the unique experience available to children at Park as they not only can enjoy the meals but also be part of the planting, harvesting and preparation of produce grown in the school garden, some of which is used in the lunches.


With love, Tabitha x


Applications for local authority run Primary schools for next year’s rising 5s – children born between 1/9/08 and 31/8/09 open on 7 November at and close on 15 January 2013. Places are offered to start in September but parents can choose to defer until the term of the child’s fifth birthday although applications must still be made before the closing date of 15 January.  Children attending a maintained school reception class full or part time will not be able to use the Early Years entitlement funding.  However if deferring school entry, you need to make that clear to the school and then you can continue to get funding.


On line survey

A message from the Early Years and Childcare Service who are carrying out a survey of parents to find out about their Childcare needs:  They have asked as many parents as possible to complete this short survey online before 31 December 2012:

‘Calling all parents!

Devon County Council are asking parents to tell them what age child you have and how many hours of childcare you require a week, so they can make sure there are enough childcare places for everyone.   If you are a parent please help by completing the simple 5 minute online survey even if you do not need any childcare. The survey can be found at

If you have any queries please do not hesitate to contact the Early Years and Childcare team on 0800 056 36 66 or Many thanks in advance for your co-operation,

The Early Years and Childcare Team, Devon County Council. ‘

Upstairs Office-  Thank you to all who helped redecorate Pauline’s upstairs office.  It looks so much better.  I hope that it will be a nicer place for Pauline to be in and that all the work that went into it also created new friends and a sense of belonging at Park which I want these community projects to engender.  There will be a new list of projects you can sign up for next term under the covered way shortly.

Children’s Christmas lunch and party with Father Christmas – 17 December.  Sacks with class names are upstairs in the Quiet Room for parents to put a named ‘you know what’ (up to £5) to be given to your child by ‘you know who’ at the party.  Please ensure they are in place by 13 December at the latest.  (If this cryptic message means nothing to you please have a word with your class helper or the school office).

Those children who are normally in school at lunchtime on Mondays and want to have the school lunch should have already let Tabitha know and paid their class teacher but if you are unsure please check with your class teacher urgently.  Early Years children who don’t usually attend on Monday afternoons are invited to come to school at 1pm to meet Father Christmas.  This will be followed by a little tea party.


The school Christmas post box is in the hallway.  Please make sure names and class teachers names are written clearly on the front.  Post will be delivered daily to the children in class.


Email addresses

If you have not returned the form as yet but would like to receive future school news editions in this way please return the form below. Please make sure that you inform the office of any changes to email addresses in the same way that you do for phone numbers.


A couple of reminders-


Please get the children into school on time.  Late arrivals are very disruptive and are causing a lot of frustration.  The main school classrooms doors open at 8.50 and registration is at 9.00.  The Early Years open their door at 9.00.


Please remember to take your child’s bike home for the holidays as they are not insured by the school’s insurance.


Welcome to Eljas and Lily’s sister Sophia, new daughter for Dale and Lotta.  She is beautiful.


Term ends on Wednesday 19 December and the Spring term begins on Tuesday 8 January.

Have a lovely holiday!


Best wishes,


Amanda Bellamy

Teacher in Charge


Phone number and email address

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The school office and certain members of the school community e.g. Parent group coordinators, may prefer to send you some information by email if you are willing.  Please would you sign below to indicate your agreement to your phone no. and email address (if relevant) being used for these purposes.

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