School Council Lunch 2017



The school council enjoyed their end of year lunch to celebrate all their hard work over the past year. The council have worked hard to raise money for the school, represent the children in their classes and help the school with recruitment including interviewing new staff!  We wish them restful summer holiday.




School Council Raise Money for School Safety Week


Over the past week the school council have been incredibly busy running not one, but two cake sales.  They worked incredibly hard setting up their stalls; selling their stock and then clearing up afterwards!  Whilst the final count is not quite in, we think they have raised around £350 which is a testament to all their hard work.  They plan to spend the money on supporting the Safety in School Week and are having a meeting on Friday to discuss what to buy.



Executive Committee Trip to Chelmsford



On Thursday 15th October the Year 6 Executive Committee travelled to Chelmsford to participate in Primary Democracy Day.  As always, it was a fun and fact-filled event.  The children were asked to plan a party celebrating the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta with a limited budget; they enjoyed planning the theme including asking all the guests to dress up in medieval clothing.  In addition, the children voted on a controversial issue, 'Do adults know what is best for young people?'.  After a hearty lunch followed by an enjoyable game of 'human bingo' (one of the councillors used to work for the BBC and another has seen the dust brought back from the first moon landing!) the children learned about the differences between the Parish, Local and County Councils.  Finally  Vice Chairman John Alridge and a select group of other county councillors answered the children's questions, including why they wanted to become a councillor.  As always, our councillors came back enthused about democracy and look forward to the difference they can make in our school over the forthcoming year.





Student Voice Conference - Friday 3rd July 


Our School Council Executive team were invited to participate in a Student Voice Conference at Fitzwimarc School on Friday 3rd July.  We joined school councils from various other local schools including Fitzwimarc, Glebe, King John and Sweyne and the ages of the councillors ranged from 9 - 15!  During the morning the children were challenged to think about their local area and what they would like to see change in order to improve it for young people.  Then they were asked to propose an improvement with a multi media presentation.  The judging panel included Councillor Heather Glynn of Rochford.  The presentations varied from improving mental health services for young adults to increasing the impact of the local libraries.  All the children did a wonderful job!  Councillor Glynn was very impressed with our young people and was proud that the future of our district was in such safe hands.



Grove Wood Elections - Thursday 8th May


On Thursday the 8th May, children in Year 5 will be exercising their democratic right to vote in the school council elections for the new executive committee.  Working with Miss Brooklyn, several children have prepared their manifestos; first sharing their personal qualities and then outlining their plans for change.  The other children have worked hard with Mr Green and Mr Banks to prepare a variety of questions, designed to challenge the candidates and help the voters decide who they would like to be their Executive Committee next year.  The hustings and voting will take place on the same day as the country's general election - really bringing home to the children the importance of voting.




Visit to Rayleigh Town Hall


On Monday 27th April, the school council visited Rayleigh Town Hall to meet the new Chairman, Councillor Eddie Dray. As well as learning about Councillor Dray's work, the children posed questions about the work of the town council.  In return, Councillor Dray enjoyed asking the children about their work as a a school council and commented on how active they are as a student body.  

Councillor Dray told us that the town council are looking to re-design the playground at the King George V playground.  Our council were quick to jump at the opportunity to help and we are looking into supporting this process.  On the way home, we had a quick play in the park in order to fully research the facility and develop our ideas!

To conclude our time together, we all posed for some photographs and Katy and Sophie were thrilled to wear the Councillor's chain!  



Presentation Award


The school council were thrilled to award their first certificate and prize for exemplary presentation in a book this half term.  After much deliberation, the award was presented to James M in Year 4.  The school council felt that James had shown real progress in improving his presentation since the start of the year.  In addition, they were impressed with his beautifully joined up handwriting.  James was awarded with a pencil case and a certificate to celebrate his hard work.



Our Q&A about School Dinners


On Friday 6th February, the School Council invited Mrs Tuck to answer some of the children's questions about how School Dinners work at GWPS.  Mrs Tuck was really helpful in listening to the children's views and explaining some of the routines we have in place at school.  In addition, Mrs Tuck is going to implement some changes, as requested by the children, to make our school dinners even better!
Who can we talk to about our school dinners?
I’m really pleased to have been asked to attend the school council today and give feedback about school dinners.  You can speak with myself, a midday supervisor or a teacher about your school dinners.  We are always here to listen and do what we can to make dinners even better.
Why are the portion sizes for KS2 the same as they are for KS1?
The portion sizes are actually different, although you may not realise it.  We give slightly larger portions to children in Key Stage Two because they are slightly older.  Where it may be that we have a dinner such as spaghetti and meat balls, you may find that every child receives a portion of five meatballs.  However, the portion of spaghetti which goes alongside it will be more for a child in Key Stage Two.  But, now that you have mentioned it, we have thought again and decided that, where we can, we will also increase the portion size of the main item. 
Sometimes it looks as if the cutlery is dirty.
Actually, the cutlery is not dirty and has been washed thoroughly.  You may know from using a dishwasher at home that washing cutlery in water may cause a water mark on cutlery.  This is because the cutlery is not polished.  At school, we wash our dishes in a really powerful dishwasher and then leave them to dry on a sterilised service.  We don’t polish our cutlery and this may leave a watermark but it does not mean that the cutlery is dirty.  In fact, it shows that the cutlery has been washed!
The jacket potatoes are quite small!  Can we have larger ones?
On a jacket potato day, we can look to ordering in larger potatoes. 
Why do we always have to have a roast dinner on a Wednesday?  If you have a club on a Wednesday, it means you may miss out.
We have to order food on certain days due to our suppliers.  In addition, we can only store some food for a limited amount of time and we only have a certain amount of space to store it in!  This means that our meals have to be carefully planned out for certain days.  This means that, for now, a roast dinner will always be on a Wednesday.
Someone told me that they found a hair in their dinner.  What can I do about this?
All of our kitchen staff wear hair nets to prevent hair from falling into the dinners.  It may be that, with the large amount of children in the dinner hall, a hair comes from another child whilst you are sitting with your dinner.  If you find a hair in your dinner, let us know and we will get you another dinner.‚Äč



Can you help?  Donate any old pots & pans - in fact anything you think we could use for our Music Centre Project!


Our Music Centre Campaign


Hopefully you've seen our new music lodge opened last summer, but how would it look with a nice little music centre outside?  Our campaign team (composed of a selection of a our school councillors) has been hard at work trying to think of ways to publicise our new school project:  the music centre!  It is basically a ladder or old swing frame with pots and tubes attached, acting as musical instruments.  This will be perfect for our music lessons in the future!

At the moment we have next to nothing to use and that is where you come in:  we need your help.  If you have any pots or pans, unused spoons or a sturdy kind (metal, hard, plastic, wooden) or unwanted Tupperware pots, then please donate them to our school.  Metal tubes as well as old metal or plastic cups would be helpful too!

Thank you for your help!  Sam - School Councillor, Year 6.



Children's Take Over Day


On Friday 21st November, our Exec team were invited to participate in 'Take Over Day,' by the local Children's Centre.  The aim of the day was to give children and young people the chance to work with adults and be involved in decision-making. The children would benefit from the opportunity to experience the world of work and make their voices heard, while adults and organisations would gain a fresh perspective on what they do.  After meeting the staff at the children's centre and spending several lunchtimes carefully planning, the team decided to deliver a themed afternoon entitled 'Once Upon a Time.'  Dressed up as the three little pigs and the big bad wolf, the team set up a variety of fairy tale themed activities, including indoor and outdoor play.  The afternoon was concluded with an interactive story telling session.  The executive team did a fantastic job.  Here was some of the feedback they received:


"I just wanted to say a big Thank you to the year 6 children for all their hard work in planning and delivering the session on Friday. Although I was not able to make it I have seen the photos and feedback from my colleagues and parents was very positive. Parents commented on how much their children had enjoyed the session and how well you all did. My colleagues remarked that the children worked so hard and delivered a beautiful session and a lovely story brilliantly acted out. The children represented Grove Wood Primary brilliantly. So thanks to you all for taking part in this event."



Local Democracy Week

On Wednesday 15th October, the School Council Executive Committee and Miss Brooklyn travelled to Chelmsford to participate on European Democracy Week.  Upon their arrival, they were presented with a Dragon's Den task.  For this activity, they were challenged to think of a new idea that would enhance Grove Wood Primary School.  They were to be judged on how likely the project was to happen; how original the project was and the benefit of the project to the school community.  Only half an hour was given to generate an idea and then prepare a presentation.  Their idea was to create an outdoor music centre created from locally recycled and reclaimed materials.  The team felt that this would encourage all children to enjoy music, raise awareness of recycling and could be used for playtimes, lesson times and music therapy.  They presented their ideas to the 'dragons' and awaited their decision.  

After lunch, the decision was announced:  Grove Wood Primary School had won!  Not only had they won the competition but they were to be awarded with £250 to create the music centre on the school site.  The team and Miss Brooklyn were thrilled and are looking forward to starting the project imminently.  As well as winning the Dragon's Den, the exec team enjoyed learning more about democracy and writing letters to our local MPs.  Please watch our video and look through our pictures to see what a fantastic time we had learning about democracy.

 Friday 17th October 2014






Chelmsford Trip Part One

Chelmsford Trip Part Two





Recognition of Commitment Award


We are pleased to announce that we have been awarded the Unicef Rights Respecting School Recognition of Commitment Award.  In order to gain this certification, we have had to complete an audit of our current understanding of children's rights and responsibilities.  Based upon this audit, we have explicitly included a focus on children's rights on our school development plan.  As we now continue on our journey towards the Level 1 status, we will keep all members of our school community updated on our progress.  In the meantime, we need to say a huge congratulations to our school council who have been pivotal in ensuring that we achieved this award.  

Wednesday 8th October 2014.


Rights Respecting School


Grove Wood Primary School is embarking on an exciting journey to becoming a Rights Respecting School.  This exciting initiative, championed by UNICEF, enables children to learn about their rights and responsibilities as they become a citizen in our global community.


In our assemblies last week, Mrs Chase and Miss Brooklyn shared with the children the first focus of the year:  every child has the right to an education.  We thought about how having an education will enable us to become better citizens and how some children across the globe may not have the same opportunities as us for an education.  A display is set up in the Key Stage Hall to remind us of this right and the School Council will be sharing with us some activities that will help us remember this important right for all children.  


Friday 26th September 2014.



School Democracy 


This week in our assemblies, we learned about democracy and how democracy works in schools.  Miss Brooklyn and Mr Green worked with us to think about what a democratic decision looks like.  We also thought about what it means to vote and how elections take place.

Over the next two weeks, children from Years 2-6 will be electing a Class Councillor and Vice Class Councillor.  Each class will hold a fortnightly council meeting and discuss the issues which are important to them.  The Class Councillor will bring ideas from the class meeting to the School Council Meetings which will take place every other Friday.  In our meetings, we will talk about the issues that make a difference to our school and work with our school community to make our school an even better place to be!

In Year 6, as well as being a Class Councillor, the children have the option to be voted onto the Executive Committee. There are four places available:  The Chair, Vice-Chair, Secretary and Treasurer.  This committee will meet every week and work closely with Miss Brooklyn and Miss Seaman in organising the School Council and its work.

As soon as elections are over, we will announce the new Grove Wood School Council.

Tuesday 9th September 2014

Grove Wood Primary School

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