Before Starting School
What do I need to provide for my child so that s/he is ready for school?
Ensure that your child has the correct uniform including PE kit and footwear, a book bag (Reception to Years 2/3) and a PE bag, all of which should be marked with your child’s name. (Sweatshirts, P.E. shirts, Book bags and PE bags can be bought from the school office). You should also provide a bottle of water and if your child is bringing a packed lunch from home, a suitable bag/container; please note that unfortunately we do not have facilities to refrigerate lunch so an insulated bag/container is preferable – again these should be named. The water bottle and lunch container should be taken home for cleaning on a daily basis; your child should keep their PE kit in a bag at school and taken home for washing at the end of each half term.
Remember that your child goes outside for breaks and for learning activities so in cold/wet weather ensure that your child has a suitable coat/jacket and shoes.
You do NOT need to provide any pencils, pens, erasers, rulers, sharpeners or books!!
Is there anything else I can do to prepare my child for school?
Ensure that your child gets a good night’s sleep when s/he has school the following day.
Ensure that your child does NOT wear any jewellery to school other than studs for pierced ears but these must be removed on PE days. If in doubt please ask the teacher which days these are. Also please bear in mind that if you plan to have your child’s ears pierced please have it done at the start of the summer holidays as it usually takes 4-6 weeks for them to heal properly.
The School Day
What time does school start?
8.40 – 8.50 Children can come into school from 8.40am for the ‘Soft Start’ to the day. Outside doors close at 8.55am. Pupils arriving after 8.50 are late and must sign in at the office.
Where can I park if I come by car?
Unfortunately there is very limited space in our car park and there is no space for parents to park; for the safety of all concerned we would also ask you not to stop or park on the zig-zag lines outside school to drop off or pick up your child at any time, even if you are late. If you do so you may be challenged by a member of staff. We would also ask that if you must park in the vicinity you are considerate to our neighbours and avoid parking (even partially) across anyone’s driveway or access even if you are late/in a hurry/it is only for a few minutes.
Can I come in to the school in the morning to help my child hang up his/her coat / talk to the teacher etc?
For a number of reasons, including the safety of your child, we would ask that you do NOT come into school with your child; it is a very busy time and we need to get the children settled in class as soon as possible – if your child needs help one of our staff will help. If you need to speak to the teacher and it will keep until the end of the day this is more convenient and less disruptive for your child and his/her classmates. If you need to get a message to the teacher urgently please give the teacher a note or ask our office staff to pass on a message.
What if we are late?
The playground doors have to be shut as soon as the last children who have entered the building. If you are later than 8.50 a.m. please bring your child into school via the main entrance and ensure that the office staff note his/her name and class – this is necessary in case your child has missed morning registration. If you are very late please tell the office staff the reason why as this needs to be recorded.
It is important to try your best to be punctual but no matter how late you are please do bring your child to school except if s/he is unwell.
What if my child has forgotten something that s/he will need at school?
We would ask that you try to make sure that your child brings everything s/he will need for school that day with him/her in the morning in order to minimise interruptions to classes and to the work of our office staff but if this is unavoidable please come to the school office via the main entrance and ensure that the forgotten item(s) are clearly marked with your child’s name and class.
Your child will be provided with books to take home but these should be returned. Unfortunately we have to make a charge of £3 for text books which are damaged or not returned.
When does my child have breaks?
All pupils have a staggered morning break of 20 minutes.
Lunch break for Reception is from 11.30-12.30; Year 1 11.45-12.30; Years 2 & 3 12.00-12.45; Years 4 & 5 12.30-1.15 and Year 6 12.45-1.30.
Can I take my child home for lunch?
You are entitled to take your child home for lunch but we do not encourage this as it means that s/he misses out on the social aspect of lunch break and depending how far you live from school it can be quite a rush in order to get back ON TIME for the afternoon session.
Does the school provide my child with lunch?
A. If you have applied and your child is entitled to Free School Meals please let the office staff know that you would like your child to have a hot lunch; vegetarian and Halal meat lunches are available. If you need to make an application for free school meals this is done online. The Eligibility Checker is available on the following link free school meals eligibility checker and you will need your National Insurance Number and Date of Birth to apply.
If you are not entitled to Free School Meals then you can purchase hot lunches from school for your child; these cost £10.75 per week (£2.15 per day).
If you need any help or further information please contact the school office. See our School Lunches page for the weekly menus.
If you prefer to provide your child with a packed lunch from home please ensure that it is healthy – no glass bottles, fizzy drinks or sweets!
What time does the school finish?
School finishes at 3.00pm except on the last day of term when school finishes at the earlier time of 2.00 pm. Please note that on the last day of half-term (in October, February and May/June) we finish at the usual time of 3.00pm.
What if I’m late to pick up my child?
If you have an emergency whereby you are unable to collect your child at the end of the day you must contact the office staff immediately. If a child is not collected at 3.00 p.m. we will check for any information about changes to the normal collection routines. If no information is available, we will attempt to contact parents/carers at home/work/mobile phones. At 3.15 p.m. if your child remains uncollected they will be placed into the late room and a charge of £10 will be made. You will be asked to sign and give a reason for your late collection when you arrive to pick up your child. If by 6pm it has not been possible to make contact with any parent, relative or emergency contact and there is no indication of why the child has not been picked up, it will be necessary to contact Social Services.
What if my child cannot attend school?
If your child is unable to attend school for any reason please phone the school office by 9am on 020 8422 4503 to let us know. Please give your child’s name, class and the reason for his/her absence. If you do not contact us, we will phone you to enquire about your child’s absence. If you know in advance that your child is going to be absent (e.g. hospital appointment) please let us know. You may be asked to put this in writing, especially if the absence is for more than a day.
What if I need to pick up my child early?
If you need to pick your child up earlier than normal please let the office staff know in advance and they will pass the message to your child’s class teacher. When you come to collect your child you must come to the school office to sign him/her out and the staff there will contact his/her class.
We would ask that you try to avoid taking your child out of school whenever possible; most general appointments can be arranged outside school hours.
Can I take my child for a holiday during term time?
The law requires you to send your child to school every day that it is open. It is school policy not to authorise requests for leave of absence. Please remember that the more time your children miss from school, the more difficult it is for them to catch up with their work.
If you have an exceptional circumstance and need to take your child out of school during term time you must make your application in writing in advance – forms are available from the school office
What shall I do if my child is having problems at school (or outside school but which may affect his/her schooling?
It is probably most appropriate to speak to your child’s teacher in the first instance, even if the problem is with him/her. S/he may refer the matter to another member of staff such as the Inclusion coordinator, Safeguarding coordinator, one of Deputy Headteachers or Head teacher.
If the problem remains unresolved please speak to our office staff for an appointment to see one of these members of staff.
What shall I do if I have a concern or comment?
Again, it is probably most appropriate to speak to your child’s teacher in the first instance. They will be available in the school playground at the end of each day. Our leaflet What to do if you Have a Concern gives you full information on how to direct your concern or comment.
My child’s progress
When will I meet my child’s teacher and how do I know how how my child is progressing?
Each term you will have the opportunity to meet with your child’s class teacher at Parents’ Evening. Your child is continually assessed and we will report to you termly.
Heathland Whitefriars Federation, a charitable company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales with company number 09066965. Registered office address: Healthland School, Eastcote Lane, Harrow, HA2 9AG.