School Newsletter : 02 February 2024

| Issue 18 | Spring 1 | Week 4 |

Scholastic Book Fair

Once again, we’re delighted to host the Scholastic Book Fair at our school. This is a great opportunity to find some new books for your bookshelf, while at the same time helping us to earn free books for our school’s library. For every book you buy, we’ll be able to earn free books for our school!

The book fair will take place in the Ground Floor Hall on Monday 5th, Tuesday 6th, Wednesday 7th and Thursday 8th February; from 9.00 – 9.30 and 3.30 – 4.00 each day.

Hakuna Matata: Lion King update!

Since Christmas, our talented Year 4 and Year 5 children have been immersed in the enchanting world of Disney, diligently rehearsing for their upcoming production. Together with the production team, they’ve been working to bring the African savannah to life through the inspiring coming-of-age-tale, The Lion King.

We’ve followed Simba, the Rafikis and a captivating ensemble of characters on their journey from Pride Rock to the jungle and back again. Over the past few weeks, the stage has witnessed the emergence of the fearsome Scar from the darkness to recruit the Hyenas; Mufasa’s dramatic exit, and the dynamic duo of meerkat Timon and lovable warthog Pumba, as they go on the run with the spunky lioness, Nala.

Our children have worked hard to master their lines as well as the lyrics and choreography of iconic songs such as ‘Hakuna Matata‘, ‘Just Can’t Wait to be King‘, ‘Be Prepared‘, and ‘Can you Feel the Love Tonight?‘ supported by the Disney Teaching Artists, Tori and Lauren. Well done everyone!

Trips & Visits

Reception’s visit to St James Park:

Reception enjoyed a wild adventure in an exciting ‘Gruffalo Hunt‘ in St. James’ Park. With eyes wide open and imaginations running wild, they searched high and low for clues to uncover the mythical creature’s hiding spot. As they scampered through the park, spotting playful squirrels, majestic pelicans, and quacking ducks, our young adventurers not only soaked up the wonders of nature but also sharpened their observation skills and teamwork abilities. The real magic wasn’t just in the hunt; it was in the shared excitement, and the joy of discovery. They also enjoyed a romp in the playground where they could let their imaginations soar as they built friendships and lasting memories.

LDBS Annual Service at St. Pauls Cathedral:

On Thursday 1st February, eight pupils including our Head and Deputy Head Choristers, Mr Carden, Miss Barnett and Graham, attended the London Diocesan Board for Schools’ Annual Service in the wonderful St. Paul’s Cathedral. We had seats near the front of the very large congregation (approximately 1,000 people), singing hymns and listening to the reading, and enjoying the talk about The Good Samaritan. The Cathedral was inspiring, with a special globe on display to remind everyone of the importance of reconciliation. Daniel and Sarina carried a new banner (made by the Art Club and Miss Muir) in the procession.

Numeracy Program @ St Stephen’s

In conjunction with Capital City College and supported by the Mayor of London, there will be a free numeracy programme held at St. Stephen’s Church. Open to any adults over 19 years old, the program will run every Monday morning @ 11.30am, for six weeks beginning on Monday 19th February 2024.

Please see the information leaflet and the enrolment letter below for more information. If you require paper copies of these documents, please ask at the school office.

Friends of Burdett-Coutts

Our next event is the Easter Fair on 15th March. Please come to our meetings if you can, it’d be lovely to meet new parents and it’d be great to have you onboard. Our meetings will be on Thursdays in the Ground Floor Hall from 9 – 10am on the following dates:

  • 8th Feb
  • 22nd Feb
  • 7th March
  • 14th March

Celebrating Behaviour

At our school, we are blessed to have many wonderful daily and weekly examples of good behaviour. This includes behaviour around learning (academic), co-operation (working well with others), in the playground, having good manners and showing kindness to others.

To further celebrate this, we have been reviewing ways to highlight good behaviour in our school. After the half term break, not only will we be naming and celebrating all pupils awarded a gold certificate in our weekly newsletter, we will also be introducing additional forms of celebration:

  • Postcards: Each week teachers will select up to 2 pupils who will have a postcard sent home to acknowledge a particular behaviour noted in school. We have trialled this in several classes over the past few weeks, with positive feedback from parents and pupils!
  • BC Afternoon Tea: Each week teachers will present invitations to 2 pupils in each year group, inviting them to an afternoon tea with a member of school staff. Staff will take turns hosting the afternoon tea, which will be a wonderful opportunity for children to share and celebrate their reason for attending, whilst enjoying a yummy afternoon tea! Those selected will also have their names shared in the school newsletter each week.

A copy of our Behaviour Strategy: Stay on Green, will be sent home next week, along with a letter outlining these new initiatives, as a reminder of the various steps we have for managing behaviour in school.

In addition, I’d like to remind all parents and carers to make an appointment to meet with either the class teacher or a member of our SLT, should you have a concern about your child and/or the behaviour of another child. We politely request that parents do not approach other parents about such issues directly.

We thank you in advance for your support with this matter and we look forward to sharing and celebrating our pupils’ continued successes within our school’s community.

PE Lessons

Please ensure that your child is wearing the correct PE kit to school each week.

Pupils who are not wearing their full PE kit will not be able to participate in lessons, and a note will be sent home indicating why they were not able to participate.

The full PE kit for the Autumn/Winter term is as follows:

  • Plain navy blue leggings or tracksuit bottoms
  • School navy blue PE t-shirt
  • School navy blue sweatshirt (all year groups).
  • Pupils in KS2 (Years 3 – 6) must wear a school navy sweatshirt for PE and NOT their school jumper.
  • Plain black trainers (velcro if your child struggles with shoe laces)
  • Please ensure all items of uniform are clearly labelled (with a permanent pen or label)

PE lessons are on:

  • Monday: Year 1, Year 4 (session 1)
  • Tuesday: Year 5
  • Wednesday: Year 4 (session 2) & Year 6
  • Thursday: Year 3
  • Friday:  Early Years, Year 2

Cashless Payments: Parent Portal on Arbor

On Monday 8th January, parents were sent a welcome email from Arbor via the school office email account. Please read this carefully, as it contains vital information of the steps required to download the Arbor app, which is now live and ready to use for our school.

Once you have downloaded the app and followed the setup steps, you will be able to pay online for the following:

  • Breakfast Club
  • After School Club (6 o’clock club)
  • School Trips and Visits
  • Nursery Extended Day Fees
  • Preschool Fees

You will also be able to view your child’s details held by the school, such as their attendance record  and the named adults allowed to collect them from school.  After the Easter Break, you will also be able to sign up and pay for Extended School Day (Enrichment) Clubs.

We understand that while paying online is the preferred option for many of our families, those wishing to continue paying by cash will still be able to do via the school office.

  • If you’re unable to download or log into the Arbor App, please contact the school office.
  • We hope that this will be a smooth transition, but as is often the case with new technology, there may be some disruptions so please bear with us during this process.

School Meals

If you would like your child to move from bringing a packed lunch to having a school meal, you must inform the office at least a week in advance of this change being made. Kindly note pupils are not allowed to alternate between having packed lunches and/or school meals on a daily or weekly basis. If you have any questions, please see a member of the school admin staff at the school office.

You can find the current school lunch menu here >

If you require a printed copy, please ask at the school office. Should you have any questions about the menu, kindly make an appointment to speak with Miss Barnett.

Are you getting to school on time?

Why good school attendance matters: Missing a few days of school here and there may not seem a big deal, but research shows that it can have a significant impact on children’s learning.

Children who miss a substantial amount of school fall behind their peers, and struggle to catch up. Most of the work they miss is never made up, which can lead to big gaps in their learning.

  • Poor attendance often starts at primary school and children who fall into this pattern are likely to under-achieve at secondary school.
  • Pupils who miss between 10 and 20% of school (that’s 19 – 38 days per year) stand only a 35% chance of achieving five or more good GCSEs, compared to 73% of those who miss fewer than 5% of school days.
  • An attendance rate of 95% is generally considered good; this allows for children to miss 9.5 days across the school year.
  • Persistent absence (PA) is defined as an attendance rate of 90% or below.
  • All pupils are expected to have an attendance rate of 95% or higher.

Attendance class of the week: Each week we will be celebrating the class with the highest attendance levels.

Did you know?!

  • 10 minutes late every day = 33 hours lost learning each year!
  • Lateness and absence has a significant impact not only on your child’s learning, but also others, as teachers may have to re-teach late arrivals to ensure they can participate in the lesson.
  • Remember pupils need to be in school by 08:55.
  • The pupil entrance gates open at 08:40.

Upcoming Events


  • Monday 5th – 8th: Scholastic Book Fair in the Ground Floor Hall @ 15:00 – 15:30
  • Monday 12th – Friday 16th: February Half Term Break
  • Thursday 22nd: Year 1 Trip to Hyde Park Lookout Centre
  • Thursday 29th: Y6 Thames Explorer Trip

Term Dates 2023-2024

Please find here the agreed term dates set by our school’s Governing Body for the upcoming academic year, starting September 2023.

Please remember that holidays will not be authorised during the school term, and that all children should be in school (on time) every day.

Please refer to the table below for the term dates, including INSET days and Bank Holidays when the school will be closed to pupils.

Alternatively, you can click on the image thumbnail on the right to view the PDF (please note this will open in a new window) or you can click on the link below:



Start of Term (for Years 1-6)


05 September 2023



20 October 2023

Half Term


23 October 2023



27 October 2023

Return on


30 October 2023

End of Term


22 December 2023



Start of Term


09 January 2024



09 February 2024

Half Term


12 February 2024



16 February 2024

Return on


19 February 2024

End of Term


28 March 2024



Start of Term


15 April 2024



24 May 2024

Half Term


27 May 2024



31 May 2024

Return on


03 June 2024

End of Term


24 July 2024


Teaching & Learning: Curriculum & Safeguarding


04 September 2023

Assessment & Pupil Progress


01 December 2023

Teaching & Learning TBC


08 January 2024

Teaching & Learning: Curriculum Map Autumn/Spring


22 March 2024

Teaching & Learning: Curriculum, Assessment & Pupil Progress


28 June 2024

BANK HOLIDAYS (school closed)
May Bank Holiday


06 May 2024

Community Corner

This week in Church, we learnt about Candlemas, celebrated in the Church of England on 2nd February. Candlemas is considered the end of Christmas and is all about light.

The Christmas Tree in St Stephen’s Church is still up, and we look forward to seeing what will happen to it next week! Will it become a cross as has been done in the past? Will it become beautiful tree decorations for next Christmas? Or maybe something else?

Graham started our worship with pictures of young babies and explained that all religions around the world have special celebrations and services to welcome the new arrivals.

When Jesus was born, it was the custom for families to take their first-born son to the Temple to be presented. Mary and Joseph brought Jesus to the Temple, and while there, two elderly people, Simeon and Anna, saw him. They had been told they would not die until they saw the Messiah.

When they saw Jesus, they rejoiced. Simeon exclaimed that Jesus was the light and would lighten the world for everyone! He also warned Mary and Joseph that there would be difficult times ahead in Jesus’s life.

They prayed and celebrated seeing Jesus, the light of the world.

We light candles to remind us of God’s presence, in memory of someone or to light up the darkness.

Candlemas is the celebration of Jesus being sent to light up the world and we end the Christmas period by asking for Christ’s light to continue lighting the world for the rest of the year.

At the end of the service, Graham lit the special Peace Candle and said the Candlemas Collect prayer:

Almighty and everlasting God, we humbly beseech thy Majesty, that, as thy only-begotten Son was this day presented in the temple in substance of our flesh, so we may be presented unto thee with pure and clean hearts, by the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord.

Look at the painting – can you spot Jesus?

Class Assemblies:

  • 9th February: Year 2
  • 1st March: Year 1
  • 15th March: Year 3

Community Questions:

  • What have you seen in nature that makes you go ‘Wow‘?
  • Have you ever known God’s unexpected provision?
  • Have you ever looked at the world and wondered whether there was a Creator?


  • Spend a few minutes looking at the natural world. You could look up at the night sky or the clouds, or at the bark on a tree, or a leaf. Be still and spend time looking really closely.


Father God, thank you for your wonderful world. Thank you for the sun, the stars, the beauty of all around us. Help us to look after the world you have made. Amen

Online Safety

Did you know that not all apps are safe for children, with many popular ones having certain age restrictions. For example, WhatsApp, Tik Tok, Instagram and Facebook operate a minimum age of 13+ years, and therefore primary school children should not have their own, nor access to, such apps or accounts.

As parents, you can help safeguard your children online by researching these apps and their purposes, as well as their age restrictions, BEFORE agreeing to download them. If you do choose to download them, remember that parental controls such as password protection, can be set up so that in-app downloads or purchases, cannot be completed by the children themselves.

For example, to prevent iTunes, Apple App Store purchases or downloads, all you need to do is:

  1. Go to Settings and tap Screen Time.
  2. Tap Content & App Privacy Restrictions. If asked, enter your passcode.
  3. Tap iTunes & App Store Purchases.
  4. Select a setting and set to Don’t Allow.

Tips on how to install parental controls on other apps and devices (Android or Apple) can easily be found online, or even from the app developers themselves.

Preschool, Nursery & Reception Admissions

1We only have a few places remaining in our early years provision for this academic year. Currently we have:

  • 1 full-time Preschool and 3 part-time afternoon places available (2-year olds)
  • 3 full-time Nursery (3-year olds) place available, and 1 part-time place (afternoon)
  • 4 Reception class places

If you are looking for a Preschool, Nursery or Reception place for your child from January 2024 or September 2024, we’d love to have you join us for a 30-minute bespoke EYFS tour.

Here, you’ll have the chance explore our Early Years setting, speak to key staff and ask any questions regarding admissions and your child starting with us at Burdett-Coutts.

Contact us to register for our tours which take place every Thursday, with times available from 09:30 – 14:30 during term time.

Funding eligibility letter for Pupil Premium, Early Years Funding & Free School Meals

Due to changes in the eligibility criteria for Pupil Premium, Free School Meals and qualifying for 30 hours of funding for Nursery provision, many pupils currently enrolled at our school may now be entitled to one of these funding allocations.

We will be issuing letters to families who are currently not in receipt of the above, asking you to complete the registration for the identified funding option your child/ren maybe eligible for. Thank you so much in advance for your help in completing this.

This funding allows us to increase additional staffing hours to run booster groups, and an exciting range of extended day activities, that benefit our school and your child, and your cooperation is greatly appreciated at this difficult time for school budgets.

  • If you should have any queries with regards to the letter sent to you, please contact Mrs Deary or the school office.


Preschool have been learning all about Goldilocks and the Three Bears. It’s been lots of fun exploring exciting activities linked to the story. We’ve been practising counting to 3 using everyday objects, and even made our own bowl of porridge. We had to weigh, measure and mix all the ingredients together and then cook it. It was delicious and we enjoyed it so much, we wanted more!


This week, Nursery explored different ways to compare weight. The children used key vocabulary such as ‘heavy’ and ‘light’ to make predictions about the weight of different fruit. Using a balancing scale, the children identified which item was heavier or lighter, learning that the heavier object will go down on the balancing scale, while the lighter one goes up.


This week, Reception embarked on a numerical journey and delved into the world of number bonds. The children eagerly tackled compositions of 6, 7, and 8 through interactive skill building activities; reinforcing concepts, while strengthening their mathematical prowess. Here’s to counting, exploring, and uncovering the wonders of Maths together!

Year 1:

In Geography this week, Year 1 have been learning about London and its famous landmarks. The children wrote fact files about some of these famous landmarks in Writing and created some colourful artworks as well! This term’s Art focus is painting, and we looked at how we can create different sections in a picture using paint.

Year 2:

This week, Year 2 have been learning all about the devastating effects of plastic pollution on the world’s oceans and explored ways we can all contribute to solve this problem. As Writers, they wrote letters to the Mayor of London regarding the large amount of plastic in our oceans and its harmful impact on marine life. Children also read ‘Clean Up‘ by Nathan Byron. They immersed themselves in the narrative, assuming the role of the main character, Rocket; a lovable, passionate girl who sets off on a mission to rescue a Caribbean island from plastic pollution!

Year 3:

Newton Class have had a very busy week retelling the story of the Pebble in My Pocket by Meredith Hooper. We became geologists and learnt about the history of rocks and how they are formed. We then choose 3 illustrations from the books to describe for our journey. We used adjectives and conjunctions to make our writing interesting, and then published our work as a book, which we illustrated too!

Year 4:

This week Year 4 have been busy continuing learning about rainforests and deforestation. In Geography, they’ve spent time writing and delivering weather forecasts about the rainforest. They learnt about the type of daily weather found in the rainforest and used this information to write their own weather report to present to the class. Everyone really enjoyed pretending to be meteorologists!

Year 5:

This week in Science, Year 5 have been learning how to explain the difference between melting and dissolving. They have learnt how to identify materials which will dissolve in water and investigated factors affecting the speed of dissolving. They collected information about the speed of dissolving dependent on the temperature of the water and recorded the data in a bar graph.

Year 6:

In Art this week, we have been exploring pieces created by Solara Shiha. The main theme of her work is the feeling or situation of loss; loss of loved ones, memories and places. Despite the sombre theme, she often uses bright, strong colours and an excessively ornamental style. We chose to explore one of her pieces called ‘Entitled 9000‘ as it relates to our English text, which is about a refugee child who had to flee Syria due to the outbreak of war. We are very proud of our finished pieces.