School Newsletter : 17 May 2024

| Issue 28/29 | Summer 1 | Weeks 4 & 5 |

Burdett-Coutts International Evening

Parents, carers, families & friends, and of course all pupils – we would like to invite you join us in celebrating our International Evening on Friday 17th May from 15:30 – 18:30.

Come join us in celebrating the many individual cultures that make up our fabulous school community, through the universally enjoyable theme of food! We will have a range of food stalls, offering you the chance to sample and taste delicious food from around the world.

This is also a great opportunity for parents & carers to meet in a social setting to get to know each other.

We have over 26 different nationalities in our school, so the opportunity to discover and taste something new, whether a staple food or a celebration treat, is almost guaranteed! There will also be a drinks stand and music, as well as a range of activities for children on the day.

This will be a non-uniform day and pupils can attend wearing traditional dress, for a gold coin donation.

Please note that this will be a totally cash free event. On entry, you will be able to buy tickets which you can exchange for any item – food, drink or activities – on the day. This is to ensure that those serving food are also not having to handle money, and can concentrate on dishing out delicious meals for you.

All proceeds from this event will go towards much needed funds for our school playground. Thank you so much for your support with this fundraising initiative.

We look forward to seeing you on 17th May!

If you would like to submit a dish, whether hot, cold, savoury, a dessert or a baked item for this event, please email the school office, with your name, name and country of origin for your dish, and an ingredients list. You can also register in person at the school office.

Please note that we require the ingredients list to print out and place next to each dish, that everyone can be informed of any allergens or dietary requirements they may have.

Congratulations to Year 2 & Year 6 (& staff too!)

A HUGE congratulations to all our Year 6 and Year 2 pupils who have successfully completed their SATs tests this week!

All pupils were focused and applied themselves fully to the different tests each day. Thanks to the dedicated teaching from their teachers and support staff, pupils displayed great resilience and determination as they confidently approached each paper.

Thank you to parents for all their ongoing support across the year, ensuring homework and holiday packs were completed and that your children have been in school each day. These have all helped immensely in your child’s success.

Swimming Lessons for Years 3 – 6

We are delighted to announce that swimming lessons will begin again this term, for pupils in Years 3 to 6.

These lessons are an important (and statutory) part of the national curriculum and provide an opportunity for pupils to develop key skills and knowledge about water safety and learning basic swimming skills and strokes.

Pupils are issued with certificates at the end of each unit of swimming, which acknowledge the skill level that they have met.

All swimming lessons will take part at the Queen Mothers Sports Centre. Classes will complete their lessons in blocks (6 consecutive lessons over two weeks), instead of one lesson per week (over 6 weeks).

This arrangement ensures pupils have the best chance to consolidate and make the most of their lessons, with the opportunity to build on learning over sequential days, as opposed to having a week between each lesson.

On the weeks that your child’s class is swimming, they will need to wear their bathing costume to school with their PE kit over the top. They also need to bring in a bag; a towel, underwear and goggles, plus a cap (if they choose to use one).

Children will change into their PE kit after each lesson and put their towel and bathing suit in their bag to return to school.

Pupils will swim on Tuesday, Wednesday & Fridays of each week. They will walk to and from the pools with their class teacher and a teaching assistant.

If you have any questions or queries about your child’s swimming lesson, please contact the office to arrange a time to meet with a member of the Senior Leadership Team.

Class Swimming Dates

  • Year 5: Weeks beginning 20th May and 3rd June 
  • Year 4: Weeks beginning 10th and 17th June  
  • Year 3: Weeks beginning 24th and 1st July (no swimming on Friday 28th June as it is an INSET day)
  • Year 6: Weeks beginning 8th and 15th July  (no swimming on Friday 19th becuase of a school trip)

Accelerated Reader Program

We are very excited to announce that we are now part of the Accelerated Reader program, for children in Years 1 to 6.

Accelerated Reader encourages children to read regularly, while ensuring that they bring home a book appropriate to their reading level. There are three steps to the program:

1. Pupils complete a star assessment which informs us of their reading level
2. They choose a reading book from the library, appropriate to their reading level
3. After they’ve read the book, they complete an online quiz about the it. The children earn points for the quizzes that they complete.

Pupils can log into the Accelerated Reader portal @

They can also log in by clicking on the Accelerated Reader link found at the top right hand corner of our website (in between Staff Login and Sooper Books).

Please click the image below for information about Accelerated Reader, or click here for a PDF >

Find out more:

  • Years 1 to 6 parents & carers, you’re invited to attend an information coffee morning about Accelerated Reader.
  • Please join us on Wednesday 22nd May at 9am in the Ground Floor Hall.

Community Corner

The weather was kind to us as we held our very special annual Ascension Day service on the roof of the school on last Thursday.

The whole school, including our 2-year old preschoolers made their way up many, many flights of stairs and sat in beautiful sunshine listening to the reading from Luke 24:44-53, all about the ascendance of Jesus to Heaven.

We sang “Lord I lift your name on high” as bubbles were let off all around us and we watched them make their way up into the blue sky.

Well done to all of our amazing dancers for leading us in the movements, and as ever to Mr Carden and Graham for a joyful service.

Graham has also just returned from his visit to the link church in New York, Holy Trinity on East 88th Street, with a lovely gift for the school: a miniature detail of their Ascension Window.

This was crafted by Henry Holland, a good friend of Edward Burne-Jones who designed the beautiful stained glass window in St Stephen’s Church of The Good Shepherd shown below.


Father God,
Thank you for all the people who give their lives to serve others, doctors, nurses, carers, firefighters and teachers. I pray that you will help me to think of the needs of others and help me care selflessly too.

Class Assemblies:

Fridays @ 9am. Please be seated in the First Floor Hall by 9am:

  • 24th May: Year 4
  • 14th June: Year 6
  • 21st June: Year 3
  • 5th July: Year 5
  • 19th July: Nursery & Reception

Community Questions:

  • Who do you feel loved by?
  • How do you show love to others?
  • Who do you know who needs to know that you love and care for them?


  • Show someone you love them through sacrificing time that would usually be spent on yourself (such as giving up time on a show you watch or time you would usually spend on your phone) to do something kind or helpful for them.

Westminster Family Practitioners Information Events

Do you have concerns about ADHD in your child?

Westminster’s Family Practitioners are hosting two information events for parents, one face-to-face and another held online. These events are FREE but you must book your place by clicking on the links below:

Competition: ‘Moments Matter, Attendance Counts

Friends of Burdett-Coutts

A HUGE thank you to everyone who support our Bake Sale – we raised a fantastic £201! These proceeds will also be going towards the fundraising target for our playground projects.

Many thanks to the FOBC volunteers and staff for their contributions and running the stall. Your support is very much appreciated 🙂


If you are a parent, carer or a guardian of a child that attends our school, then you are automatically a member of our Parent Staff Association, Friends of Burdett-Coutts.

Being part of our PSA offers an exciting opportunity for you to meet other parents, whilst supporting our school, through organising fundraising events, volunteering and much more.

Even if you can only give a small amount of time, you will be making a difference to the school experience for your child and other pupils in our school.

Our next meeting will be on Thursday 16th May @ 09:00 – 10:00 in the Ground Floor Hall.

All are welcome – please come along and join us, your energy & support is very much needed!

Meeting dates:

  • Thursday 16th May

Upcoming events:

  • Friday 17th May: International Evening
  • Saturday 6th July: Summer Fair

Upcoming Events


  • Wednesday 22nd May: Year 4 Trip to the Science Museum.
  • Monday 27th May – Friday 31st May: May Half Term Holiday (School Closed)


  • Monday 3rd June – Friday 14th June: Year 4 Multiplication Test Check Window Good luck to all pupils completing this test 🙂
  • Monday 10th – Friday 14th June: Year 1 Phonics Screening Check Week. Wishing Year 1 lots of luck with this assessment 🙂
  • Thursday 20th June @ 14:00 – 15:00: Reception Open Afternoon for September 2024 Reception Starters
  • Thursday 27th June @ 09:00 – 10:00: EYFS Stay and Play Morning
  • Thursday 27th June @ 15:00 – 18:00: Year 5 at Young City Makers Project at City Hall
  • Friday 28th June: Staff INSET Day School Closed for pupils. 
  • Saturday 29th June: PTA Summer Fair.


  • Friday 12th July @ 14:30 – 15:15: Years 6 Leavers Service in St. Stephens Church
  • Tuesday 16th July: Alms House Founders Day Service at St. Stephens Church.
  • Friday 19th July: Year 6 Trip to Rochester Cathedral
  • Wednesday 24th July @ 13:30: School ends for the Summer Holidays

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 Days:

  • Monday: Year 4
  • Tuesday: Year 2
  • Wednesday: Reception & Year 5
  • Thursday: Year 3
  • Friday: Year 6

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.

February 2024 half term vouchers for pupils eligible for FSM are available for collection from the school office.

Are you getting to school on time?

We have noticed several pupils are consistently late to school each day. It is essential that every child arrives at school by 08:45 so that they are in class and ready to learn at 09:00. If your punctuality has slipped recently, please ensure that you take steps to arrive in school on time after the February half term break.

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.

Term Dates 2024-2025

Please find here the agreed term dates set by our school’s Governing Body for the upcoming academic year, starting September 2024.

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)


03 September 2024



24 October 2024

Half Term


28 October 2024



01 November 2024

Return on


04 November 2024

End of Term


20 December 2024



Start of Term


07 January 2025



14 February 2025

Half Term


17 February 2025



21 February 2025

Return on


24 February 2025

End of Term


04 April 2025



Start of Term


22 April 2025



23 May 2025

Half Term


26 May 2025



30 May 2025

Return on


02 June 2025

End of Term


22 July 2025


Teaching & Learning: Curriculum & Safeguarding


02 September 2024

Teaching & Learning TBC


25 October 2024

Teaching & Learning: Wellbeing


29 November 2024

Assessment & Pupil Progress


06 January 2025

Teaching & Learning: Curriculum, Assessment & Pupil Progress


27 June 2025

BANK HOLIDAYS (school closed)
May Bank Holiday


05 May 2025

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

We have the following availability for places in our Early Years provision from September 2024:

Reception class:

  • 2 places

Nursery Class (3-year olds):

  • 10 full-time places
  • 3 part-time places (afternoon)

 Preschool (2-year olds)

  • 2 full-time places (from September 2024)
  • 3 part-time afternoon places available NOW

If you are looking for a Preschool, Nursery or Reception place for your child 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 10:30 – 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.


This week in preschool we have been reading, ‘The Animal Boogie’. We have been enjoying using our imaginations and creativity to create animal dens out of things we have found in our classroom and been enjoying painting beautiful jungle pictures.

Last week we enjoyed the delights of the playground, basking in the warm sunshine and loving the outdoor play time. We engaged in many enjoyable activities such as water play, zooming around with toy cars and making our own ice cream shop. It was a lovely week.


This week in Nursery, we’re excited to announce the blooming start to our new story ‘Lulu Loves Flowers’. Inspired by Lulu’s passion for blooms, the children embraced their inner artists and dipped their brushes into a world of vibrant colours to paint their very own flowers. As they explored, they also delved into the wonders of nature by planting seeds and making predictions about how their plants will look and what they will need to help them grow.

Last Wednesday the children embarked on a nature walk, gathering leaves, petals, rocks, and sticks. With these treasures, they crafted their own unique nature crowns, fostering creativity and appreciation for the natural world.


For our Phonics provision this week in Reception, we enjoyed a spot of green and red word bingo. The children were read out words and tasked with stamping them if they appeared on their bingo sheets. This fun little game consolidated their reading fluency and phonics skills, but the children hardly noticed, they couldn’t wait to call out “Bingo!” when they completed their sheets. Great job speedy readers!

Last week we really enjoyed the sunshine and warmer weather. The writing tasks they completed reflected their ‘sunny’ moods as they designed their own fantasy gardens and then wrote what they loved the most about their little plots of paradise.

Year 1:

This week, Year 1 have been writing and publishing a fact file about plants; using all the knowledge we have learnt in our Science lessons this half term. We have been focusing hard to present our work to a high standard and getting our handwriting ready for Year 2. Some of us are even beginning to join our letters together! When writing we looked at how we can start sentences in different ways to make our stories more interesting.

Last week we continued our focus on 3D sculpture in Art lessons and learning more about plants in our Acience lessons. We made our own 3D flowers by painting and cutting different sized paper and folding it so that the petals stick out- making it 3D. We found it challenging to create different sized leaves for the inner and outer parts of a flower.

Year 2:

As Mathematicians this week, Year 2 have been learning all about fractions. They have been exploring fractions of shapes and amounts including one and two-digit numbers. Pupils used their division skills to find unit fractions of numbers and also applied their knowledge of related facts to help them find fractions of greater numbers. For example, using 1/2 of 8 to work out 1/2 of 80. They then looked at non-unit fractions where the numerator is greater than 1 and recognised the equivalence between 1/2 and 2/4 using concrete resources and pictorial representations.

Last week, we enjoyed an exciting and interesting Science lesson about Chemistry, led not by our teacher, but by one of our Year 2 Scientists! We had the wonderful opportunity to learn from one of our young class scientists who shared his knowledge of the periodic table. Why is the periodic table so important? Because everything – including humans – are made up of elements, so it’s crucial to understand them. Children learnt that the periodic table is a large list of elements. For example, water (H2O) is made up of the element hydrogen and the element oxygen. The periodic table lists all the known elements and groups together the ones with similar properties. The periodic table is very useful for chemists to study patterns and relationships between elements. For example, elements on the bottom left of the table are the most metallic, and elements on the top right are the least metallic. While there are 118 known elements, our young scientist has created his own. In recognition of his lesson, he has been awarded a framed design of it. It was an enriching experience for all of us, and we were captivated by the uniqueness and brilliance of the lesson on the periodic table, and the courage displayed by our scientist in front of the classroom.

Year 3:

This week we have been learning about the functions of the different parts of flowering plants. We made these colourful leaflets to help us remember and to put on our display. We can’t wait to investigate what it is that plants need to grow.

Last week we began learning all about sculpture and further exploring 3D art. We began by exploring the structures we can make and join using cardboard! We took time during our lesson to reflect on the art created by our class and on display in our art gallery, sharing the techniques and ideas we had used.

Year 4:

In Year 4 this week the children have been busy finishing The Iron Man. They’ve really enjoyed reading this book and were excited to find out what happened at the end of the story. The pupils are now busy writing letters of apology in the role of Hogarth, looking for alternative words for ‘sorry‘ and imagining what Hogarth might say to The Iron Man. They’ve also thought about what The Iron Man might say if he spoke to Hogarth too. After finishing the book, they discussed the main themes, and what they liked and didn’t like about the story.

In Science this half term, Year 4 are asking the key question ‘What do I need to create power?‘ As part of this topic, they have been investigating whether a circuit is complete or incomplete. The children had to look at the diagrams and predict if the bulb would light up or not. Then they made the circuit to test their predictions and see if they were correct.

Year 5:

This week in our English lessons, we are learning to write a balanced argument presenting different points of view about a subject. We are reading Street Child, which is set in the Victorian times, and thinking about the pros and cons of living in a workhouse at that time. It would be great if your child could do some independent research about this subject to help with this activity and share it with the class. We are also planning to have a structured class debate about this which should prove interesting and educational.

Last week we took a trip to The National Portrait Gallery. The visit was led jointly by Westminster City Council and a team of professional architects and planners. The architects are responsible for the recent refurbishment of the Gallery and explained all about the creative ways to use the space and therefore accommodate more visitors. We have a workshop coming up soon and the class will be creating their own models of a future vision of our school. Any recycling materials would be appreciated to help us with this project which will be happening later this month.

Year 6:

This half term in PSHE, we are learning about what mental health means to us and the things that we can do to ensure that we keep our minds healthy. We explored challenging scenarios that we may face in our lives, which led to discussions that helped us to understand this. The discussions involved loss, loss of a loved one, moving home, changing schools etc, which we then ordered from what we considered to be most to the least challenging. We talked about the different stages of grief, when we go through changes and realised that we all show our emotions differently.