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Parent Council Meeting Minutes

Parent Council Meeting

 

Thursday 28 March 2019 – fifth meeting of academic year 2018-19

In Attendance: Karen Cruikshanks (chair); Rashmi Garg; Ulrike Goessman; Lynn Andrew (secretary);

Head Teacher Ms Shona Henderson.

TECH UPDATE - BLACKFRIARS APP

The previous App has stopped working for some people. In this case you need to download the Scot Ed Piota Apps from google-play or app store (just search Scot Ed).

Once downloaded It will ask you to select your school.

You can go to Settings and select ‘Channels’ to choose alerts for your child/children’s classes.

You can also set up a link to your calendar via Permissions, select ‘Calendar access’

 

HT SCHOOL UPDATE

OUTDOOR SPACE

Mrs Wilson is finishing the consultation on the Blackfriars Outdoor Space/Garden project. There is very high level of interest and those registering as volunteers. However, investigating the costs hiring a company to do even the most basic trim trail is upwards of £10,000 therefore there will be the need to:

  • Do as much as we can ourselves
  • Bring in community partners who can offer support and expertise or funding
  • Raise funds to though applying to grants and other fund-raising activities to cover materials and other unavoidable costs.

Mrs Henderson and the other staff are already making connections with Gorbals Housing Association, Men’s Shed and Clutha Trust who may be able to help – need to tap into local skills and funding.

School have enlisted the voluntary help of an architect to examine the site and give us a clearer idea of the type of skills, materials and money involved in creating our outdoor space to inform our planning.

PARENT COUNCIL ACTIONS

  • Initially research and apply for grants / funding
  • Raise awareness of the project and gather potential supporters / volunteers

SPORTS KIT

There has been a request for new athletic uniforms for the netball team as the current supply is too big for many of the team. As new uniforms were purchase last year first step, by Mrs Henderson, is to check what the current Blackfriars Athletic Kit contains.

PARENT COUNCIL ACTIONS

  • Once we know what is needed look into costs
  • If current funds do not cover this look into grant and fund-raising options (The parent’s council currently has £507 in funds)
  • Look into environmentally friendly uniform options – link with ApparelXchange

GETTING THE FUNDING PEOPLE NEED
Blackfriars has had a cut to its budget for supporting families due to the low number of people applying for free school meals and clothing grants. Families who are eligible could be getting £110 for uniforms and free access to the breakfast club as well as free lunches.  It is unclear why so few people are applying but anyone who is in receipt of Council Tax Reductions or Housing Benefits is eligible.

PARENT COUNCIL ACTIONS

  • Highlight this at any event where we are with parents
  • Gather any insight into reasons behind lack of uptake so we can explore solutions.

Cont. Over

PARENTS COUNCIL FUTURE

PC ROLES - At the end of this academic year our lovely chair Karen is moving on (probably to keep her sons new school PC in line ??) We need to select a new Chair. I am happy to do this but if I do then we need a new secretary. Can the PC members decide if they are interested in either role and we can vote next meeting? We may also want to confirm if Maria and Beatrice are happy to continue as joint treasurer.

 

PC MEMBERSHIP – We need to attract more members to the PC. While the current core people are amazing there we need more people, so we can offer the school support with upcoming project and ongoing fundraising.

There is a large P1 cohort starting in 2019-20 and Mrs Henderson suggested we make the new parents aware of the Parents Council. Dates:

Primary 1 Parents session Wednesday 15th May and Wednesday 22nd of May (to check times with Mrs Wilson)

Open Afternoon Wednesday 5th June 2-3pm

PARENT COUNCIL ACTIONS

  • Consider new chair / secretary (vote next meeting)
  • Create Parent Council information and sign up sheet (Lynn)
  • Highlight Parents council at upcoming events – Assembly, P1 Parent days
  • Look into digital poll to select best times/days for meetings next year (Lynn)
  • WhatsApp group – Karen currently owner, need to sort that one out too

 

UNIFORM RECYCLING SCHEME -  ApparelXchange  

We now have two donation bins set up for uniform donation. ApparelXchange have also want to hand in some flyers about their activities, agreed this information can be shared via school App.

The Parents Council have kept a selection of items aside for the in-school recycling rail, available to parents, teacher and pupils as needed for a small donation to Parents Council or free.

SCHOOL - PARENT COUNCIL ACTIONS

  • Ask for donations via the App over the months between Easter and Summer break
  • Ask ApparelXchange to attend new Primary 1 Parent events to show Green uniform options alongside BE School wear (Ulrike?)

BOOK BAG

Use has dropped since no reminder has gone out on the App.
Agreed re-start Monday alerts to advise bookbags can be borrowed any Monday 2.40 to 3.20pm

Parents or children can sign out the bags.

Other Information

  • EIS have produced a booklet, PowerPoint and video - Face up to child poverty – poverty-proofing our schools which we should add to the Parent Council growing bank of knowledge in this area. See: www.eis.org.uk/Child-Poverty/Poverty-Pack

 

Next Meeting – Thursday 25th April 6pm

Next Blackfriars Blether – Thursday 2nd of May 9-10am

Items for Next Meeting:

  • Vote on chair
  • Parents Council recruitment drive
  • Fund raising & grants

PARENTS COUNCIL GENERAL INFORMATION

WHATS APP - For those that wish to be involved with the Parents Council through the year we will communicate across What’s App, new members are welcome to join. Download the App and contact Karen Cruikshanks (chair) for an invitation – karenc598@googlemail.com or text/call 0754 101 6941

 

PVG - parent involvement in the school is encouraged and you do not need further security checks to take part in school activities where teachers are present. If parents wish to / or are required to take part in activities with children without a teacher present they will need to join the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) scheme. Connect has a guide to PVG and there is support with any cost, contact school or Parent Council chair. Further Information: https://connect.scot/resources/pvg-guidance-pcs-and-ptas

 

RECYCLING – APPARELXCHANGE (www.apparelxchange.co.uk)

From 2019 the parent’s council will work with Apparel Exchange, a social Enterprise that specialises in uniform recycling and re-sale and is expanding into general clothing. They also work with Shawlands Academy and three Glasgow schools. We have two recycling bins in school for uniform and other donations, they accept all donations including ripped and stained items but only re-ell the best donations, anything unsuitable for re-sale is recycled.

  • SALE - Refreshed uniforms are available for purchase as single items or a uniform package via the ApparelXchange website, store (47 Haggs Rd, G41 4AR) or re-sale events in the school (P1 parents events)
  • COSTS - Items are sold for between £2.50 and £3 per garment, items like winter jackets are between £5-10 and blazer £10-15. A Uniform ‘Starter Pack’ containing 5 polo shirts, 3 skirts or trousers, 3 sweatshirts can be purchased for £27.50. Free uniform starter packs can be requested by the school for families who just moved to the school/area and need support.
  • LEARNING - ApX also offer information sessions for parents and pupils on recycling, supply chain and the growing green economy

 

RECYCLE RAIL - The Parents Council also keep some of the donations as part of a recycling rail available in the school throughout the year. This is for parents, teachers and children either free or for a small donation that goes to the Parent Council fund and is channelled back into the school.

 

24th January 2019 – fourth meeting of academic year 2018-19

In Attendance: Karen Cruikshanks (chair); Rashmi Garg; Ulrike Goessman; Lynn Andrew (secretary);

Head Teacher Ms Shona Henderson.

 

HT SCHOOL UPDATE

STAFF - There will be some changes in staff, Mr Borland (p6/7) will be moving on. Mrs Henderson will go through the teaching staff recruitment channel in the spring to ensure a suitable replacement. 

Mrs Lovack (p5/6) will remain until the end of the school year and a new Support for Learning teacher, Diane Gilchrist, will join Blackfriars this month.  All teaching staff have now been trained in use of iPad for effective learning and teaching. There will be a roll out of iPad for pupils in June. 

 

LEARNING - The Play centred learning and teaching approach introduced this year in P1 by Mrs Boyd and Mrs Ritchie has been recognised as an example of best practice. The Blackfriars team are considering other places in the school where learning through play may be introduced. A consultant from the Glasgow’s Improvement Challenge, who helped with the original learning through play project, is coming back to offer further guidance. 

Next week P7 will go to Blairvardoch outdoor learning for a week, this year Blackfriars are introducing an outdoor learning week for p6 where they can gain the  John Muir Award www.johnmuiraward.org (can contribute to future awards/qualifications such as Dynamic youth Award, age 10+, Youth Achievement Award, age 14+, and Duke of Edinburgh Award, age 16-25)

 

SUPPORT – The Hive upper school nurture base is going well with small groups working with two adults allowing extra support. Uptake on the parents/family session for sewing and holistic therapies has been poor. There was some discussion on offering learning that connects with helping our children as events centred around our children’s learning/performances tend to have higher attendance. Suggestions around helping your child study, how to combine learning and play and using Sumdog and other learning Apps. 

  • Look into appropriate childcare support for parents that need to bring younger children to learning sessions – volunteer parents/grandparent, older primary children, secondary school children involved in Childcare & Development Higher, Foundation Apprenticeship or Skills for Work?
  • Parents Council members, Karen, Ulrike and Lynn will attend the Blackfriars Blether session on Thursday 31st January 9-10am to welcome next years P1 parents and seek parent views.

 

UNIFORM RECYCLING SCHEME 

Agreed we will go with Apparel Exchange to organise the uniform donation and re-sale.

  • Ulrike will contact and arrange next steps.

 

BOOK BAG - UPDATE

Bookbags have proved very popular in 2018 with many parents borrowing a new bag each week. In the feedback forms the majority of parents rated the bags 10/10 with the lowest rating 8/10 and parents and children shared wonderful comments and suggestions, included: 

  • “The bookbag is superb”
  • “items are interactive, and books are interesting and simple”
  • “it has a full package to engage kids and learn”
  • “she loved all the books and the puzzle”
  • “he loved the animals and the story book”
  • “lots of reading time which resulted in bonding and family time”
  • “Are there any ways this bag could be improved? No, it is really fun” (from a child)

The Bookbag sign out sessions will continue in 2019 with one of the Parent Council there to help sign bags out every Monday between 2.40 to 3.20. If a parent isn’t available to sign out or return a bag, grandparents, siblings or the child can sign them out. There has also been a suggestion for a second sign out time, perhaps during morning drop off, please let us know if this would be of value  - email lynn.andrew@hotmail.co.uk or see me on any Monday at book bag sign out / Thursday 31st Blackfriars Blether.

  • Highlight the bookbag sign out sessions on the App each week
  • Share the positive feedback from parents and children (above)
  • Offer an additional sign out time if there is an interest (get in touch)

 

FUTURE PARENT COUNCIL DATES – proposed 3pm afternoon session avoid Let issues?

The was discussion of trialling a Friday 3pm meeting but this does not work for the school and some of the parents. It has been agreed we will continue with the Thursday 6pm meetings until the end of the school year but we will have a poll/discussion on What’s App to explore how we might select best times and days in the future – is there a meeting voting App we could make use of?

  • Meeting continue of Thursday at 6pm till end of years, future dates: February 28th; March 28th; April 25th; May 30th, June 20th END
  • Set up discussion/poll to look at change for next year
  • Look at meeting Apps that could help select the best days and times for the majority

 

ANY OTHER BUSINESS 

There have been groups loitering at night in playground, this has resulted in vandalism to the school.

Please be alert and contact the local police if they see anything suspiciousPolice Scotland - 101

 

The Community Orchards group will be holding a winter pruning session at the Gorbals rose garden on Sunday 10th February – they are offering a workshop for the children on making lanterns and storytelling. 

  • Ulrike to make sure full details passed to HT and the school team will investigate options for the Workshop. Everyone is welcome to the pruning day on Sunday 10th Gorbals Rose garden.

 

Other Information

  • Confirmed upcoming ESOL sessions are open to anyone in the Gorbals not just Blackfriars parents Parent Council to highlight to any parents/friends they know may benefit and suggestion that pupil from multi-lingual houses write up an invite to ESOL for their family/.
  • STEM in Gorbals will be held in Blackfriars this session Wednesday 27th February 3pm
  • Fox & the Gazelle current p7 reading but worthwhile for parents 
  • Smart STEM goes to school do events – Karen is to investigate links for Blackfriars
  • Sports Council Glasgow – Karen to at links
  • Karen will also investigate setting up learning sessions on British Sign language 

 

Next Meeting – Thursday 28th February 6pm

 

Items for Next Meeting:

  • CATCHMENT AREA ISSUES – UPDATE

PARENTS COUNCIL GENERAL INFORMATION

WHATS APP - For those that wish to be involved with the Parents Council through the year we will communicate across What’s App, new members are welcome to join. Download the App and contact Karen Cruikshanks (chair) for an invitation – karenc598@googlemail.com or text/call 0754 101 6941

 

 

PVG - parent involvement in the school is encouraged and you do not need further security checks to take part in school activities where teachers are present. If parents wish to / or are required to take part in activities with children without a teacher present they will need to join the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) scheme. Connect has a guide to PVG and there is support with any cost, contact school or Parent Council chair. Further Information: https://connect.scot/resources/pvg-guidance-pcs-and-ptas

 

 

Parent Council Meeting

 

25th October 2018 – second meeting of academic year 2018-19

In Attendance: Karen Cruikshanks (chair); Lesley Coll; Beatrice Trench; Lynn Andrew (secretary);

Head Teacher Ms Shona Henderson; Kim MacCollie (Blackfriars staff) teacher working on sustainability and children’s rights; Noreen Campbell Family Learning Officer (Glasgow Life)

 

 

PARENT COUNCIL TREASURER NEEDED – we are looking for one, or more, volunteers who are willing to manage the parent council finances and keep accurate records. If you are interested but want to know more please see Connect Guide for PTA treasurer (link below). Volunteer at the next meeting or contact our chair karenc598@googlemail.com  text/call 0754 101 6941.

 

PARENTS EVENING VOLUNTEERS (30th October / 5th November)

Parents evenings will be held Tuesday 30th of October (3.30-5.30) and Wednesday 5th of November (5.30-8pm). Representatives from the parent’s council are asked to volunteer to help people that wish to pick-up a ‘nearly new’ uniforms from our stores.

  • Pre-parents evening – help sort out and tag the uniforms with size and note if any imperfections, make list of uniforms available as may not be able to have everything out to view.
  • If able to volunteer – Confirm if you can support either session through WhatsApp Parents Council group or email either lynn.andrew@hotmail.co.uk or headteacher@blackfriars-pri.glasgow.sch.uk advising of your availability (you would take time away for your own child appointment as needed).

 

HALLOWEEN DISCO 2018 (1st October)

The annual Halloween Disco is all set for the 1st of October

  • ACTION – please confirm if you can volunteer to supervise either, or both sessions and if you can bring any home baking. Confirm via What’s App group or email Lynn or the school (emails above)

 

Primary 1-3 group – 6-7pm

Beatrice, Lynn, Lesley, Karen, Maria

Primary 4-7 group

Beatrice, Lynn, Karen, Maria

 

BOOK BAGS (5th November)

Beatrice and Lynn from the Parents Council will be available to sign out Book Bags to parents, carers, families at afternoon pick up time, 3pm to 3.30pm every Monday from 5th November.  If a parent/carer is keen to access the book bag take away packs, which are excellent, but can not do Monday pick-up please email lynn.andrew@hotmail.co.uk or the school to sort out something suitable.

  • ACTIONS – School will highlight bookbag sign out time through App. Other volunteers to support bookbag sign out are welcome (contact Lynn/School)

 

NEARLY NEW UNIFORMS GOING FORWARD (29th November)

Kim (teacher) advised of a local social enterprise business based on the Southside involved in school uniform recycling.  The company provide clothing bins and take uniforms (they do not have to be perfect) wash and repair and then make the uniforms available at reduced costs. They can be sold in pop-up shops, Merry-go-round (Southside 2nd hand family store), or within school at key times.

The company also produce uniforms packs.

  • ACTION – Kim will arrange for the woman who runs the social enterprise to attend our next parent’s council meeting to discuss if this might be the next step for us due to the high level of donation (thank you). Discuss introducing a voucher scheme or similar for anyone who would find the costs an issue.

 

FAMILY LEARNING DEVELOPMENTS (through the year, further information to follow)

Noreen Campbell will be working with the school and supporting family learning,

initially this will include:

  • Parents survey to find out what learning we would value, times that would suit, if joint learning activities with children would be of interest or adult centred courses and if other support, such as childcare would be needed, to allow learning.
  • Two learning programs for parents delivered over 12 weeks in Holistic Therapies or Sewing. Available January-March in association with Glasgow Clyde College, courses will be held in Blackfriars and St Francis schools during school hours. Awaiting final confirmation and dates.

Further work will go into building family learning in the school and community through the year.

Other parent led ideas are being taken up, for example, from the Healthy Hub parents are volunteering recipes from around the world to be shared. School exploring how this can be taken further.

 

ISSUE WITH CATCHMENT AREA (registration in November)

There has been an issue with parents who live in the area being directed to Cuthbertson Primary and forced to put in a placement request to access Blackfriars.  This may be particularly difficult for parents/carers with English as an additional language or those who are not confident with the Glasgow City council online registration. To try and address this:

The School

  • Is producing posters and leaflets to inform parents they can access Blackfriars
  • Working closely with nurseries providing posters, leaflets and drop in sessions with a member of Blackfriars staff at the nurseries so parent/carers can find out more.
  • Holding open afternoons in the school to offer advice and support
  • Opening the digital suite to directly help parents completing the online application

The Parents

  • Beatrice will be contacting Education headquarters and Local Council representatives as a parent who has experienced this issue and a parent council representative.
  • Other parents are encouraged to express their views to relevant representatives or if they are uncomfortable to contact a parent’s council member or the school to pass on their experiences.

Council Representatives include:

You can check catchment areas on the Glasgow City Council website

 

Next Meeting – Thursday 29th November

 

Items for Next Meeting:

  • New treasurer
  • Second hand uniform future planning
  • Time on Cost of the School day
  • Christmas planning

Other Parents Concerns for further consideration:

  • Road safety, the need for a protective barrier between the school side gates and the road
  • Lack of local secondary school with nearest Shawlands or Holyrood.

 

PARENTS COUNCIL GENERAL INFORMATION

WHATS APP - For those that wish to be involved with the Parents Council through the year we will communicate across What’s App, new members are welcome to join. Download the App and contact Karen Cruikshanks (chair) for an invitation – karenc598@googlemail.com or text/call 0754 101 6941

 

PVG - parent involvement in the school is encouraged and you do not need further security checks to take part in school activities where teachers are present. If parents wish to / or are required to take part in activities with children without a teacher present they will need to join the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) scheme. Connect has a guide to PVG and there is support with any cost, contact school or Parent Council chair. Further Information: https://connect.scot/resources/pvg-guidance-pcs-and-ptas

 

 

Parent Council Meeting

 

27th September 2018 – first meeting of academic year 2018-19

In Attendance: Karen Cruikshanks (chair); Lynn Andrew (secretary); Maria Kwok; Beatrice Trench; Rashmi Garg; Ulrike Goessman; Anna Wojcik; Kumari Rishika; Bala Murugan; Rupali Kewale; Anil Ashtekar; Michael Andrew; Suaad Obsiya; Madhan Kumai; Sandeep Khaire;

Head Teacher Ms Shona Henderson

Apologies: Tounsia Djoudi (treasurer)

 

 

SCHOOL UPDATE

The school have just completed their School Improvement Plan. A board showing how the school is working towards these improvements with a copy of the plan is now in the entrance area of the school.  Ms Henderson feel part of the Parent Councils role is to help evaluate how well the school in doing and contribute to improvement.

Key area for improvement include: Pupil Equity (linked to Scottish Government funding and the Scottish Attainment Challenge), to ensure all children feel included and supported to grow within the school even if they are facing challenges. Equally that parents have the information and support they need; Addressing late coming; working to raise attainment in literacy and numeracy and building a whole school nurture approach including Addressing Childhood Adversity (ACEs); plus celebrating the different languages and cultures in the school.

 

 

  • ONGOING ACTION – work together to develop approaches that are inclusive. Suggestion included:

- Fundraising fun fair based on cultural diversity and celebrating the 31 languages in the school, teaching Bollywood dancing which some of the parents may be able to lead (combine with St Francis), including sign language - Karen works with West of Scotland deaf Children’s society and will consider options (chance to meet some of the children)

- Sport events such as cricket/football with the parents as trainers – parents can come as supporters, play and perhaps pay for some ‘extras’ (digital photo holding a winner’s trophy emailed) Suggested start in the Spring and arrange for the last Friday of the month. Importance of dad’s involvement in the school pointed out (see http://www.fathersnetwork.org.uk/ for more on this)

– parents who wish to lead on these should speak to Ms Henderson in school or at future PC meetings.

 

HALLOWEEN DISCO 2018

We have agreed to host the annual Halloween Disco on 1st of October

  • Primary 1-3 group – 6-7pm
  • Primary 4-7 group – 7.30-8.30pm

 

  • ACTIONS
  • Confirm: budget/tuck-shop with Tonsia; school staff can be available to support the event;
  • book DJ;
  • Poster and tickets to be designed by pupils;
  • Request costume donations via the App to ensure all children have access to dress-up options;
  • free tickets/option to donate

Parent volunteers will be required to support both sessions and to bring along bakes goods, this can be finalised at the next meeting or email Karen or Lynn (emails further on)

 

 

WHATS APP

For those that wish to be involved with the Parents Council through the year we will communicate across What’s App, new members are welcome to join.

  • ACTIONS - Download the App and contact Karen Cruikshanks (chair) for an invitation to the group – karenc598@googlemail.com or text/call 0754 101 6941

 

BOOK BAGS

In the school library, there are bookbags, an excellent but rarely used resource for families, that parents can sign out.

  • ACTIONS - Beatrice will meet with the Depute Head on Monday 8th of October to set up a time/day when one or more Parents Council members can be available to sign out books (to start after the October week). If you are interested in volunteering please feel free to attend the meeting or let Lynn (secretary) know when you could be available – lynn.andrew@hotmail.co.uk or text/call 0794 750 1469

 

2nd HAND SCHOOL UNIFORM DONATIONS

We have had an amazing response to our request via the school App for second hand uniform donations.

  • ACTIONS – Parent Council members will sort and itemise the donations ready for redistribution

Agree an approach to redistribution that does not cause cost related barriers. Suggestions include, rather than re-sale, donations welcome, uniforms to be available during the ‘Blether’ sessions, online ‘shop’ but can pay by volunteering your time in school, completing a survey or adding a comment to school twitter.

 

OTHER BUSINESS

PVG - parent involvement in the school is encouraged and you do not need further security checks to take part in school activities where teachers are present. If parents wish to / or are required to take part in activities with children without a teacher present, such as one-to-one reading support, they will need to join the Protection of Vulnerable Groups (PVG) scheme.

Connect the National Parents body for Scotland has a guide to PVG and there is support with the cost of an application if it is required https://connect.scot/resources/pvg-guidance-pcs-and-ptas

This should be agreed with the Council and HT.

 

 

 

Next Meeting – Thursday 25th October

 

Important future dates:

  • Halloween Disco – Thursday 1st of November

 

 

 

If anything in these notes needs to be edited due to an error or something that has been missed please contact lynn.andrew@hotmail.co.uk

Thank you

 

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