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Parent Forum - Terms of Reference

Stanway Fiveways Primary School Parent Forum

Terms of Reference


The objective of Stanway Fiveways Primary School Parent Forum is to facilitate positive and effective two way communication between parents and the school, providing a channel for communication, feedback and suggestions for improvement.

Specifically to:-

  • Promote the partnership between school staff, its pupils and its parents/carers
  • Develop and engage in activities which support the education and welfare of the pupils
  • Identify and represent the views of the parents on matters affecting the education and welfare of the pupils.



Specific feedback and suggestions for improvement of:

  • Communication
  • Administration
  • Catering
  • School policies
  • Supporting children at home


Out of Scope

  • Items relating to specific pupils, specific parents or individual school staff which should be discussed one to one with the relevant teacher, Deputy Headteacher or Headteacher as appropriate.
  • Parent Forum is not a fundraising committee


Key Responsibilities of Parent Forum Members

  • To seek feedback and suggestions from as many parents as possible from their respective year group and to relay the outcomes from the Parent Forum as appropriate.
  • To attend Parent Forum meetings representing the views of all parents in their respective year group.
  • To work closely with parallel members to ensure coverage of all parents in that year group.
  • To respect confidentiality where necessary.



To attend one meeting each half term

  • At least one of the Senior Management Team (Headteacher of Deputy Headteacher) to attend
  • Two parents per year group to be nominated as below.


Relevant parents nominate themselves as a potential Parent Forum member and the two parents with the most votes in each will be appointed.  Membership is for one school year.   A parent can represent only one year group.



Meetings will be held half-termly

It is the responsibility of the chairperson to ensure that:

  • Meetings are scheduled and times and venues communicated
  • Minutes are posted to the school website for all parents to view with copies available from the school office upon request.
  • Meetings run to time and active participation is sought from all representatives

Parents Forum Minutes 2020 - 2021

Minutes of Parents Forum Thursday 9th December 2020

Parents Forum Thursday 9th December 2020 – Virtual Meeting via ZOOM

Attendees       Jemma Wilby(JW)      Amanda Preston Flack (AMF)            Natalie James (NJ)            Hannah Watt (HW)    Louise Bloomfield (LB)                                              Jeremy Hagon(JH)     Charlotte Meadows (CM)

                          Jackie Irwin – headteacher                                        Adam Squirrell – Deputy                     Claire Sainsbury – Note taker

Apologies       Kay Corris                   Eloise Aitchison

JI thanked everyone for their attendance and gave apologies for KC and EA.

JI wanted to catch up with parents prior to her retirement.

JI explained that AS Acting Head and MH acting deputy head for January were also in attendance, CS was taking minutes.

The previous meeting was back in January and JI felt that they were largely irrelevant, but on checking the minutes, most of the things covered had been dealt with.

JI reminded parents of the Terms of Reference and asked CS to send them out to all members of the Parent Forum.

JI explained that certain things discussed at the meetings could be confidential and she would let people know when she did not want things discussed outside of the meeting. She stressed that the meeting was not to discuss individual cases.


JI sent an update out on Friday in the newsletter about staffing in January. She explained the reasons for her retirement to the committee. She told parents that the school was in a very strong position with the current teaching staff. Also the reasons for the change in the leadership structure. She also spoke to them about the new year group leaders that were being introduced. She explained that, AS would no longer be teaching in class. She asked for any questions, there were none.


JI asked parents for feedback about how they felt the school handled the changes from September.

JH wanted to thank the teaching staff for everything that the school had done.

JH felt that there was a clash with secondary school children at the beginning and end of the day. He had asked councillors for some signage about social distancing.

He mentioned mixing of bubbles at the end of the day. He felt that this was a particular problem in year 5 and year 6. JI to speak to the teachers to ensure that they are leaving at the correct time from their classrooms.

He mentioned snow days, and suggested that the gates should be left open a little longer in the morning on these days. JI explained that she was already aware that this had been an issue and had already decided that this would be the case. Staff would be outside collecting children for the various bubbles.

JH felt the overriding comments were that parents and children were happy to be back.

APF felt that classes need to be dismissed promptly, JI to speak to the teachers.

She also felt that the telephone system was not adequate, CS explained about a cloud based system. JI suggested a company that could help with this. JH to supply details to CS

LB asked about the class bubbles, JI explained that EYFS was the only year group bubble, Year 1 do share an outside area, but the two classes do not go out together.

LB said that she had received feedback about the transition in to year 1 from reception. JI was hopeful that by the summer term the children would be able to have a proper transition for 2021.

JI explained that we would be getting COVID catch up money. The school had used this money to recruit a full time teacher to catch up the year 1 and year 2 children. These children were already making accelerated progress.

Many teachers are doing tutoring after school in other years.

In addition, Miss Hammond would be coming out of class on Thursday and Friday, she would be doing booster sessions with year 6, she knows the children well.

JI would put this in the newsletter.

Both EYFS parents were happy with the transition in to school and happy with the school. The majority of parents were happy with the mixed year group bubble and it was felt that the children get more out of it than keeping all the children separate in their classes. CM explained that she felt that because the children had missed the last few months of preschool, it was important that they got the social skills going forward.

HW asked when children could bring their bicycles back in school. JI said that she would have a think about this and come back to the Parent Forum on this.

JH spoke about the remote learning sent home during lockdown and more recently, when a bubble closed in year 5, he said that some of the documents sent home did not open, as they were not in the correct format. AS explained that there would be two systems running for remote learning. Single child and whole group bubble working at home. He explained that Microsoft Teams would be used to carry out live lessons for KS2 and KS1 would record video lessons for the children to watch and complete tasks, EYFS to use tapestry. He agreed that the documents would be standardised. This would provide more teacher interaction with the children.

AS explained that to encourage parents and children to log on to the teams system, all classes will be uploading a Christmas song for parents and children to watch. This would be in place of Christmas concerts; this would mean that any issues could be sorted before the system is needed.

CM mentioned an issue with Facebook, she felt that JI handled it really well; a conversation took place around this issue.

Concerns and Ideas

CM mentioned the school menu and said some parents were not happy with the choices. JI explained that we had appointed a new catering manager who had started today, the menu would be changing.

LB also said that the menus do not seem as healthy as they were prior to lockdown. JI parents that it had been adapted for eating in the classroom, again the new catering manager would be looking at this.

Parents would like more communication at the end of the school day as it is a quick hand over to make sure that things have been OK. She wanted to ensure that important messages were passed on. JI said that this was difficult with the current pandemic, but hopefully this would improve as time goes on.

She asked if children were allowed to have a drink and go to the toilet when they need to, JI confirmed that this was the case, but they would be encouraged to use the toilet at break and lunchtime in order to maximise teaching time.

LB asked about reading books and when they should be getting them. This had been discussed recently at a Senior leadership Meeting, EYFS collect in on Monday and give them out on Thursday, Years 1 and 2 collect on Thursday and give out on Monday.

Response - This has been investigated and EYFS and Years 1&2 will give out on Thursday and collect on Monday after January.

LB felt that there were inconsistencies with Dojo points- JI to feed back to teachers

NJ said that the children were not getting their spelling words in time to learning them, JI would investigate. She said her child misses the jacket potato.

Response – Lunch menus were discussed previously.

Spellings are stuck in the journal on Friday, spelling test is on a Friday, this gives children a full week to practice.

APF ask if One Plans would revert to being teacher led. MH said that this term she went through every one plan with the teachers, as she was new to the school. Going forward, she would be training teachers to enable them to undertake the one plans, however MH will step in for high level SEN and EHCP in order to ensure that if any EHCPs are required we have the required paperwork in place.

JH said that the snack trolley was missed.

JH wanted to ensure that reading was not seen as a punishment. JI did agree that making it a punishment to read during break time did not go hand in hand with reading for pleasure.

APF felt that there had been a change in the way that behaviour was being dealt with, she gave an example of detention for bad behaviour. JI said that she would talk to teachers about this issue. JI felt that children must feel safe in school so that they can learn and this should be done sensitively.

HW did not have anything to add.

JI thanked everyone for their attendance and hoped that had they enjoyed it and found it useful.


Notes from EA received Friday 10th December 2020

parents mentioned that they felt the dojo awards appeared not to be fair and often the same child was winning, so please could this be looked into.

Response - This has been dealt with above.

parent mentioned that they would like to know if the lollipop man could be monitored, they felt he was often not there (I did reply and saying the school do not appoint the lollipop man and you always inform us when he is not there)

Response - The crossing patrol is employed by Essex CC, we do not have any control over this, we are simply advised if he is unwell, unfortunately they do not have any cover if he is absent.

parent asked if there was going to be a virtual singing assembly or show at some point, they pointed out that the year 4’s have not been involved in any show since reception. This then prompted 7 parents to agree and asked me to mention the lack of performances.

Response – unfortunately, this is not possible at the moment, please see response above regarding the songs being uploaded to the new teams accounts

parent asked if TA’s are allowed to cross bubbles.

Response – yes, this has been risk assessed.

parents asked if the snack trolley would be coming back soon.

Response – We have no plans to reinstate the snack trolley at the present time










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