Parents and Community
“As soon as I walked through the door I thought, ‘He has to come here. This is what he needs," - Year 4 Parent
The Gatsby Benchmark
We are continually revising our curriculum to meet the current need. Our most recent development is around incorporating the 8 Gatsby Bench Marks. From the 2nd of January 2018 onwards, a key requirement for schools is to ensure that there is an opportunity for a range of education and training providers to access pupils from year 8 to year 13, however we feel it is important to embed these principles from a much early age.
If you have any further questions regarding any of this information, please do not hesitate to as your child's class teacher. If you have any ideas or suggestions, we welcome them.
Attendance and Punctuality
It is very important that your child arrives at school on time every day.
Our school day starts promptly at 8.30am each morning. If your child travels to school via the Waltham Forest Assistance with Travel (the school bus) they will be collected at an allocated time and will arrive on time each day.
Absence from school can only usually be justified when your child is ill. Family holidays, outings and where possible, medical and dental appointments must be arranged out of school time.
If, for any reason, your child is late or absent, a message or letter must be given to the school office explaining the reason for the absence/lateness. If you know your child will be absent, a telephone call before 8.30am will prevent the automated ‘first day’ call-in system from being activated.
Lateness and absence are monitored by the Home School Liaison Officers and the Local Authority, in addition to the Headteacher.
Holidays during term time
Children who miss school for this reason, will be marked with an unauthorised absence. Holidays will not be agreed during term time.
Please remember that, like you, the school wants the very best for your child. If you have any concerns, however trivial, please come and talk to us as soon as possible. We have translators/interpreters available during the school day.
Helping our pupils keep safe online
Making sure you know what your children are accessing on the Internet is vital in keeping them safe in this ever expanding and changing, technological age.
A new gaming 'craze' Fortnite is sweeping primary schools across the country. We are aware that many parents are not yet fully aware of the content of this game. We encourage all parent for follow the advice below to mitigate risks and maximise keeping their children safe. Screen time, stranger chat and rage at losing can become insurmountable without consistent guidance and monitoring over a child's online use, but with the right advice we hope to provide a greater understanding of the games content and how parents and carers can keep their children safe.
What is Fortnite?
Fortnite is a survival game where 100 players fight against each other in player versus player combat to be the last one standing. It is a fast-paced game where 'killing' the other opponents is the name of the game. Every other 'player' can be a complete stranger to your child, from anywhere in the world, in any age bracket. There are an estimated 3.4 million current players on Fortnite.
In the UK the Video Standards council rate Fortnite as PEGI 12 for frequent scenes of mild violence. In the US the ESRB rate Fortnite as Teen only suitable for those 13 years and older. iTunes rates the game only suitable for children 12+ for Frequent/Intense Cartoon or Fantasy Violence and Infrequent/Mild Medical/Treatment Information. As all children of Primary age are between the ages of 4 - 11, it is not advised by Hawkswood or any of the organisations mentioned above that children under 12 assess this game. If your child is playing this game online we strongly suggest that you encourage them to take you through the game, exploring the content and any other people that they may be connecting with online. From here, you can make the decision as to whether they access it again. We strongly advise that the content of the game is neither useful or constructive for any of the pupils at Hawkswood.
Monitoring who they are talking to
Along with suitability, it’s worth checking the online communication settings on any game to ensure your child is’nt talking to strangers. Fortnite users statistically range from teenagers to much older adults.
Managing in-app purchase on the game
The game has considerable in-app purchases (games within the game that need you to pay money towards to access) so you'll need to be aware this. These areas will ask for you to set up passwords on credit cards associated with the system. This is important to remember for any online games your child may access, be it on a laptop, computer, tablet or gaming console. Ensure the device your child is using isn't linked to any adults payment details...you could find yourself facing some very high bills if not monitored closely!
Setting time limits on 'screen time'
Finally, it’s important to have some limits in terms of play time for 'screen time' or 'gaming online'. This is something you can set as a family and then discuss with your child. Screen time does not have to be something that always happens, with a clear time limit and monitored use, you may choose to have particular days of the week or day when your child does or doesn't have screen access.
The National Online Safety Team have teamed up with MusicAlternative as part of their #WakeUpWednesday campaign, to launch a Fortnite online safety song for you to share with your children
The song encourages parents and carers to "stay switched on" to online dangers when their children are playing Fortnite.
What do people say about Hawkswood Primary School?
In February 2018 the BBC’s Victoria Derbyshire Programme filmed live from Hawkswood Primary School as part of a week-long special focus on Pupil Referral Units across the country: https://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b09t28h4/victoria-derbyshire-26022018
They also did online news articles featuring Hawkswood Primary:
The feedback we received from across the country was amazing! Below are just a few of the comments we received during and after the programme was aired:
Watching the work of the teachers and staff of the Pupil Referral unit on #VictoriaLIVE is an eye opener. What is the definition of a Hero these days? I'd say these teachers fit the brief, especially in this tricky environment. - Scott, via Twtitter 26.02.18
Well done to all the teachers and children in the referral unit shown. The teachers have shown what hard work it is, but how rewarding the job is! It just goes to show what discipline, consistency and being calm during difficult situations can create. I really do take my hat off to the teachers, they really ARE absolutely BRILLIANT!!!! WELL DONE TO EVERYONE INVOLVED! - Kerry, Via Text 26.02.18
So inspiring to watch @VicDerbyshire @VictoriaLIVE footage at Hawkswood Primary Pupil Referral Unit. Seeing teachers & pupils interacting shows how treating them as individuals, being firm but supportive, has such a positive impact. Amazing kids & the teachers are treasures! Kiran, Via Twitter 26.02.18
A day in the Life of a Pupil Referral Unit. What a wonderful Head & team. You are doing a wonderful job & you support those fabulous children. - Gill, Via Twitter 26.02.18
My sons are both on the verge of being referred to a PRU. Suspected autism and behavioural issues. This has reassured me no end, what a fantastic resource well done. - Carol Via Twitter 26.02.18
...How nice to see how happy and very well behaved all the children were at your school. You have done a fantastic work and they are going to be a credit to the community and our society in the future with all thanks to you and your staff. Keep up the good work, we admire you from afar. All schools should be like yours! - From a Mother, a Londoner and a fellow Human being, via letter 01.03.18
Your teachers and their attitudes, along with your exceptional leadership skills are the key to why the wonderful children in your school are so confident and articulate. I have always stated that a good organisation works if the top is right, direction and communication comes from the top down and from the bottom up...the world needs more schools like yours. - Kate, via email 05.03.18
Having read your article, it appears that your PRU is leading outstanding practice. Myself and our SENCO agree it would be beneficial for us to make the journey down to London to visit your PRU and see what we can take from your work and incorporate it into our provision. - Louis, via email (From Nottingham) 05.03.18
Dear Marie and all your team, Thank you so very much for inviting us into your school and being so open, welcoming and amaizng. I am in awe of what you do. You are all, children and staff, brilliant. - Victoria Derbyshire 29.02.18
Here at Hawkswood we are always delighted when pupils and their families revisit and keep in touch. Please find below quotes and thoughts of the experiences of our parents and pupils.
Parent and Carers voice
"From the moment I met Mrs Gentles I felt reassured that finally somebody understood me and was whiling to help and support both me and my child to get to a better place. Then I met Miss Milligan and I felt an almighty sense of relief. It was the first time in my son's life that I felt anyone could relate to his needs and see a positive way to move forward..'' November 2017
"I am so thankful for the Nurture Group at Hawkswood. This was the perfect intervention program for my son. I am already seeing signs of a happier more confident child..." November 2017
"I'm extremely pleased that my son is going to Hawkswood. It has really transformed him.'' , passion and care in helping our son. Professionals like you and your team are hard to come by.'' July 2017
''It's been just over a year since you showed us round the school. The suddeness of the situation that we found ourselves in, with our son having to leave his Primary and go to the PRU, left us feeling rather dazed and upset for a good few weeks. However, a year on, he has progressed in leaps and bounds and our appriciation of you and all the staff at Hawkswood is huge.'' February 2018
"The teachers always explain things clearly to me so I know what to do and it just makes sense" March 2018
"I like is at Hawkswood. I like the healthy food. I think my behaviour has got better here." March 2018
"There’s a lot of people who care about me here, I know that now.’' March 2018
''You are the best at your job!'' April 2018
''Hawkswood makes me feel good about myself. I didn't feel like that before. Now I can be anything I want to be.'' April 2018
Worried about a child?
Contact our trained helpline counsellors for 24/7 help, advice and support.
Are you 18 or under?
Are you being bullied?
If you are being bullied, or you are not ready to make a report to CEOP, you can talk to Childline anonymously online or on the phone - No worry is too big or too small.
Childline offers free, confidential advice and support whatever your worry, whenever you need help.
Child Exploitation and Online Protection command (CEOP)
CEOP is a law enforcement agency and is here to keep children and young people safe from sexual exploitation and abuse (https://www.ceop.police.uk/safety-centre)
Make a report: https://www.ceop.police.uk/ceop-reporting/Step2/