Newsletter 15: 27th November

St. Cuthbert’s RC Primary School

Newsletter 15 – Friday 27th November 2020

St Cuthbert’s CARES We are: Creative Active Respectful Equal Supported

Good afternoon all,

It is hard to believe that we are almost into December already. As always, there is lots of important information in this week’s newsletter. We are very grateful to you for taking the time to read this information. As always let us know if you have any questions about the coming term. We can be contacted on (0131 443 2621) or via our admin mailbox (

Two Way Digital Functionality – MS Teams

City of Edinburgh Council have decided that they will switch on the functionality allowing both pupils and teaching staff to use both camera and mic facilities on Teams in the near future. No staff member is obligated to make use of the facility and it is envisaged that those doing so would at present, only do so if a class was to be sent home to self isolate and the teacher was willing and able to use the functionality. City of Edinburgh Council also recommends that in advance of this change that all parents/carers read the attached ‘Responsible Use Policy’.

Staff School Jackets

You may have noticed myself and other staff members wearing the new blue reflective material school jackets. The aim behind the purchase of these is twofold: Firstly, to ensure that pupils can easily identify staff in the playground at break and lunch when they require help. Secondly, in order to tie in with our support for school uniform and the fostering of a corporate identity at St Cuthbert’s. We hope that you will see and support the benefits of this decision.

Playground Boombox

Another item that we have managed to purchase through school funds is a Bluetooth boombox. This piece of equipment will allow us to play music for pupils at breaks and along with our new playground equipment and staff identifying jackets make the playground an even happier and more enjoyable space than before. It can also be used to support P.E activities.

Access to Digital Devices/MS Teams

As you know we have been using MS Teams for homework this year. The take up of this, as it was during lockdown, has been very good. We are however, keen to support any family that does not have access to a device with the loan of an iPad. This would involve pupils and parents/carers reading the Council’s ‘Responsible Use’ of ICT policy as well as reading, signing and returning the school’s own Home/School Digital Device contract. Please let us know via the admin mailbox, if you are interested in taking up this offer and we will be in touch.

Support for Learning Teacher Consultations

Please note that these will take place sometime in late December. Depending on uptake of requests some calls may need to be made in early January. A letter will come out next week with a choice of time and dates. Please also indicate if you require an interpreter.

Christmas Arrangements at St Cuthbert’s (Lunch/Jumper/Pantomime/Parties)

· Christmas Lunch will be served on Thursday 10th December. Unfortunately, we cannot change the ParentPay menus but if you wish your child to have a Christmas Lunch please book this as follows: If you choose a cold option (sandwich/roll), your child will be given a veggie haggis puff pastry parcel and if you choose the hot option, your child will be given a turkey burger. Both will be served with Christmas trimmings. Desert will be fruit plus a Christmas surprise! Please note there will be NO option for a sandwich/roll on this day. Please be advised that booking deadline for Christmas Dinner is 2nd December. Pupils may also wear a Christmas Jumper to school that day.

· Pantomime: The school has purchased a pupil friendly online pantomime: Cinderella, which will be shown to classes on 16th and 17th December. It will also be available on demand for classes to watch after this date.

· Parties: These will take place on the following days/times

· P1 – Friday 18th December

· P2 – Thursday 17th December

· P3 – Friday 18th December

· P4 – Monday 14th December

· P5 – Tuesday 15th December

· P6 – Wednesday 16th December

· P7 – Thursday 17th December

As with P.E, we have no changing facilities available currently in school, so pupils who wish to wear party clothes should come to school dressed for the party on their class’s nominated day.

Christmas Jumper Bank

As above, we will be holding our Christmas Dinner and Jumper Day on Thursday 10th December. While the wearing of the jumper is purely optional, we know pupil’s love to take part. Equally, we know that buying a Christmas jumper for your child can be a costly exercise. One of our parents made the excellent suggestion that we should try to accumulate – under Covid safe guidelines – a bank of used jumpers for pupils to wear. If you have any Christmas jumpers that no longer fit your children and would like to donate them, please feel very welcome to do so. We will then make our donations available on request to the wider parent/carer body. More info to follow.

Rights Respecting Schools: Bronze Award

Congratulations to the pupils and staff, led by Miss Pusker for achieving our Bronze award in Rights Respecting schools. Great progress has been made since August. This is the first step towards the gold standard which we ultimately hope to achieve as a school community. More information to follow.

School Recovery and Renewal Plan 2020-21

Schools usually produce an annual School Improvement Plan (SIP) setting out their goals for the year. Due to the current situation this year’s plan has been renamed the School Recovery and Renewal Plan. A driver diagram summarising this plan for St Cuthbert’s is now available on our website under the SQIP tab.

Closing the Gap Teacher: 23rd November to 22nd December 2020

Our ‘Closing the Gap’ teacher: Ms Flora McCulloch started with us this week and has been a great help. She will be with us for the remainder of this term and then on Thursdays and Fridays next term.

First Holy Communions Update – November 28th 2020

Our final First Communions of this session take place on Saturday. The two so far have been joyous occasions, despite the challenging circumstances and we look forward to the same again tomorrow. Look out for photos on our school Twitter Page once all celebrations have taken place. There will also be an opportunity for you to take your own photos both in the

church and outside after Mass on the day of your child’s celebration. Thanks to the pupils, families and staff members who have made these occasions so special.

First Reconciliations Update (Current P4 Pupils Only) – 5-12th December 2020

Parents/Carers of pupils who were in P3 last year and should have celebrated their First Reconciliation in March 2020, will have the opportunity to celebrate the sacrament in December: between the dates of Saturday 5th and Saturday 12th December. Parents/carers can select either a Saturday or weeknight slot by contacting Fr Duffy on 0131 443 1317 or to arrange a time for this sacrament to be celebrated. Well over 50% of parents/carers have now contacted Fr Duffy. Thanks for this, please do so in the coming weeks, if you haven’t had the chance to do so already.

*Please note that any pupil wishing to celebrate their First Holy Communion in 2021 must have also made their First Reconciliation.

St Cuthbert’s Primary School Nursery Update

Another member of staff; Mrs Kasia Barnat, joined the nursery team this week. We have received the go ahead from Edinburgh Council to finally offer nursery places to children who will be starting in January 2021. Parents/Carers will receive offer letters at the beginning of next week and they will be informed of the next steps required to accept the offered place.

Reporting Absence (Particularly with Reference to Possible Covid Symptoms)

Thank you for the sensible approach you are taking to gauging when children are not well enough to attend school. In the current circumstances of an ongoing pandemic, we need to remain cautious and follow appropriate guidelines. We very much appreciate that our parents and carers are doing this.

If you are calling us to report absence, please be specific in reporting reasons for absence. In cases where you are reporting any of the following symptoms relating to Covid-19:

· High Temperature

· New and continuous cough

· Loss of, or change in, the senses of taste and smell

please be advised that pupils with any of these symptoms must be tested and evidence of the test result e-mailed to our admin account (

If a test is positive, pupils must have isolated for 10 days before returning to school 48 hours after symptoms have ceased. Siblings and families must isolate for 14 days.

If test result is negative, pupils should return to school once they have had 48 hours without any of the above symptoms.

Our Learning This Week in St Cuthbert’s Primary School

Please see this week’s learning below. I hope you enjoy reading it. Please also check out our school Twitter Account @stcuthbertsRCP when learning will be shared on the following days:

Monday P1/P2 Tuesday P7/LCC1/2 Wednesday P4/P6 Thursday P3/P5

P1 – This week we have been busy reading and spelling our 1.4 green words and have enjoyed learning the j and v sounds. We are learning to partition numbers in SEAL which we are getting very good at. We have also been discussing about learning being difficult and we have been introduced to Triatops, a dinosaur who reminds us that trying hard really helps us to learn. Most of us collected our Triatops sticker this week and are looking forward to meeting the next dinosaur who will help us in a different way!

P2 – In Numeracy, we are learning to name a number before or after a given number within the range of 1-100, we are learning to count in jumps of 10 and add 2 numbers using different strategies. In Literacy, we are learning to use a word bank to create a sentence. In HWB – we have been learning how to shoot in Basketball.

P3 – In literacy, P3 have been learning about adding adjectives and extending sentences in our writing. In PE we have been learning to play group ball games and practice passing the ball to each other. For Eco-schools, P3 have been working on the school’s Action Plan for Litter, Water and Waste Minimisation topics.

P4 – This week P4 have been learning about using facts to construct for and against arguments during discussion and written work. They have also made posters to highlight their understanding. In Maths they are continuing to work on multiplying and dividing by 6. Our topic has led us to understand more about why rainforests are important for the survival of our planet and the problems that arise from deforestation. This week we have also enjoyed taking part in indoor games with our Active Sports Coordinator.

P5 – This week in Primary 5 we have been learning to include speech in our writing and to use synonyms for ‘said’ to make our writing more interesting. In Building Resilience work, we have been learning about why it is important to keep connected with our friends. We also enjoyed a session with our Active Schools coordinator, Mrs Damen, where we practised running using the Beep Test.

P6 – -In Maths with Mr. Vilanova, we have been learning about lines of symmetry. In Literacy we have been learning to write narrative stories inspired by the Antarctic and Arctic regions. In Numeracy we have been learning to create our own fraction walls to find equivalent fractions.

P7 – P7 have been furthering their knowledge of adverbs and using them in WW2 poems about ‘The Blitz. We have been learning about place value in the topic of decimals in Numeracy. We can now round numbers to two decimal places. In Spanish, P7 have been learning to name objects that they would use in school.

LCC1 -LCC1 have been learning numbers after 10 in maths and have begun to learn how to use full stops and capital letters in their writing. They have also been investigating their senses and focused on hearing this week.

LCC2 – This week in LCC2 we have had fun learning about electricity and creating our own electrical circuits to light a bulb, making a buzzer buzz and use a motor to spin a fan. We also worked hard in PE with Mrs Damen practising our throwing skills and playing games. In art we started looking at and using pointillism in our art work. In literacy we have been using the prefixes dis, in and un within our work and learning the different meaning. Within maths we have started looking at fractions and how they can be used to share things equally.

Head Teacher Availability

As above, please continue to feel very welcome at any time to contact me by phone or to e-mail our admin mailbox for my attention and I will respond as quickly as I can.

Mass Times at our local Parish – St. Cuthbert’s, Slateford

Fr Duffy passes on his best wishes to all of our families on their return to school. Attendance at Mass can now be secured by booking online. Please see details on the parish website.

Saturday 6pm – Vigil Mass

Sunday 10am – Parish Mass

Sunday 5pm – Additional Mass


Thanks again for your support in these challenging times. I hope that you and your families enjoy the weekend.

Kind regards.

Mr P Brack, Head Teacher

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