Promoting the right attitudes is best achieved with school and home in partnership. The school rules, which are few, are based on common sense, courtesy and safety and I would like to draw your attention to the following short list.
At Lady Joanna Thornhill School we expect and encourage the children to demonstrate high standards of behaviour and self-discipline. We try to foster an environment in which the children learn to respect other people, their cultures, their opinions and their property.
Children are encouraged, with this in mind, to increasingly take on responsibilities as they progress through the school. In most cases the staff deal directly with the children concerned when poor behaviour does occur. On the whole these are isolated cases. However, we feel that it would be helpful if all parents were fully aware of the school’s policy.
Staff encourage children to work hard and be responsible members of the school. Our ‘Good Citizenship’ awards, Bouncer the Dog for Key Stage 1 and Coco the Bear for Key Stage 2, are presented fortnightly to a child or children who have been particularly helpful in and around school. The winner takes the ‘animal’ home for the weekend and afterwards it remains in their class until the next presentation.
Two bears named Joanna & Thornhill are given on a day by day basis for children who need particular encouragement or acknowledgement for good work, good behaviour, being a good friend or who need some ‘TLC’. These bears are kept in the class during the day and returned to the Headteacher at the end of the day.
Following concerns raised by parents and staff, the Governing Body discussed the issue of whether dogs should continue to be allowed onto the school site. The matter had arisen from concerns about the potential dangers to our boys and girls and not, I should add, because we have had an actual incident.
After much discussion it was decided that ‘waiting for an accident to happen’ before making a decision was not appropriate. Consequently, it was decided that as from the beginning of the Summer term 2008 dogs will no longer be allowed on the school site. (NB Guide dogs and dogs authorised by the school management for specific reasons are excepted)
For a small number of you that bring your dogs with you to school I am sure that this will be a disappointment. I am quite sure, though, that as parents you will understand why the decision has been made. Our dogs are generally very well behaved and carefully monitored, however, 420 children on a school playground can be an excitement and a challenge for even the best trained pet. None of us would wish to see an accident happen which we could have prevented.
This ruling will also specifically apply to dogs being left unattended at the school railing.
Unfortunately, we are unable to apply the same ruling to our school playing fields because of the public rights of way which exist. However, it would be greatly appreciated if parents would cooperate by not taking their dogs onto that area whilst children are using it.
Thank you for your cooperation in this matter.