Letter from Mr Spiers, Headteacher

Dear Parents and Carers,

The AGFS build up to Christmas has begun in earnest this week. We switched on the Christmas tree on Tuesday - much to the excitement of our Year 7 scholars! Decorations are up around school and Santa has been spotted on the roof! There will be a range of themed events leading up to Christmas to keep our scholars smiling. We will be sure to keep you up to date via twitter , through this bulletin and on our website www.arkgreenwichfreeschool.org.  Following parent feedback we are soon to release a new parent app called MCAS. This app is has far more robust features which will continue to support parent and school communications. For further information on the app and how to download it, scroll down for more. 

Twice annually we ask all parents to complete a short survey which provides important feedback to help us improve our school further. We really value your feedback and hope you will take 5-minutes to complete the survey using the link here. 

Many thanks for your ongoing support.

Mr Spiers

How to Use the New Parent Bulletin Format

As you can see, we are trialing a new format for our parent bulletin, where all the information you need is in one easy and accessible spot. To help you make the most of it, please follow these steps to ensure you're up-to-date each week. If you have feedback on the new layout, please send it to Ms Linn at jlinn@arkgreenwich.org

  • To view upcoming dates, click on 'View Calendar' in the bar below this message. It will take you to the full calendar of the current month. You can click into it for further details. 
  • To view and download attachments, scroll to the 'Attachments' section and click on the subsequent tile with the document/form you need. 

AGFS Updates 4th December 2020

Writing Contributions Wanted by Mayor of Greenwich

The Mayor of Royal Greenwich, Councillor Linda Bird is asking for contributions from everyone, either poems, prose, illustrated or not that focus on how the Covid – 19 lockdown has been for them as part of a borough-wide writing project. They now have a deadline for this and are asking for your contributions by Friday 11th December 2020. 

The Mayor sends the following message: 

"Thank you to those schools for expressing an interest in contributing to our memory book. Contributions can be as a poem, a song, a piece of prose, a throught bubble, a converstaion. Your contribution should also not be too long- very maximum of 200 words as a guide. Ordinary handwriting is fine - there is no need to use a computer unless you prefer. This could also take the form of a piece of shared writing from a group or a whole class. Please make sure the name of your school is clear on your contribution. Also the name(s) and age(s) of all inviduals who contributied to the writing.  Your memory is going to form a very important part of our publication, which will tell how the people of Greenwich felt, how we behaved, how we came together and how we survived during this time. Your memory will be there for future generations to read, as part of our Greenwich History."

Please do send work that you wish to be included in the project to Mayor@royalgreenwich.gov.uk

Nasal Flu Vaccine Clinic Sat 5th December

Oxleas is holding a clinic on 5th December for children aged reception to year 7. If your child did not receive the flu vaccine in school already this year, we encourage you to read the attached information below. 

Duke of Edinburgh Awards

Scholars whave been contacted regarding this year's funding for Duke of Edinburgh awards. We are excited to continue to offer this prestigious certification for our scholars, which aligns with our school's values so well. Those who participated last year but were unable to complete their expedition due to Covid will now have an opportunity alongside new scholars to the programme in the spring.  All families that this impacts have received an email from Mr Guildford via reception. Should you have further questions, please contact Mr Guildford here

Free School Meals Eligibility

If you have had a change in circumstances and believe your child could be eligible for free school meals (FSM) please fill in your information via the link below and we will be notified immediately of the outcome. Any one eligible for FSM will also be issued vouchers to cover lunches over the Christmas break so we strongly encourage any family who believes they could be eligible to complete this short form. The Government has temporarily extended eligibility for free school meals to groups with no recourse to public funds. The income threshold for these groups is higher (£16,500 after tax) than the income threshold for standard eligibility.  

Lunch Account Top Ups

While scholars will never be left without food, it is the responsibility of the parent and child to ensure there are adequate funds available on their lunch account, or that the child bring in a packed lunch. Should your child be left without money on their account, a call will be made home and notice will be given. Accounts can be topped up with cash via the cashloaders in the main school foyer, or via WisePay. Should you need to set up a WisePay account or request a password reset, please email ccashford@arkgreenwich.org.

Year 7 and 8 Parents Evenings

Year 7 parents evening will be happening on 7th of January 2021. Further information to book in will be sent via email early next week. Please keep an eye out for that message, and book in before end of term. 

Year 8 parents evening will take place the following week on 12th January. Further information will be sent next week via email next week. Please keep an eye out for these details to book in before end of term. 

Careers and Aspirations Information

Invitation For Parents: Success Beyond School

Guiding your child to a successful career

InvestIN provides students aged 12-18 with immersive work experience in some of the world's most competitive and desirable careers - medicine, law, engineering, investment banking and more. More than 40,000 students from 81 different countries have attended an InvestIN programme.

You are cordially invited to our free-of-charge, 'Live Online' event for parents aged 12-18. You will hear our expert panel share their knowledge on:

· Why your child's career starts at school

· The most in-demand skills top employers are looking for, and how to get them

· The role you can play in helping them achieve their aims

· Guidance on work experience, interview techniques, LinkedIn profiles and more

Date: Thursday 10th December 2020
Time: 19.30 - 21.00 (GMT)

Register your place here

Post-16 Progression—December Dash

A reminder to all scholars in Y11 they need to make a minimum of 3 applications to their chosen Post 16 Providers by Friday 18th December 2020.

After scholars have submitted an application to join a post-16 provider, it is vitally important to advise the AGFS Careers Advisor of each application completion by filling in the details at the following link: https://tinyurl.com/Post16ApplicationMade

Oxford Interview for AGFS Alum

We send our very best wishes and good luck to Alexia Brasenose, a former AGFS scholar, who will be undergoing her interviews at Oxford this week. Alexia demonstrated the values of AGFS and her scholarship has truly paid off. Congratulations, Alexia! Good luck next week! 

The Holiday Season has Arrived at AGFS

To kick off the holiday season, we lit our Christmas tree on Tuesday 1st December with our year 7s. Morgan and Murray had the honour of switching on the lights. The countdown to Christmas has begun!

Scholars of the Week

Congratulations to this week's top scholars for achieving the most golden tickets in their year groups. Each student has exemplified the school values of Ambition, Growth, Fellowship and Scholarship. 

New Parent Application: My Child at School (MCAS)

We've heard your concerns, and we've listened. We want to thank our parents and carers for their patience as we found a better solution for our parent application. We are excited to announce that starting on January 4th we'll be migrating all communications to parents via the MCAS app. The app is free to use on both Android and Apple phones, and can also be accessed via online. Some of the features included with MCAS are: 
  • Behaviour points (you'll be able to see when your child has a detention or golden ticket, as well as the reason)
  • Attendance tracking
  • School announcements and messages 
  • Reports on progress and achievement  
  • Permission forms 
Further details on how to download and use MCAS will be sent out next week. In preparation for the roll-out, please download the MCAS app via your phone's app store. We look forward to your feedback on our new system!

Christmas Jumper Day at AGFS

December will unveil some fun events for our scholars, including the lighting of our Christmas tree on 1st December, Christmas dinner, and more. On the 15th of December our scholars are encouraged to wear their most festive and creative Christmas jumpers and to donate £1 to the Mizen Foundation, a local charity that combats bullying. The donation link will be live on WisePay from 1st December. Alternatively, scholars may bring in a £1 coin on the 14th in preparation for the following day. Further information will be shared in a letter home in the upcoming days. We look forward to celebrating this festive season with our scholars and seeing their incredible jumpers! 

Upcoming Dates

19 March

Inset Day

24 March

Dress As Your Favourite Literary Character Day

26 March

Inset Day