Kevin Parker, school business manager at Ann Edwards Church of England Primary School near Cirencester, had an eventful autumn term


nn Edwards is an innovative and nurturing school that caters for 250

boys and girls, aged 4 to 11. We’re based in South Cerney, one of the largest villages in Gloucestershire. Our dedicated staff team provide a broad and balanced curriculum, with a strong emphasis on our pupils’ emotional and mental wellbeing. In terms of grants or revenue generation, we explore all opportunities where there can be a direct link back to increasing engagement with our pupils and parents, or enhancing our curriculum.

September We have applied for annual grants from the Ministry of Defence Education Support

Fund over the past few years, with varying levels of success (ranging from awards of £5,000 to more than £11,000). We are situated less than a mile from the Duke of Gloucester Barracks and currently have 48 service children in school. Through previous ESF

funding, we have been able to fund a teaching assistant to run nurture groups for these children. These groups (pictured overleaf) support pupils when their parents are

sent overseas to countries such as Brunei, Germany and Canada. For example, we have made scrapbooks about the countries the parents are deployed to, and we complete a pupil diary so parents can see the activities their child has been involved in. The nurture groups help us

identify any emotional issues experienced by the children, and allow us to provide support for them. We also support the pupils with transitions to other schools and countries by producing a transition ‘pizza box’ for each child. When children join our school, we complete an activity book with them to help them settle in. We would like to continue

with this pastoral support and build on what we have already achieved in supporting and working with the service community. Our application this year included a request to allow the nurture groups to continue, as well as some specifi c ELSA training for staff and an external multi-

sports club to be run on the army camp for our pupils.

October We had our fi rst positive Covid-19 result in school. This fell on the last day of the term, which meant the majority of our Year 5 and 6 pupils had to isolate during half-term. One of our pupils, Jack Ryall (below), decided this wasn’t going to stop him, and spent the week walking 60km around his garden to raise money for others. Jack had to overcome

thunderstorms and freezing temperatures, but he smashed his fundraising target of £100! The whole community got

behind him and he raised £1,500. This has been split between the Big Yellow Bus Project in Cirencester, which helps local homeless people, and our school PTA. We are extraordinary proud of what he achieved.

November Work has started on a new 83-plot housing development

Kevin presents Jack with a reward – chocolate trainers!

FundEd SPRING 2021 35

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