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May 2020 Newsletter

Hello! Welcome to the latest edition of the School’s Out Henleaze Newsletter, we hope you are all well, making the most of the sunshine and time with your children, and keeping safe in these challenging times.

Holiday Club

We have just wrapped up two weeks of Easter Holiday Club, which, we were pleased to be able to stay open to support vulnerable children and children whose parents are key workers.

During this time the children benefitted from the increased attention from the playworkers, and opportunities to really elaborate on their play ideas; for instance, their den got bigger day by day, turning into all sorts of things from a bakery to a toy shop. The playworkers appreciated the opportunity to get to know each child really well and had a lot of fun helping them create props and getting absorbed in their play. We also appreciated the amazing weather, and managed to play lots of games outside in the sunshine. The children had so much fun, and we always enjoy children telling their parents they are not yet ready to go home!

After School Club

After School Club is currently open to vulnerable children and children whose parents are key workers. Having fewer children has allowed us to change how we operate. Rather than planned activities, we can respond to the children’s ideas and interests and build on these. For example making our own versions of favourite board games, playing running around games outside and letting the children choose the craft activities each day. The children have also been allowed some time each day on the Wii, and it has been a pleasure watching our older children helping and teaching the younger ones.

Term 5 and 6 Bookings and iPAL

We can confirm that we have cancelled Term 5 (April, May) After School Club places.

Term 6 (June, July) are still booked. These will be cancelled if the school remains closed.

Some notes on how iPAL (our current booking system) invoices:

1. One term can cross two months but iPAL invoices monthly. Term 4, for instance, has been billed in March and now, April (where April is for places on 1st, 2nd and/or 3rd April only, depending on your child’s booking). Normally this would include fees for after school club sessions after Easter too, part of term 5 but these have been cancelled. You will see the cancelled dates listed if you click on the relevant invoice number in your iPAL wallet.

2. If you log onto your iPAL account and look at your wallet, you may see a negative RED number, this relates to fees outstanding for January, February and March. Please pay these fees now.

3. If you have a green ‘0.00’ balance in your wallet this relates to fees for April as described in 1.

4. Please click on the #invoice number to view the invoice, you will see what the email invoice amount refers to and can view the dates by clicking the ‘view dates’ button.

5. Click ‘pay now’ to pay by credit card or voucher.

6. If you pay by voucher please select the voucher option on the drop-down menu and enter the voucher provider name and the amount.

7. The administrator then verifies the voucher payment when we receive the funds into our account.

8. Monthly voucher payments should be entered by the iPAL account holder by adding money to your wallet. The administrator verifies in the same way as in 7.

9. Those that do pay by monthly voucher might like to suspend payments until the current crisis is over to avoid building up too much credit.

We hope that this explains iPAL a bit more, if after reading this you still have queries with recent iPAL invoices please let Roberta know via

After School Club Places for September

  • Currently we are not sure that all will be back to normal by September but we will, tentatively, be working on the bookings over the next few months.

  • It is important to let the Administrator know if you would like to change your existing after school club sessions for September or cancel them entirely. We will do our best to accommodate changes.

  • If you are on the waiting list, we cannot guarantee places for September. We are over-subscribed and a typical wait time is a year.

  • Committee members get first refusal on places at the after school club and we are still looking for a Treasurer. Please see the link for more information

  • We have received a number of applicants this year so other than a Treasurer the committee is now closed for new members.


We are currently posting all sorts of interesting things on our Facebook page, such as quizzes, activity ideas, child friendly podcasts, and all the different charities our staff and parents are supporting across the community, so why not follow us for regular updates?

Keeping In Touch

Thanks to all the parents who have been in touch to let us know how their children are getting on. We miss all the children terribly and have loved seeing your photos. If we haven’t heard from you (or even if we have) please feel free to send in photos of what you are all up to!

Staff Update

A big congratulations to our amazing playworker Tasa, who recently passed her exams and is now a Junior Doctor working for the NHS. We wish her all the best in the future and she will be welcome to come and visit the children once things return to normal. Congratulations also to Cal for completing his Level 3 in Playwork, a huge piece of work completed alongside his other jobs.

In other news, Jenny has been busy in her spare time by volunteering as an NHS Responder, and in her spare spare time she has been helping her elderly and vulnerable neighbours with their shopping. Hannah has been raising money for Penny Brohn, a charity dedicated to providing free, integrative care to everyone living with cancer, before, during and after treatment, in honour of her mum’s passing. Siobhan has been teaching children of key workers at her school in Thornbury. Also, Emma H, Bernie and the children at Holiday Club have organised some rainbow posters to say Thank You to St Peters Hospice for their continued hard work in this challenging time.

Broad Beans Update

The beans are coming along really well, we have had small groups of children coming to the Pond Area to help pull out weeds around the plants and transfer some worms to the compost bins. We always welcome suggestions at After School Club, so if anyone has any ideas of what we should grow next, please let us know!

School’s Out Henleaze Green Credentials

At After School Club and Holiday Club we make a real effort to recycle everything we can. Firstly, we have reduced or eliminated the amount of non-recyclables we buy (e.g. glitter), secondly we reuse what we can through junk modelling and thirdly by separating out rubbish into the council provided bags and boxes. Also, we compost appropriate food waste and have used it to help our Broad Beans to grow. The children are involved with all of this, and have made us some excellent posters showing everyone what they need to do.

What to Say to Children Instead of “Be Careful!”

Help you child foster awareness by saying:

Notice how… these rocks are slippery; that branch is strong…

Do you see… the stinging nettles; your friends nearby?

Try moving… your feet carefully; your hands quickly…

Try using your… hands; feet; arms; legs.

Can you hear… the rushing water; the singing birds; the wind?

Do you feel… stable on that rock; heat from the fire?

Are you feeling… scared; excited; tired; safe?

Help Your Child Problem Solve by Saying:

What’s your plan… if you climb that boulder; cross that log?

What can you use… to get across; for your adventure?

Where will you… put that rock; climb that tree; dig that hole?

How will you… get down; get up; get across?

Who will… be with you; go with you; help you if…?

Thank You!

Thank you to all the parents who have dropped in toys, games, books and even cakes! They have all been thoroughly enjoyed. (All resources are stored for three days before being given to the children.)

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