Dear Parents and Carers,

I hope you have had a good week. We were thrilled that so many of our new families joined us for coffee this week and look forward to welcoming any parents and carers who would like to come to our first monthly coffee morning of the term next Wednesday (6th October at 10am).

The children have had a great week in school. Some have made terrific storyboards and were able to talk clearly about what they had drawn and written. Another pupil made a fact sheet about a Triceratops and told me ‘I didn’t get fussy when I made a mistake!’ Some of our youngest children have been using Write Dance to support the development of their writing skills and are now making circles, lines and dots on paper in response to the music. ‘The Tiger who came to tea’ has been a big success with many of our pupils who have been keen to tell me about the story and what learning they are doing related to it. A number of them had a ‘Tiger’ visit their classes this afternoon which prompted lots of great communication as well as terrific sandwich making! Others have been working really hard to develop their independence skills; making improvements in their ability to transition, asking when they need to go to the toilet or when they want to access a resource. Others are gaining confidence in the school environment, for example, one reception pupil left his classroom for the first time this week. A number of children have made progress in recognising colours and two children asked their teacher if they could do extra maths work which always makes us proud!  One pupil has made really good progress in using switches and her walker. Another child developed her skills in exploring sensory props within a story.  Lots of children have made progress in their communication skills using simple phrases, signing more complex sentences and using their communication devices to express what they want or need or to comment in their learning. Some of them have really persisted at this and worked hard to make accurate sentences. I really enjoyed chatting to one of our pupils who sounded out his name and was determined to make sure I heard the final sound!  One of our new, year 6 prefects came to see me for ‘a meeting’ and could remember her historical learning from two years ago and apply it to current affairs. Wow! She also told me what a ‘lovely place Palatine is’ which was a fantastic end to the week. I hope these little snippets of school life really inspire you and give you some insight into all the wonderful and varied learning opportunities the children have at Palatine.

Doctors are seeing a sharp increase in children needing emergency surgery for bowel complications caused by swallowing tiny magnets. We see small, high-powered magnets in our everyday lives and they are even used as fashion and party accessories.  However, if a child swallows magnets, they can cut of the blood supply in the intestines and cause significant internal damage within hours and can be life-threatening.

If you have toys or adult desk toys with small magnets, magnetic construction sets or fridge magnets, make sure they are out of reach of children.  The magnets used in such items are often bought cheaply from online marketplaces and can be 10 times stronger than permitted by law. If anyone in the home uses magnetic products such as fake piercings, make sure these are out of reach of children too.

In the event that you suspect your child has swallowed a magnet, take them immediately to your nearest A&E of call 999 for an ambulance.  Symptoms may not be obvious but your child may have stomach pain, be vomiting, have a fever, be pointing to their throat or stomach. Do not wait for symptoms though, if you have the slightest suspicion a magnet has been swallowed, seek emergency assistance. More information can be found on the Child Accident Prevention Trust website.

Have a lovely weekend everyone.

With very best wishes,



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