All Cannings CofE


Parent Focus Group

One of the areas identified for improvement from a past Parent Survey was communication and the newly formed Parent Focus Group met for the first time in October 2015.  The group is made up of new and established members of the school community, with pupils in all year groups, some living in the village and others further afield.  The members will help to gauge parent reaction and opinion as well as minimising low level issues which can arise through misunderstanding or a lack of information.  The group will meet every couple of months and will send out a list of topics they intend to discuss through the newsletter so other parents can give their input.

The members of the group are: Jess Shergold, Emma Paffley,  Ruth Deadman, Diana Hitchcock, Karen England and Rebecca Grigg.

Below are the notes from the most recent meeting together with those from our previous meetings:

 Autumn 2015              Spring 2016               Summer 2016                 Autumn 2016

  Summer 2017             Autumn 2017           Spring 2018

Parent Focus Group Meeting


Focus Area

Key Points/Outcome





 Water Bottles

The school has provided water bottles for the children for the past few years.  However, with recent increased environmental awareness over the problems that plastics are causing for the environment it was asked whether this should continue.  It was also pointed out that with pressure on school budgets we should look carefully at every area of expenditure.   This would save more than £300 a year.  A number of parents spoke about the reluctance of their child to use the school water bottles and with the filling and emptying each day it was felt this was not a good use of time.  The school remains committed to children having easy access to drinking water at all times recognising the importance of hydration.  Parents present were happy for this system to come to an end and instead, for children to bring in their own water bottles from September or to use the drinking fountain.



 Sports Day

Feedback from parents was very positive about all aspects of the morning and the addition of a programme with a map and list of events was very helpful.  There was a request that next year the ‘learning at work’ event does not take place in the same week as this makes it difficult for parents to get the time off.  This will be taken into account when dates are planned and shared in September.








Following previous discussions at parent focus group, the school has taken on board comments about the number and age range of clubs and is beginning to make arrangements for the Autumn.  There have, however, been concerns in recent weeks over erratic attendance which has been frustrating for staff as they plan the activities for each session.  In September pupils and parents will be reminded about this and the need to be fully committed before signing up for a club.  This means you should attend every session unless away ill from school that day or when there are exceptional circumstances.  Non-emergency appointments and visiting friends’ houses for tea should be arranged for other days.  It was recognised that it can be an issue for parents who are relying on clubs when they are cancelled at short notice and there is not always space in after school club.  Therefore staff will also try to ensure that clubs are only cancelled when they are ill or cannot arrange for another member of staff to cover the club.  If children are not enjoying a particular club and no longer wish to attend, they should speak directly to the member of staff running the club to let them know.  This would also help the office in maintaining up-to-date registers when reminders are sent out and knowing which children should be in school.








Mrs Draisey introduced parents to the changes being introduced by the DfE for the teaching of Sex and Relationships Education which schools should be reviewing from September 2018.  (The government timetable for the implementation of this has been amended in the last few days to September 2020).

The programme for delivering sex education in Years 5 and 6 will continue and the right of parents to withdraw their children, if they wish, will remain.  The changes involve the teaching of relationship education.  The DfE wants to bring the curriculum up-to-date by introducing new and relevant topics such as online safety, social media and cyberbullying.  The emphasis will be on different types of relationship and how they may affect health and wellbeing.

It was recognised that this is a sensitive subject and there will be a wide range of views amongst parents. The school would welcome parent input through a working party in the Autumn to review how SRE is delivered at All Cannings and the resources we will use.  Once a plan has been created, all parents will be given details of the proposed programme of teaching for each class so they can consider their response.

Issues Raised through Group by Parents


In view of the fact that the school does not have dedicated changing facilities there was a suggestion that the girls in Class 4 change for PE in the classroom rather than in the corridor to allow them greater privacy.  This has since been implemented.



Unfortunately, due to work commitments Rebecca Grigg has had to step down from the group.  We believe the group has a real impact and is a helpful conduit for parent and school communication.  Therefore one or two new members would be warmly welcomed.  Please contact the office if interested.  We meet six times a year for an hour a term at 5pm.