29 April 2022

What an incredible start to the summer term.

Last week we took a group of Y4-Y6 children to St Joseph’s College on Friday and Saturday to take part in an English National Opera film shoot.

On Thursday, the children from Nursery to Y6 took part in the Daily Mile to commemorate the 10-year anniversary of the Daily Mile.

However, the highlight of this week has to be our 150th School Anniversary Mass on Thursday, 28th April 2022.

The day began with Archbishop John visiting the school to bless our Oak tree planted in the Infant playground to commemorate our 150th Anniversary. He then joined the Juniors and the Community Payback group to cut the ribbon to open our new Forest school in the Junior School. This is home to our Apiary (it houses 8 beehives), deep in the forest, and we can also boast a developing wildflower garden in this area (spot the wild bluebells in the pictures).

His Grace spent time talking to the children before moving onto Virgo Fidelis Church to concelebrate Mass with Canon Michael, Fr. James, Fr Anthony, Fr Luke and Fr Philip. The children sang beautifully with enthusiasm and pride. It was an emotional moment for us all, coming together to celebrate our school. Our children’s responses to Archbishop John’s questions showed a good knowledge of St Joseph’s and genuine pride in our school. Many past Headteachers, senior staff and Governors joined us for this momentous occasion.

Our children did us proud and His Grace was impressed with our children and touched by their responses and genuine love of the school. My thanks to all the staff, and Governors who attended and especially to Mrs Bailey, our Chair of Governors for her support and excellent leadership.

Mrs Ruth Speight rehearsed the hymns with the children over the past weeks and the singing was simply outstanding. I am delighted that Mrs Speight has agreed to lead weekly hymn practice starting from September 2022.

The final thanks must go to Mrs Durie and Mrs Sanders who represented the PTA. The PTA have arranged for special commemorative pins for all the children, Governors, past staff and visitors to commemorate our 150th Anniversary. We all wore them with pride and will treasure this keepsake. They are available to buy on Parentpay, so please log in to your account to buy your own memento for this year.

Thank you to Mrs Sanders also for the beautiful flower arrangements and corsages displaying our school colours. They were just spectacular.

We have been through many challenges over the past two years but our School Mass on Thursday lifted everyone’s spirits. I am so proud of everyone and it is a day to be cherished.


Daily Mile Celebration – 10 years

A great end to a fantastic day on Thursday, 28th April 2022. Mrs Mangan and Mr Abraham led staff and children to complete a mile running around the field and playground to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the Daily Mile. Children were full of energy and enjoyed every moment of running the mile. It was the best end to the perfect day.

Well done Mrs Mangan, Mr Abraham and all the staff for a wonderful achievement.


English National Opera

Last Friday and Saturday, we took 75 children from years 4-6 to St Joseph’s College to participate in a film shoot for a Sky Arts project called ‘Abracadopera’.

The storyline: is about a school which is forced to cancel its visit to the opera, but then meet a group of larger-than-life, determined famous opera characters who team up with the children and stars from Sky Kids, and set out on a road trip.

Their mission: to stage an opera at the school before the day is out.

The opera characters can’t agree on anything and need to pull the team together if the show is going to be ready in time.

Will the group be able to pull together and fulfil their promise to the waiting kids? This against-the-clock story threads together a series of musical sequences and episodes in the real world and sees the famous faces of Sky Kids discover why opera can be so amazing while the opera characters are introduced to other musical styles and art forms in return.

The team’s road trip culminates in a short, triumphant show performed at a school, with ENO orchestra and chorus members, and singing and participation from the school kids themselves. Mission accomplished!

St Joseph’s roles:  Our children were filmed and had the opportunity to see an orchestra and opera singers performing with them. They participated enthusiastically and learnt a great deal about filming, producing and sound operations. I have to say yet again, that our children were fabulous and received so many compliments from the production team and performers.

We have been asked to take part in a further session to be recorded at our school next week. Thank you to parents/carers for bringing your children to the sessions and especially for giving up your Saturday.


Wild flower area

As promised last week, the pupils have started to seed our new wildflower area in the bank above the junior playground. My thanks to Mrs Tope, Mrs Steen Plommer, Mr Navarro and the Community Payback group for creating areas around the school to promote the growth of wild flowers.

Click here for a short presentation by Mrs Tope (Outdoor Learning Lead)


Polling day – Thursday, 5th May 2022

The school will be closed on the above day as the Infant hall will be used as a Polling station. However, Year 6 are required to attend school as Year 6 teachers will be teaching as normal. Year 6 will be provided with a sandwich lunch, which is free to all. It is not a holiday for the rest of the school, so work will be set on Google Classroom for other year groups to complete. Staff will be completing CPD activities.


Half term week – Monday, 30th May to Monday, 6th June

Please do remember that we have an extra day (Monday, 6th June) off for the May half-term as a result of the Queen’s Jubilee. All pupils will return to school on Tuesday, 7th June 2022.


Science week – 16th to 20th May 2022

We are excited about our Science week organised by Mrs Steen-Plomer, details of which were provided in last week’s newsletter. As a reminder of the key events:

  • Bird Man visit on 16 May 2022
  • Live beehive demonstration on 18 May 2022
  • Various class trips to local parks and venues

Please remember to check your child’s google classroom account for updates provided by your class teachers as well as the school app for notices, newsfeed and messages.


Multi-Academy Trust (MAT) update

As you are aware the Government has recently published a White Paper with information and recommendations about every school being part of a MAT, or preparing to be part of a MAT, by 2030.

We currently work in collaboration with other primary schools as part of the Croydon Catholic Primary Schools Umbrella Trust (the UT) and have done so since 2014. We are all currently autonomous and this collaboration is based on working together voluntarily.

St Joseph’s has been involved, as part of the UT, in exploring the possibility of forming a MAT. However, after due consideration and discussion, the Governing Body has decided not to become part of a MAT at this point, but to keep the situation under regular review.

Click here for a letter which provides more details about our decision


The School Creed

At our 150th celebration Mass, we all said the School Creed, which is a simple yet beautiful summation of our values at St Joseph’s. It is something that has been part of the school for quite some time, but one which we would like to celebrate more often and more widely, so expect to see it in more places around the school and our community.

This is our school,
Let peace dwell here.
Let the school be full of contentment.
Let love abide here,
Love of our school,
Love of one another,
Love of mankind,
Love of life itself
And love of Jesus.
Let us remember,
That as many hands built our school,
So many hearts make our school.


Have a lovely long weekend, and see you back at school on Tuesday, 3 May 2022.

Click here for this week’s photo montage


Mrs L Fernandes


Future Dates for your diary

1st half of Summer Term
02.05.22 – Bank Holiday (school closed)
05.05.22 – Polling day – School closed except for Y6
09.05.22 – 13.05.22 – KS2 SATS WEEK
14.05.22 – Catholic Schools Netball & Football tournament – Margaret Roper
16.05.22 – 20.05.22 – SCIENCE WEEK
18.05.22 – Catholic Swimming Gala
19.05.22 – Y3 trip to the Science Museum
23.05.22 – 27.05.22 – KEEPING HEALTHY WEEK
27.05.22 – School Games week followed by a ‘Jubilee Celebration’ Picnic
27.05.22 – End of term