Education Noticeboard - 16 March 2023

Welcome to the Education Noticeboard. A round-up of news, guidance and key updates for education settings.

Included in this update:

  1. Director update
  2. Hundreds of Telford primary school children welcome The Queen Consort
  3. SEND Area Inspection update
  4. SENCo Network Meeting Transition Workshop – Thursday 23 March 2023
  5. Final Reminder: ‘Your Life, Your Care’ survey
  6. Arthog visits get even greener
  7. Easter 2023 activities available to book on to now, don’t miss out!
  8. World Story telling Day: 20 March 2023
  9. Downs Syndrome Day: 21 March 2023
  10. Reminder to use the School Closure Line if your setting is closed for any reason
  11. An opportunity to place your CPD course bookings
  12. Secondary Subject Networks
  13. LEGO® based ‘Think Bricks Therapeutic Approaches Course: Intervention to support Children’s Mental Health – Friday 21 April 2023

Director update

Dear colleagues

A shorter Education Noticeboard for you this week, but still some important information and news to share.

The big news of course in that earlier this week the Queen Consort visited Southwater. It was lovely to see children from Telford & Wrekin there to welcome her. Something that I am sure they will never forget!

The Area SEND Inspection, currently being conducted by Ofsted and the Care Quality Commission is now in its second week. We want to keep you all as in the loop as possible, so issued an update earlier this week. In case you missed it we have shared it again below.

We have also included a reminder that the Easter Happy Healthy Active Holidays sessions are still available to book onto, as well as a last plea to help us make a final push for participation with the ‘Your Life, Your Care’ survey. We have already had a fantastic response rate, but the more views we can capture, the better we can make our services going forward.

With Comic Relief being held this Friday, please don’t forget to share your photos and stories with us. You can send them to

Enjoy the rest of your week.


Simon Wellman
Director: Education & Skills

Hundreds of Telford primary school children welcome The Queen Consort

Hundreds of local primary school children, from Old Park Primary, Hollinswood Primary and Randlay Primary, were there to welcome Her Majesty as she arrived in Southwater Square earlier this week The Darby Show band played as Her Majesty arrived.

Once inside Southwater One, Her Majesty met representatives from local volunteer and community groups.

Her Majesty unveiled a commemorative stone for Telford Veterans Trail which will be set into the trail in the park, in addition to unveiling a plaque to commemorate her visit to the Southwater One building.

The leader of Telford & Wrekin Council, Cllr Shaun Davies, said: “Today was a brilliant celebration for our town. It was a great opportunity to showcase what we have here in Telford. It was wonderful to invite The Queen Consort to meet local charities, and volunteers who help make Telford and Wrekin such a great place to live.

“But for me the hundreds of school children who were able to attend made my day! This was a once in a lifetime experience for them.”

SEND Area Inspection update

Dear all,

A quick update regarding the area SEND inspection. 

We now head into week 2 of the 3 week inspection process, having completed a huge amount of work last week. By last Friday the team uploaded over 100 documents onto the OFSTED / CQC portal and we know many people contributed to this task. We thank you so very much! 

Yesterday we spoke with the inspectors to consider the timetable for when they begin to meet with us. This starts Thursday of this week, virtually, until they arrive in person next Monday. There are many visits being planned and where schools and settings are involved they have received notification.  For those colleagues involved we are planning a briefing session so that you feel well informed. What we will say is that during our ongoing conversations with the inspectors they have been very friendly!

This experience is very different to our previous SEND inspection (2017). There will be a lot more case tracking, which means the inspectors will look at records of children with SEND and really take time to listen and understand what their experience has been. Multiple sources of information will be considered and they have many opportunities to work with parents/carers, children and young people.

We know there is much to be proud of in Telford and Wrekin and we want the inspectors to ‘feel’ our can do attitude. We have been overwhelmed by the offers of support from you, our fantastic educational settings. It is so appreciated and you know our partnership approach means a great deal to us!  We will continue to update but a huge thank you for your continued hard work with our families.  Telford and Wrekin are lucky to have you!

Jo, Simon and Darren

Jo Britton
Executive Director of Children Services

Simon Wellman
Director: Education and Skills

Darren Knibbs
Director:  Children Safeguarding and Family Support

SENCo Network Meeting Transition Workshop – Thursday 23 March 2023

The next SENCo Network Meeting will be on Thursday 23 March 2023 at 4pm – 5.30pm, this will be a face-to-face meeting with a focus on Transition.

Thursday 23 March 2023, 4pm – 5.30pm
Venue: Southall School, Rowan Avenue, Dawley, Telford, TF4 3PX

Please can we politely request that you arrive after 3.45pm to assist with traffic flow for transport and parents to leave the school site.

On the agenda:

  • Presentations and advice to support transition from SEND Services.
  • Networking opportunity for all schools and settings to discuss best practice around transition.
  • Opportunity to link with schools and settings to support your children transitioning.

An invite to the SENCo Network Meeting will be sent out on Thursday 16 March 2023 to all SENCo’s on our contact list, if you would like to attend and have not revieved an invite previously please contact us by email:

We look forward to seeing you!

Final Reminder: ‘Your Life, Your Care’ survey

As you are aware we are currently working with Coram Voice on their Bright Spots Programme to help us better understand how the well-being and care experience of looked after children can be improved in Telford and Wrekin.  We really appreciate all your efforts in supporting us to achieve this level of response and we are asking for another push to get us to an even higher return rate. The more responses we manage to obtain the greater amount of children’s voices get to be heard and the more meaningful the feedback will be.

We are distributing this survey to our looked after children aged between 4 and 18 years old and please note that many will have already completed the survey – they do only need to complete it once. This is a great opportunity for us to better understand how children and young people perceive their care, well-being, the people they know, their rights and the chances they get. This will be valuable information which we will use to improve our support and services. 

The surveys can be completed on any device connected to the Internet (computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone). We can also send you PDF copies of the three surveys (4-7, 8-11 and 11-18) for those children/young people who prefer to write their answers by hand or for instances where no internet connection is available. This can then be either given to a worker and sent on to the project team, emailed in or posted to Darby House, Lawn Central, TF3 4JA.   

Children and young person that feel able to complete the survey alone are welcome to do so. It may be that they would like a trusted adult to support them to complete the survey, and that person is asked to be mindful that it is their opinions, thoughts and feelings we need. This means that we want to record exactly what they say. We ask therefore that any trusted adults do not paraphrase, interpret or attempt to clarify what they say, and try to remain as neutral as possible while supporting them.  

All questions are optional, and the survey has been designed so that it is possible for a child/young person to skip questions that may be upsetting or not relevant. It is important that the child/young person is supported to complete the survey in a way that works for them. If they would like someone independent such as an independent advocate to support them, then please do email us at and we will arrange this for them.  

We would really appreciate your help with this. We are aiming to capture the views of as many children and young people as we can.  

The survey needs to be completed by 31st March 2023.

Arthog visits get even greener

Children travelling with Telford & Wrekin Council’s Outdoor Education team, Arthog Outreach, will be having an even greener experience now, thanks to two new electric minibuses that the council have just bought. These vehicles will mean cleaner air around the schools they visit and reduced carbon footprint for the council's operations.

We caught up with children from Short Wood Primary School to find out more about how outdoor experiences support our #10by10 campaign, creating fulfilling childhoods:

Easter 2023 activities available to book on to now, don’t miss out!

The Happy Healthy Active Holidays (HHAH) scheme will be running through the Easter holidays (Saturday 1 April to Sunday 16 April 2023) with multiple holiday clubs running in the first and second week of Easter.. Holiday activities will be available for children and young people who are receiving income-based free school meals (FSM).

There will be a range of activities on offer at Holiday clubs for children in reception to Year 11. Every day a child attends they will be provided with a nutritious meal and at least 4 hours of enrichment activities, including 60 minutes of physical activity, arts, crafts and nature walks. In order to access the scheme parents and carers of children who are eligible must register on the HHAH website. Video tutorials on how to register, manage and cancel bookings are all available on the website.

Parents and carers who are eligible for income-related FSM have been directly notified of the scheme and how to apply by letter (a copy of the letter is available for download). We have notified families and registered users that bookings have gone live from 13 March 2023.

If you are able to further promote the HHAH scheme to eligible families then that would be appreciated. We know some families will need your support to register for the scheme and therefore we have created a paper registration form to help any that are finding it difficult to apply online. Please can we ask that schools support these families in completing the form and returning it to us so that we can get them in contact with the holiday club?

Thank you for help with this!

Like last year, there is some flexibility for other children, not eligible for FSM to access the scheme.  This may include children and families living in areas of deprivation, those known to children services and those that have SEND as examples. If you feel a child would benefit from the HHAH programme, please contact the inbox so we can provide more information and a special code for the family to register on the website.

We have put together a brochure of some of the activities running over the Easter holidays. All income related FSM families will have received this with their letters! Bookings for activities will go live on 13 March 2023.

World Story telling Day: 20 March 2023

World Storytelling Day is a global celebration of the art of oral storytelling. It is celebrated every year in March. On World Storytelling Day, as many people as possible tell and listen to stories in many different languages all across the world.

Nobody knows exactly when storytelling began, but it is probably hundreds of thousands of years old. When early humans travelled, they took their stories with them, and they shared them, and also learnt new ones. The stories would change to reflect the circumstances people found themselves in.

A story is a narrative that has a beginning, middle and end. Words and gestures are usually used when telling the stories.

The theme this year for World Storytelling Day 2023 is “Together We Can.” Considering the current worldwide events, storytellers felt the need for society to come together to move forward to build communities and to inspire change.

Some free resources are available online, to support with celebrating this day with your students:

Story Telling Resources

Twinkl Story Telling Resources

Downs Syndrome Day: 21 March 2023

Down syndrome is a condition in which a person has an extra chromosome.

Chromosomes are small “packages” of genes in the body. They determine how a baby's body forms and functions as it grows during pregnancy and after birth. Typically, a baby is born with 46 chromosomes. Babies with Down syndrome have an extra copy of one of these chromosomes, chromosome 21

Approx 47,000 people in the UK are living with this condition Children and adults with Down’s syndrome are all unique individuals with their own personalities, family backgrounds and preferences that make them who they are. Research shows that itis not a life-limiting condition. People with the condition can lead active, healthy and fairly independent lives into their 60s, 70's and beyond.

Down Syndrome has officially been observed around the world since 2006. Every year since, people have come together to learn about Down syndrome, and raise awareness, celebrate the lives and achievements of people with the condition.

There are lots of great ways that you can celebrate World Down Syndrome Day 2023 in your school. Some people like to wear brightly coloured odd socks on World Down Syndrome Day. This is because chromosomes look like socks! You could encourage your students and colleagues to follow this trend.

Support is available online:

Shropshire Downs Syndrome Group

Free educational resource are also available:

Twinkl Down Syndrome resources 2023

Reminder to use the School Closure Line if your setting is closed for any reason

A quick note to remind settings about the school and settings closure line. Please ensure to use the School Closure Line if your setting is closed for any reason (e.g. adverse weather conditions, maintenance issues etc.).

The school/settings closure line has been in operation for 12 months now. This system is user friendly and easier to use.

Each school/setting will be responsible for keeping the information up to date about their respective school/setting. 

Please note that your school or setting will need to be registered to be able to access and use the system. You will need to ensure that you have nominated /designated persons who will be given administration rights and be responsible for keeping the closure line up to date (this can be either a general admin person/email address,  head teachers, PA’s or a mix of).

We need to ensure the system remains effective, and therefore it is important that the system is kept up to date. The information displayed on the closure line automatically updates the Telford & Wrekin website, this is used to keep staff, pupils, parents and the residents in Telford & Wrekin aware of the latest school /settings closures

If you have any issues with accessing the closure line or require any further information please email

An opportunity to place your CPD course bookings

The CPD Booklet continues to be available on the Telford Education Services site to the end of the academic year 2023.

Course bookings with a course code are made by sending a completed CPD booking form via email to

Other courses and briefings without a course code are usually booked by sending your email address name and school name to (unless stated otherwise).

EAL & Maths
(CPD 603)

Tuesday 21 March 21

3.45pm to 6pm

Pupil Premium Network Meeting
(CPD 721)

Tuesday 21 March 21

4.30pm to 5.30pm

AET Making Sense of Autism – an introduction to Autism for Governors (LSAT 514)

Tuesday 21 March 21

6pm to 7.30pm

Preparing for Statutory Assessment at the End of KS1 (CPD 505)

Wednesday 22 March

9am to 12.30pm

Safety Intervention Refresher Training (formerly MAPA Refresher Training) - CPI accredited (BSAT 212)

Thursday 23 March

8.45am to 12.30pm

Assessment - termly update (morning)
(CPD 502)

Thursday 23 March

9.15am to 10.45am

Promoting Cultural Diversity and Equality of Opportunity in EYFS (CPD 606)

Thursday 23 March

1pm to 3pm

Accredited Safer Recruitment Training
(HR course)

Thursday 23 March

9am to 4.30pm

Early Years Coordinators – Termly Update
(EY 007)

Thursday 23 March

4pm to 5.30pm

Assessment - termly update (twilight)
(CPD 503)

Thursday 23 March

4pm to 5.30pm

Managing English as an Additional Language in Early Years Settings (CPD 710)

Monday 27 March

1pm to 3.45pm

Designated Teachers & Governors for Children in Care Network (compulsory school age) (GO 503)

Wednesday 29 March

4pm to 5.30pm

Designated Safeguarding Leads Refresher
(SG 107)

Thursday 30 March

9.15am to 4pm

An Introduction to EAL for Early Career Teachers
(CPD 527)

Thursday 30 March

3.45pm to 6pm

Secondary Subject Networks

Secondary Subject Networks being run by University Centre Shrewsbury, which are open to schools and academies in Telford & Wrekin.

Termly subject networks are delivered by associates who are experts in their area. Delegates are updated on national and local developments that are new and emerging. The networks provide an opportunity to develop subject knowledge and share best practice, resources, and ideas. Visiting speakers are often invited to present at the meetings.

To book onto a network meeting or for further information, please visit the University Centre Shrewsbury website.



Subject/course title:


Cost per person:

17 March 2023  


Exciting New Course* - An Idiots Guide to KS3 Dance  

Shrewsbury Academy


29 March 2023


PSHE / RSHE Network (Secondary

Microsoft Teams


17 May 2023


Pastoral Care and Support (Secondary)

Microsoft Teams


23 May 2023


Secondary Drama Network

Microsoft Teams


5 June 2023


Secondary Geography Network

University Centre Shrewsbury (face to face)  


15 June 2023


Secondary Modern Languages Network

University Centre Shrewsbury (face to face)


22 June 2023


Secondary PSHE/RSHE Network

Microsoft Teams


27 June 2023


Secondary Physical Education Network

Microsoft Teams


29 June 2023


Secondary ICT Network

University Centre Shrewsbury (face to face)


29 June 2023


Secondary Science Network 

University Centre Shrewsbury (face to face)


3 July 2023


Secondary Design and Technology Network

University Centre Shrewsbury (face to face)


4 July 2023


Secondary Art Network

University Centre Shrewsbury (face to face)


4 July 2023


Secondary History Network

University Centre Shrewsbury (face to face)


6 July 2023


Secondary English Network

University Centre Shrewsbury (face to face)


For enquiries please contact:

LEGO® based ‘Think Bricks Therapeutic Approaches Course: Intervention to support Children’s Mental Health – Friday 21 April 2023

Think Bricks’ empowers and inspires young people to creatively build symbolic models to help to communicate their thoughts and feelings.  The box of specially selected metaphors allows young people to convey their own personal feelings, thoughts, hopes and wishes in a powerful and constructive manner. On a one to one, or in small groups, children can explore and find solutions to personal issues.  Children will really open up and find it easier to talk once they have built their models. 

This inspirational workshop will teach you to coach children and young people in a therapeutic way using hands on learning. Get children talking!! 

Course Leader: Claire Osbourne M’ED (Special Education – Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties) Therapeutic Coach, Lego Education Academy Certified Trainer with 30years + experience in education with young people presenting with Social, Emotional, and Mental Health Challenges. Former Team Leader of a Council Behaviour Support Advisory Team.

Date: Friday 21 April 2023, 10am to 3pm
Location: Shropshire Wildlife Trust, Abbey Foregate, Shrewsbury
Cost: £210pp

All training includes a Lego® ‘Think Bricks’ suitcase of resources kit and therapeutic activities cards worth £85 to take away on the day, plus electronic resources to enable delivery of the intervention. Limited additional kits can be ordered in advance to enable small groupwork.

For more information please visit the Think Bricks website. To book a place on this training, please send an email to or call 07789003459.



Every week during term time we publish a new update for the education community. It includes essential briefings and specialist information about education.

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