As you know communication is vital to any partnership and in so many ways this is working really well. I’d like to share some good examples of the communication and to remind everyone of the options for communication:
It’s been wonderful to see so many parents at the “What’s Happening This Year” meetings with your child’s teacher at the start of the school year, coming to Parent Workshops to find out how to help your child with learning, or meeting up with the teacher to discuss any matters.
Unfortunately, there is a matter which I do need to address. Over the last year, but particularly this term, there has been a handful of parents using social media, primarily Facebook, to express their dissatisfaction. No place or person is perfect, and I fully appreciate that there are times when concerns or issues need to be raised, but the way this is being expressed is causing considerable hurt to people and damage to the good name of Ash Grange; which has taken many years of hard work by staff and parents to build.
Everyone involved in Ash Grange (staff, governors and families alike) are here because they believe in and share our values and aims and know that we really do care about your children and your family. We strive every day to go above and beyond to offer the best opportunities for all. School placement is a matter of choice, so if you’re here at Ash Grange, I know that you’ve chosen our school and want your child to achieve their full potential.
The reputation of Ash Grange in the community has grown a lot stronger and more positive, but this process has been long and slow. Everyone involved in the school wants this trend to continue and is supportive and proud of our school. Sadly, comments shared in a moment of frustration cause reputational damage so quickly, and often don’t tell the full story. There have also been occasions where comments have been made and the matter hadn’t, (and in some cases never had been), raised with the school so that we could have the opportunity to rectify the problem.
It’s really important to remind everyone that, as a school, we will not respond to comments made on Facebook or any other social media outlet, but this highlights the need to make sure that any concerns/worries/issues are raised in the most appropriate way. Not everything will always be exactly as each person would like it to be and I fully appreciate that social media can be a way to express views and let off steam, but I would ask that you do it respectfully and privately and without causing unnecessary damage to the reputation of our school and our staff.
Social media undoubtedly has a place in the modern world; when used respectfully and for the correct purposes it is a powerful means of communication. I’d like to remind everyone that no sites or pages should refer to Ash Grange Primary School except for those officially sanctioned by the school, and I ask that any unofficial pages are renamed with immediate effect. If there is a year band page, please ensure it is private and carefully used.
Please remember staff work so hard, we’re not perfect and if we get something wrong, please talk to us directly. If you don’t feel able to discuss it calmly with your class teacher, please then address it with me or Mrs. Rumsby, so we can support you. Angry outbursts are not and will never be acceptable or tolerated.
I wanted to share this with everyone, because, although the incidents center around a small minority of parents/carers, I know that you all care about our school, so let’s all work together to make it even better.
If you’ve any questions or want to discuss anything in this letter further, please come and speak with me.
Mrs Curtis (Headteacher) & Miss Hallewell (Chair of Governors)