Securing the Best Start to Life

Bake the Most of Life competition

Sign-up for Warburtons Bake the Most of Life today to ensure you get access to all resources as well as competitions such as Harvesting Family Favourites! 

This exciting competition encourages your pupils to explore their favourite family recipes and share them for the chance to have them published on the Bake the Most of Life website! 

This helpful website is home to plenty of resources and enrichment activities that can be used for home-learning, plus the competition! 

With direct PSHE curriculum links to topics such as healthy eating, respectful friendships, and caring relationships, (as well as supporting Gatsby Benchmarks) this is a great opportunity to break-bread with your class and get to know their family favourites! 

The competition only takes 30 minutes to complete and is simple to enter with age specific competition entry forms for 5–7 and 7–11-year-olds!  

Don’t miss out, register today! 

Entry is totally free using our free-post or scanning and send options! 

    Learning to talk

    There are some brilliant tips and activities for speech development on the Start for Life website.

    Help children learn to talk with fun routines. Could these be shared with the families of the children you work with.  

    Be a Savvy Shopper

    Last year, 91 types of toys were recalled because they were dangerous. And a report from the British Toy and Hobby Association found that, of 101 dangerous toys withdrawn from sale on online marketplaces, 65 seemingly identical toys were still on sale a year later.

    Despite this, new research reveals that 70% of parents never check to see if a product has been recalled and 93% don’t know how to check.

    That’s why the Child Accident Prevention Trust has set up a new advice hub where parents and practitioners can check if the toys and childcare products, they’re buying are safe.

    For more information click here

    A Bright Start for Every Deaf Child

    The National Deaf Children's Society are running four online, free sessions to help education and support those working in the early years about childhood deafness.

    The sessions' details are:
    A Bright Start for Every Deaf Child: Together We Can for Deaf Children
    The National Deaf Children’s Society are running four live and free online sessions to give those working in the early years information and ideas to support deaf children.  Whether you currently have deaf children in your setting or not, these sessions will help you reflect on your practise and equip you to be ready for deaf children now or in the future.
    We will cover how deafness impacts development, language and communication, acoustics and  lighting, deaf awareness techniques, behaviour and identity.
    Our sessions cover:
    • Implement Effective Transitions for Deaf Children: 19 April 6-7:30pm on Zoom
    • Improve Language and Communication for Deaf Children: 26 April 6-7:30pm on Zoom
    • See Parents as Partners: 3 May 6-7:30pm on Zoom.
    • Support Social and Emotional Development for Deaf Children: 10 May 6-7:30pm on Zoom
    You will also receive two recorded webinars on sensory storytelling and using basic BSL if you attend one or more of the four.

    Find more information register here

    Down’s Syndrome Awareness Week

    This week marks Down’s Syndrome Awareness Week and World Down Syndrome Day.

    The Down’s Syndrome Association is a registered charity that is ‘committed to improving the quality of life of people who have Down’s syndrome, promoting their right to be included on a full and equal basis with others.’
    You might find the following links of interest:

    Supporting Inclusion for SEND and Vulnerable Groups

    Series of special events for professionals and families to focus on Neurodiversity and Autism

    This week Warwickshire County Council, along with partners, has been supporting Neurodiversity Celebration Week (NCW) 2023.

    Founded in 2018, Neurodiversity Celebration Week is a worldwide initiative that challenges the stereotypes and misconceptions about neurological differences and aims to transform how neurodivergent individuals are perceived and supported. The week is an opportunity for schools, universities, organisations and individuals to celebrate the many talents and advantages of being neurodivergent and the strengths of a neurodiverse community. 

    Coventry and Warwickshire Integrated Care System will be holding a series of free online events in March for professionals and families, to enrich their understanding of Neurodiversity and Autism and the support available locally.

    All events will be online and anyone who would like to attend can register using the links below: 

    • Neurodivergent Language: Sharing learning from Neurodivergent people and their families/carers - Tue 28 March, 10.30-11.30am. The webinar will explore the topic of neurodivergent language: meaning the words we use to talk about neurodiversity, which can be heavily connected to a person’s identity and self-esteem. This interactive session will be an opportunity to hear experiences of neurodivergent people from across Coventry and Warwickshire and learn about a new resource being developed to help people feel more comfortable talking about neurodiversity. Register here. 
    • Act for Autism: Self-awareness and self-identity including Q&A – Tue 28 March, 6.45 - 7.45pm. Be the first to see the latest film from the award winning Act for Autism film project. Join the cast for a live Q&A and find out how working on self-advocacy (speaking up for yourself) and self-awareness (knowing about your autism) is the key to positive self-esteem for autistic children and young people. This is suitable for all those living with or working to support autistic children and young people. Register here.

    • Nurturing a positive Autistic identity for professionals – Tue 28 March, 1pm – 2.30pm. This webinar aims to provide professionals working to support autistic children and young people an opportunity to understand how they can nurture the young person to develop a positive view of their autistic identity and become advocates for themselves and others. Register here.
    • Nurturing a positive Autistic identity for families and carers – Wed 29 March, 12pm – 1.30pm. This webinar aims to provide parents, carers and family members supporting a Neurodiverse young person with an opportunity to understand how they can nurture the young person to develop a positive view of their autistic identity and become advocates for themselves and others. Register here.

    Further support for Neurodivergent families and children and young people

    Last year, a new e-booklet for Neurodivergent people and their families living in Coventry and Warwickshire, was published providing a wealth of information and advice on services and support across the area. The booklet was co-produced with input from professionals across Coventry and Warwickshire, plus Neurodivergent people and their families. Please do share this with families and take a look yourselves - read the e-booklet online here.

    In the last few weeks, WCC has launched a ground-breaking and unique Supported Employment Service and received national funding to give supported internships in Warwickshire a boost. We are also continuing to deliver on our SEND and Inclusion Change Programme to support Neurodiverse children and young people in Warwickshire. 

    Celebrating Warwickshire’s Family of Schools

    World Oral Health Day

    World Oral Health Day is on 20th March this year. This gives us an opportunity to reinforce the messaging around how oral health is so important for our mouths and health in general.

    By promoting World Oral Health Day, we can remind and encourage everyone of the importance of brushing our teeth regularly.  Please do spread the word with the resources and link below.

    Attached factsheets and information to share with pupils/students of all ages.

    Warwickshire County Council takes time for Young Carers On Young Carers Action Day 2023

    Wednesday 15th March 2023 marks the start of Young Carers Action Day 2023. The theme this year is ‘Make Time for Young Carers’.  

    For many young carers, downtime is not an option as they take on additional responsibilities. This often means having to help around the house with tasks such as helping to dress young siblings, cook, clean for the family  help siblings with homework, or even providing emotional support to family members.   

    Young Carers Caring Together Warwickshire (Young Carer CTW) has targeted support that can help with every aspect of a young carer's life.  

    In addition to an assessment that will help with assistance for both the young carer as well as the cared for, there is also support with the following:  

    • Provide information and advice about every aspect of caring for young people
    • Arrange groups and activities to meet other young carers
    • Help you with your educations aspirations (college, university) and next steps 
    • Provide one-to-one emotional support in a safe place 
    • Help you to access support to look after your health and wellbeing 

    For information and advice please visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/carers

    Read more here.

    Warwickshire Junior Book Award 2023

    Libraries are delighted to launch their popular Warwickshire Junior Book Award 2023 and it is open to all primary schools in the county.

    This is a lovely way to encourage reading for pleasure and further develop your reading culture at your school. Please click on the following link for more information.

    FREE Level 1 Scootability training

    Warwickshire County Council and Warwickshire Road Safety Partnership are offering FREE Level 1 Scootability training throughout Warwickshire during the Easter holidays, 3rd – 7th April 2023. We would be most grateful if you could share the below information, and attached poster, direct with parents/carers:

    Warwickshire County Council and Warwickshire Road Safety Partners are offering free Scootability Level 1 training throughout Warwickshire during 3rd – 7th April 2023. Training is suitable for children aged 5 – 10 years and is being held at the following locations:

    • Monday 3rd April: Kingsbury Water Park
    • Tuesday 4th April: Pingles Leisure Centre, Nuneaton
    • Wednesday 5th April: Ryton Pools, Bubbenhall
    • Thursday 6th April: Stratford Recreational Ground, Stratford upon Avon
    • Friday 7th April: The Kenilworth Centre, Kenilworth

    During the 90-minute course, children will learn essential skills and knowledge to help them scoot safely, including:

    • learning about the parts of the scooter and the safety gear
    • learning the basics of pushing, balancing and turning
    • learning how to do slow and fast stops
    • learning how to navigate stationary and moving obstacles
    • learning how to do one handed signalling
    • learning about road safety rules

    All equipment, including scooters, helmets and pads, is provided and the sessions are suitable for children aged 5 to 10 years.

    Booking is required and spaces are limited.

    To find out more and book training for your child please visit: https://warksroadsafety.org/scooter-training/ 

    Warwickshire Safeguarding commits to tackle child exploitation

    At this week’s Warwickshire Safeguarding Executive Board meeting, members pledged their support to raise awareness of Child Exploitation in the county, ahead of Child Exploitation Awareness Day on Saturday 18 March. 

    Every year, hundreds of children and young people are exploited in Warwickshire. Child exploitation comes in many different forms, such as sexual exploitation or abuse, coerced criminal activity, county lines drug dealing, human trafficking and online grooming. It can affect any child, anywhere, anytime, and regardless of their social or ethnic background or gender. 

    The aim of National Child Exploitation Awareness Day is to bring attention to child exploitation, promoting awareness and encouraging individuals and communities to recognise and report instances of abuse. This includes adopting zero tolerance towards adults engaging in inappropriate relationships with children, as well as children who exploit or abuse their peers. 

    The Something’s Not Right campaign, launched in 2021, is a partnership initiative between the council, Warwickshire Police, Barnardo’s and the Police and Crime Commissioner and aims to raise awareness amongst Warwickshire residents of all forms of child exploitation to encourage everyone, not just parents, carers and professionals working with children, to tackle the issues of the exploitation of our children. 

    There are some key signs to look out for in a child or young person, such as: 

    •  receiving unexplained and expensive gifts or money 
    •  having no money but in possession of cigarettes, alcohol and other expensive items (could be a sign of running up debt) 
    •  having new and significantly older friends  
    •  being picked up from school by strangers 
    •  substance use (drugs / alcohol) 
    •  changes in mood 
    •  showing signs of self-harm 
    •  regularly going missing from school and home 
    •  staying out late 
    •  being secretive about where they are going 
    •  being secretive with their mobile phone, laptop, tablet or other electronic devices 
    •  lack of interest in activities and hobbies 

    Where to go for help and support:

    For information and advice go to www.somethingsnotright.co.uk

    • If you are worried about a child or young person, contact the Warwickshire Front Door between 9am to 5pm, Monday to Friday, on 01926 414144 
    • You can also make a report to Warwickshire Police via their website or by calling 101, or you can contact your local Children and Family Centre 
    • Contact Crimestoppers confidentially and anonymously on 0800 555 111 
    • Talk to trained counsellors on the 24-hour helplines run by ChildLine on 0800 11 11 and the NSPCC on 0808 800 5000 
    • If someone is in immediate danger, call the police on 999 

    Link to the full article: https://www.warwickshire.gov.uk/news/article/4027/warwickshire-safeguarding-commits-to-tackle-child-exploitation

    Naming the Line workshops - For primary schools

    The Heart of England Community Rail Partnership would like to work with local communities to help choose a new name for the railway line between Nuneaton and Leamington Spa. This is a key rail line linking North and South Warwickshire with Coventry, where there are many fantastic attractions that we want to shine a light on.

    Schools along the line are invited to take part in this special project through a programme of workshops designed to support the National Curriculum targets for English and Geography. The workshops will culminate in a competition to decide on the new name for the Nuneaton-Leamington line.

     For local schools, there are 3 ways to get involved:

    Workshop and trip:

    Aimed for KS2, the CRP delivers a 2-hour workshop looking at what makes the Nuneaton-Leamington line special. For schools who sign up to these workshops, we will also arrange

    a trip out on the line for the students. Spaces for this option are limited and will be offered on a first come, first served basis. Trips will be limited to one class per school.


    The CRP delivers an assembly to multiple classes or to the whole school, outlining the competition and touching upon the subjects of tourism, rail safety and sustainability. Assemblies can be tailored to fit in with school timetables.


    Schools can access our downloadable resources and lesson plans to teach their own sessions around the project from heartcommunityrail.org.uk/nametheline 

    If you would like to book us in to deliver a workshop, an assembly or to receive the resources pack, please email: HeartCRP@warwickshire.gov.uk  Full details of the competition and school engagement can be found at heartcommunityrail.org.uk/nametheline 

    Independent Panel Member volunteers are needed to hear School Admission Appeals

    Warwickshire County Council are seeking volunteers to become independent panel members to hear school admission appeals. Independent Appeal Panels consider appeals by parents against school admission decisions in relation to schools within Warwickshire and some neighbouring counties. This is an important role and panels are required by law.

    The County Council are looking for:

    • Lay Panel members - people without personal experience in the management of any school or provision of education in any school.
    • Non-Lay Panel members - people with experience in education (such as current and former headteachers) who are acquainted with educational conditions in the area, or parents of a registered pupil at a school.

    Panel Members need only dedicate as much time as they are willing to offer to this voluntary role, and exercise good judgement and demonstrate sound reasoning skills to ensure fair consideration of every case.

    To find out more visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/jobs-volunteering/independent-panel-member-hear-school-admission-appeals

    Feel Good Field Trips

    Feel Good Field Trips was launched in March 2022 by Avanti West Coast and aims to provide thousands of school children aged between 4-18 with the chance to go on free, enriching and educational days out across the West Coast Mainline.

    The schools involved all have high pupil premium rates and are located close to a station Avanti serves. Many will have never had the opportunity to go on such a special field trip – some won’t have even been on a train before.

    Schools that can access an Avanti managed station (Rugby, Coventry, Birmingham International – transport to stations can be provided over a short distance), are invited to sign up for one of two trips.  These trips are completely free for schools and include:

    • A return trip on an Avanti train
    • Lunch
    • An enriching educational day out which is reflective of Britain's diverse society
    • Learning in a hands-on way / interactive experience

    The two Feel Good Field Trips schools can choose from are:

    The Herbert Gallery, Coventry

    • Trip is for a maximum of 30 students
    • Return travel on an Avanti train with seats reserved
    • 15 min walk from Coventry station
    • Your students will get to see and learn about Dippy the Diplodocus
    • Each group will get a choice of workshop while at the gallery
    • Lunch will be provided at the cafe
    • Most suited for KS1, KS2 or Y7/8

    Soho Sonic Recording Studio, London

    • Trip is for a maximum of 20 students
    • Return travel on an Avanti train with seats reserved
    • Transport on the London Underground to Kentish Town then a 15 min walk to the studio
    • Students will be split into 2 groups of 10
    • One group will go for lunch in a nearby cafe while the other group will learn how to produce and record their own song/poem

    For more information or to book a Feel Good Field Trip, please contact david.savage.crl@gmail.com 

    Warwickshire residents are invited to get involved with King Charles III Coronation celebrations

    On Saturday 6 May the Coronation ceremony will take place at Westminster Abbey, which can be watched on television and online, followed by opportunities to get involved in The Big Lunch from 6 -8 May and The Big Help Out on 8 May.  

    A Coronation is a symbolic, religious event where a sovereign is crowned. In the UK it formalises the monarch's role as the head of the Church of England and marks the transfer of their title and powers. The Coronation of King Charles III will be the first Coronation event to take place in the UK since Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II was crowned almost 70 years ago. The ceremony itself will be held at Westminster Abbey in London and will be conducted by the Archbishop of Canterbury, reflecting the monarch's role today whilst being rooted in longstanding traditions and pageantry. 

    King Charles III’s Coronation will be broadcast online and live on televisions around the world. The BBC is offering local communities, including those in Warwickshire, a one-off TV Licence dispensation to watch the Coronation ceremony on 6 May and the Coronation Concert on 7 May. Find out more at www.tvlicensing.co.uk/faqs/FAQ290   

    Warwickshire district and borough councils are also reminding residents of opportunities to submit street party and temporary road closure applications before the end of March: 

    Additional advice and guidance for planning a street party to celebrate the Coronation is available at www.warwickshire.gov.uk/streetparties.  

    The National Lottery is also giving away up to £10,000 of funding to support communities in delivering local events and activities. If you would like to apply, please visit The National Lottery website, but be aware that the process can take up to 12 weeks 

    Between the 6 – 8 May, registered charity Eden Project Communities is encouraging neighbours and communities across the country to get together to share friendship, food and fun as part of The Big Lunch. In Warwickshire, there are almost 600,000 people (2021 Census), which means a lot of sandwiches and scones could be consumed over the Coronation weekend! If you are thinking about hosting a party with neighbours in your area, visit www.coronationbiglunch.com to download a free Coronation Big Lunch pack full of ideas, tips, and practical help to plan your community event. 

    On the 8 May, people from across the country will also be doing their bit and volunteering their time as part of The Big Help Out; to support this, Warwickshire County Council will be highlighting a selection of volunteer stories and how more residents can get involved in volunteering over the coming weeks.  

    To find out more about the Coronation in Warwickshire, visit www.warwickshire.gov.uk/coronation  

    Nominate your local community hero for a Coronation Champions Award

    To celebrate King Charles III’s Coronation in May, Warwickshire County Council is encouraging residents to nominate their local voluntary heroes for the Coronation Champions Awards, an official Coronation project launched this year by Royal Voluntary Service in partnership with The Queen Consort.

    The purpose of the Awards is to celebrate a diverse group of exceptional volunteers from across the country who have contributed their time and good nature to help local communities and causes.

    Nominees for the Awards must be over 14 years old and have overcome adversity or discovered creative ways to make a significant contribution to their local communities within the last five years.

    Volunteers can be nominated in one of nine categories: supporting older people, supporting young people and children, crisis and welfare, community, sports, culture and heritage, health and care, sustainability and the environment, and animal welfare.

    Anyone can nominate a volunteer hero who they believe deserves recognition, and the deadline to submit nominations is Sunday 2 April 2023.

    Five hundred volunteers will be chosen as Coronation Champions and will receive a specially designed, official Coronation Champions pin and a signed certificate from The Queen Consort.

    In addition, some of the Coronation Champions volunteers will also have the opportunity to attend one of the official Coronation celebrations, such as the Windsor Castle Coronation Concert or a Coronation Garden Party.

    To nominate a volunteer hero, visit www.royalvoluntaryservice.org.uk/volunteering/coronation-champions-awards

    Continued support for Ukrainian refugees in Warwickshire

    It is one year since the Homes for Ukraine scheme was established and since March 2022, 1,072 Ukrainians have started new chapters of their lives in Warwickshire via the scheme.

    In this time the county’s Homes for Ukraine support team and a range of public sector organisations, voluntary, community and faith groups have worked together with local communities to welcome people fleeing Ukraine and helping them to settle.

    Nationally, more than 150,000 Ukrainians have arrived in the UK under the Homes for Ukraine scheme since the beginning of the conflict and as the war continues more Ukrainians need a place of safety. Hosts on the scheme initially signed up for six months, and whilst many hosting relationships will continue for a year and beyond, the Warwickshire team is seeking more hosts to join for different types of placements.

    People interested in joining the scheme as hosts will help those coming to the UK as well as those already in Warwickshire who need to move on from their initial sponsorship arrangement. Ukrainians already settled in Warwickshire have had time to become established within their local communities. They may be at work, with their children in school, minimising some of the challenges many new hosts on the scheme initially face.

    Anyone can consider hosting as long as they have a spare room. Those who are successfully matched to Ukrainian guests are offered a £350 per month ‘thank you’ payment. Recently, Warwickshire County council has agreed to offer an additional payment of £150 per month to all hosts who commit to their guests staying beyond six months.  The payment is tax-free and is made for single long staying guest or multiple groups.

    Warwickshire County Council has expanded its help to Ukrainian guests by approving a new guarantee scheme to enable access to private tenancies. Guests wishing to rent private accommodation who meet a set of criteria will have the local authority acting as a guarantor. This will include guests having saved enough money to pay the deposit and first month’s rent and undertaking a financial assessment.

    People arriving via Homes for Ukraine scheme are able to live and work in the UK for up to three years, and have access to healthcare, education, public funds, employment and other support. Almost a year since the scheme launched, there are still 360 hosts providing a home to their Ukrainian guests across Warwickshire. Throughout the county over 89 Ukrainian families have successfully moved to independent living.  

    Working together to improve school attendance


    1. School Attendance Lead Network Event – will be held jointly between Warwickshire County Council’s Attendance Service and the Stowe Valley Multi Academy Trust. The purpose of the event will be to discuss the new attendance guidance and begin the development of an attendance support network.

    Thursday 23rd March 2023 - 1.30pm to 3.30pm - Myton School

    Training Courses - Stowe Valley Multi Academy Trust (stowevalleymat.com) 

    2. Daily attendance data webinar for schools and local authorities

    Wednesday 22 March 11am to 11:45am:

    At this webinar you can find out more about how to share your attendance data and access attendance reports via a digital service.

    3. Reminder - Compare pupil attendance with other schools in your local authority

    Nationally 78% of schools are now sharing daily attendance data with the DfE.  The figure in Warwickshire is 82%. 

    The DfE are now rolling out new functionality to allow mainstream schools that are sharing data to compare attendance with other schools within their local authority area.  The tool will help schools to identify strengths and priorities and signpost to additional guidance and support. To share daily attendance data and get access to these tools, please email Wonde. If you already use Wonde, please accept the request in your Wonde portal.

    4. Improving attendance: good practice for schools and multi-academy trusts. There are some really useful effective practice attendance webinars produced by the DfE in conjunction with schools, with good or improved attendance, sharing their good practice. It is highly recommended that your attendance lead/champion access this free resource.

    5. Additional attendance resources are available on the Education Huband Teaching Blogs

    6. DFE GUIDANCE: Mental health issues affecting a pupil's attendance: guidance for schools February 2023 - Summary of responsibilities where a mental health issue is affecting attendance and examples of effective practice.

    Contact Us

    If you wish to discuss any issues relating to school attendance, please feel free to contact the Warwickshire Attendance Service: was@warwickshire.gov.uk

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