Thursday 26th June 2019
A week ago, we had our fire audit. This is a requirement followig all fires on school sites. The fire officer felt reassured that the school is doing everything possible to make the site as fire safe and secure as possible.
You may start to see a few changes around the site as we move towards more 'open' grounds.
Earlier this week, we met with Dave Barclay (Charlie's Dad) of Barclay LED Solutions and a member of his team to view the school site and make some plans about the type of system that will be put on to the school site. It's hard to believe the superb quality and amount of cameras that will be implemented - we really are so fortunate to have such kind people care about our school community.
The lists of 'lost equipment' have now all been sent in to the loss adjuster and hopefully we will soon have authorisation to go ahead and purchase some new resources. Plans are currently being drawn up for the re-design of the EYFS area.
Friday 14th June 2019
Hello friends of the school, parents and carers
I thought I'd put the Community Fun Day update on the school website (rather than send a letter) so that everyone has access to it.
Last Sunday was an event that I will remember always. I don't think there has ever been quite so many people on the school site. Together, we showed our unity and strength for moving forward with grit.
I am indebted to Simon Wall from the fire and rescue service and his team of firefighters for planning the event, bringing the community together and helping us to raise funds.
It was fabulous to have an abundance of parent support such as Scott Lambert taking photos, Claire Cairns, bringing us moral support in the holidays and cakes by the bag load as well as prizes for the raffle and Alan Brownlow as Sammy, the Saltergate squirrel. I know how much you all enjoyed Sammy being at the event.
For the bakers.....you did us proud! Cakes were delivered on mass and then there were more....and more....and more!
The raffle was something else!
I'll upload the list of prizes and sponsors for you to take a look at. We are all overwhelmed by your kindness, especially in these challenging economic times.
A huge thank you to MP Andrew Jones for supporting us and for staying with us all afternoon despite his busy onward schedule.
Although Dave Burns was at the other side of school, delivering bike riding lessons, he was there in spirit. The work done by Dave to promote the event was first class! In additon to this Dave has been a pillar of strength to us since the incident, and managed to make us smile with his very 'special' sense of humour!
You already know, because you're on the school site every day that we have some very dedicated adults here and I want to say a resounding 'thank you' to the school staff for 'abandoning' their own families on Sunday to support the event - you are lovely people.
What a stunning 'pebble' representation of our togetherness, handmade by Lydia Bond (Gateways staff) which will remind us always of our challenges and our tenacity in making good this unimaginable situation.
And then there's the community beyond Jennyfield. Kind people who have sent in funds and resources, knowing that it will probably take us a while to thank them but giving so freely because they want to help our recovery.
Finally, out of the disaster came the offer from Councillor Don MacKenzie to provide up to £5000 towards our new CCTV system and the commitment from a very special family, the Barclay family, who have offered to install the new and effective system so that the school site will be so much safer.
My heartfelt thanks
All in all, a magnificent effort everyone. What this means to the children - Everything.
Thursday 6th June 2019
The Saltergate Community Fun Day is on the 9th June 2-4pm. Please come along and support the event.
The event has been organised by the Fire and Rescue Service, Harrogate. Huge thanks to Simon Wall for leading the planning of this event.
Dave Burns you have been a huge ambassador for Saltergate. Thank you for promoting the Fun Day in the local community and for keeping us upbeat with your wicked sense of humour.
Our school community is indebted to you both.
I can’t thank you enough for your continued support for our school community. It is overwhelming to realise just how much our community care and have pulled together for us over the last week. Your kind offers of help along with the donations towards extending our CCTV system have significantly boosted morale at this disheartening time.
A couple of days ago we received a ‘clean-up pack’ from ARCO in Leeds. The items were delivered to us and will be most helpful – such a thoughtful act of kindness. Other memory makers include a lady from Harrogate who read about our situation and penned a lovely letter and included a cheque for £200.
The gift vouchers from all over Harrogate and beyond are ready to be distributed on Sunday at our Saltergate Community Fun Day.
Monday 3rd June.
Good evening everyone
Hope you've had a lovely half term with your families.
Here's to a peaceful half term ahead!
Bike Riding lessons for reception children
Thank you again for your wonderful messages of support and kindness with offers of help. We are
truly blessed to have such a supportive school community.
Friday 31st May
It's Friday and the events of earlier in the week now seem almost a world away.
Not many updates today apart from to say that Mrs Hornsby from Gateways will send out a message early in the week asking parents of Nursery and Gateways children to send children with packed lunches to eat in Gateways. This is because the Nursery and Gateways lunch room is out of bounds as it is part of the clean up operation.
The lunch room will need to be re-carpeted before it can be used again.
Main school children will not be affected as they all eat in the school hall.
Also, today I have been in contact with Dave Burns and the lead team member of the fire crew. After seeing the devastating sight at school, the Fire and Rescue service are very keen to support us with a fundraising day on Sunday 9th June 2pm - 4pm. This is such a generous act of kindness.
Already they have organised an number of activities and experiences!
If anyone would like to donate a prize for the raffle, please contact Linda Mortimer or Dave Burns. Thank you to those who have already donated- we're sure to have a grand raffle!
I have agreed to ask parents for baking - any donations would be gratefully received. Of course, the most important thing would be to see you there on the afternoon. Just another way that we can show our community spirit and togetherness.
I will send further updates on Monday evening once I know more about the progress of the contractor clean up operation.
Have a lovely weekend.
Thursday 30th May
It’s been more straightforward today with plans now in place to take us forward over the next few weeks.
On Monday 3rd June (training day) if all goes to plan, the clean up operation will begin with the appointed contractor (Willoughbys) bringing a team on to the school site to remove debris.
By the end of the day, the contractor hopes to have cleared much of the internal and external damage. Hoardings will be erected around the damaged area so that children do not have to witness it. From inside the reception classrooms the windows will be covered in translucent paper.
On Tuesday 4th June when the children return to school, the reception classes may have to enter via a different route but we won’t know that for sure until we see how much progress is made on Monday.
Keep a look out for further information on Monday evening.
All other children should continue to come and go from school as usual as key stage 1 classes, Nursery and Gateways will be unaffected by the disruption.
On another note, thank you for your continuing support of the Crowdfunding page. The staff and governors have also joined together to put forward their contributions. I hope it gives an idea of just how much we care about
your children and their wellbeing.
I’d also like to say thank to our local schools. I’ve had contact from both New Park and Killinghall primary schools offering support, if we need it. Although the situation is in hand, to know that others care, is hugely reassuring.
Finally, this week has been somewhat of a roller coaster but I think we now know what’s ahead of us and with your help, we’ll tackle it with a smile!
Wednesday 29th May 2019
Another day has passed with plenty more activity.
Today, we met with the loss adjusters (insurance agents) and a further colleague from forensics.
We are now at the stage where all conversations with colleagues have now been held and the 'clear-up' operation can be fully planned.
The skips have been ordered today in readiness for Monday. You may see a number of different skips on the school site so apologies in advance for any inconvenience caused. I'm delighted that the skips have been offered free of charge from
A1 Skip hire in Knaresborough and
GNL Skip hire in Harrogate.
Our grateful thanks for this support.
As said previously, there isn't much any of us can do at this stage in terms of the clear-up operation. That's hard to say when we have had so many wonderful offers of support over the last few days. However, the burnt canopy frame, the debris and uneven surfaces are dangerous and we must not take any unnecessary risks.
It certainly doesn't take away from the generous offers that have been made by friends of the school in terms of time, skills and funds - we really are blessed with a very special school community.
Tomorrow, I will write with further information about the clear-up operation and how we will be affected by this during the next few weeks. As always, despite the challenges, we will overcome them with our will to succeed.
As one of the school staff stated in a text today, 'We stand strong together'.
With warmest wishes
Tuesday 28th May 2019
So, today has been a very busy day at Saltergate, despite not having any children around!
The CSI and the Fire officer have been on site with a co-ordinated response to assess the criminal activity.
I know the police have also been very busy too.
Representatives from the local authority have been with us and others have phoned to offer their support - that's been very reassuring.
Throughout the day, we've had a continuous stream of visitors, members of the community and parents. Thank you for your kind words and offers of help. I have now had a chance to look at some of the supportive comments and suggestions about ways that we can work together to combat the criminal and anti-social behaviour with which we are faced.
It was helpful to catch up with our local Neighbourhood Watch representative (Tim) and share some of our concerns. We can't thank you enough for your help in being vigilant.
Lastly, I have spoken to Dave Burns and looked at the crowd funding account that has been set up.
Thanks Dave - that was a wonderful gesture! To add further CCTV to our already installed system would be of huge benefit. The total raised so far is already beyond belief. Your generosity is overwhelming and your messages show the strength of community support for our schools. On behalf of our children - THANK YOU!
My best wishes
Monday 27th May 2019
On Monday 27th May, Saltergate Infant school suffered an attempted break-in and an arson attack. It was purely due to the vigilance of members of the local community that the fire and rescue service and the police were on site soon after these attacks - our grateful thanks for their efforts in dangerous circumstances.
Although the severe damage to the Early Years outdoor area is heart breaking, it could have been so much worse if the fire had extended to the school buildings. I am of course, deeply saddened that anyone should wish to destroy an area designed and made for young children embarking on their journey in education.
We thank you for your support and offers of help. It means such a lot to the staff and governors to know that our community is ready and willing to 'get to work' to make the school site safe for our children. It's heart warming to know that so many people care. On this occasion we have to let others take the lead. Firstly, the Fire Service and CSI will need to complete their investigations and the local authority representatives will then ensure that the area is safe for the children, who will be back to school on Tuesday 4th June, after the half term holiday.
I will keep everyone informed of progress and will gladly accept all offers of help from parents and the community if I am given the authority to do so. But, for now, please hold tight and await further news.
All updates will be posted on our website.
Thank you and best wishes