At Dunsford Community Academy we work in close partnership with parents as we seek to provide the best possible education for each child. We welcome parents into the classrooms at the start of each day, and teachers bring their classes out into the playground at the end of each day. There are plenty of opportunities for teachers and parents to talk, passing on news, reminders, concerns or queries or celebrating achievements. Parents also often write in with their views – a recent selection of their comments are represented below.
Christmas Production of ‘A Ring on the Doorbell’, December 2018
Thank you for the remarkable job you do at running Dunsford School. Once again an excellent Christmas production and it is so joyful to see the children thriving and happy. I love the way the school encourages and builds character and that it has such a nurturing and caring ethos. We commend your hardwork, dedication and passion; your team of teaching staff and assistants are exceptional. Thank you for making it such a wonderful environment for our children.
Mr & Mrs U – Y4, Y3 & Y1 parents
I just wanted to thank everyone involved in yesterday afternoon’s wonderful performance. The staff and children clearly worked really hard to achieve a brilliantly funny show. My daughter (the pre-school reindeer who didn’t want to leave the stage) hasn’t stopped talking about it. It has made our Christmas! Thank you
Mrs T, Nursery parent
What lovely comments.
I too thought it was an amazing show. Such talent by all who took part! I think your staff do an amazing job. More effort put in by children and staff, than I have ever seen at any school before.
Many thanks for all your hard work. Thoroughly enjoyed it.
Mrs F, YR parent
Smiled all the way through yesterday’s performance and will continue to laugh and smile remembering it! Full of joy and fun. Incredibly impressive script and music from Mr Parker and such hard work from all the teachers to produce the show. Really made me so proud of all the children and so grateful to be part of such a wonderful school. Thank you for all your time and effort.
Mrs T, Y2 parent
Thank-you for sharing these.
A very big thank you to all of the School adults who made the show happen. J was incredibly excited to be taking part, and thoroughly enjoyed it. As did we. Well done to all!
Mrs B, Y3 parent
Having been to all your pre-Christmas concerts over the last 8 years, I have to say that today’s afternoon performance was by far the best I have ever seen! I was mesmerised by the exceptionally high standard shown by the entire team. The self-confidence of the pupils was outstanding – their enthusiasm as they all team-worked together was infectious; they were eager to excel. The staff motivation of the pupils was incredible to witness. Teaching the singing group to cross-harmonise en-masse – and so confidently too – must have made Mr Parker a very proud man. I was certainly one very impressed grandparent.
Well done everybody and I wish you every success in maintaining this level of excellence under your new Academy status in the New Year.
With kind Regards
Mr B, Y3, Y5 and Y6 grandparent
We too would like to add our congratulations to you all. It was so lovely to have a complete change in telling the Nativity Story, but still have the same meaning. The humour was fabulous.
Well done to everyone You’re amazing.
Happy Christmas to you all.
Mr and Mrs G, Y2 grandparent
I so enjoyed last night.
Please forward to all.
Just wanted to say how much I enjoyed last night’s performance and it was clear that the children were enjoying themselves too.
Yet again you have managed to bring out the hidden talent in so many children and produce a wonderfully entertaining and inclusive production.
Well done all.
Congratulations and thanks,
Chair of Governors
I just opened my emails to send you a message and saw you have already had so many!
It was wonderful to see all the children participating in the show and to see such a range of skills and talents! It is so inspiring for the younger children to see their friends performing and my children certainly loved every minute.
Well done to all of you. Only three days to go…
Mrs M, Y2 and YR parent
Firstly, well done today! Everything was fabulous. The children looked relaxed and clearly enjoyed it. I know how much work goes into these things. You all deserve a medal.
Mr P, Y4 parent
To all the staff team,
Thank you all so very much for your incredibly hard work in pulling last night’s performance off so magnificently. It is a huge undertaking but SO worth the effort for the children to have the opportunity to shine and to boost their confidence. Nick struggles to be positive about lots of things but it thrilled us to hear him talk so overwhelmingly positively about the shows, which he would gladly have performed a third time, he LOVED it! That is a massive win for him! It will be a highlight of his time at Dunsford and give him some fantastic positive memories.
I remember when we were at the point of choosing between Dunsford and Tedburn schools all those years ago I visited both schools’ Christmas events as I knew that they would be a good indicator of what each school was like, and it was Dunsford’s performance of Papa Panov that sold the school to me! I remember being bowled over by the confidence of the children, their acting, singing in two parts, dancing, playing instruments. The children looked like they were having a fantastic time, were confident, and were clearly proud of what they were doing and that was something that we wanted for our boys. Every single performance since then, including yesterday, has exuded that same accomplishment, enjoyment and confidence and it has been wonderful to see both boys participate in them over the years and of course to see Nick rise to the ranks of the prominent roles. I shall miss this Christmas tradition and was sad that last night would be my last one.
So thank you, thank you for making it happen, for giving our kids such positive and enriching opportunities each year, and for the opportunity to see it all come together so marvellously in a public performance that we can all appreciate. I hope you can now all breathe a sigh of relief, relax a bit more and enjoy the end of term celebrations and panto! Happy Christmas to you all.
With warmest regards
Mrs T, Y6 parent
Improving Writing Curriculum Evening for Parents, Feb 2017
What a wonderful evening we had. I can’t remember the last time we had such a great turnout of parents for a curriculum information evening. Thank you. Those attending found the evening very useful and informative, and we had some wonderful feedback. Here is a tiny sample:
“The girls’ writing and spelling has definitely greatly improved with cursive. Very useful evening! I now know how to help with homework, spellings, writing …… thank you so much. The main thing from tonight is that I’ve witnessed firsthand how wonderful the teachers are here! Thank you for caring about our kids.”
“Informative and clear view of development through the school. Many useful tips for parents.”
“Very helpful, thank you. I now look forward to trying new fun learnings with my children.”
If you were not able to come on the night, or if you would like to review some of the information again, do go and look under the Literacy Information. Thank you.
Email from a parent, September 2016
A number of years ago when I was a child in South Africa my parents had to make a decision on our schooling. It basically boiled down to whether or not they should commit to a good primary school for the three of us boys, or commit to a good high school – at the time they couldn’t afford to do both.
In the end they opted for the primary school – and I’ll never forget my Dad explaining to me why they thought these were the most important years. I think for him it had something to do with the fact that he’d left school at the age of 16 and gone out to find his way in the world, but the main reason was that he’d had his best school years while evacuated from London during WWII when he was in a small English village where one teacher taught all years in one room!
I know it never quite came to that with L’s year, but as that year swelled you and your team certainly had some serious challenges – which you all rose to admirably. You’ve done a great job for the children in that year.
But in particular you’ve done a great job with L, and my wife and I just wanted to thank you – and thank each member of your staff who helped her on her way. She likes to boast that before we moved to Dunsford she’d lived in seven houses – it makes for a good boast, but it also made for a young child who was a bit unsure of herself and her place in the world.
There is no doubt L has graduated from Dunsford confident in her abilities, and with a very clear idea of her place in the world!
Please thank everyone in your team – with a special thanks to Amanda Kersey for the early support, Rob Stewart for taking on the bulge year when he joined and making all of them feel individual, Helen Cole for the reading / spelling support and for making ICT fun, and last but definitely not least Chris Parker for bringing so much music and performance to L’s life – something she really loves – and for recognising and then encouraging her creative streak.
In June 2016 we organised a week’s residential to London for our year 4, 5 and 6. Here are a few of comments we have received.
“Thank you so much for making the London residential such a magic experience for L and I’m sure all the children who went. We know there was such careful planning beforehand and both the children (and parents) were so well prepared. And on the actual trip the experiences sounded so varied and were all fun. Particular thanks to Mrs Wilson and Mrs Russell for managing her group’s nights and days so patiently, Mrs Cole for managing L’s foot pain, and Mrs Alphey for keeping everyone safe and happy. Lara said that all the adults were so kind to her and she loved every minute. Thanks also to the school that you stayed at – it was so interesting for Lara to be in such a multicultural environment and she had fun with her penpal and the other children. When we asked her what her what her highlights were, she said the visit to the Temple and the Lion King. THANK YOU!” – Year 6 Parents
“A great big thank you to you and the ‘dream team’ for the London trip. What a phenomenal amount of work you must have put into pulling off such a superb trip. I cannot believe how much you fitted in and E loved every single minute of it. She has gained so many fabulous and valuable experiences. She was particularly blown away by the Lion King and the visit to the Hindu Temple. I am so grateful for the sacrifices you all made to give the children such a memorable time. I hope you have had a very restful weekend – you deserve it!” – Year 6 Parent.
“Thank you all so much for giving C an amazing adventure !! He’s certainly very tired and full of stories! It’s been horrible missing him, but an experience he couldn’t miss. You’ve all done an incredible job…thank you.” Year 4 Parent.
“Thank you so much for the wonderful experience you have given my children. They have been buzzing since they have been home, telling me all about their wonderful adventure (I am secretly very jealous of what they have experienced, lucky, lucky children!). They have obviously had a wonderful time (although they are incredibly tired right now!). Thank you so much for taking them, it must have been incredibly hard work for all of you, and I very much appreciate it. Please pass on my thanks to all the other volunteers on the trip. What an amazing primary school we have, I’m sure there aren’t many primary school children who have experienced such a trip. Thank you!” – Year 4 and Year 6 Parent.
“I just would like to say a big thank you for organising such an amazing trip for the children. The effort you must have put in before and during the week has been huge. D has experienced so much this week, I cannot express enough how grateful and proud we are of the school, staff and parent helpers that enabled such a trip. D had never ‘experienced’ London before and I think this trip will always be special and one which she will always remember. It’s lovely to see her joy and excitement as she described the Lion King and the London Eye. I hope you have a restful weekend and thank you once again.” – Year 4 Parent.
“I have simply the two happiest girls. They were not really ready to come home, they are on such a high, full of stories, I asked about the low points…silence, they could not think of any (oh one, M made H cry but they are sisters!) They are both so grateful to all the staff and talk about how kind everyone was and how much they have appreciated all the thought and effort (especially Ruth who they think is just the best) My H has no idea how you managed to fit so much in for only £190! Funniest comment was her trying to see her home in Devon from the London eye…priceless. Neither of them can stop and its all about having had such an incredible time and so much fun. …Hayley clearly also a top star at fun in the tent! Oh I wish you could have heard them, they are sooooooo lucky and they both know it. How you keep so many children safe, entertained and loving every second (though M said you did too much walking and her feet hurt but she complains about walking round Sainsbury’s so no surprise there) I have no idea but you have all managed it …even the lightening storm was “amazing”! They both cried in the Lion King because it was so emotional, they found talking to the pen pals interesting and they did not even seem that tired, just incredibly happy, well and bursting with stories. What an unforgettable experience, huge thanks to everyone, however shattered you must all be it was truly worth all the effort as I don’t think you could have happier, more grateful children if you tried and I am full of admiration for all your kindness, care and memories you have made for them. Thank you.” – Year 4 and Year 6 Parent.
“I don’t really know where to start in thanking you for the London trip! L had the most amazing time, and has talked non-stop about every aspect of her week. The whole thing sounds like it was an incredibly positive experience for her and I’m sure will be a lovely lifelong memory. I do know how full on residential trips are for the adults & so a big huge thank you to everyone for looking after them & giving them this amazing opportunity. One of the most reassuring things L said yesterday was that she wasn’t at all homesick, which I think just shows what a great time she had!” – Year 6 Parent.
In March 2016 we sent out annual reports to parents for all children in Y1 to Y6. Soon after that we held parents’ evenings. Here is a selection of comments made by parents at the time:
Parent comments – April 2016
I read my child’s report and I am very pleased with all the comments and her progress in school. I was also pleased to read on her report that she enjoys school and has a wide choice of subjects as her favourites.
This was a lovely report to read, it was so positive. I do agree that my child does lack confidence with maths at times and prefers to have someone there to guide her through. We are playing lots of number games at home, but if you know of any other worksheets or websites she can use, we are more than happy to do more at home.
We are really encouraged by our child’s report. We know she really enjoys school and talks very positively about being a pupil at Dunsford. We are aware that she does sometimes lack self-belief and find reading challenging, but she is enthusiastic about her subjects and really enjoys maths, creative subjects, PE and music especially. It’s been helpful having target areas highlighted so we can support her at home. We are delighted with her efforts and we love seeing great development and independence over the last two terms. Thank you to all C2 teachers for your hard work and care.
It is lovely to receive such a comprehensive report on our child’s learning and journey at school. It is also great to read so many positives as I know it has been a tough year for him in terms of concentration. I am feeling encouraged that despite his attention in some areas, he is at the expected level especially as the curriculum has got much tougher. We know handwriting is a tricky area but we are seeing huge improvements at home and he is voluntarily picking up a pen and writing. We have noticed this only in the last month or so since he started getting interested in comics.
Our child appears to be thriving at school. She was delighted with her report – as were we. Thank you for all the hard work that goes into delivering lessons.
I just wanted to say thank you for sending me my child’s report and I am sorry that I can’t attend the PTI today. I am glad his confidence is improving (especially pleased to see him on stage at the Christmas play) and he is getting along well at school. I know Mr Stewart has suggested he should read aloud every day to improve his reading and I am pleased that he is now doing this and appears to be enjoying reading more than he used to. He’s also developing a keen interest in computing and chess, which is good to see him engaging in those too.
Our child does need encouragement at home to read – it isn’t a task he is naturally drawn to although if there is a book he really wants then he is keen to get it and read it. This is the pattern for him with lots of things – if he is engaged with something and finds it interesting he puts a lot of effort in and is very enthusiastic about it. He very much enjoyed the lightbulb session in school this week – being very animated in describing in detail what happened. I would agree he does tend to rush writing but of late he has been putting in a lot more effort with his writing homework and takes time to try and join up his writing – I do tend to get him to rewrite something if it’s untidy! We agree that with more effort in some areas he could reach his potential. It has been also lovely this year to see him go into school happy everyday, generally more settled than previous years.
We are very pleased with the progress our child has made this year. If there are any work sheets he can use to improve his handwriting we would be very grateful. We have also agreed for him to be assessed for dyslexia which is due to take place in April. Sometimes he can get frustrated whilst doing homework especially when its lots of handwriting due to grammar and handwriting skills.
I would agree our child needs to improve and develop her work pace – especially where writing is concerned. Her handwriting and spelling need more focus and I will try and give more support to this at home. However I am very proud and pleased with how she is working at school. It was wonderful to see on her report the effort she is putting in across all subjects and the areas that she is exceeding in. It highlights the areas for development but also the areas she strives. She can at times struggle with needing adult encouragement but hopefully she will gain more confidence in herself as the year progresses.
We are delighted to read that our child is achieving well and working hard, especially in the core subject areas. For information only, it might be nice to know who has written the different sections of the report – maybe a teacher’s initials next to the subject heading? I would have liked more information on his attitude/demeanour/behaviour in lessons and towards staff and his peers – the report is very factual and tells us what he has been learning, on the whole with just the odd comment regarding this area. I think this is especially pertinent given that he has been on the Thrive programme and there has been no feedback from that aspect of his schooling (although Mrs S has tried a couple of times to ring/arrange it just hasn’t been feasible to meet up). With our child it has been such a dominant concern, overriding any academic issues, it is surprising and a little disappointing that this aspect is not really addressed in any detail. It would have been nice to have had the opportunity to meet with Mrs S on parents’ evening too. We hope that won’t be needed for us again in the future, but may be something to bear in mind in future parents’ evenings.
Computing and E-Safety Curriculum Evening for Parents, May 2016
Thank you to all of the parents and children (Tess, Will T, Daisy C, Polly, Emily and James) who came to our curriculum evening on Tuesday night. The event was a great success. The children demonstrated their many computing skills and encouraged the adults to have a go themselves. After a refreshment break, Mrs Cole led a presentation about E-Safety and how we can all work together to keep the children safe online. We had some lovely feedback for parents:
“Excellent evening, very informative. I learned a lot about safety. Lots to implement at home but now I know where to look for help.”
“Very informative. I shall go home tonight and check out the relevant website links that are on the school website that I didn’t realise were there! I shall feel better when I know how to filter out certain websites.”
“I loved the Beebot and programming bits! The E-Safety session was very useful – informative, reassuring and food for thought!”
“A very helpful session providing a clearer picture of the changes. Really like the approach and views that Dunsford teachers are adopting towards changes. A good healthy balance. Thank you for your time given in updating us all.”
“A useful and informative meeting. Thank you for sharing the detail of the changes and reassuring us that the children will still “thrive”.”
“Well done. What a challenge ahead!”
“Thank you for giving up your evening! It was very clear and informative – despite being an uncertain/unclear time of change in education. I’m sure they’ll all be fine!”
“Thank you for your time and explaining it so well. A challenge indeed for all involved, but certainly at this stage it feels as though a fairer platform to succeed in all areas for all.”
“Really helpful and informative evening.”
“Very informative and useful.”
Email from Y5 parent, December 2015 – “With my Mummy and Governor hats on! I just wanted to congratulate you all on the wonderful display of talent that you managed to showcase so magnificently today. To provide so many children with the opportunity to shine is just amazing and then to instil the confidence in them all to perform so happily is fantastic. Thank you all.” Mrs F.
Email from Y6 parents, December 2015 – “Thank you so much for a fantastic production today. L so enjoyed the last term building up to today, and we loved watching all the children performing and having fun. The dancing, the music and singing, the script, the costumes, the sets were all brilliant. Thank you also for our great front row seats and my present as thank you for face painting. So kind of you to think of both rewards and really appreciated. Well done – we are only sorry it is our last Christmas show and feel very grateful for all our years of enjoying them! Best wishes.” Mr and Mrs H.
Email from Y5 parent, December 2015 – “I thought I would also put a few words together to thank the dedicated staff for the efforts in creating a wonderful performance. Each and every child played great rolls and with loud voices. It was clear that there were many hours put into practice. My son had even been practicing getting his lines correct and in the right place at home, he was thoroughly looking forward to both performances and enjoyed the evening as much as we did. The commitment, efforts and dedication are a real reflection of the work carried out by your staff during both my children’s time at Dunsford Primary School. Many Thanks.” Mr R.
Email from Y2 and Y4 parents, December 2015 – “Thank you so much for providing us with a brilliant Christmas production this year. There was such a variety of dancing and the singing was wonderful. It was very clear all the children loved it too. Our two certainly did. We as parents are already looking forward to the next top notch production. Well done to all staff and children.” Mr and Mrs Wood.
Email from Y5 parent, December 2015 – “Thank you all very much for a very enjoyable performance. I was quite impressed with the children’s confidence and delivery. I look forward to seeing some of them in the West End in few years time! I was very pleased with W’s performance – I know standing up in front of people is outside his normal comfort zone. Great to see him stretching himself to reach his full potential. Thank you for helping him so much.” Mr T.
Email from Y6 parent, December 2015 – “For me the Christmas Show is not just about entertaining the audience but also giving the children the invaluable skills of performing – learning lines, timing, delivery and confidence. I know A took his camel role very seriously though I have to say sometimes it’s not hard for him to play ‘the grump’! We thoroughly enjoyed it and there was a pang of sadness as we realised it was our last Christmas Show, it’s an annual event that is a testament to the talents of the pupils and staff alike.” Mrs W
Email from Y6 parents, December 2015 – “Just to say how wonderful the Christmas Play was. The staff and children have been so dedicated, hard working and enthusiastic. It was so professionally presented, so fun and enjoyable to watch. Broadway here they come! They are all a credit to you. What a lovely school community you have.” Ms F and Mr P.
Email from Y1 parent, December 2015 – “Thank you for a wonderful first term at school for H. I could not be more impressed at how wonderfully the Class 1 staff helped him to settle and grow in confidence. He loves school so much he’s just announced he’s a bit sad it’s the Christmas holidays! Thank you also for all your continued support for Pre School.” Mrs D.
Email from Y1 and Y3 parents, September 2015: “We would like to pass on our thanks to you and all the staff at Dunsford Primary School. M and M have had a wonderful start to their school life and have enjoyed every day at the school. We have never had any concerns about their safety or happiness and they have always been eager to be in class. We would (and do) thoroughly recommend Dunsford School to prospective parents and we are very pleased we decided to send the girls to you to start their education.” Mr and Mrs S.
Email from a YR parent, September 2015 – “I just wanted to send you a very quick note because I just felt I must tell you how incredibly impressed I am with not only the whole school but especially the Class 1 staff. I know it’s early days!! But it’s just been amazing how wonderful and individual the care has been for each new child.
Not only did the Class 1 staff and Christine manage brilliantly to turn a rather reluctant H into the MOST enthusiastic new starter (uniform all put on by himself, incl. socks and shoes by 0630 on day 1!) but seeing you all out yesterday to greet them all made such a great start to school life.
And then today, predictably, we had some tears from H and a bit of a wrenching away situation at leaving time! But even though I was quite philosophical about it, Mrs Taylor made an effort to come straight over to me at hometime to reassure me he’d been fine – as did Ms Forsyth – and even more impressively, they had bothered to take a photo at 5 past 9 and print it out to put in his book bag to prove it to me!
I can’t speak highly enough of all three of them and the experience H has had in starting school…please do let them know how much I have appreciated their immense efforts!” Mrs D
Email from Y6 parents, July 2015: To All the Staff – “Thank you all very much for all your hard work and the encouragement given to A as she prepared for secondary school. She has loved every stage of her time at Dunsford School and has been given the space to grow and blossom over the years. The quality of the teaching she has received has been evident while preparing her for 11+ exams. As for enrichment activities – thank you for Sports day, Slapton, the concerts, the plays, the after school clubs, ten pin blowing, sports trips, the camp outs etc – all those times where you have gone the extra mile. Best wishes.” Mr and Mrs K.
Email from a Y4 parent, July 2015 – “Just a quick email to say S has come back after school last week really full of excitement about Mr Stewart’s lessons. So I thought I would write a positive email about it! Thank you, it is lovely to see her so happy about learning!” Mr W
Leaving card from a Y6 parent, July 2015 – “Just to say a very big thank you for all of the care and support you have given S and us as a family. He is leaving Dunsford Primary School very happy, confident and grown up! We hope you will find this small gift useful and fun, in particular for those children on the Thrive programme.” Mrs B
Leaving card from a Y6 parent, July 2015 – “Thank you so much for giving our three children such an idyllic primary education over the last 11 years. We’ll miss you. The biscuits are to share. The books are to inspire with nature and creativity.” Mr and Mrs W
Leaving card from a Y6 parent, July 2015 – “I would like to say a big thank you to you and all the staff for the many years of quality teaching and support you have provided for all three of my children. R, S and T have all benefitted hugely from their time at Dunsford and continue to thrive. Particular thanks to Mr Parker and Mr Stewart who have really helped to engage T over the last couple of years. As parents, G and I have tried to work with you and support the school as much as possible, fitting in with all our work commitments and I think the combined teamwork has been to all our benefits.
Very best wishes to you all and I hope Dunsford CP continues to thrive.” Mrs P
Singing Club visit to the Memory Cafe, June 2015 – “As I was on holiday I missed the children singing at the Memory Cafe, but yesterday heard all about it from our group. They said how much they had enjoyed the visit and that the singing was lovely. They were very complimentary about the children and as always said how well behaved they were, so a big hit all round again. I have been asked already if we can have another visit around Christmas and will contact you again nearer the time. Thank you to everyone who made this visit possible.” – Margaret Barker, Grandparent
Teign Valley Learning Community Arts Fest, June 2015 – “Please pass on my thanks and congratulations to Mr Parker and Mr Stewart (and the children of course) for an amazing performance at Teign School yesterday afternoon. Dunsford’s performance stood out from the other schools and demonstrated how talented the children at Dunsford are – it was truly enjoyable and all achieved without any obvious input from the teachers on the day.” – Regards, Mrs M, Y6 and Y4 parent
Email from French Exchange Parent, June 2015 – “I’d just like to thank you very much for taking such good care of L on the trip to France. L was very nervous about going but she had a great time on the ferry and on all the occasions when she was with you and the other children. It also sounds like you were endlessly patient spending hours playing Top Trumps among other things and I’m so grateful she had such a kind and caring team taking care of her.” – Mrs H, Y5 Parent
Slapton Ley Residential feedback, May 2015 – emails from parents:
“H clearly had a very happy time…huge thanks to all involved.” – Mrs W, Y5 parent
“Thank you to everyone involved in the Slapton trip. E had a lovely time and really enjoyed it. I was concerned about her birthday but I think everyone was really kind and made a fuss of her, so thank you very much to all of the staff involved.” – Mrs W, Y4 parent
“A certainly had a great time and seems to have come back with a sort of more grown up air about him, having been totally independent for the week. He’s come back feeling like he was very integrated and happy, if only a little exhausted! He did lie in til 8am on Saturday which is late for him. I know Mr Parker put in extra thought for him so please pass on our appreciation of this and to all the teachers who I know would have been looking out for him.” – Mrs W, Y5 parent
“Thank you so much from us too! E has clearly had an amazing time and we feel privileged that the children are given the opportunity to do such fantastic things. The staff are as ever amazing (and deserve medals I think!).” – Ms H, Y5 parent
“It was lovely to watch the children all returning from their final beach activity yesterday afternoon, all looking a little tired but very happy and well behaved. The teachers, especially Mr Parker, have worked very hard to bring this wonderful week together and as a parent I very much appreciate the dedication shown by all. H has thoroughly enjoyed her first residential trip and all of the girls talked non stop on the journey home (I was expecting a lot of sleeping!) about the experiences they have shared. A particular favourite seems to have been the low ropes and beach bouldering. A big thank you to Mrs Cole for looking after H in her homesick moment on night one, it seems she was quite happy after that night and very proud of herself! I hear that H’s group won the most tidy room…. I shall be expecting the same at home from now on! Many thanks once again to all involved, a very successful trip.” – Mrs C, Y5 parent
Email from a parent, April 2015 – “Just a quick email to say that I quizzed S on her column subtraction last night with particular attention to the borrowing method (That’s how we have fun in our household!!!). This was the method demonstrated to me during my Governor day by Mrs Carne. I was really impressed by her progress, she has grasped the concept. She told me she has been working on it in class. I would like to say a big thank you to you, Mrs Carne and all the other teachers and TAs involved in her maths teaching. This is of course in addition to all the wonderful work you all do in teaching our children. Thank you.” Mr W, Y3 parent
Email from a parent, February 2015 – “I just wanted to take the time to email and say thank you to Mr Parker for his piece in church with the children playing guitar and singing last week. We go to the family service each month and S was delighted to take part with Mr Parker’s group. She cannot wait to take up a musical instrument now when she is a little older. Anything that involves the church with the school I feel is wonderful and the congregation loved it also. I feel very proud and lucky to be in such a wonderful village with a school where the teachers go the extra mile every time. Thank you very much from the P family.
Kind regards, Mrs P”
Email from a parent, December 2014 – “I wanted to drop you a line to congratulate you on the excellent position in the Department of Educations’ Rankings released today.
Dunsford came in the top 20 for % achieving level 4 or above in reading, writing and maths and an incredible 4th out of 376 schools for pupils attaining level 5 and above !
What an amazing set of results achieved by a dedicated and professional team in which everyone plays their part.
I’m so proud and grateful that my boys have benefited from a Dunsford education.
Thank you!” Mrs H, Y4 parent
Christmas concert at the Memory Cafe – December 2014 – “Yet another lovely morning with the Dunsford School Singing Goup, we feel we are very lucky to have their visits and today we were told by a number of our group how the singing was so poignant it brought tears to their eyes. The inclusion of the songs from the war years was a great touch and much appreciated in this special year. Our thanks to Chris Parker in particular, he has such a great rapport with the children that shows through in the singing. Thanks too to all the helpers who brought the children down and hopefully they managed to return before yet another heavy shower! We look forward to seeing them again in 2015. With all good wishes for Christmas and the New Year. Margaret and all at the Memory Cafe.”
“Dear Mr Parker & the singing club,
Well done on a fantastic performance at the Memory Cafe today! You all sang so beautifully & with such enthusiasm & lovely smiles; I could see that everyone watching was having a wonderful time, & some were even singing along with the WW1 songs. All your hard work definitely paid off!
Thank you for a lovely morning,
Y6 Leaving card – July 2014 – “N has greatly enjoyed his time at Dunsford School. He has loved all the outside activities, the extra-curricular clubs and the fantastic outdoor areas. Many things have changed over the years but he has felt comfortable and happy throughout his time. He has enjoyed his work (mainly!) and thrived on being challenged. He has been given an excellent springboard to take him on to his higher education. Many thanks. Ms H and Mr K”
Summer concert – July 2014 – “Thank you so much for a fantastic concert this afternoon. The children were having such fun – and so did the audience! I am so grateful for the time and effort you put into building the children’s confidence and giving them the opportunity to perform. L’s grandmother has just arrived from South Africa so it was an extra special event for her and L. Thank you so much. Mrs H”
First Ever Great Dunsford Camp Out – July 2014 – “Just wanted you to know how much fun H had camping, things like that will be remembered for many years and I think it’s great staff gave up their time and sleep to allow that to take place. So from a mother who did not like school I have two girls who love it! Thank you. Mrs W”
“Thank you so much for the camp out on Friday night. L absolutely loved it! It was so adventurous and generous of you to give up your time to make it possible. It really was a great idea and we are very grateful to you all for making it happen and making it such fun. What a magic experience you gave the children. Thank you! Mr and Mrs H”
“H and Z had a fabulous time at the camp out on Friday evening as their excitement had built up during all of last week. I wanted to say thank you to Mr Stewart for having the vision to hold and organise such an event, supported by Mrs Cole and Mrs Carne. It’s great to take advantage of our wonderful facilities and rural location. The girls were absolutely shattered yesterday – our home hasn’t been so quiet since they were born! They’re all recovered today and sharing the stories of their adventure. Kind regards, Mrs B”
Memory Cafe visit – June 2014 – “We all enjoyed and appreciated the visit from the children today, the singing was very good and entertaining, particularly the “actions”. The children showed us some of their work and spoke very well about it. After all the lovely weather we have had it was a pity that today was the day to change and we hope they managed to get back without getting too wet.
As ever, we are always impressed with how well the children communicate and behave and our thanks to their teachers and helpers who take the time to bring them along.
It has been requested that if possible could Mr. Parker bring the singing group for a short visit at Christmas (our last meeting is 11th December) but if this date was not free on their calendar, perhaps early in the New Year? With all good wishes, Mrs B”
Activity Week – June 2014 – “Thank you so much for supporting and transporting the children through the most fantastic week. L absolutely loved her time at Haven Banks and it must have been a lot of hard work for everyone who made it possible. Many thanks again, Best wishes, Mrs H”
“We just wanted to send you an email to thank you for laying on such an amazing week of activities for the children. Our boys came home each evening with so many exciting adventures to tell us about the new challenges they had faced and such delight in their achievements.
Thank you for all for planning and organising this extra curricular, whole school extravaganza … it was very much appreciated!
We can’t wait to see the photos!
With admiration and best wishes, the H family”
“I know they haven’t even finished yet but I wanted to be one of the first to say what an amazing time both boys have had this week, coming home full of the things they have done.
When A found out he was going to Haven Banks he said, “what’s the point I won’t be able to do anything…” Turns out he’s had a ball – jumping off 20m platforms, kayaking, caving, he has been mega chuffed about it all.
As far as I’m concern it’s all about a positive ‘can do’ attitude which his school and the staff at Haven Banks have in spades – so a HUGE thank you to all of those who have made it work for A, particularly Mr Stewart for being so proactive in making sure it was all going to be OK for him [the pre visit was an inspired idea] and Mrs Cole who I think has been subtly making sure he’s had a great time all week. Best Wishes, Mrs W”
“I have just read the newsletter and the itinerary for this week for the children… I think it is wonderful and wish I was back at school again! Please tell everyone I am very impressed with all they are doing… am not surprised that parents want their children to come to Dunsford School!” Mrs W (school governor)
Arts Fest – May 2014 – “I would like to say a really big thank you and your team for teaming S up and with a year 6 girl (sorry I have forgotten her name) for daily reading. S is making huge progress in her reading, she is far more confident and is really enjoying the stories.
Thank you, it has made an enormous difference.
Oh one more thing, I would like to add that the Dunsford School “FM” was by far the funniest, most inclusive, fastest to the point and most professional piece of stage work at Teign School.
Kind Regards, Mr W”
Parents Survey – April 2014 – “My son started the school in September. School has made our family feel very welcome and has provided my son with a safe, relaxed and happy environment to learn and make new friends.”
“We think the teachers and teaching assistants of C1 have shown wonderful and committed dedication to the children. They have shown tremendous care and have quickly grasped a good understanding or our child’s needs, giftings and struggles. We are hugely grateful for all their hard work and pastoral care. Thank you.”
“We feel the school teachers and assistants are excellent and committed to delivering good education. We are very satisfied with Dunsford School and everything our children are taught and the methods which are used.”
“Thank you! I continually recommend DCPS and “sing its praises” throughout the land!”
“Very happy so far. One of my main reasons of leaving the army and moving back was so our daughter could attend Dunsford School. I am very glad I made that decision. Thank you.”
“Generally very happy.”
“We are extremely lucky to have such a high level of support and nurturing at Dunsford. I am very grateful for the patience and tailored approach our child has received in order to support their learning.”
“I have always worried about my child and this year has had its ups and downs but they are thriving. They are very self-motivated, getting so confident, it’s wonderful to see. My other child too is doing well. Thank you all.”
“A good broad education is obviously important but at this age I think it is more important that they are allowed to develop as individuals with sound values. To have confidence in themselves and these values, and to be exposed to diverse experiences and cultures. I am confident this is happening.”
Bird Ringing – April 2014 – “I just wanted to write as ‘a governor’ to say how wonderful the bird ringing sessions were this morning and to acknowledge and thank Mr Stewart for all his hard work and time in organising such a special and enriching experience for the children. All the children were enthralled and I am sure learnt a great deal (as did I ) as well as hugely increasing their awareness of our little feathered friends!
Such a special experience for the children and one I, especially as a governor, am delighted to see taking place at our school.
So huge thank you to Mr Stewart!
Ms F (parent and governor)”
Design Technology Biscuit Project – January 2014
“I think it is important to feed back positive comments to you and so following a long discussion with Hannah last night, I thought you should know the following!!
The project of biscuit making that Mrs Cole has been running with the children has been a huge success. H has found this so exciting and informative and was rather disappointed last night that it has now finished!! I have yet to see or taste the bright blue biscuits(!) but she has really enjoyed the entire project from designing their packaging to thinking of a name for them to choosing the flavours and finally making them yesterday.
A huge thank you to Mrs Cole.
‘A Ring on the Doorbell’ Christmas Production – December 2013
“I just wanted to pass on comments about yesterday afternoon and last nights production of A Ring on the Doorbell.
What an amazing performance by all who took part. We clearly are blessed with many talented children and of course, wonderful teaching staff. It was an outstanding Nativity play, a credit to the school.
A big thank you to Mr Parker and Mr Stewart who persuaded H she could sing a solo. A huge achievement for her and she is very proud of herself! I was a rather proud Mummy too!
Well done to all. Mr Parker deserves a special mention for writing a very humorous and clever script with fabulous songs, along with Mr Stewart who clearly had a huge role in the production.
Thank you once again. Looking forward to next years already!!
“All the parents I’ve spoken to are buzzing with the quality of yesterday’s two shows. One older lady I spoke to [I don’t know who she was] said it was ‘the best school performance I’ve ever seen’ and she was a teacher and so had been to quite a few in her time!
What I like is that every year the children move up through the years and get that little bit more confident. The talent of some of the children for such a small school is extraordinary and fabulous to get the opportunity to see it – notably L’s gymnastics and R, T and L’s dance performances and all those children brave enough to sing solos…
We’re very lucky to have teachers who are such hard workers and with the talent too.
“Just a quick note to all the staff involved in the School Christmas production to say that we absolutely loved it. We were overwhelmingly impressed by the professionalism of the show and can only guess at the hundreds of hours of work that have gone in to producing it. Thank you all so very much.
This was my first show as a Parent and we are looking forward to the next one.
Thanks again and Merry Christmas.
“Thank you so much for a fantastic show yesterday. Mr Parker should definitely get his script published – it was funny and engaging and we really enjoyed it. And what was really noticeable was how much the children were enjoying it too!
We are so impressed by how the children’s enthusiasm for singing and performance has grown at Dunsford. It is brilliant how the children are encouraged to express themselves creatively and are given opportunities to perform if they would like. L has really blossomed this term by taking the plunge and asking to do a dance and a solo – it has made a massive difference to her confidence and her enjoyment of school. Thank you!
Mr and Mrs H”
Singing Club visit to the Memory Cafe – December 2013
“What a wonderful visit by the children from Dunsford School, they really are a group to be proud of and all of us at the Memory Cafe enjoyed the singing and, as one of our group said, the children all looked to be enjoying it too which comes across in their singing. The children were extremely well behaved which again was remarked on by many of the elderly audience.
We are grateful to yourself and all the teachers and assistants who make the visits possible, particularly Mr. Parker who obviously puts such a lot of hard work into the singing group and we felt privileged to hear the first public performance of two of the songs. The question we are asked as soon as the children have left is will it be possible for them to come back in the summer and maybe we can arrange this next year, it is so therapeutic for all who come to the Memory Cafe.
With good wishes to you all for Christmas and the New Year from everyone at the Memory Cafe.
Class 1 ‘Poppies’ for Remembrance Sunday – November 2013
“I would like to thank you and the children, who made the display for the Remembrance service. It was wonderful. The children must have worked very hard to produce such a good display.
Thank you very much.
Trooper Philip Morris 24131281
3rd Royal Tank Regiment”
Tour Of Britain Cycling Day – September 2013
“Just wanted to say what a wonderful day Friday was. Such a memorable experience for all the children. E talked about the cyclists and the big art attack all the way to Surrey on Friday night and kept telling people we saw over the weekend that she had seen Bradley and his team! Seeing all the excited class 3 children on their bikes by the river was confirmation of how important the extracurricular activities such as cycling are. It was clear that they all got a tremendous amount out of it. Perhaps it should be an annual event!
Mr Stewart, Mrs Cole, Mrs Hart and the parents with them did a great job. Please pass on my congratulations and thanks to Rob for organising the ride, as I know it is quite a brave thing to do taking that many children off site on bikes!
Science Enrichment – July 2013
“After her trip to Teign last week, L is now telling everyone she wants to be a scientist. This is a great development and exactly what education is about – opening doors of interest and possibility. She had a fantastic time and the visit, together with Ms Forsyth’s science experiments with her class this term, has sparked a real interest in science. Thank you!
Mr and Mrs H”
Class 1 trip to the Memory Cafe – July 2013
“Thank you very much for making it possible for the younger children to visit the Memory Cafe today. We all thoroughly enjoyed the singing, poetry and seeing the project work they had done and they were such a happy, well behaved group of children and it gave our group a lot of pleasure. A big thank you to Mrs. Kersey, Mrs. Taylor and all the helpers for taking such a lot of time to plan the programme and for bringing the children down to Strawberry Hill – we were fortunate to have such a lovely sunny day. At a recent general meeting of the Devon Dementia Care & Support Partnership a gentleman from DCC was talking about links with schools and Memory Cafes and I was pleased to tell him that Dunsford Primary School and our Memory Cafe already had got together. I have given Mrs. Kersey the e-mail address which was given for schools to get in touch – not too sure what they are offering to you (if anything!) but thought it might prove useful,
We were asked today by our group if the children could come again, maybe during the next term or near to Christmas, so you can tell how popular the visit was.
With kind regards
Class 3 London Residential – July 2013
“I wanted to drop you a line to thank you and the rest of the staff and volunteers for the effort that you made to make the London trip such an enjoyable and memorable experience for N. You obviously spent a lot of time planning the activities and ensuring that the children enjoyed themselves; it must have been a lot of work and have involved quite a lot of stress at times too!
Thank you, she really has gained a lot from it.
“I just wanted to extend my thanks to you and your team for giving C the experience of this residential. I can only imagine the very many hours of planning and preparation that went into organising such an exciting program of activities. As for bravely negotiating the tubes and steering the children round central London … Well all I can say is congratulations. I’m sure this is a trip they will remember for years to come.
Class 2 trip to Dawlish Warren – July 2013
“Thank you so much for a fantastic day on Friday. It was so magic to see the children having a happy time on the beach together and munching lunch and ice cream on the grass in the sun. And catching pond creatures and bugs and butterflies.
And you handled the mass of children so carefully and easily – I felt really lucky to accompany the trip. Thank you!
‘Hosanna Rock’ Christmas Production – December 2012
“I’m sorry this is so late, but I just wanted to say that your Christmas Show was really fantastic! It was so apparent that the children were enjoying the singing and performance and the whole production was full of life and spontaneity. It was also magic to have live guitar accompany the class 1 children.
“What an amazing couple of performances yesterday, it was so good I went back and saw it again!
I have two very happy boys today, pleased that they ‘pulled it off’ in spite of some nerves! The confidence and multiple talents of the children at Dunsford is just wonderful.
Please could you thank G for helping A up and down the steps, I was very impressed that she always remembered to do it even just before or just after she had had to do something herself performance-wise. You’d never have guessed that she’d only just joined the school and that must say a lot about how welcoming a school is.
All the best.