PEP Bulletin w/c 18 May 2020

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portsmouth city council
Portsmouth Education Partnership

PEP Bulletin

21 May 2020

If you have information to be included in the next issue of the PEP bulletin, please send your text, image and link by Tuesday at 12pm to

COVID-19 recent government updates

Schools and educational settings information for parents and carers

The Department for Education has published an FAQ document for parents and carers about the wider opening of nurseries, schools and colleges, transport, attendance, free school meals and remote education.

Read now

Update from Ofqual

Ofqual recently published a blog on making grades as fair as they can be: advice for schools and colleges and additional information for heads of centre, heads of department and teachers on objectivity in grading and ranking.

Ofqual have also published 'guidance for centres - the awarding of vocational and technical qualifications, and other general qualifications, in summer 2020.'

Read now

Early years

Early years 'read with me' project

The School Library Service and early years team have been working with a range of schools to develop the 'read with me' project.

Due to the current circumstances the project has taken a different turn. We have adapted the delivery model to make provision for the children who have remained and who may continue to stay at home.

This has also enabled us to share this project with the wider early years setting and schools community. The 10 core books that were selected by year r practitioners and further links to 'readings' of these books can be found here.

The original aim of 'read with me' was for pre-school practitioners to share the 10 core books with children in their last term of pre-school, for parents to continue sharing and talking about the stories over the summer holiday and then for year r to continue in September. In this way children can build familiarity, understanding and an in-depth knowledge and love for a range of texts.

Please feel free to use this resource and share the links with parents.

Additional information about the project can be found here.

School improvement

Solent Junior School maintains good Ofsted rating

Congratulations to Solent Junior School for receiving a good rating following an Ofsted school inspection on 10-11 March 2020. In their report, Ofsted highlighted:

"This is a welcoming and friendly school where everybody gets along with one another.
Pupils enjoy coming to school because they feel safe and well cared for.

Leaders and teachers are united in their ambition for all pupils to fulfil their potential.

Teachers know the content of the curriculum well. They explain information and tasks
clearly. Their effective use of subject-specific language is helping to expand pupils’

Read the full report

Curriculum and CPD

Sound Minds - a brand new musical initiative

Portsmouth Music Hub are proud to announce their brand new mental health initiative Sound Minds.

Sound Minds brings together musicians, composers, performers, teachers, community groups and thousands of children in a new campaign. It focuses on how music and the arts can help support the exploration, education and discussion of mental health.

Sound Minds aims to use music and the arts to:

  • promote the expression of our emotions
  • support our wellbeing
  • provide a platform for children across the city to continue conversations about mental health

The launch of this new initiative coincides with Mental Health Awareness Week which takes place from 18 - 24 May 2020 on the theme of kindness.  

Sound Minds

Learn more

7 top tips to support key stage 2 children reading at home

Shared reading is a great way to develop children’s language and communication and to boost their reading skills. The Education Endowment Foundation has produced a document for parents and carers which lists tips aimed at supporting children in key stage 2 with reading at home.


Funk Format online dance workshops

Funk Format, an urban dance organisation, are looking to reach more young people from local schools, through providing online dance workshops and courses that can be delivered directly through schools.

The online workshops last from 30 to 120 minutes and are delivered virtually via online video streaming.

Learn more

Emotional health and wellbeing

Survey into how young people are being affected by COVID-19 and lockdown

The You-COPE study at UCL is seeking to understand how young people aged 16-24 years in the UK are being impacted by the current coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. 

This project will help to understand the effects of social distancing measures on young people in the UK. This will help to better support young people at this time, and could inform the social distancing measures put in place during the pandemic and beyond.

This survey should take approximately 15-20 minutes to complete.

Find out more

New videos to support dental prevention in children and young people

The British Society of Paediatric Dentistry (BSPD) have produced three mini-videos to support dental prevention in children and young people. Dr Ranj and sidekick Supertooth guide children in different age categories on how to brush teeth.

The videos are aimed at parents of children aged 0-3, 3-6 and 7+.

Watch now

LA updates

LA traded services - extension of deadline

The deadline for schools to buy into the 2020-22 traded services was set as 5 June 2020. We are very conscious that given all of the other pressures that schools are under it would be helpful to extend the deadline. This has now been pushed back by a fortnight to 22 June 2020.

Support for families

We would be grateful if you could include the following information in your communications with parents and carers.

The coronavirus pandemic has brought many new challenges for families. There are lots of things which families are now finding more difficult than usual. Across Portsmouth, there are lots of ways to access a little extra help at this time. If you need to talk with someone you should:

  1. Speak with your social worker or other key worker, if you have one.
  2. Contact your child's school or childcare setting - they will help and if needed, link you with someone who can help further.
  3. Contact the health-visiting service if your child is under 5, or midwifery if you are pregnant/expecting. You can use the text messaging service: 07491 163 275 or call 0300 123 6629.
  4. If you don’t want to speak to your child's school/health worker - phone the Portsmouth City Council Helpdesk on 023 9283 4092 or by email
  5. Contact your GP if you or your child is poorly - the NHS is open for business.

Useful COVID-19 resources for schools

Several multi-academy trusts (MATs) have shared resources relating to the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation which schools may find useful. These resources include a communications plan and suite of letter templates, bereavement advice, and tips for digisafe primary teaching.

All resources are available on the senior stakeholder hub on the PEP website here.

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