PEP Bulletin w/c 24 May 2021

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portsmouth city council
Portsmouth Education Partnership

PEP Bulletin

27 May 2021

Preparing for study, work and life

EBP South Inspiring STEM Careers

Book your place for Inspiring STEM Careers

EBP South's Inspiring STEM Careers, aimed at years 8 - 11, takes place on Wednesday 7 July 2021, 9am - 1.45pm. The virtual event is free to attend with places available on a first-come first-served basis.

Young people will experience four STEM activities, including an imagination and creativity challenge, watching experiments, problem solving and a 'guess my job' session and panel.

Schools attending the event will be meeting the following outcomes:

  • Meets the Gatsby Benchmarks 2, 4, 5 and 7.
  • Engages young people with STEM businesses within their local area.
  • Enables young people to recognise local STEM businesses they could work for.
  • Helps young people engage in STEM subjects in school.
  • Helps young people to identify different STEM careers.
  • Inspires young people, years 8 and 11, to consider a career in STEM.

For more information, please email

Royal Navy STEM Engagement Team - free sessions for schools

The Royal Navy STEM Engagement Team aims to inspire and enthuse children and young people to learn about STEM and encourage a positive approach to learning and development that integrates the areas of science, technology, engineering and maths. Through STEM, students develop key skills including problem solving.

The aim of the STEM engagement team is to deliver a comprehensive, interesting and enjoyable experience to young people from all backgrounds around the country. They are a self-contained mobile unit who can deploy anywhere in the country and what they deliver can be tailored to your own requirements, all at zero cost to you. They are keen to accept invitations to visit schools and youth groups.

Their target audience is 8 to 11 year olds, however they can deliver more bespoke, in depth packages to older students. They are also able to offer evening sessions to youth organisations such as Scouts, Guides, Cadet Forces etc. They are not recruiters and do not conduct recruiting activities.

To find out more and how to book a visit to your school/organisation, please email or contact Alex Watts at

Early years

Nuffield Early Language Intervention (NELI) funding

The government has recently announced that recruitment for the second wave of the Nuffield Early Language Intervention (NELI) programme has been launched. NELI is a programme training early years staff across England to provide a comprehensive catch-up intervention, proven to accelerate language skills by an additional 3-4 months over 20 weeks.

The programme is aimed at children aged 4-5 years in preschool and year R, but can be easily applied to other groups where appropriate. It consists of 3 x 30 minute group sessions and 2 x 15 minute individual inputs per week, and targets skill development in the areas of listening, vocabulary, narrative and phonological awareness - with additional positive side-effects for behaviour and literacy.

All English schools are eligible to apply for free, and are prioritised based on free school meals. Applications close on Friday 30 July 2021.

Find out more

Leadership, recruitment and retention

Challenge Partners offer for school improvement and leadership development in 2021/22

Challenge Partners offer a flexible partnership model which enables schools to join at a level which suits them, so that more children enjoy an excellent education in a Challenge Partners school.

All partner schools automatically join the peer-led Network of Excellence through which school and trust leaders network, collaborate, discuss challenges, share excellent practice and offer peer support, for sustainable school improvement.

Full details of the 2021/22 partnership offer for schools can be found here.

For more information on joining Challenge Partners please contact Sharon Burt (Portsmouth Hub Senior Leader) at or Kate Chhatwal (Challenge Partners CEO) at

Complete Google Sheet for Teach Portsmouth celebrates campaign

Teach Portsmouth

Colleagues are reminded about Teach Portsmouth celebrates - a new campaign to recognise your efforts during the pandemic which launches on Monday 7 June.

Schools and colleges can download a resource pack that gives ideas on activities to celebrate staff.

Colleagues are being asked to share a photo or video taken during the two week campaign on their organisation's social media accounts using the hashtag #TeachPortsmouthCelebrates as well as tagging @TeachPortsmouth.

If you would like to participate in the campaign, please complete our Google Sheet. This will help the Teach Portsmouth team plan and share your content during the campaign.

Complete Google Sheet

Curriculum and CPD

Free music and mental health resource for KS1

PCEP Portsmouth Music Hub

Portsmouth Music Hub, in partnership with the Schools' Library Service, has released a new video resource aimed at key stage 1 pupils. The video uses the popular picture book, The Worrysaurus, written by Rachel Bright and illustrated by Chris Chatterton. Using the book, children get to know an apprehensive dinosaur and the strategies that he uses to help overcome his fears.

The story's positive messages are reinforced through the teaching of an enjoyable, lively song, with the support of actions, backing tracks and words on screen.

This resource is part of Portsmouth Music Hub's Sound Minds initiative, which uses music and the arts to encourage education and discussion around mental health for young people. 

The video is freely available to all schools here.

The Worrysaurus

Poetry competition for primary and secondary schools

Schools poetry competition

Portsmouth Poetry is pleased to announce a poetry competition for Portsmouth schools
as part of Ports Fest (the Portsmouth Festivities).

The competition is open to primary schools (key stages 1 and 2) and secondary schools (key stages 3 and 4). The four winners in the key stages will be awarded a £10 book token and £50 of book tokens for their school. Ports Fest are delighted to support this creative writing initiative and will be awarding the overall winner of the poetry competition a £50 book token and publishing the winning entries online.

The closing date for submitting entries is Sunday 27 June.

Find out more

Primary Languages Network Conference 2021

The Primary Languages Network free virtual conference will take place from 14-18 June 2021. The theme is 'reaching out', with a focus on KS2-3 languages transition.

Keynote speakers are Suzanne O'Farrell (ASCL) and Janet Lloyd (Primary Languages Network).

Find out more

Free live-streamed literature festival for schools

PCEP logo

Pop Up Festival Presents is a free live-streamed summer showcase of children’s literature for primary, secondary and special schools.

20 award-winning and bestselling authors will read from their most-loved and new books, along with interviews, performances, workshops and resources. Events will be live-streamed on Crowdcast daily from 14 - 18 June 2021.

Find out more and register

Pop Up Festival

Art Builders - high-quality participatory arts projects

PCEP logo

Art Builders is about inspiring schools to programme art activity, giving all young children and teaching staff an opportunity to get involved in the arts and be creative. Whether daily art lessons, week-long art weeks or big art days, they believe that creativity should be a valued part of the education system. Art Builders champions art experiences for every child, every academic year.

Art Builders Day is Friday 25 June 2021. This year the Art Builders team will be creating resources and projects under the theme of ‘Lotions & Potions’. You can register your school as an Art Builders School for free.

Find out more

Armed Forces Day 2021

The Armed Forces Covenant is a promise by the nation ensuring that those who serve or who have served in the armed forces, and their families, are treated fairly.

Portsmouth City Council are proud to uphold the Armed Forces Covenant and recognise that now more than ever, our armed forces community may need the support the Armed Forces Covenant provides.

Armed Forces Day

For children growing up in military families, Armed Forces Day on Saturday 26 June and the week leading up to it is our opportunity to recognise and thank them for the unique sacrifices they and their families make and have made to support our security and wellbeing.

There are lots of pre-existing educational resources available for schools and parents on the topic of the armed forces, past and present. These can be used during Armed Forces Day and the week leading up to it to say thank you and find out more about the armed forces.

Find out more

Big City Read

3,000 schoolchildren take part in Portsmouth Big City Read

33 schools are taking part in the council's Big City Read this summer, with every year six pupil receiving a copy of Boy Giant: Son of Gulliver by children's author Michael Morpurgo.

Pupils will be encouraged to explore the themes of the book which focus on refuge, war, kindness and hope - which links with Portsmouth's status as a City of Sanctuary, to offer safety and sanctuary to anyone fleeing violence and persecution.

A large sand sculpture of the Boy Giant is also on display at Portsmouth Central Library over the summer for public viewing.

Read more about Boy Giant

Emotional health and wellbeing

Portsmouth Young Carers Service update

To make the referral process easier and more accessible, Portsmouth Young Carers Service have launched an online referral form. If you have identified a young carer in your school/college, please complete the online form via their webpage. Alternatively you can send the webpage link to the parent/carer to complete alongside the young person.

If you would like to find out if a young person has already been referred to the service, please email the team and they will be able to look into this for you. They will need the young person's name and date of birth to do this, together with a parent/guardian and the young person's permission.

Summer term Young Carers Lead Network meetings are taking place soon:

  • Secondary schools and colleges - Tuesday 8 June, 3.45pm - 4.45pm
  • Primary schools - Wednesday 9 June, 3.45pm - 4.45pm

The focus at both meetings will be on:

  • Identifying 'hidden' young carers at school/college;
  • Supporting transitions for young carers.

To book a place, please email the team.

Contact details:
Young Carers Education Link Worker: Mandy Watters

ELSA (Emotional Literacy Support Assistants) newsletter

The latest ELSA newsletter for May 2021 is available to read here.

Emotional Literacy Support Assistants (ELSAs) help children and young people learn and practice social and emotional skills and enable them to feel valued and listened to. ELSAs have been working hard during the pandemic to support children and young people through this difficult and challenging time. 

The Educational Psychology Team run annual ELSA training courses. The next starts in the autumn term and is available to book on the Portsmouth Learning Gateway (course code SCH/21/22). View the ELSA training 2021 leaflet for further information.

The team are hoping the training will be face-to-face and have booked a venue (Training & Learning Centre, The Portsmouth Academy) but in light of current COVID-19 restrictions numbers are limited so book early to avoid disappointment!

If you do not have access to Portsmouth Learning Gateway to book or have any further queries please contact Philippa Wilson at

School Streets free Zoom talk

Sustrans and Pompey Living Streets are holding a free School Streets Zoom talk on Thursday 17 June 2021, 7pm to 8pm. If you are a parent, pupil or teacher worried about air pollution and road safety outside schools this event could be for you.

A School Street is where a team of trained volunteers close the street directly in front of a school entrance at drop off and pick up times. This prevents cars from going up to the school gates during these busy times which lessens congestion and improves air quality. Studies have shown this encourages parents to walk or cycle to school with their kids, rather than drive, which can also benefit pupil health and mood.

Portsmouth City Council, alongside Sustrans, will be trialling School Streets in two local primary schools and are keen to do more.

If you have any questions please email Jenni Jones:

School Aged Immunisation Service update

An update for schools from the School Aged Immunisation Service is now available, including information on: service changes, e-consent, MMR, flu and new contact details.

Read full letter


New online game launched to give children a head start with staying cyber secure

CyberSprinters is a new online game to help primary schools, clubs and youth groups teach children about cyber security from an early age. It is a free interactive game, developed by the National Cyber Security Centre – a part of GCHQ, aimed at 7 to 11-year-olds. It is designed to make learning about cyber security fun and interactive at a time when children begin to seek more independence online.

The game sits alongside a pack of educational resources which illustrate what good cyber security practice looks like, from creating strong passwords to being vigilant about receiving messages from unknown senders.

Find out more

0-19 parenting offer

Details of the 0-19 parenting offer are available here. This includes information on:

  • Support for under 5s
  • Parenting surgeries
  • Triple P discussion groups (view upcoming dates here)
  • Non-violent resistance (NVR) and rebuilding relationships
  • Children with additional needs

Medical alert relating to ingestion of 'super strong' magnets

A joint National Patient Safety Alert has been issued by the NHS England and NHS Improvement National Patient Safety Team and Royal College of Emergency Medicine on the need for urgent assessment/treatment following ingestion of ‘super strong’ magnets.

Small powerful magnets, also known as neodymium or ‘super strong’ rare-earth magnets, are sold as toys, decorative items and fake piercings, and are becoming increasingly popular. Unlike traditional magnets, these ‘super strong’ magnets are small in volume but powerful in magnetism and easily swallowed.

Find out more

Special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND)

The results of the Portsmouth 2021 SEND survey are out!

The 2021 survey of parents and carers of children with SEND praised city schools and keyworkers for their support in Portsmouth City Council's annual survey. 86% said they felt they were being listened to, with education staff being most often identified as the main keyworker that supports them.

However, it also showed about half of families are still not aware of Portsmouth's SEND Local Offer website, meaning some might be missing out on important and helpful support and advice. Please signpost any families whose children require additional help with their learning to visit

SEND survey

Read the full survey report

LA updates

Education Information Services: Alternative primary school profiles 2021

The EIS team can provide you with a version of our school profiles to support your school, should you wish us to do so. We have provided you with templates on SSE for you to complete and send back to us.

To receive your profile in September, you will need to return data by Friday 9 July. If you cannot meet this deadline but wish to receive a profile, you can give us data before autumn half term (and will receive the profile in December).

Please remember that this is a voluntary process, you don't have to provide data for all assessments that pupils would have taken and the data will not be used for accountability purposes. The school profile is available for free to schools with the EIS SLA, and can be purchased as an ad hoc service for those without the SLA.

For further information, please email:

COVID-19 research

Public Health Portsmouth are looking to conduct research with residents who are hesitant to get the vaccine or reluctant to get tested and follow self-isolation guidance. The insights from this research will help to inform local campaigns. There will be no judgement or repercussions for people expressing these views.

Your assistance in promoting to your school community via your social media channels, website or newsletter would be much appreciated. The survey for people to express interest closes on Sunday 6 June.

You could share posts from:

Or use the pre-written Facebook and Twitter posts available here.


The HR news information is located on the human resources Google homepage and maintained schools and any academy with an HR Traded Services agreement can access it here.  

Further information can be obtained by contacting HR.

PEP calendar

The PEP calendar contains dates of events, network meetings, conferences, training and workshops taking place in Portsmouth.

To help make the calendar as useful as possible for everyone, colleagues and partners are encouraged to regularly add relevant dates that you'd like to share. If you're scheduling your own event or training, you can check availability on the PEP calendar to avoid potential clashes with other events.

To add a date to the PEP calendar, simply forward your meeting invite to and it will be added automatically.

Please note that the email address should only be used to add items to the PEP calendar. All queries regarding the Portsmouth Education Partnership should continue to be sent to

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