Sandown School

Sandown Primary School

Sandown Primary School
Thomas Becket


Young Carers 2016.2017

Sandown School Young Carers' Group 

At Sandown we recognise that sometimes a child who has caring responsibilities at home might need a little extra support to help them get the most out of school and so we have set up our Young Carers Support Group.

The whole school is committed to ensuring that all our children, including Young Carers, can access and engage with their education, with the right support where necessary, to achieve their potential.

We have 2 designated Young Carers leaders in school, Mrs Male and Mrs Skinner. Mrs Horrocks, SENCO, supports the group on behalf of the Sandown Senior Leadership team. We also have a school Governor, Mrs Rowe, who is taking a special interest in and responsibility for our Young Carers' Support Group.  They will ensure that families and pupils are aware of the group.  They can be contacted via the School Office by phone or in person.  Pupils can speak to Mrs Male, Mrs Skinner or Mrs Horrocks at any time during the school day or they can leave a confidential message in the box located securely in the School Office.

We have excellent links with external agencies and can make referrals to get support for Young Carers and their families, if they would like us to. We would only share information with professionals and agencies on a need to know basis in order to get the right support.  The school actively seeks feedback and ideas from young carers and their families to shape and improve support so we would be pleased to hear your views.

The school uses Pupil Premium funding to minimise any barriers to education and learning experience by eligible Young Carers.

What is a Young Carer?

At Sandown a Young Carer is “a child in Year 1 and above who provides care to another family member who has a physical illness or disability, mental health problem, sensory disability, severe learning disability or who has a substance misuse problem”. We include in this children living with siblings who have any of these difficulties.

What do we do?

We meet once a month at lunchtime in the After School Club Room. We have our lunch together, either a school meal or packed lunch, and then enjoy activities together.

TERM 6 update: GREAT NEWS! We are very proud to announce that Sandown School has just achieved its Young Carers in Schools Bronze Award from The Children’s Society.

To celebrate, our meeting this month was an afternoon trip to Walmer Castle Gardens on the 19th June.

Mrs Collins, our Green Zone Leader, came with us too and we had a fabulous afternoon in the sunshine.

We played under the biggest, oldest tree we had ever seen, climbing on the branches and looking at all the places creatures make their homes. A robin almost landed on one of our heads!

Then we went to the pond and lay down by the edge to look at the fish and some of us had our fingers tickled by them. There were lots of beautiful blue dragonflies and water lilies and some of us saw a tiny frog on the path. After a walk along the woodland path it was to time to head back for our ice cream treat.

We all enjoyed ourselves very much and you can see some photos of our adventures on our notice board.

On 24th February 2016 we had our first meeting where we started to get to know each other as a group.

On 23rd March, after we had eaten lunch, we had fun painting Easter Eggs to take home. We made a bit of a mess and ended up with some glorious colour combinations on our eggs!

On 27th April we had lunch as usual and then chatted about what we hope to be able to do at our next meetings. In the summer we are going to have a tea party so we made invitations to take home. We hope that the person we help care for, or one of our parents, will be able to come to the party.

On 25th May, after lunch, we went to the new play park in the North Deal playing field. The rain held off for us and we all enjoyed playing on the new equipment, especially the rope climbing frame.

On 4th July we had a party at the play park. We were very lucky as the weather was brilliant, the first really hot day we’ve had for ages. Some of our parents and the people we help care for joined us there and we had a great time playing together. We had drinks and snacks and it was lovely to meet some of the other young carers’ families. We took some photos, which you can see here.

On 27th September we were lucky the weather was good so after lunch we went to the play park. Our group enjoyed being outside and having fun together on the play equipment.

On 1st November the whole school had a visit from Kent Fire and Rescue Service and we were very lucky that Debbie stayed on to have lunch with our Young Carers group. We had the chance to ask her any special questions we had about being safe at home and it was very nice to have her sharing our lunchtime meeting.

On 6th December for our Christmas meeting we had lunch together as usual and then we got ourselves ready for an exciting afternoon. We went to The Chequers Kitchen for an afternoon of Christmas Cooking and we made chocolate yule logs. First we watched one being made and then we got started on making our own cakes. We whisked eggs, sifted flour and mixed everything together and then waited until a delicious smell came from the ovens. Then we made the chocolate icing and rolled our cakes into a log shape. We decorated them with icing sugar and Christmas shapes and they looked absolutely fabulous! We didn’t make too much mess but there was a lot of chocolate everywhere! We each took our cakes back to school and then home and everyone said how lovely they were. We enjoyed the afternoon very much and were proud of our baking skills. Look out for our photos on the Young Carers’ notice board and in the gallery below.

At our first meeting of 2017 (10th January), we had lunch together as usual and then we all looked at the photos Mrs Skinner took when we went to the Chequers Kitchen before Christmas.  We each chose 2 photographs of ourselves and wrote a few words about our cookery afternoon to make a display for our noticeboard.  Some of us helped decorate signs for the board and the rest of us played games or drew pictures until it was time to go back to class.  Mrs Skinner has made a lovely display of our photos for everyone in school to see.  

At our meeting on 21st February we were joined by Dawn, from Dover SmArt project. After lunch Dawn showed us how to make paper garlands out of newspaper. They were shaped like children holding hands and we each painted one to represent ourselves.  We had a lovely time with scissors and paints and we will display some of our finished work on our notice board.

Dawn then showed us how to make a paper game to play with friends. None of us knew the proper name for it so we called it a “paper game thingy” but now we know it is a paper fortune teller or “chatterbox”!

We all enjoyed meeting Dawn and had a great time. She has said she would love to come back to see us again so we are hoping we can arrange another visit.

On 28th March we had our Easter Event. We had a movie afternoon in school and watched Hop, a very funny film about the Easter Bunny. Some of us brought along cushions and soft toys to cuddle up with and we had drinks, popcorn and ice cream during the afternoon.

We all really enjoyed the film and when it had finished we had free time out in the playground before going home.  Mrs Skinner took a photo of us which we will put on our notice board.

On 2nd May we were very lucky to have Laura and Dawn from Dover SmART Project visiting us again. They joined us for school lunch, which they enjoyed very much, and then we all put on our coats and went to the beach. Dawn and Laura showed us how to look at the beach, sea and sky to see all the different colours. Then we split into groups to paint a picture of what we saw. Some of us painted the pebbles, some did the sea and some painted the sky. By working together and taking turns we painted a fabulous picture of Deal beach. On our notice board there are photos of us enjoying painting and the finished picture is on display in the library, for all to see.

When we had finished we still had time to explore the beach and we all found some treasure: a small crab shell, shells and some beautiful pebbles.

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12th July 2017 Our Young Carers group was invited to Green Zone to meet the Judges of this year’s Deal in Bloom competition. We had all been involved in the planting and nurturing of flowers and vegetables at Green Zone so we chatted to the Judges about our work and showed them all the things growing there. We took them to the pond and showed them things we had made. The Judges seemed very impressed. After they had gone we had a campfire picnic lunch which was delicious.

In November we heard that Deal had won a Silver-gilt award this year and we were very proud to have been part of that.