Frequently Asked Questions
These frequently asked questions relate to questions from parents.
What do I do if my child is ill?
Please telephone the school office on 01732 452475 from 7.30am, stating your child's name, class and reason for absence. Please do this each day of absence. Write a short note to the class teacher on return to school.
A record of absences and late attendance is maintained (please refer to the Attendance Policy for more information).
Please let us know immediately of any infectious diseases (eg, German Measles, Chickenpox, Measles, Mumps, etc.) which may result in your child being absent from school. If a child suffers from sickness or diarrhoea whilst at home, we ask that parents wait for forty eight hours before bringing the child back to school in order that we can avoid the spread of sickness among the staff and pupils.
A useful guide is that pupils who are not well enough to go out at break times are probably not well enough to be at school, since an unwell child is unlikely to be able to work satisfactorily. A checklist of some infectious diseases is included below for your advice and there is more information on www.nhs.uk.
We also ask for your support for a small number of our children who are at greater risk if exposed to infection, including a child who has a reduced immune system. This puts them at serious risk if exposed to chicken pox, mumps, measles or rubella. The best way to protect a pupil from measles is for all pupils to be immunised against measles. Please discuss measles immunisation with your GP if your child is not already vaccinated. If you suspect your child has measles you should let the school know immediately.
Our pupil is also at risk from chicken pox and would need to be given an injection within three days of contact. Please let us know immediately if you suspect that your child (or another family member) has chicken pox. It is also very important that you let us know if anyone in your household has shingles. Your own child is not at any risk whatsoever from this situation. However, the health and wellbeing of our pupil may be at serious risk. We depend on the co-operation of all parents and know we can rely on your help.
What do I do if I need to collect my child during school hours for a medical appointment?
For medical appointments during School hours, eg, dentist or doctor, please notify the Office or Class Teacher in writing. No child will be released from School during school hours without authorisation from the Headteacher following a written request. The parent or appointed responsible adult must collect the child personally from the School and sign the child out. The Headteacher will give permission for the child to be collected early only for medical or study reasons – not hair appointments, shopping etc. and proof of the appointment may be required.
What time do the gates open and close?
The gates open for access to the grounds at 8.30am. Early Years families wait in the Early Years playground, all others remain on the large playground until the bell rings. We ask that children do not go on the grass in the winter months to ensure the school remains clean. The bell rings at 8.45am when families walk in a quiet orderly manner to the classes. Teachers greet the children at 8.50am when children enter the building and organise themselves for the days activities. The gates are locked immediately after all adults have left the grounds. Registration is taken at 8.55am.
At the end of the day the children are collected from the classrooms. The gates open at 3.15pm and are locked again at 3.30pm, thereby ensuring security for children attending after school clubs. We ask that during these times your children remain with you and do not wander off in the grounds or out of your sight.
In the event of inclement weather families can wait under the awnings at the front and the back of the building. We ask that you avoid gravel areas, and that those working and learning in the school are not disturbed.
What do I do if we arrive late?
Enter school through main reception, sign your child in at the office. Office staff will then take your child to their class. If you think they may be distressed, you are welcome to telephone school to confirm your child has settled once you are home.
Can I take my child out of school during term time?
The Government has changed the law to restrict the freedom of schools to authorise holidays in term-time. Time off school for family holidays is not a right and will only be authorised after careful consideration and in the following exceptional circumstances:
Requests for even a single day’s absence for any other reason, will need to be made by completing our "Absence Request Form" (please see the form below), allowing at least four week’s notice wherever this is practical. It should be recognised that exceptional circumstances cannot be applied to the cost of the holiday being cheaper during term time, nor to leave school early to try and avoid holiday traffic or catch an early flight.
For further information please refer to our Attendance Policy under the "Governor's Section" of this web site.
What do I do if my child is prescribed medication?
In most circumstances antibiotic medicine dosage is for 3 times a day. In this instance it can be done before, after school and at bedtime. However in special circumstances staff may administer medicine prescribed by the Doctor. Forms are available from the School Office for parents to request that the School allow a child to receive medication at School. All medicines must be brought to the School Office on arrival at School. Prescribed medication must remain the responsibility of the parent.
If your child has a medical need, please talk to your Class Teacher and complete the relevant forms available from the School Office.
How long before they can return to school after an illness?
In the case of sickness and diarrhoea please wait 48 hours after symptoms stop before returning.
Where can I buy water bottles?
Water bottles are available from the school office.
Where can I buy school uniform from?
All school uniform, book bags and ruck sacks can be purchased from Horncastles School Outfitters.
Orders are placed directly with the company and items are delivered to your home. Amherst School also use the same uniform provider as us which means that parents with children at both schools can now benefit from using their linked service and possibly receiving free delivery on orders. Simply log on to their site www.horncastles.co.uk
place an order with one school and switch over to the other school before making a payment.
Second hand uniform sales are held each term.
Can I help in class?
There are opportunities to help out in class and you should speak to your Class Teacher about this.
Can I help on school trips?
Parents are often asked to help on School Trips and if the trips are local we encourage parents to organise transport for their children to and from the visit. If you are taking other children your car must have valid insurance, please see our Educational Visit Policy in the "Governor Section" of the web site for more information.
Can I park in the school car park?
What happens if the school needs to be closed during the school day?
If we need to close the school during the school day, i.e. due to bad weather, all parents will be informed via ParentMail, text message alert and information will be posted on the school web site. We ask parents to provide us with a password in cases of emergencies and if someone else is picking up your child you must provide them with the password so that they can give this to the teacher.
What is the Admissions Policy?
We offer places firstly to children in Local Authority Care ('Looked After Children'), secondly to children who have a sibling link (either an elder brother or sister in Riverhead or Amherst School at the time of entry), thirdly to children and families with special medical needs for attending this school; and then children who live nearest to the school. Please click on the following link for a copy of our Admissions Policy.
Will any siblings automatically receive a place if I move house?
If you move more than two miles away, your 'sibling link' will be lost for any children who have not yet started at Riverhead. This also applies to any children in Year 6 at Amherst School. For more information please visit Kent County Council page.
Do you have Breakfast and After School Clubs?
To provide wrap around care for our children, we have our own Breakfast and After School Clubs which takes place at the school. Moniques After School Club takes place at the Bessels Green Baptist Church at the Unitarian Church. Both are provided daily to ensure effective care for the children of working parents. Good links exist with other providers, including holiday clubs and child minders to support you, we can signpost you to these facilities from the office.
Useful Web Sites
This section contains links to other websites which parents and carers may find useful. Clicking on any of the links will open that particular website in a new window.
|Mathletics||This link will take you directly to the Mathletics web site.|
Amherst is our link school and their web site is full of information for Year 3 to Year 6.
This link will take you directly to the Admission page.
Riverhead Parish Council, which has nine members meets at 7.30pm on the third Monday of each month in the Committee Room at the Village Hall
Provides lots of information for parents.
A great fun site for all ages!
Excellent site to catch up with world news. Plenty of games and activities.
This advice sheet will give our information about caring for school-age children and young people.