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Updated: Dec 4, 2023

What is the Claremont Christmas Cracker?

The PTA is creating a package of magical fun for the children this Christmas.

On Friday 1st December, the PTA elves will also be sprinkling festive magic across the school with decorations and Christmas trees in the hall and main reception.

On Friday 1st, 8th & 15th December, the Playground Sales Team are back bringing festivities to the playground.

  • 1st: Before and after school selling Christmas stationary and nearly new toys and Christmas jumpers.

  • 8th: Chocolate brownies and snap bands

  • 15th: Donut sale

We'll be selling Christmas craft and kitchen kits until they run out. Find out full details including how to pre-order for collection at the playground sales, here.

On Monday 4th December, Cinema Club (years 1-6) will be showing Elemental (PG) in the school hall after the school day. Tickets are now sold out.

On Friday 8th December, at the school's Christmas lunch, all children will receive a festive surprise and can wear a Christmas jumper/festive item.

On Tuesday 12th December, we will see the popular Secret Room return which includes:

  • A “Secret Room” experience where each child will have the opportunity to select gifts for 2 of their loved ones to give them at Christmas.

  • Name Claremont's Christmas Polar Bear competition – Each child will have the opportunity to name the soft toy (see picture below!) when they visit the Secret Room. Mrs Roberts will choose one lucky winner, who will be able to take it home.

What is the Secret Room?

The Secret Room is a much-loved magical Christmas event for the children that takes place in school, this year on 12th December. Your child is given the opportunity to choose two Christmas gifts for their loved ones (parents/guardians/grandparents etc), wrap them up in their classrooms and take them home to hide ready for Christmas Day.

The PTA transform the school library into an enchanting festive room of wonders where the children get to choose their gifts.

The children really do love selecting secret gifts for their loved ones and are thrilled to watch you receive a genuine surprise on Christmas Day. If, of course, they can keep it a secret that long!

What can parents/guardians do to help make Secret Room happen?

Donate gifts to fill the Secret Room full of wonderful presents:

We will be accepting donations of (small, low value) gifts (2 per child if you can) on Monday 4th, Tuesday 5th, Wednesday 6th, Thursday 7th & Friday 8th December at drop off. Gifts should be left with the PTA helpers, in the marked boxes by the main school entrance.

What gifts can I donate?

Gifts really do not need to be expensive. We recommend small low value gifts such as socks, chocolates, mugs, womens & mens toiletries, books, photo frames, key rings, festive food products. Ideally gifts should be neutral or 1 appropriate for a male & 1 for a female. We are unable to accept any gifts containing alcohol, nuts or DVDs over rating PG.

Will all children be able to participate?

Yes, if your child is in school on 12th December they can participate. No child will be excluded. It is an inclusive and festive fun event for ALL Claremont School children.

Thank you for your support!

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What is the PTA Christmas Cards project? Each year the PTA gives the pupils of Claremont the chance to design their own Christmas Card and for their designs to appear on cards and other novelty items (mugs, wrapping paper, gift tags and A5 spiral bound notebook). You can place an order for as many of these items as you wish to and the PTA submits the designs to Cauliflower Cards who produce the cards/mugs etc to order. Cauliflower Cards give us commission for every item ordered so you can spread your child’s creative joy to everyone you know this Christmas and raise funds for the PTA at the same time!

But it’s only October! Why now?!

Christmas is only 2 months away! And that means we have to get the designs back to the company after half term so they can print them to get them back to us in good time for international posting deadlines in December. Plus, what better thing is there to do on a rainy day over half- term!

Why else should I sign up?

Prizes! Your little one’s artwork will be automatically entered into a school competition with the chance to win a £10 Waterstones voucher for the best entry from the Infants and the best entry from the Juniors, selected by Mrs Roberts.

I’m in! What do I do now? 1 - Don’t lose the Order Form that your child will bring home before half term (each one has a unique code so can’t be easily replaced)

2 - Before you start, check out the “artwork guidelines” on the Order Form and inspiration no their website here.

3 - Encourage your child to release their artistic expression! (within the guidelines, of course, for optimal printing)

4 - Carefully stick the completed artwork onto the Order Form.

5 - Circle the tree on the Order Form which shows the correct orientation for the card

6 - Complete your child’s details and your order request on the Order Form (boxes 1-3)

7 - Then, by Monday 30th October you need to do two things:

1. Pay online using your unique two part code found at the top of the order form,

2. Return your completed Order Form with artwork attached, in a plastic envelope or sleeve, back to your child’s class teacher.

8 - Sit back and await your delivery; the items you order will be sent home with your children in good time for Christmas posting deadlines.

——————————————— FAQs

Any questions not covered below please contact Emma Doward at How much do the cards cost? The first pack of 12 cards costs £5.50. Packs of gift labels cost £2.50 and the mugs are £6.75 each. This is set out as well as bumper and value packs on the Order Forms. Does my child have to participate? Absolutely not! The project is not compulsory, it is run as a fun way of giving pupils a chance to get their own design printed so that they can be proud of their work and for parents to see their children be inspired by freedom of expression. And of course raise some vital funds for the PTA at the same time! For that reason, to avoid embarrassment for people who choose not to participate, individual parents/pupils who have not submitted forms/artwork will not be chased after the deadline.

Can I use any medium/product?

Please refer to the Artwork Guidelines which are clearly set out on the Order Form. If you use materials which are not recommended, do not stick down properly, or if you fold the artwork, this will affect the end result and you may be disappointed. Please follow the guidelines. Will the cards be printed the right way up? Yes, provided you circle the tree showing the correct orientation for your card. The tree is clearly shown on the Order Form where you complete your child’s details

How big should the card be?

The artwork must be A4 or A5 size and must fit within the square box marked on the Order Form. Anything bigger than this and the edges will not come out. I have lost my Order Form... Please contact My child’s usual name is different to their formal Christian name – which do I use? Whichever you prefer, as long as it is written clearly on the Order Form. The name you write on the Order Form will be the one which appears on the finished cards. I do not get to see my child’s book/homework bag often so may not see the Order Form. Can I still order? Absolutely! Any requests of this nature can be made directly to us To ensure discretion we are happy to personally arrange for products ordered in these circumstances to be posted to your home/work address rather than be returned “home” via your child’s book/homework bag. Please just email with order requests and postal address/collection requests and we can deal with this separately. Will I be reminded of deadlines and chased if I forget? The deadline for your payment to be made online and to submit the Order Forms with artwork attached to school is Monday 30th October.

Reminders will be sent out via class reps and social media but we will not be chasing individual parents where orders have not been placed, to avoid embarrassing those parents who do not wish to order. If you are forgetful, keep an eye out for the reminder!

Please don't be late! We unfortunately can’t accept orders submitted after this date.

Can I submit late orders? If you have not submitted payment or your order form by the deadline, you can still order directly through Cauliflower Cards – details on their website. How much money does the PTA make through the card scheme? The PTA makes £1.00 profit for every pack of cards sold, 50p for every pack of gift labels and £1.50 for every mug. The cards are much cheaper than shop/charity bought cards. The PTA is a registered charity and funds raised work directly benefit your child’s education and well-being. Please order as many as you can. You will also show your child how much you love their creativity! In 2022 we raised nearly £550 through this project, let’s see if we can beat that in 2023!

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Updated: Jul 18, 2023

Unbelievably we are at the end of another academic year!

It’s been a busy year and we hope you’ve enjoyed it as much as we have.

To mention just a few highlights; we discovered how much Claremont families LOVE a donut, an ice lolly and second hand bargains with our new playground sales, we enjoyed a rare sunny Saturday in May and danced as the sun set at Clarefest, making a record breaking profit (over £12,000), children in all years had the opportunity to enjoy an after school disco for the first time since before the pandemic and the rain held off for a fun family day at the fete raising around £5,500. All of this on top of other events including nearly new uniform (which raised over £2,000), new parent drinks, wine tasting, wreath making, a text raffle, Christmas festivities, and the ever popular Secret Room, Easter Egg Hunt and sell-out Cinema Clubs.

Thank you!

Of course none of the above could happen without volunteers and supporters. Thank you to you all. Whether you donated your time, money or something else, it all goes a long way.

This year we have been able to fund over £35,000 in the following items for the school all thanks to your generosity.

What impact does that have? Without the PTA funding, the school’s capital budget (which is less than £10,000) would have to be topped up from the school’s core revenue budget - the budget that funds teachers salaries. The PTA’s contributions enable the school’s core budget to go further in other areas, such as rewarding the exceptional staffing team.

This year we contributed:

£200 to the Year 6 Leavers BBQ

£303.89 for Netball Kit

£563.80 subsidy for Year 6 Yearbooks

£1,400 for classroom contributions (£100 for each class for the teacher to spend as they wish)

£2,219.50 to pay for the Trinity Threatre Panto Trip in full for Years 4-6)

£15,000 for I.T. (to enable the school to operate at the forefront of technology, with access for every pupil to maximise their learning)

£16,000 for wet weather canopies to improve access to/from the hall and year 1 area

Why it matters in the words of the school:

“The work of the PTA is absolutely vital in enhancing the learning journey of every pupil in school”

Get involved next year!

We can’t continue to help the school in this way without more volunteers.

From September 2023, we are looking for new people to take on the following roles:

Secretary - to join Claire, Natalie and Shagun as a Trustee of the charity to help ensure the charity runs smoothly e.g. meetings are organised and recorded and our Charity Commission records are up to date. A full handover and ongoing support from Sara, our outgoing secretary, is included.

Summer Fete Team - a small group of friends to coordinate this wonderful community event with a full handover/support from those involved the last few years.

Marketing / sponsorship - people who can help build relationships with local businesses and build our advertising sales and sponsorship.

More members to take on the running of specific events e.g. Discos and Parent Socials.

The following roles are also available (either from September 2023 or in a shadowing capacity with formally taking on the roles from September 2024):

Chair - oversight of all PTA activities, run the meetings (not organise any events themselves), main liaision point with the school.

Vice-Chair - to support the Chair, deputise when needed, potentially take on Chair role themselves in future years.

Clarefest team A group of 4-6 friends who are willing to take over the organisation of Clarefest from 2025, to shadow the outgoing Clarefest team this coming year.

Want to find out more? Join us at these events in the Autumn term:

New Parent Social (open to new parents/guardians of the school from all years) on Friday 22nd September, 7.30pm in the Claremont pub.

A NEW annual PTA “welcome back to school” social (open to all parents), followed by the AGM, on Friday 6th October, from 7pm in the School Hall. We will be serving welcome drinks, making new friends and finishing off with talks from PTA Committee members on what happened this year and what’s planned for next year.

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