What a beary good idea!

What a beary good idea!

by Danielle Thompson (September 2020)

STAFF at Our Lady of Lourdes Catholic Primary School in Birkdale had a beary good surprise for their Reception pupils when they returned to school after the pandemic – their own cuddly friend to take home and keep!

When they returned to the school last week, which has incorporated socially-distanced coronavirus safety guidelines, they were given one of the school’s own teddy bears.

Helen McMullan who is Early Years Lead and Assistant Head at the Grantham Road school, said: “As parents ourselves we know how important the start of school is for every child and we all have our special memories of our own children’s first day at Our lady of Lourdes.

“We really wanted our children to feel happy and settled on their first day and as some of our transition procedures have changed due to the coronavirus safety guidelines, we decided a teddy belonging to each child was a great way to support them during this important transition time. We are also not able to send home a class bear this year which our children have always loved as they share their adventures together with the class. and so, we wanted them to also experience adventures with their own bear.”

“The children enjoyed some teddy bear creative activities and finished the session with a tasty picnic kindly donated by Morrisons in Southport, who have also supported the school throughout the semi-closure period.

“It was clear from the children’s happy smiles that their first day was a big success and many parents shared their comments on their popular ‘Our Lady of Lourdes Birkdale Reception Classes’ Facebook page.

“The children are now ready to begin their exciting learning journey at Our Lady of Lourdes and the staff will ensure that their learning experiences are fun and engaging with regular and crucial contact with the families.”

Carole Baker, chair of governors at the school added: “We welcomed back lots of children into Nursery and Reception at the start of term. However, they were not alone in their excitement and enthusiasm for a new start. On Friday, they were visited by the new Head, Catherine McDermott as she came to the end of her first full week. She chatted with them about new beginnings and asked them what they were looking forward to doing. Rather like many of the Reception children, who moved up from Nursery, she is not really new to the School as she was appointed as Deputy Head in 2018 but like the children she too is settling into new routines. On the retirement of their long-serving Head, Maureen Hillsdon, the Governors were delighted when Catherine McDermott agreed to be Acting Head as she can provide a seamless transition which is so essential in the current pandemic.

“Unlike the children who were each presented with a Teddybear, wearing an OLOL tee shirt to take home and have adventures with, Mrs McDermott was presented with lots of paperwork! She said that, reflecting on her first week as Head she felt proud that all of the changes put in place to support the children and staff worked so smoothly. The rewards of being the Head of such a wonderfully supportive ‘family’ far outweigh the challenges. The Birkdale community wishes Mrs McDermott, all the staff and children an exciting and productive journey together.”


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