Family Information and Friends of Percy Hedley School News Friday 12th May 2023

Welcome to Percy Hedley School's Family Liaison blog!

After 2 bank holiday weekends, this one was full steam ahead on Tuesday as the exam season commenced. I have had a few meetings, calls with parents this week, signposting etc. Do remember that if there are things with which you feel I may be able to support my contact details are at the foot of every blog. What I can help with is matters not relating to class/education; these need to be raised with your child/young person’s class team.

As if a Coronation buffet wasn’t enough our wonderful Catering Team provided a new menu taster day yesterday and photos will follow. Your children enjoyed choosing from the menu and the catering team is supported by Sally, Speech and language Therapist who helps with planning and the evaluation, ensuring that those with special dietary and varying levels of blended diets are included.


Event reminders:

Coffee mornings/afternoons

Social coffee morning next Friday, 19th May. This is a chance to chat with other parents/carers and we would love to share news of the Friends of Percy Hedley School. Class teams will not be in attendance, nor will students. Drop in any time between 9.30 and 11.00.

Department coffee afternoons:

Monday 22 May 14-15.00. ELTBA

Tuesday 23 May 14-15.00. Engagement

Wednesday 24 May 14-15.00. Post 16

Thursday 25 May 14-15.00. KS4 Accreditation Pathway


Off Timetable Day

Thursday 25th May: Our next off-timetable day, linked to Beating the Odds focus is on Managing Emotions and Calming Ourselves Down. Full information on the letter attached.


This week’s E-Safety blog from Maria is thought provoking and relates to “Artificial Intelligence”. You will find it on the school website on the Parent and Carer section. Under the sub heading “E-Safety”, scroll to the foot and the blog is dated 11/5/2023. The link to the E-safety information is here:

Attendance Policy

Just to draw your attention to this important policy. A link was sent out today to it and is copied below.


Family Fund 

At Family Fund we offer information, signposting, online learning, and virtual workshops to support families to maximise their income.

Next week we’re running a free online workshop to show you how to check you’re receiving all the benefits you’re entitled to. We’ll walk you through a benefits checker using a case study, so we won’t ask you for any personal information.

Checking your benefits online, Tuesday 16 May at 6pm

Toby Henderson Trust: webinar

Some of our followers might be familiar with Pathological Demand Avoidance, especially if your child has a PDA profile but for those who haven’t hear of PDA before, then this statement from PDA Society might be insightful:

“PDA is widely understood to be a profile on the autism spectrum, involving the avoidance of everyday demands and the use of ‘social’ strategies as part of this avoidance”.

If you’d like to learn more about PDA we highly recommend you visit the PDA Society’s website, it has a wealth of information that is vital to helping you to understand PDA as well as offering support:

We are delighted to be delivering our PDA webinar again on Tuesday 23 May at 9.30am-11.30am. If you’d like to join us for this session then please register by completing our online registration form.

Pass it on Parents Newcastle.

On the off chance that some of you have not heard of this group, I thought I would include it this week. Part of Skills for People, it is funded by Newcastle City Council so activities etc are restricted to Newcastle residents. They organise coffee mornings, provide support with form completion and much more. I see they have a pamper day with brunch for parents/carers coming up.

They hold coffee mornings in several locations and have a Facebook page. The link is here:

#PaintTheToon Purple

In celebration of the amazing success of 70 years, we are asking those across the North East to get creative with the colour purple on Friday 19th May. That’s now only a week away!

This could mean wearing purple clothes or having a purple-themed event like a bake sale. The possibilities are endless!

Whatever you decide to do on Friday 19th May 2023, every penny raised will go to support the children and adults we empower every week and their families. We would love your help encouraging as many people as possible to get involved, so spread the word to parents, teachers, friends and family, and together we’ll paint the toon purple.

Mini and Junior Great North Run

Do you have any little ones who would love to get involved with fundraising for Percy Hedley and want to participate in the mini or junior Great North Run? For the first time ever, we have our very own places up for grabs.
📅 When: Saturday 9th September 2023
📍 Where: Newcastle Quayside
💰 How Much: Our entry is only £20 with a fundraising target of £100

Mistletoe Ball 2023

The Percy Hedley Foundation is hosting another Ball this year, bringing back a classic theme of the Mistletoe Ball. Save the date for Saturday 18th November 2023!

There’s even a special offer; quote the following code for 10% off for parents and family members – PHSSCHOOL. To book email and one of the team will be in touch.


Friends of Hadrian School Disco Friday 19th May

I know some of our current and past students attend these, so thought I would share. Over 16’s only.

Visit Belsay Hall and Wallington by bus.

It’s back and this year it’s FREE!

We’re very excited to announce that the Go North East X75 Belsay and Wallington Express is back and for 2023, the bus is free to all visitors heading for Belsay Hall and Wallington as the service is running in partnership with English Heritage and the National Trust.

Every Saturday from 6 May to 2 September, there will be four return services a day running from Newcastle Haymarket to Wallington, via Belsay. Visitors to Wallington and Belsay Hall, Castle and Gardens will also get a 20% discount on entry.


Tailored Leisure.

I can’t comment on this but thought it might be of interest.


We’re kicking off our new Accessible Holiday Escapes listing with some discounted stay options.

Next Week Only!

7 day stay for £400 or 5 days £300 or a weekend £250!

Why not grab a discounted accessible holiday away while you can, links below

Adventure Valley, Durham

Half term planning ahead?

  • Dinosaur shows.
  • Meet and greet the baby dinosaurs.
  • Follow the dinosaur trail to earn a certificate.
  • Lots of photo opportunities
  • An activity every 30 minutes

There is a frequently asked questions link, where you can enquire about disabled facilities/accessibility as I can’t find this on the website.

True Colours Theatre

This inclusive theatre group has been working in school for some classes in Lower School for some time now. Your child may be part of the happy group on Thursday afternoons, and I’m often asked who’s making all that noise. It really is wonderful to see the children grow in confidence as the sessions progress. Last week I shared their website but here it is again, in case your chid is interested in their classes.

Playhouse Whitley Bay

We are so excited that our tickets will be on sale very soon for our up and coming show at Playhouse Whitley Bay!!

This show is going to be called “One True Love “and is all about acceptance, inclusion and being you!!

Here is a little snippet of the magic last year…. And in the words of the song…

What makes us special, makes us strong!

We are all unique, diverse and individuals whose magic should shine for all to see!

Friends of Percy Hedley School News:

Have you noticed anything different in this blog? We are now the Friends of Percy Hedley School as of yesterday. We have been talking of this change for a while, and feel it enables us to involve wider family members and the community. The constitution will be reviewed to ensure it remains fit for purpose. Our next meeting is set for Tuesday 20th June from 9.30-11.00. We would love to have some more help organising the Autumn Fayre which will be held on Saturday 30th September. Can you donate some time, do you have a family member or friend who would help? If you can/do, please get in touch with me.

We were joined by Josh, Chair of the Student Council, as we re-establish working with them post pandemic. There is more on that in John’s blog but here’s a photo; location with our School Values as the background chosen by Josh.

Pictured left to right:

Josh, Chair of Student Council, Donna, Chair of FOPHS, Eileen, Family Liaison Officer and Hannah, Vice Chair of FOPHS


Outdoor Learning Area: We invited John Strachan to join us, to outline plans for this area. We have had a lot of help from various people/places as we develop what was a piece of waste ground. Outdoor learning is now established as part of the ELTBA curriculum. More is being done to make it accessible to all and Virgin Media have been in again last week, levelling, clearing, resurfacing and more. We look forward to sharing more with you; the PTA has supported this, but we will need to fund-raise more to continue the level of support it needs. I’m excited to see it develop and look forward to sharing more as we progress.


Facebook page:

This is a closed group for family and friends of Percy Hedley School, where you can share news and updates about school life. It is not for external professionals who may be working with families. To join, you need to answer the question stating your link with school.

Please note: this group is for sharing news and updates about school life and is not intended to discuss any issues around individual students, and as such all comments are moderated. If you have a particular issue or concern, please contact school directly on 0191 216 1811.


Thought for the day, week, month, year ahead.

Being a parent of a child with special educational or additional needs is even harder. I am frequently reminded of this, seeing you drop off, collect students, attend events in school or share your out of school trips. I know too how tiring it is and how rewarding it is to see your children happy.

Have a good weekend and I look forward to seeing lots of you next Friday morning. Did you know it is “Paint the toon purple day”? I’ll try to remember to wear something purple!


Contact details

Eileen Robinson: Family Liaison Officer


Telephone: 0191 2161811 ext. 3260.