Family Information and PTA News Friday 31st March 2023

Welcome to Percy Hedley School's Family Liaison Blog!

Let me start by wishing you all a lovely holiday with fervent hope that the worst of the cold weather and snow is history, wishful thinking maybe. I love the snow when I can watch from my window, soup in hand, and not have to negotiate rural roads.

Thanks to those who joined me for the half termly Social Coffee Morning for Parents/Carers on Wednesday. There were some useful conversations and plenty of laughter. I tend to have these group led, so no set agenda. I am open to focused discussions should there be a demand. Contact me if this would interest you.


Safeguarding Update

I would like to draw your attention to an important update to safeguarding. The letter below will be sent to parents and shared on all our media platforms.

Also see the website page for safeguarding at PHS.

It is especially important that we share by different means to ensure that families of those students who are not in school still receive information promptly. I would also like to use this opportunity to remind families of the importance of updating school of any change in contact details.

The link to the E-Safety information is here:


Free School Meal Vouchers.

Those who are eligible for holiday vouchers will receive these on 1st April. These are income dependent; if you have submitted evidence and do not meet the income related criteria on the letter, you will not receive them. You will need to activate these within a short period, or they will be cancelled by North Tyneside Council.



Holiday Grants:

I have been asked by a parent for information on grants available to help with the cost of holidays. I thought it worth sharing what I know again for all. There will be different eligibility criteria, many will be income related and some will require referral from a professional. If any of our parents knows of others, please let me know.

Family Fund:

Make a wish Foundation:

Restricted to those with life limiting or critical condition. This excludes conditions like Autism, but I felt it worth sharing for others who meet the criteria.

Spectrum Holidays:

More information below but here is the link anyway:

The Family Holiday Charity:

Requires referral from a professional (welfare agent) as these are for disadvantaged children and their families:

Happy Days Children’s Charity:

Trewan Sands Children’s Trust:

The Children’s Hope Foundation:



This is a “grant search” site, which you access by providing information. It may be worth checking out.


Spectrum Holidays:

I saw a post online and thought it worth sharing. I have no further information as I can’t access the website at school, but think they accept Family Fund vouchers. As ever, I would appreciate reviews or any additional information from families, or anyone who has used this company/charity.

“Back in 2020 we launched Spectrum Holidays LTD following our experiences we had as a family trying to find suitable holiday accommodation for our son Luca who is autistic. Over the last 3 years we have worked extremely hard to ensure we have a good range of holiday homes across the UK for the many different needs of the people and families that come to us for help.

In the last 18 months we have seen a large increase in the demand for our services, as well as an increase in the requests for financial help towards the cost of a stay in our holiday homes. As a company we have been very restricted in the amount of financial help we can provide as we have had to cover the operational costs that kept the business running. We ran giveaways and donated holidays to various not for profit organisations throughout the year, but we knew we could do more!

Malcolm and I have been working on this for over 12 months and we are so excited to share with you that Spectrum Holidays is now a registered charity! (Charity number 2002291)

We will be able to provide subsidised or free holidays for eligible families in any of the holiday homes we list on our website! We know you will have lots of questions and we have put together some FAQ’s for you to read below:

As we are a brand-new charity, we will be spending the next 12-15 months building up our funding in order to subsidise holidays and in the meantime we will continue to operate as we have done for the last few years.

There are ways that you can help us to reach our funding targets earlier, by keeping an eye on social media or in your local area for companies that are looking for charities to sponsor and please nominate Spectrum Holidays!

Our trustee team all have lived experience of autism or are themselves neurodiverse. We will be introducing you to them over the next few days!

Thank you to everyone that has supported us so far, we have loved every minute and we now look forward to supporting you as we move forward with Spectrum Holidays CIO!”

Contact details are below:



Phone:                 07776 427394


Seven Stories: The National Centre for Children’s Books:

Saturday 7th – Sunday 8th April

Join us for all things Spring this Easter Weekend! Enjoy two days of themed crafts and storytimes as we share some EGGS-tra special tales, ‘hoppily’ ever afters, and create fluffy bunnies or cheeky chicks pom poms

Storytimes are £2 per child, adults do not need to pay and children under 12 months go free. Craft sessions are £6.50 per child plus one free adult.

A gentle reminder that Seven Stories are an educational charity and donations are always incredibly appreciated.

You can support our work by texting STORIES to 70480. All money raised is used to save, celebrate, and share the wonderful world of children’s books. You can also donate online via our website.

Northumberland Families

Northumberland SENDIASS produce a helpful Newsletter, providing information on activities and other matters for those living in Northumberland. I do know that some of the groups advertised are open to those living in other LA’s, so it will be worth checking. If you’d like to be kept up to date, email and ask to join their mailing list.

Here is the link to the current edition:

PTA News:

By the time this is published your child will have received an Easter Egg, with an alternative for those who are not able to eat chocolate. This is due to the support of one of our parents, Christine Fewster, as we no longer receive donations from previous sources. We hope that your children enjoy them and, on behalf of the PTA I wish you all a very Happy Easter.

Our next meeting will be hybrid as this seems to be working well and enables those who can’t drive or live a long way from school to join us. Do feel free, as with my social coffee mornings to dip in for as long or short a period as suits you. The date is:

Thursday 11th May 9.30-11.00. We will have cakes in school, and the link to join online is:

Summer-Autumn Fayre

We have had some discussions about our fayres, which we started a few years ago. We had to move one from summer to autumn towards the end of COVID. Discussions with staff and parents at the PTA were around the best time to hold them. We felt that the one which was held in September was just as good, with the added benefit of being able to welcome new families to school in a social way. So, this has yet to be confirmed but the provisional date is Saturday 30th September which will give us a few weeks to advertise and sort out. The fayres have been popular, but only go ahead due to the dedication, hard work and commitment of some staff and parents. That saying “Many hands make like work” is so true and I would be grateful for a few more hands to make this one as good as the ones we have held in the past.


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.

Contact details

Eileen Robinson: Family Liaison Officer


Telephone: 0191 2161811 ext. 3260.