Frequently asked questions
Before choosing Nelson Academy for your son or daughter, you will almost certainly have questions for us. In addition to our regular newsletters, we have compiled a list of frequently asked questions and our answers that we hope you find useful. If you have a question that isn’t listed here, please contact us we will respond to you as soon as possible. Alternatively, please phone our reception, where a member of staff will be delighted to answer any questions you may have.
What time does the academy open and close, and how is the school day structured?
Teaching times for pupils at Nelson Academy:
Nelson Academy Nursery
Morning session 9.00am – 12.00pm
Afternoon session 12.00pm – 3.00pm
Reception through to Year 6
Gates open at 8.30am for free flow into school
School Day - 8.45am – 3.15pm
Enter and exit via main school gate
School Day - 8.45am - 3.15pm
My child will need 'school meals' at the academy - how does this work?
Food at Nelson Academy is produced and provided by our in-house catering team and is of a very high quality. All meals are nutritionally balanced and designed to appeal to children. Options available on a daily basis include a hot meal, salads, sandwiches and jacket potatoes. A ‘complete meal’ is currently £2.40 per day, which includes a main course/sandwich/jacket potato, pudding/biscuit/drink. Payment can be made using the Pupil Assett Parent app.
Vegetarian meals are provided by arrangement, and special diets can also be catered for.
Provision is also made for pupils to have packed lunch sandwiches, or they can go home for lunch if collected by a parent/guardian. Pupils may switch between an academy meal, packed lunch and home lunch for your convenience.
You may send your child with a biscuit or piece of fruit from home as a snack for the morning break time if you wish. No sweets are allowed.
Children in reception are provided with a snack through the National Fruit and Veg scheme.
All children of Reception and Key Stage 1 age are entitled to Free School Meals, as are Key Stage 2 children of families receiving Income Support or Income-Based Job Seekers Allowance. Families receiving Child Tax Credit but who are not entitled to a Working Tax Credit, may also be entitled. An application form for Free School Meals can be obtained from the academy office.
What is the procedure for asking the academy to grant my son or daughter exceptional leave of absence?
As you may be aware, new Government guidelines have made it clear that Principals may not grant leave of absence during term time unless there are exceptional circumstances.
Exceptional circumstance may be:
- Families of armed forces personnel returning from a tour of duty
- Police or other service personnel whose leave has been cancelled during academy holidays, such as occurred during the London Olympic Games
- A family funeral
Please be aware that these guidelines are set by the Government, not schools and if you decide to take your child out of the academy during term time unauthorised, you may receive a penalty notice from the Local Authority.
If you wish your child to be considered for a leave of absence, then please send a letter to the Principal – for more information please see the Nelson Academy policies.
What happens if my son or daughter is unwell and cannot attend. How do I report this to the academy?
To make it as easy as possible to report student absence, we have set up a dedicated page with information here.
What happens if my son or daughter is going to be late. How do I report this to the academy?
If your child will be slightly late, please call the school office on 01366 383 824 explaining the reasons. If there will be significant lateness, please report it here.
What happens if my son or daughter has a dentist/doctor appointment during the day?
If you know your child is going to be absent, for a dental/doctors appointment for example, please call the school office. We ask that you provide us with a letter/email/ text message as proof of your appointment.
My son or daughter needs to take medication - how is this managed at the academy?
Please let us know about any medical conditions your child may have and remember to inform us of any changes. We are able to administer prescribed medicines at the academy, providing that the child concerned is otherwise fit enough to be at school. These can only be administered if a consent form has been signed, which are available from the office. Please ensure that you:
1. Label the container clearly with your child’s name and the time and size of dose.
2. Leave the medicine and form with a member of staff at the academy reception
Children suffering from asthma can keep inhalers close at hand – please name the inhaler, and make sure we have some details about the circumstances when your child may need to use it.
Where do I drop my child off if I am driving them to the academy?
During the day the car parks are for academy staff who are working and official visitors only.
Car parking is only permitted within the academy grounds for disability blue badge holders, taxis, buses or by prior arrangement with a member of the academy leadership team.
Access to the main academy grounds is via the electronic gates, both vehicular and pedestrian. Please press the intercom on arrival and speak to the office staff to gain access.
Parents wishing to park must do so on roads bordering the academy giving consideration to all neighbouring residents.
If you are on foot, please wait for your child inside the academy gate.
Children in Nursery and the SRB should enter and exit school via the main school electronic gates. All other children should enter and exit school via one of the two gates on the main school field.
If parents wish for their child to walk home on their own please confirm this to us in writing.
How much homework should my child be doing?
On average, 30 minutes per night.
How do I know if my son or daughter is making enough progress?
We aim to ensure that you receive the fullest information about your child’s progress and development. The academy has a pre-enrolment consultation with parents of new pupils and also makes an initial assessment of each child’s stage of development on entry to ensure we provide the appropriate curriculum. Children are also assessed at 7 and 11 through the statutory testing procedures, Standard Assessment Tasks (SATs); the results of the SATs will be given to you in writing.
The academy also uses assessments and tests to monitor both individual and school performance at the end of every year. These are the national QCA test materials which allow us to monitor against national expectations.
In the autumn term, we hold a ‘meet the teacher’ evening, during which parents can speak with the class teacher and support staff
and receive an information pack about routines, expectations, homework and targets. Parents and teachers meet again in the spring term to review targets. Parents are given the opportunity to indicate a convenient time for these meetings on given dates. If the dates are not suitable to parents they can negotiate with the class teacher for a mutually convenient time. Likewise, if the time allocated is not sufficient for discussion on the evening another time slot can be agreed for a further appointment.
In the summer term you will receive a written report on your child indicating his or her progress in the National Curriculum. This can be followed by a parent/teacher consultation, if parents wish to talk to staff.
At any other time you are very welcome to see either the class teacher or the Principal to discuss general progress or any specific concerns you may have. These consultations can be either casual or by appointment. Please be aware that, as staff are involved in after-school clubs and staff meetings, they may not be available every day.