February 2016

Hello again everyone, and welcome to the second half of the term.

We begin our news this month with a notice to all parents, children, staff, Governors and members of the community...  Our parking barrier is now working.  This represents the successful conclusion to a long campaign by the Governors on behalf of our whole school community - the aim of keeping pour grounds free of unauthorised traffic, in order to keep everyone safe.  Further information will follow on the operation of the barrier, but please note that it is controlled by the school office only; staff in the Andrews Hall have no central control over its operation.

Now for news that some of you have been waiting for, before booking your holidays...  Just click on the link below to see next year's term dates and holidays.  Please take a few moments to read the accompanying notes, too.

Term dates and holidays for the 2016-17 school year

We all know that Vikings were scary folk from the north, who spent their time pillaging and raiding, picking on poor defenceless monasteries, including Nendrum on the shores of Strangford Lough - don't we?  Well. there is truth in all of that, as records show, but once they had tired of the raiding business, the Vikings settled in Ireland and founded some of our larger towns and cities, most notably Dublin.  Our P6 children learn about life in Viking times as part of their World Around Us and every year Rita joins us in school to paint a more detailed picture of life around 1000 years ago.  The children take part in various activities, learning about clothes, food, writing and weapons.  Most importantly they leave knowing that Viking helmets did not have horns!


January 2016

First of all, a Happy New Year to you!

Remember that the enrolment period for September 2016 entry is well underway - in fact it finishes at midday on Wednesday 13 January 2016.  You can access an application form by clicking the link below - our Admissions Criteria can be viewed on the Home Page.  Do remember, however, that no school's criteria come into effect until its admissions number is exceeded.

If you want to see our school in action, our Open Evening is on Thursday 7 January 2016, beginning at 6.30pm - come along and see what we hope is the right school for your child...

Primary Application Form

Before we set out on our journey through the 2nd term of the year, we'd like to remind you about a special week last term that we simply didn't have space for in our December News...

Once again, Science Week proved to be a great success, with all the children investigating different science topics.  Then, on Friday, we hosted what has become our annual Chemistry at Work Day, where our P6 pupils were joined by their counterparts from Comber Primary and Alexander Dickson Primary to witness presentations from a range of chemistry-related workplaces.

So, as a taster of what the children got up to, here's a small selection of photos.  All their displays are still in the Andrews Hall and you are very welcome to view them.  We must also extend a huge thank you to Mr Sandford, who organised the week, to all the teachers and pupils who took part and to Mrs Moorhead for displaying the work so brilliantly.

The enrolment period for P1 admissions in September 2016 finishes on Wednesday 13 January 2016.  Like many schools, we hold an Open Morning and Evening for parents.  This year, both events saw the school welcome lots of visitors and there was a real buzz as we showed everyone what a wonderful pace Andrews Memorial is to learn in.  The Open Evening has a lovely spin-off, too, as many of our existing parents enjoy seeing around the classrooms that their children have yet to experience - to see 'what's coming'.  Some even enjoy a trip down memory lane...

Our sincere thanks to everyone who supported us  - and to all those who we hope will be joining us in September!

Our school is really proud of its sporting tradition and we were delighted when a local business volunteered to help sponsor a new kit.  Not only did we manage to get new shirts, shorts and socks (and skorts!), we managed to get new hoodies - all making us look even more 'the business'.  Our sincere thanks go to Mr Nigel Hegan of Regency Cars in Newtownards for his generosity.  Even better, at the kit's first outing, an indoor athletics competition at Strathearn School, our team came out on top!  All wonderful!

And here is the team of brilliant young athletes that swept all before them...

As January draws to a close and there is news of more snow and ice, our last pictures for this month come from our putting to see the Belfast Giants at the SSE Arena in Belfast.  After a tense match, with the scores at 1-1, extra time came and went, followed by a penalty shootout.  Lucky us, as the Giants' winning penalty was scored just under our noses!


December 2015

We'll begin this month with the really important information regarding September 2016 admissions, as the enrolment period is now underway...

Please click on the link below to access the official application form and guidance notes; admission can only be gained to the school of your choice by completing this form and leaving it into your first-choice school by midday on 13 January 2016.

Primary admissions September 2016

You are very welcome to attend our Open Morning & Evening, too, where you will see our wonderful school in action.  We look forward to meeting you soon!

Open Morning: Friday 4 December 2015 - tours at 9.30am & 11.15am

Open Evening: Thursday 7 January 2016 - from 6.30pm

As Christmas approaches, please check out the class/year group News Sheets to find out more about what's going on - it's a wonderfully busy and exciting time in school!


Speaking of things exciting and wonderful, we've just marvelled and enjoyed a visit from Scientific Sue!  She gave us two fabulous shows that showed how exciting and fun science can be.  Of course, with Mr Sandford here, we pretty well aware of that already, but the more the merrier!  Note that dragons really do breathe fire...

Somewhere where fun was most definitely not on the agenda for a child in Victorian times was Crumlin Road Gaol...  However, as part of their study of the Victorians, we thought we'd give our P7 pupils a little taste of what life was like for a child unfortunate enough - or guilty enough - to be incarcerated in this famous prison.  We toured the cells, met a prisoner, were forced to meet the loathsome Warden, and even took in a walk along the famous tunnel...  Thankfully, this experience for children as young as 7 belongs very firmly in the distant past!

And as Christmas does begin to happen...

Here are two photos of our wonderful P7 pupils singing in Comber at Supervalu - their second performance of the day after entertaining a large crowd at St Mary's during the Farmers' Market.

We are delighted and very proud to announce that five of our musicians were playing for the Education Authority's SE regional band at the Ulster Hall this month.  They are Kathryn Finlay, Will Kirkpatrick, Katie Stevenson, Rhianna Geddis and Michael Lytle.  Well done to all!

We will post some photographs from our Christmas Services and the Nativity Play over the next week.  You can have a look at/reminder of the Christmas Service programmes by clicking on the links below:

P4-5 Christmas Service

P6-7 Christmas Service

These pictures are a selection from both services.

Moving on to our final performances of 2015 - our P1-3 Nativity Play, entitled The Hoity Toity Angel.  Again, to a full hall on both occasions, our pupils excelled in their performances of this new play - congratulations to everyone involved!

To finish the term on a healthy note, we had two Santa Buses on a dark and wet morning - but look how we brightened everyone's day!

And finally, to all of you from all of us, have a wonderful, peaceful, relaxing and happy Christmas...