A very warm welcome to St John's. We hope that your child is really looking forward to joining us soon. Below, we have compiled lots of the information we think you'll need before your child starts school. Hopefully you will find the answers to most of your questions here – but if you have any queries, please don’t hesitate to contact our Admissions Manager Gabrielle Corcoran or another member of the office team on firstname.lastname@example.org or 01892 678980.
School Day Timings and Attendance
Please click here to see the timings of the school day. You can find information about the procedures you will need to follow if your child is ill, or if you wish to request a leave of absence for a medical appointment or other reason, here.
You can find the school uniform list on our website here. Children now wear their ‘Active’ uniform into school on PE days (usually two days per week) and their ‘Standard’ uniform on the other days. Certain items need to be purchased direct from our uniform supplier, School Trends; others can be bought in any high street shop. Please click here to visit the School Trends website and to place an order. Please be aware that deliveries can take a few weeks to arrive at the busiest times of year. Our PFA runs regular second-hand uniform sales; please check the school calendar for forthcoming events.
Our delicious school meals are provided by a company called Independent Catering. All the food is cooked on site and there is lots of choice. You can find more information and a link to the current menu here. Your child will be able to have a school meal from their first day at school – they will simply be asked at registration each morning whether they are having a school meal or a packed lunch, and which menu option they would like to choose. School meals are free for all children from Reception to Year 2. If your child is in Year 3 or above, you will receive a letter from our catering manager once your child has started school, with information about how to set up a sQuid payment account. When you complete your Admission Form, please make sure you tell us if your child has any allergies or dietary requirements.
Free School Meals / Pupil Premium
If you are in receipt of certain benefits, your child may qualify for ‘Free School Meals’. Even though school lunches are free for all children in Reception to Year 2, we would still strongly urge you to apply for ‘Free School Meals’ if you think there’s a chance you might be eligible. If your child qualifies, the school will then receive extra funding called ‘Pupil Premium’ which we will use to support your child in many ways such as providing an allocation of free school uniform and offering free use of the school’s Breakfast Club. It’s quick and easy to apply – please click here for more information.
School Milk and Snacks
All children under the age of five are entitled to free school milk. If your child is starting Reception, you will be able to sign up for milk using your Arbor account. If your child is over 5, you can still choose to pay for them to have milk at school – please click here for details. All children in Reception to Year 2 receive a free piece of fruit/vegetable in school each day, although they may bring in an alternative healthy snack if preferred. Children in Year 3 and above are encouraged to bring a healthy, substantial snack to school each day. Every child should always please bring a named water bottle to school.
We run an in-house Breakfast Club, Early Birds, from 7.30am each morning. You can find more information about Early Birds here. We do not have a wrap-around care club in the afternoons, but there are several Tunbridge Wells clubs which collect children from St John’s each day and take them to their own premises. These are currently St George's, Harlequins and Hubbub.
Class and Teacher Information
Each year group has its own page on the school website here. On these pages you will find detailed information about class routines, PE days and the year group team.
House System and Dojo Points
Every child is a member of one of our four school houses, which are named after Kent castles: Bodiam (blue), Hever (Green), Rochester (Red) and Scotney (Yellow). Siblings are always placed in the same house. Pupils are awarded house 'Dojo' points for many reasons: for excellent work, good behaviour, trying hard, showing kindness, or modelling our school values. The children love the team spirit and camaraderie of supporting and representing their house, particularly at events such as Sports Day. In Year 6, pupils are elected by their peers to be House Captains and Vice Captains.
The school communicates with parents and carers via an email system called Arbor. Copies of letters and newsletters are also uploaded to the school website and can be found here and here. Parents are able to email their child’s class teacher directly with queries or concerns. To contact your child's teacher, please use the email format 'email@example.com' (eg firstname.lastname@example.org). The address for the main school office is email@example.com. For reporting absence, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or phone the school office on 01892 678980. For other queries, you can find contact details for the school leadership, admin and support teams here.
We use a system called Arbor for parents to provide consent for school trips, to book children into Early Birds and to pay for school activities. You can find more information here; once your child starts at school, you will be able to register for an account. If you have a smartphone, we recommend that you download the Arbor app as the easiest way to use the service.
Clubs and Activities
We have a wide range of clubs and activities on offer at St John's; some are run internally and others by external organisations. Please click here for a timetable of our current clubs along with information on how to book a place.
Parents and Friends Association
We are so lucky to have a very active PFA who organise all sorts of events and raise lots of money for the school. Getting involved in the PFA is very rewarding, and it's a great way to meet other St John's families. You can find lots more information on our PFA page here.
At St John’s, we recognise that many children and families will need additional support during their time at school. Our Inclusion Team, led by Mr Tom Angus, is here to help; please click here for more information. If you have concerns or feel that your child may need additional support when they start school, or if you would welcome some support as a family, it is very helpful if you can get in touch as early as possible. You are welcome to contact members of our Inclusion Team direct; alternatively, please speak to Gabrielle Corcoran who will put you in touch with the most appropriate member of the team.
Health and Medicines
Please make sure you give us full information about any medical conditions or allergies your child may have before they join the school. It is also important to keep us updated with any changes. Medicines (including antibiotics) can be administered at school if necessary, as long as children are well enough to attend; you will need to complete a consent form for this. You can find lots more information about health matters here, including a medicine consent form, guidance on common childhood conditions, and information about the vaccines and health checks your child may be offered during their time at school. We can also put you in touch with the NHS School Health Team for advice and support.
Mental Health and Wellbeing
We take the wellbeing of all our pupils very seriously. Our Wellbeing team and School Counsellor are available to provide support, and we have lots of information and resources available on our website here.
There is lots more information about school life on our website, so please take some time to explore. If you cannot find the answer to a query, please don’t hesitate to contact the school office or your child's class teacher for help.