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Stopfordian Parents’ Association brings the school community together

The Stopfordian Parents’ Association (SPA) organise fun activities and events for pupils and parents to enjoy while the funds they raise enhance the children’s experience across the whole school.

From the Christmas Fair to the Quiz Night, uniform sales and junior discos the SPA provide lots of opportunities for the school community to come together.

The funds they raise are distributed across the school so that pupils with different interests get to benefit from their support.

The Junior School’s music provision is one of the latest strands to benefit thanks to a £5,000 donation towards the purchase of musical instruments.

The Junior School have used this donation to help with taster sessions on lots of instruments to encourage uptake and several pupils are now learning instruments that they did not previously.

By encouraging boys and girls to pick up an instrument at a young age, the school are hopeful that they find a love of music that will continue into the Senior School and that they will join some of the many music ensembles which perform in the extensive programme of recitals and concerts.

Speaking about the funding, Junior School Head of Music Mrs Ruth Cole said: “We have been delighted with the SPA’s purchase of violins, cellos, and double basses which many of our pupils have used in taster sessions.

“Following these sessions, we have had a pleasing number of pupils decide to take individual lessons on these instruments. The instruments are also making appearances in class ensemble pieces, giving more pupils a chance to try them out.”

Mr Michael Dow, Director of Music, added: “It is great to see so many pupils benefiting from these new opportunities to learn musical instruments. We are very grateful to the SPA for the significant investment in instruments that is now enabling many more pupils to discover and develop their musical talents.”

Benefiting the school community

Uniform sales take place throughout the year and offer parents the opportunity to buy and sell uniform and sportswear at a fraction of the normal cost.

The Association also sell good quality musical instruments which help parents who wish to sell instruments that are no longer used regularly.

At Christmas time, they organise the printing and sale of cards featuring the artwork of Junior School children, source delicious Christmas puddings and host the ever-popular Christmas Fair.

The annual Parents’ Quiz Night is very well attended with players enjoying the renowned cheeseboard as they field questions from quizmaster Mr Tim Wheeler, the Junior School Headmaster.

During Junior School Sports Day, the SPA run cake and drink stalls to keep the spectators fully refreshed.

Class representatives

At least one parent from each class is encouraged to become a class representative. They act as a point of contact and link between the SPA and the parents in the class.

They also organise activities for the children, such as school discos, cinema and bowling nights as well as charity fundraising events and activities, including in recent years a joke book for Comic Relief, a poetry book for EducAid and a bounceathon for Barnardos.

Projects funded by the SPA

In the Junior School, the SPA have helped purchase a range of items including books for the Library, the yellow and black picnic table and a time capsule. At Christmas time the funds also help with the pantomime – which our pupils love – and give Santa a helping hand with his presents.

Our Outdoor Education provision has also benefited greatly from their support. Funds have gone towards purchasing wetsuits, kayaks, canoes and a trailer to transport them.

Across the school, SPA funds have been spent on the stage curtains in the Main Hall, a branded school minibus and the clock on the wall outside the Biology block.

You can find out more about the projects the SPA fund by clicking here.