Children were treated to a VIP welcome back to school – complete with party music and a balloon arch.
Staff at Milton Primary Academy also greeted pupils with big smiles as they returned to the classroom yesterday.
It came as schools across the country fully reopened in line with the Government’s plans to start easing lockdown restrictions.
Mum-of-three Kelly Hulland, from Milton, praised the ‘brilliant’ school for the warm welcome that pupils received. Her nine-year-old daughter, Olivia, returned to her Year 4 class on Monday.
Kelly said: “The staff must have been there from 5am working on the balloons and getting everything sorted. It was such a happy, uplifting start to the day and a great welcome back for the children.
“Olivia is obsessed with Take That, and Greatest Day was playing as she walked in and I nearly cried, as did a lot of other parents.
“All of the staff were there with big, beaming smiles and it was just lovely.
“Olivia was so looking forward to getting back to school and couldn’t wait to put her uniform back on. I was a bit nervous as we went to school this morning because we’re not entirely out of the woods yet with the pandemic. But as soon as we saw the balloons and heard the music, it was just such a nice welcome.
“Olivia ran straight to the balloon arch, went into school and didn’t look back.”
Kelly also had nothing but praise for the teachers, who were so supportive towards parents who were home-schooling during the lockdown.
She added: “Headteacher Mrs Bailey and assistant heads Mr Brown and Mr Jones are brilliant, and they know every single pupil in the school by name, from nursery to Year 6.
“Mr Brown especially knows something about every pupil and will always have something to chat to them about.
“Before Christmas, they transformed the whole school into Lapland and had elves and reindeer for the children. Mrs Bailey had jingle bells and they were all singing when the children arrived to school, and honestly it made me cry.
“Throughout the lockdowns, we have had so much support from the school with home-schooling. They still did reading over the phone each week, and they had whole year and whole school assemblies.
“If we ever had a problem, we only had to reach out and, within 10 minutes, someone would be on the phone to help you through whatever you were struggling with
“Olivia started to get upset because she was missing her friends – as were a lot of pupils – so her class teacher Mr Jones started to put on extra Zoom calls where he would put pupils in groups with their friends so that they could interact with each other.”
The school also used its social media presence, and created a poster filled with the names of every single pupil, which they posted to a Facebook page.
“Every single child’s name was on this poster, and it was just a lovely way to include everyone. No pupil gets forgotten at Milton,” said Kelly.
“My son Zander is now in Year 8 at The Excel Academy and he did really well at Milton, and my youngest, Sophia, is three, and she will starting at Milton in September.”
The StokeonTrentLive app delivers the latest news, sport and what’s on information to your mobile phone – all for free.
Designed for iPhone, iPad and Android, you can discover breaking news as it happens and you will also find a wealth of information covering entertainment, business, community, weather and lifestyle. Click on the App Store here to download the app for iOS devices, and on the Google Play store here to download the app on Android.
Headteacher Rebecca Bailey said she was ‘incredibly proud’ of the Milton Primary Academy community.
“It has been wonderful to welcome all pupils and families back to the academy,” she added. “We are incredibly proud of our academy community for their engagement with our remote learning over the last few weeks.
“Without a doubt, this has been an incredibly challenging time for all. But by working together, we have overcome these challenges and are stronger than ever.
“Every single member of staff has been waiting in anticipation for this morning to see the children’s smiles, hear the laughter around the academy, to watch them reconnect with their friends and to re-energise the buzz of learning – together in the classroom.
“We have never been prouder to be part of Team Milton.”
Here are the top stories from the StokeonTrentLive newsletter:
Want to sign up to receive these stories straight to your inbox? It’s free and means you’ll never miss the most important Stoke-on-Trent news of the day
You can sign up for free here
Not signed up yet but want to try it out?
You can read a preview of today’s newsletter here
Love nostalgia? We have you covered….
You can also sign up to receive our new weekly The Way We Were newsletter too. Sign up for free here