We look to the stars…

Telephone: 0117 903 0077


Headteacher: Tim Browse


Most Recent Newsletter – PDF Version

Newsletter 39 2021-2022


We’ve finally made it! It’s been a great year at Air Balloon and I am already looking forward to next year. Thanks to all the staff who have worked so hard all year and thanks as well to the children for making our school so special. At the end of such a hard-working year, this holiday is well-deserved for everyone and so I would like to wish all of you a super summer holiday.

For most of you, I will see you in September but there are some farewells I need to say before we break up for the holiday. Firstly, to our Year 6 children. You have been a super cohort and I would like to thank you for playing your part in helping to make Air Balloon such a super school. I feel extremely proud to have been your headteacher and I wish you all the very best at secondary school.

We also have some staff leaving us at the end of this year. First, we are saying goodbye to Miss Johns who has worked as one of our academic mentors and, as such, has supported many children at Air Balloon this year. Thank you for all of your work Miss Johns and all the best for your future. We are also saying farewell to Miss Hewlett, one of our kitchen assistants and someone who will be greatly missed by the kitchen team and all of us at Air Balloon.

Miss Clayphan has been a teacher at Air Balloon for several years and was also our Maths Leader before beginning her maternity last year. She will be greatly missed by staff and children and we wish her all the very best in her life beyond teaching. We are also saying goodbye to Miss King, one of our Reception teachers, who is leaving us to teach in Vietnam. We are all very sad to say goodbye to her but we wish her all the best on her exciting adventure. And talking of adventures, we are also saying goodbye to Miss Prescott who is leaving to embark on a road trip to Canada. Miss Prescott has been in Year 6 this year and she will be missed by all of us at Air Balloon. And, Mr Welch is leaving at the end of this year too. He has been one of our Year 4 teachers this year and will be joining a new school in September. Everyone here will miss him and we wish him all the best.

There are two other teachers leaving at the end of this year although we are saying au revoir as opposed to goodbye. Miss Skuse is leaving to begin her maternity leave and Mr May is taking a sabbatical. Both of them will return the following year and we wish them all the very best for next year and look forward to welcoming them back to Air Balloon.

Finally, we are saying goodbye to Air Balloon staff member extraordinaire, Mrs Harvey. Mrs Harvey has worked at Air Balloon for many years and has worked with so many children it would be impossible to count. She has always been such a positive force within the school and she will be much missed by children, staff and parents alike. All the very best Mrs Harvey, we are sure you’ll enjoy yourself in Devon but please don’t forget us and stay in touch.

It is always sad to say goodbye to so many people especially those that have helped shape Air Balloon and worked so hard to improve the school and make it the best it can be. I would really like to thank all of these members of staff for their contributions to the school over the years. It has been great working with you.

To everyone else, thanks for all your continued hard work and support for Air Balloon and I will see you in September.

Happy holidays!

Tim Browse


A final word from the Chair of Governors


The last full governing board meeting of the year was held on Monday. I am delighted to advise that the board appointed me to serve as the Chair of Governors for another year, supported by Martin Seasman as Vice chair. Teresa Hill and Dan Reed will remain chairs of the Quality of Education and Finance committees respectively.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the board members for all the important work they undertake in their voluntary capacity, to support school staff to deliver the best educational opportunities possible to every child.

If you, a friend or family member are interested in joining the governing board, please visit our Governor page on the school website, or enquire in the office.

Whilst the end of key stage pupil results will not be formally published this year, I am delighted to share with you that our school results for our Year 6 children are in line, or above, the national average in all subjects. These are great results when considering the disruption to teaching and learning the children have experienced due to the pandemic over the last couple of years. I would like to thank Mr Browse and team for their hard-work in making this possible through the quality of teaching and a diverse and inspiring curriculum, and also to congratulate all staff and pupils on these outcomes.

A final thanks to you as parents and carers, for supporting the children’s education through regular attendance.

I hope you all have an amazing summer break, stay cool and safe.

Nikki Jackson



We would like to remind all parents and carers that Thursday 1st and Friday 2nd September are Inset Days.  We will welcome the children back on Monday 5th September 2022.

School start and finish times in September are as follows:

Reception, Year 1 and Year 2: Start time: 08:45 – Finish time: 15:15.

Years 3, 4, 5 and 6: Start time: 08:40 – Finish time: 15:20


Year 3 Brick Project

 This week, our Year 3 children visited the Brick Project at Kensington House.  The house is run by St Mungos charity to support people who are recovering from addiction.  The project is creating a vibrant and colourful garden for residents and the children were invited to paint some of the bricks with flowers and nature themes. 

There are still plenty of blank bricks to be painted so anyone is welcome to go along to Kensington House between 10am and 6pm from 24th to 26th July to paint their own brick (recommended age is 3+).  You can find out more here:


Leia in Comet Class

Following on from her stage success as one of the narrators in the Year 6 Play, Leia in Comet Class is staring in Matilda at the Redmaids High School Theatre on Friday 22nd July at 7.30pm and Saturday 23rd at 2.30pm.  Tickets are still available – see the poster for more details. or call 07305 222 922.



Please remember to donate any uniform that your child has outgrown to the school office – we are happy to accept donations throughout the year and will run another ‘Pre-Loved’ sale in September.


Universal Infant Free School Meals – Current Year 2 children

If your child is currently in Year 2, they will no longer be eligible for Universal Infant Free School Meals in September.  If you think your child may be entitled for Free School Meals, please visit the Bristol City Council website for information on eligibility:  or click here to apply.


Important changes to Arbor

Over the summer we will be adding some additional features to Arbor and releasing some new functionality on your Arbor App and Parent Portal. 

Changes include – the retirement of the SCOPAY App and accounts which are being replaced with payments, bookings and meals in Arbor.  This will allow you to book and pay for Breakfast and Holiday Club, book other extra-curricular clubs, pay for trips and complete consent forms as well as pay for school meals in one place. We hope to also be able to offer parents the option to pre-book meals (for example, if your child has a medical appointment and will arrive late, or if you would like to have a greater input into your child’s meal choice). 

One of the key changes will be the booking and payment of Breakfast and Holiday Club – bookings will be made via the app or portal and Breakfast Club bookings can be made up to 48 hours in advance of the session. Payments for Breakfast Club, After-School Club and Holiday Club will also need to be made via Arbor, in advance of booking a space. We also hope to be able to offer the option of booking spaces at Breakfast Club on a termly basis. More information about changes to Breakfast Club can be found on Page 3.

If you have any questions about the changes or how to use the App or Portal, please speak to Mrs King in the school office.  A userguide to Arbor is available to download here or you can pick up a paper copy from the main foyer. Additional ‘quick guides’ will also be available on our website before September for the key features.

One of the main positive features will be the ability to pay using your card (Visa and Mastercard only) – both online and at the school office – as well as the introduction of Apple and Google Pay.

In order for us to facilitate the move to Arbor for payments, please can we ask that you do not add any funds to your current SCOPAY account after 31st July.  After this date, we will transfer all current SCOPAY balances to your Arbor account.

We will be using Arbor more over the next year so if you are not currently using the Arbor App or you haven’t registered for your account on the Portal, please email or ask at the school office for a new password link to be sent to you.


Inset and Term dates for 2022/23

Term 1: Thursday 1st September 2022 to Friday 21st October 2022

Term 2: Monday 31st October 2022 to Friday 16th December 2022 

Term 3: Tuesday 3rd January 2023 to Friday 10th February 2023 

Term 4: Monday 20th February 2023 to Friday 31st March 2023

Term 5: Monday 17th April 2023 to Friday 26th May 2023 

Term 6: Monday 5th June 2023 to Friday 21st July 2023

Inset Days

  • Thursday 1st and Friday 2nd September – We will welcome the children back on Monday 5th September 2022
  • Friday 2nd December 2022
  • Monday 20th March 2023

You can download a copy of the school term dates here: Bristol City Council school term and holiday dates and even get a sneak-preview of the term dates for 2023-24 (for those of you who like to plan your holidays early!) .  Please remember that holidays during term-time will not be authorised and may result in a Penalty Notice being issued to you by Bristol City Council.


Do you live in Bristol, North Somerset or South Gloucestershire and is your child on the waitlist for a diagnosis for Autism?

Bristol, North Somerset and South Glos (BNSSG) Parent Carer Forums have joined together to provide and host a range of online information sessions and face-to-face workshops delivered by a SEND professional and an experienced SEND parent carer.

These sessions will provide tips on recognising needs together with practical ways to help your child.  Even if your child does not receive a diagnosis of autism following assessment, the strategies you learn in this course are likely to still prove helpful.

Please click below to book:

EventbriteBristol, North Somerset and South Gloucestershire Parent Carer Forums working together on an exciting project to help families waiting for an Autism Assessment for their child or young

To keep up to date with all the courses from Bristol, North Somerset and South Glos Parent Carer Forums, please click “follow” on the Eventbrite page.


Important Space Cadets Update

Reminder that there will be a slight increase in fees and a new charging structure for Breakfast Club bookings, effective from 5th September.

The new prices per child, per session will be as follows: –

                                                                                                     Attendance Only       Attendance with


  • Advance bookings made via Arbor                                       £2.50                              £3.50
  • Bookings made after the booking deadline,                       £3.00                             £4.00

up to 6pm the day before

  • Bookings made after 6pm the day before,                          £4.00                               £5.00

or without booking at all.

If you have any questions regarding the new charges, please do not hesitate to contact me.

Kindest regards,



PE Kits – September

In September we will be continuing with our current plans for children to wear their PE kit into school on PE days.  Teachers will confirm PE days in September for each class. However, we would like to remind you of the PE Kit expectations – children should wear the following on PE days:

  • Plain white T-Shirt or Green T-Shirt with the school logo
  • Black Shorts
  • Daps or Trainers
  • Swimming kit for KS2 – close fitting swim shorts that come above the knee / one piece swimming costume.

Optional extras:

  • Black Jogging bottoms for outdoor PE only, in cold weather.

We have seen an increasing number of children wearing PE kit this year which is not part of the school’s uniform policy. Please ensure the kit worn in September is taken from the list above.


Employment Opportunities at Air Balloon Hill Primary School

For information on our current vacancies, please visit our school website for a link to our eteach page.

Air Balloon Hill Primary School is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment.

An enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service Check is required for these positions.

We particularly welcome applications from underrepresented groups including, ethnicity, gender, transgender, age, disability, sexual orientation or religion.


 Co-Opted Governor Vacancies

We currently have vacancies for Co-opted governors, formally known as community governors, on our governing board and are seeking enthusiastic, community focussed and committed members of our local community to join us.  

There are no particular qualifications required for the role, but following an analysis of our current membership we are particularly keen to ensure the board membership reflects the diversity of the community we serve and would particularly welcome nominations from under-represented and minority groups, who are committed to providing the highest quality primary stage education possible to our pupils.  

Additionally, in light of the results of our skills audit, we would also be keen to receive applications from someone with experience in the following areas; human resources, communications, finance and property management .

If you know anyone who may be interested in joining our governing body, please visit for more information and details on how to apply.


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