School scheme lights up the sky and helps bring parents closer

Northern Parade Federated Schools in Portsmouth held a fun evening in their school grounds ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (151103-9739)
Northern Parade Federated Schools in Portsmouth held a fun evening in their school grounds ''Picture: Malcolm Wells (151103-9739)
Yousef Alam 6, Isabella Doyle 6, Halle Wellham 6, George McKechnie 6 and Isabel Manchip 6 with one of the islands they made out of papier mache

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A SCHOOL in Portsmouth says a project to bring parents even closer to its pupils was a rousing success.

Northern Parade School, in Doyle Avenue, North End, launched a scheme to get the parents of all 631 pupils to join in with their children’s school work.

The idea saw mums and dads uniting with their little ones to design a set of colourful kites – which were then launched in stunning fashion at a party on the school’s playground.

Hundreds of people packed into the school to witness the spectacle, called Light Up The Sky, which included performances from two steel bands, a fireworks display, bonfire and freshly-cooked food.

Assistant headteacher Sarah Hilditch, who led the project, was delighted by the its success.

She said: ‘The atmosphere was brilliant.

‘It’s the first time we have ever tried something like 
this and it was a brilliant success.’

She explained the idea was meant to get parents more involved with the school.

Nicky Phillips, 41, was one of the hundreds of parents to join the event,

She was able to spend some quality time with her son Joe Burnham, nine, helping him to design his kite.

Speaking of the school’s initiative, she said: ‘It’s been really great to be able to come into school and help out.

‘But to see everyone here is amazing.

‘I think the whole school has come together.’

Year-five Joe said: ‘It was quite exciting to have my mum helping me.’

Nicky added that for a mother or father to be able to take an active role in their child’s education and 
see what their youngsters 
get up to in school was 
‘invaluable’.

‘We have got something to be able to talk about 
when they come home,’ she added.

Joanne Clark, 42, agreed. She said that her husband Gary had a fantastic time helping their seven-year-old, Kody.

‘This has been absolutely brilliant,’ she said.

‘It’s a lovely idea and the kids absolutely loved it.’

Kerry Moore, 43, helped her two children Saffron, eight, and Bailey, four, to make their kites.

She added: ‘This has brought everyone closer together.

‘It’s great to see the dads, too, coming to school.’

All the kites were display along a row of trees on the school’s playground.

Mrs Hilditch said she hoped to be doing more events like the Light Up The Sky in the future.