Schools' Bulletin - Hertfordshire Campaigns
This page provides information on the latest Hertfordshire wide campaigns from the County Council and other related organisations.
We really would appreciate your help in spreading the word in your area - by including information about the campaigns in your school newsletter, on your school website or through parentmail.
Talking to Your Child about Alcohol
This May and June, Hertfordshire’s Alcohol Campaigns Group is encouraging parents to talk to their children about alcohol.
In a recent survey in schools in Hertfordshire, data shows that children, who drink in year 10, mostly get their alcohol from home and 25% of secondary aged pupils said they have had an alcoholic drink in the last week. 80% of parents said they would ‘deal with it when it happened’ when it came to talking to their child about alcohol. Talking to your child before this situation may prevent children from entering into risky situations.
If parents need more support with starting these conversations and age relevant tips please go to:
Funding to Help Herts Families Through the Winter
Government figures estimate that 60,262 (13.5%) households in Hertfordshire are in fuel poverty. This means that they spend more than 10% of their income on energy bills. The changes arising from the Welfare Reform Act may affect this figure.
Families with young children, those with a long-term health condition such as heart disease, stroke and respiratory illness, and older people are recommended by the World Health Organisation to heat the living room to 21°C (70°F) during the day and the bedroom to 18°C (64°F) at night.
Children living in a cold home are more likely to catch colds and flu and suffer from respiratory problems such as asthma. With increasing energy costs, it is becoming harder for families to sufficiently heat their home.
Research has shown that cold homes can prevent children from being happy, as well as affecting their ability to concentrate at school and cope with challenging situations.
Hertfordshire County Council and NHS Hertfordshire working in partnership with Hertfordshire’s ten district councils and the voluntary sector has been given funding to help families with young children stay warm by providing:
• free energy efficiency checks and help to improve heating
• advice on grants, benefits and extra money that they may be entitled to
• help with paying bills
• help with home insulation, draught-proofing or emergency heaters
• free easy-to-read thermometers and practical support to help everyone stay warm and active during the winter
We ask that you please support this project by including information about the help that's available in your newsletter to parents and by distributing leaflets/posters in your school.
Contact HertsHelp for posters / leaflets on 0300 123 4044.
Encourage any family you think could benefit from help by asking them to contact HertsHelp today on 0300 123 4044 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Hertfordshire Schools - Help Bring Superfast Broadband to Your Area and Improve Opportunities for Your Children
The County Council is leading a project in order to provide superfast broadband access to over 90% of the county. High quality internet access is essential for many aspects of modern life, especially education. So Hertfordshire County Council wants to improve broadband in the county particularly in areas which currently have no access or suffer very slow speeds
Although our schools are already connected to broadband services, through the Hertfordshire Internet and Connectivity Service, teachers, students and parents will all benefit if the county council is successful in bringing better broadband services to our homes by:
- provide teachers and students with access to on-line resources to help with lesson planning or homework projects;
- ensure children and adults can benefit from on-line learning opportunities;
- help with the fun things in life such as downloading films, music and e-books or uploading videos and photos;
- provide parents and teachers with the potential for a more family-friendly work-life balance by giving them the tools they need to work from home.
Schools in areas where superfast broadband is not currently planned
We have identified those schools who are in areas where suppliers are not currently planning to make superfast internet available, and over the next 3 weeks are sending out a package of letters to be distributed through those schools to parents and staff. We would greatly appreciate your assistance in handing out these letters to students and staff over the coming weeks.
Example of the letter:
This letter will increase the awareness of the project and through online registrations by parents and staff help to further present Hertfordshire as an attractive place for suppliers to invest in superfast broadband services.
A list of the schools that have been identified along with a delivery schedule for the letters:
Registering interest for superfast broadband
The more people who register their interest the more likely it is broadband providers will improve connection speeds here in Hertfordshire. Registering only takes a couple of minutes and doesn’t cost anything and there is no obligation to buy superfast broadband services when they become available. You can check your broadband speed and register your demand for superfast broadband at:
or by calling 0300 123 4040 if you are unable to register online.
or by calling our customer service centre on 01438 737350 if you are unable to register online.
If you have any problems or questions please don't hesitate to contact Tomas Dryburgh, either by email email@example.com or phone on 01992 588924.
For more information on the project please visit the project www.superfastforherts.org. There is a regular newsletter, a number of useful links, and currently there are maps showing the project’s targeted areas in Herts, under the state aid consultation section.
Be Safe and Enjoy Winter
Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service (HFRS), Trading Standards and Resilience have launched their ‘Be Safe and Enjoy Winter’ campaign and are urging people to take care this winter.
As part of the campaign, they have produced their ‘Be Safe and Enjoy Winter’ booklet; a comprehensive guide on how to stay safe while having a good time.
To download a copy of the booklet and find out more about how to protect yourself and others this winter, please visit the Herts Direct website:
Keep Warm, Stay Well
Your local county council is joining forces with British Gas to encourage residents to get
free loft and cavity wall insulation which will help drive down gas and electricity bills
As well as a great way for Hertfordshire residents to save money on energy bills, the countywide 'Keep Warm, Stay Well' campaign will benefit financially each time a resident signs up for free insulation. 'Keep Warm, Stay Well' supports vulnerable residents - young and old - who are struggling to keep warm in their homes.
We'd be grateful if you could promote this scheme to your staff and parents so that we can raise as much funding as possible for 'Keep Warm, Stay Well'.
The offer ends on 30th November 2012 and you do not have to be a British Gas customer.
To find out more visit www.britishgas.co.uk/freeinsulation or call 0800 107 3420.
Residents signing up need to quote a Hertfordshire-specific code to ensure we receive funds from British Gas. Please quote the following code when applying: IHSCC.
HertsHelp is a free and confidential information service which helps people of all ages find solutions to wide range of everyday issues, questions and problems, quickly and simply.
The experienced advisers at HertsHelp can provide information on a variety of subjects, in different formats if required.
HertsHelp can provide useful support and advice on subjects such as:
- where to get help applying for a school place
- how to find out about activities taking place in the school holidays
- how to get advice on lowering your energy bills or benefit entitlement
- where to find out about home adaptations, services or activities for a disabled child
- how to find out about volunteering opportunities
- where to get advice on further education options for your child
HertsHelp provides a single route into the support and resources offered by a network of nearly 300 organisations across the county. So if HertsHelp doesn't know the answer right away, they will know someone who does.
Please click on the links below to download copies of the HertsHelp poster and leaflet for your staff rooms. If you would like to request hard copies to give out to parents and carers, please call HertsHelp on 0300 123 4044 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
HertsHelp is open Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm and until 7pm on Thursdays. For more information please visit:
'Tru Love' - Domestic Abuse Awareness for Young People
Herts Police Constabulary is promoting awareness around Domestic Abuse Awareness Week - an annual national event – taking place in November 2012.
This year, we would like to raise awareness amongst young people about what domestic abuse is in all its different guises - and what support and advice is available to victims.
The media has thrown a spotlight on this subject, beginning with the conviction of a gang for ‘grooming’ and abusing a number of young vulnerable girls in Lancashire. See news article:
The government also launched its own campaign in recognition of growing awareness around teenage relationship abuse:
It’s also understood that young people involved in gang culture are becoming victims of violence and sexual exploitation:
Herts Police Constabulary is launching a campaign is called ‘Tru Love?’. Educational Support Police Community Support Officers will join any PSHE lessons in early September to deliver an input on domestic abuse to young people of Year 11 age if invited – your input is requested.
The young people will then be asked to individually compose a 30 second radio script delivering a monologue of a victim’s experience (could be told from a third party’s point of view) of abuse on one of three themes:
- Abuse in an intimate teenage relationship
- Witnessing abuse between adults in the home
- Cyber harassment or bullying, ie. a couple break up and one posts intimate photos on the other to humiliate them
The advert will then contain details of how to get help, including promoting the Hertfordshire Domestic Abuse Helpline and the Sunflower services designed to support and give advice in the county.
Jack FM has agreed to become a partner in this enterprise and winners will also be invited along to Jack FM to have a tour of the Knebworth studios, meet the presenters and hear their advert played on the air.
These are our aims – planning is still underway and we would welcome any feedback, comments or questions you may have. Please respond to Kerry Biggadike, Programme Support Officer at Kerry.email@example.com.
Safe in the Water - Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board
Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board has launched a county wide ‘Safe in the Water’ campaign.
Supporting the Royal Life Saving Society’s national Water Safety Awareness campaign, the HSCB is encouraging everyone who will be enjoying the summer holidays near water, to take care and be aware of the hazards.
Launching the campaign, Phil Picton, Chairman of the HSCB, said: “Many of us enjoy spending leisure time near, in or on water, but we must recognise that water can be dangerous. It can take less than a minute for an accident to happen so we are launching this campaign to help adults and children alike, to enjoy water safely, and to work towards reducing the number of tragic accidents that can happen.”
More than 400 people drown in the UK each year, and thousands suffer near-drowning experiences. Shockingly, drowning is the third highest cause of accidental death in children in the UK.
One such accident happened to a Hertfordshire family. Ryan Pearman died last July just before his 3rd birthday. His family were attending a prewedding party on a sunny Sunday afternoon when Ryan got into an unfenced neighbouring garden. Each parent thought he was with the other and though he was only missing a matter of minutes, it was too late. Ryan drowned in an inground swimming pool which was covered by tarpaulin used to keep leaves and debris out of the pool. The tarpaulin went back over the top of him covering him from sight and any hope of rescue.
His parents said “Ryan was a very special, happy, funny and loving little boy who adored his two brothers. “There are no words to describe how painful it is for all of us to live without him. Our lives, hopes and dreams for the future changed forever that day. All the first achievements you look forward to for your child are for us now days of great sadness for what will never be.
Until this accident we did not realise how dangerous some of the commonly used pool covers can be. Some covers give the impression of being solid to a child but of course are not. Ryan hated water; he wouldn’t even use the paddling pool at home, and if he had seen there was water under that cover, we’re quite sure he would not have gone near it. There are pool and pond covers available that are secure and will take the weight of a child or small animal. Our lives could be very different if one of these had been used.
If our tragedy helps raise awareness of these kinds of dangers, or can lead to the introduction of regulations about the responsibility of owners to fence off or cover swimming pools securely, as exist in many other countries, hopefully our loss may help prevent this happening to another child and family. Ryan would want us to try”.
In conjunction with the RLSS, The Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board is issuing leaflets widely to the public and pool suppliers, to raise awareness and encourage organisations to help raise the awareness.
Schools, leisure centres, and anyone working with families, can request material by visiting:
To request more leaflets please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Safe Blinds Campaign - Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board
Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board has launched a campaign to raise the awareness of the risk of looped cords on blinds following the tragic death of two children strangled by blind cords. This campaign is supported by RoSPA and HM Coroner. The most vulnerable age group is the 16 to 36 months.
Parents of the two children who died from strangling themselves are supporting the campaign, and calling for parents and carers to be more aware of the dangers. “Blind cords kill children. We lost our daughter twice” said the parents of Emily, who, after her tragic accident in August was resuscitated, suffered significant brain damage but later died in December.
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (ROSPA) reports that there have been 18 deaths similar to these in the UK, since 1999.
Children’s Services practitioners are encouraged to obtain more information and advice on keeping children safe from blind cord dangers and to share this information with parents and carers. A free ‘’Make it Safe’ pack is available from ROSPA.
For more information on the campaign, call Dee de Bruin in Corporate Communications on Comnet 25791 or the Hertfordshire Safeguarding Children Board on Comnet 28757.
Whilst this campaign is targeted externally it is important that the risk is understood by services within HCC and appropriate measures put in place and a risk assessment can be found below:
Window Blind Cord and Chain Risk Assessment