News

Latest news from around the school

Girls only basketball

Posted on 24 September 2018 by Mrs Latham

Clubs, clubs, clubs!

Posted on 19 September 2018 by Mrs Latham

We have a jam-packed after, and one before, school club timetable this half term. Letters have been, or will be, sent out inviting children to take part in these. They range from dodgeball to netball, athletics to dancing. If you would like your child to take part in a club, please contact the school office for further details and letters.

Monday KS2 Art

Dodgeball (whole school)

Y6 Coding

Y2 Booster

Y1-6 Mad Science

COMING SOON : Netball

Tuesday Flex Dance – KS2 before school

Y1&2 WUSU Crew

Football 5* Sports (whole school)

Wednesday Y1-6 Athletics

COMING SOON : Y5/6 football team

Thursday Y6 WUSU Crew

COMING SOON : Little Birds KS1 crafts

Friday COMING SOON : Chess, Y4 Skipping

Fantastic Fruit Tuck Shop

Posted on 19 September 2018 by Mrs Latham

We’ve started our fruit tuck shop trial. Children enjoyed choosing their fruit (or vegetable) and have made some suggestions that we will take on board. If you’d like your child to join in, please return the slip to the office before next Tuesday.

Living and Learning

Posted on 17 September 2018 by Mrs Wilkins

Each Autumn, we focus on our Living and Learning theme: ‘The 8 Rs for learning’. This theme is about promoting good learning behaviour for your child. (Our Newsletter gives details of this too!)

Each week, we’ll focus on two different ‘Rs’. We use an animal to symbolise each ‘R’, which might help your child remember all eight – can your child remember which animal matches the correct ‘R’?

You can support your child at home – we’ve listed a few ideas to help you below. Ask us if you’ve any questions or comments.

Download top tips for promoting the 8Rs for good learning behaviour.

I can show I am ready to learn.

Make sure your child is at school for a prompt start of 08:50am.

Make sure your child has had plenty of sleep so they are alert and ready to learn at all times.

Encourage your child to ask lots of questions – that shows they want to learn!

I respond to feedback.

Ask your child if they remember their ‘must do’s’ in English (and Maths).

I take a safe risk.

Talk about the difference between a safe and unsafe risk.  At school, we want your child to take a safe risk by having a go at answering, even if unsure; trying something new and attempting harder learning.

I take responsibility for my own learning.

Provide time and space at home so your child is able to organise themselves: their PE kit, reading book, homework, spellings and tables… Don’t organise everything for them!

Make a link between rights and responsibilities: your child has the right to a great education, but needs to be responsible for their own learning.

I am resourceful.

Encourage your child to be organised so they can play with a range of different toys.

Encourage your child to try new ways to solve a tricky problem.

I am resilient.

Encourage your child to keep going! Set a tricky challenge or puzzle for your child to do.

Encourage your child to think of different ways of doing things.

Don’t let your child win when they play a game – they need to experience losing, too!

Celebrate mistakes as opportunities to learn – be happy that your child found some learning hard and encourage them to ‘bounce back’ and learn from the experience.

I remember.

Make sure they have time to learn spellings, number bonds and times tables – a little practice daily is best.

Play memory games: Kim’s game: show them objects for 30 seconds… can they remember all the objects?

Can they build up the sequence, ‘I went to the shop and I bought an apple’… ‘I went to the shop and I bought an apple and a bike.’… ‘I went to the shop and I bought an apple, a bike and a cucumber.’ etc … Take turns!

I reflect about my learning.

Talk with your child about what they’ve learnt, asking questions about:

how they learnt

why they learnt it

when they’ll use their learning

how they would teach this to someone else

what learning might link with what they’ve learnt today etc

As well as covering the 8Rs for learning, pupils will also learn about their rights and responsibilities.

Finally, we end the half term learning about democracy (one of the British Values).  All children have the opportunity to experience democracy in our annual School Council elections.  More details to follow.

Our full Living and Learning long term plan is available on the health pages and you can keep up to date with our weekly Living and Learning statements on the school calendar.

 

Scroll Free September? Scams? Gaming Addiction? TikTok?

Posted on 17 September 2018 by Mr Roundtree

The eSafety advisor, Alan Mackenzie, has published the latest edition of his excellent newsletter, #Ditto. The September 2018 edition includes information on all of the above!

New and improved end of KS2 outcomes

Posted on 14 September 2018 by Mr Roundtree

At Scholes (Elmet), proportions at age-related expectations are substantially higher than in recent years – we’re really proud of this and it reflects all the hard work staff are putting in to make the improvements we’ve introduced as successful as they can possibly be.

We had one of our 2017-18 Year 6 pupil’s Reading test re-marked because we had concerns over some of the marking. We’re happy that the re-mark has meant good news for our former pupil (well done!). It also means the outcomes for the school have improved even more.

The proportion who reached age-related expectations in Reading is now 80% (last year, it was 64%).

This means that proportion of children reaching the expected standard in Reading, Writing and Maths (all three combined) has increased: it’s now 71% – higher than the national figure of 64%.

Postcards, postcards and more postcards!

Posted on 10 September 2018 by Miss Hague

A huge thank you to everyone who sent in a postcard from their summer holiday.  We received over 50!  I have thoroughly enjoyed reading them all and have pondered for a long time about the winners.  You certainly visited some amazing places and got up to some exciting things.

We had postcards from around the UK and as far away as Hong Kong.  We had picture postcards showing special family events and even a jigsaw postcard which needed putting together to reveal the picture.

The postcards will now be displayed in classrooms for everyone to share.  The winners (to be announced this week) will be displayed on a special board within school.

High school application deadlines...

Posted on 05 September 2018 by Mrs Craggs

Leeds City Council writes:

Is your child currently in Year 6? If so, it’s time to apply for a secondary school place!

If your child is due to start secondary school in September 2019 you should apply for a place from 01 August 2018. The deadline for applying is 31 October 2018.

You need to make your application online at www.leeds.gov.uk/secondaryschool

If you need any more information please contact the admissions team on 0113 222 4414.

Frequently asked questions

When can I apply for a place at High School Year 7? 

The application process is available from 1 August 2018 to 31 October 2018.

How do I apply for a place?

You can apply online by going to www.leeds.gov.uk and searching for school admissions.  If you need assistance with the application you can call us on 0113 2224414 or email us at [email protected]. There is also a video on www.leeds.gov.uk which offers advice and guidance.

What are admissions policies?

Admissions policies set out how schools will offer places, and who will be offered a place first if there are more applications than places available at the school. The criteria set out in the admissions policy will be used to rank all applications and then places will be offered from the top of the list of applicants until the year group is full.

It is important that you look at the admissions policy for each of the schools you are including in your list of preferences as different schools have different admission policies. Admissions policies for all kinds of schools (Community, Foundation, Voluntary Aided and Academy schools) can be obtained from schools directly, found on the school website, on the Leeds City Council website at www.leeds.gov.uk/residents/Pages/Admissions.aspx, or by contacting the Admissions Team on 0113 2224414.

How are places offered?

The local authority is required to co-ordinate all applications for year 7 places. This means the Local Authority receive all applications centrally, work with schools who determine their own admissions to gather information from them, and send out all the offer letters, making sure each child only receives one offer.

We consider all preferences at the same time and aim to offer your highest preference possible, but whether we can offer you the place you want for your child will depend on your circumstances, the schools you have asked for and their policies, the  number of applications they have received and the circumstances of all other applicants to that school.

I have good reasons why my child should attend my first preference school – so you have to offer them a place there don’t you?

Many parents have good reasons why they would prefer their child to attend a particular school, but while parents have the legal right to express their preference, this is not the same as free choice about where their child is admitted. School admissions policies provide very clear criteria about who can be prioritised over others for a place and you should review the policies to see whether your child meets any of these priority criteria. If they do, please tell us on your application so that the admissions policy can be applied to your application for each school correctly.

What is my priority school/catchment area?

One priority which many admission policies include is a priority for children requesting a place where they are living in the priority catchment area or where the school is their ‘nearest’ school. It’s important to look at the school policy as not all schools include this priority. You will receive a letter telling you which school is your catchment priority school.

Distance (measured in a straight line) is also often used as a tie break within each priority, so all children who meet the ‘catchment’ priority will also be ranked in order of distance from the school. There is no guarantee that you will be allocated a place at your priority catchment school if you request it – each year it depends on the number of children requesting the school who meet this priority.

It is important that you look at each school admission policy and all other available information before making a decision about your preferences as it is important to consider whether you have a realistic chance of being offered a place.

Does it matter what order I list my preferences?

Places are not offered on a ‘first preference first’ basis – it is against the School Admissions Code for this to happen. When schools are ranking their applications in line with their admissions policy, they don’t know which preference number you gave to that school.

Your preference order is only used by the Local Authority when they are making the offers on behalf of the school, and it only influences which offer is made where you could be offered more than one of your preferences.

The Local Authority is obliged to offer you the highest preference school which your child qualifies for so please put the schools in order of where you would like your child to attend.

If I only provide one preference, do you have to offer me that school?

No. Providing just one or two preferences does not in any way increase your chances of being offered a place at these schools as your application for each school is ranked in line with the admissions policy. If the Local Authority is unable to offer a preferred school, you will be offered a place at any school with a vacancy available after all other applications have been considered, so not using all five of the available preferences actually decreases the chances of you being offered a preferred place.

Can I find out which schools are closest to my home?

You can contact the Leeds City Council Admissions Team on 0113 2224414 or send an email to [email protected] to ask for this information. Please remember to include your address when contacting us. Our measurements are based on a straight-line distance from the school to your address. Previous allocation maps for secondary schools are on the Leeds City Council website www.leeds.gov.uk/admissions. These show the distances from home to school for the people who were successful in gaining places last year so give an indication of your chances of being offered a place. Most online mapping tools only use postcodes and not the full address. If you want to know your nearest priority school you must ask us for details; you should also receive a letter in July which will give details of your priority school and your five nearest schools by distance but you don’t need this letter to apply.

What is the ‘furthest allocation distance’?

In the information provided on the Leeds City Council website, ‘furthest allocation distances’ are stated where this information is available.

Furthest allocation distances are the distance the last pupil allocated a place at a school under one of the distance priorities (in the Leeds City Council policy this is Priority 3 – Priority Catchment and Priority 4 – non-catchment) lived from the school.

Further details of allocation data can be found at: www.datamillnorth.org/dataset/secondary-school-allocations

When will I find out which school my child has been offered?

1 March 2019 is National Offer day. You will be sent an email on this day with your offer letter attached or if you did not apply online a letter will be sent out by second class post and you will receive it a few days after the 1 March.

What should do when I receive my offer of a place?

You should accept the offer of the school place directly with the school. Accepting a lower preference offer will not affect your position on a waiting list or your right to appeal against the refusal at any other school.

What happens if I don’t get offered a place at the school I want?

If you don’t get offered a place at the school you would prefer, you can request to go on the waiting list. You can also appeal against the decision to refuse a place at a school, although appeals can only be granted in specific circumstances.  More information will be provided with your offer letter.

What happens if I move into the area or change address?

If you move into the area or change address between the closing date in October 2018 and the start of the new school year in September 2019, you must let us know as this could affect your application. We will try our best to offer your child a place at the school you prefer. If there are no places left at any of the schools you wanted, we will offer your child a place at the school closest to your home with available places. Remember that we will find your closest school by measuring in a straight line. If you move to a new address, we will ask you to provide written proof of your new address and written proof that you have left your previous address.

Useful numbers and contacts

Leeds City Council website:  http://www.leeds.gov.uk/residents/Pages/Admissions.aspx

Admissions team: phone 0113 222 4414 email [email protected].

Transport:  Application forms, guidance notes, Leeds Children’s Transport policy, Under-16 Photocards and information about bus travel can be obtained at: www.metro.com/schools.  If you need information on your ‘Nearest Qualifying School’ or have other general school transport questions please contact the Leeds Education Transport Assessment Team on 0113 348 1122 or [email protected].

Elective Home Education: phone 0113 378 5028.

Attendance Team:  phone 0113 378 2480.

School meals: To apply for free school meals please contact 0113 222 4404.

School uniforms and other expenses parents should contact the school their child will be attending for information about help with school uniforms.

Special Educational Needs Information: For children with an existing Education Health and Care Plan (EHC) parents should contact their SEN casework officer phone 0113 378 5256.  For general information, support and advice about SEN and disabilities contact the Leeds Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Service phone 0113 378 5020.

 

Annual survey of parents / carers 2018 - results

Posted on 05 September 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Thank you to all of you who completed the Summer 2018 parents’ and carers’ survey. This news post is a repeat of one published at the start of the summer holidays, in case you missed it then.

This year, the number of responses dropped a little: 77 of you gave us your feedback, and these spread very evenly across all the classes. Below is a summary of what you’ve said. Lots of you added some comments after each question; we’ve included here just one or two that represent typical responses.

Please do remember that what you say is important to us. We can’t guarantee we can accommodate everyone’s wishes or opinions expressed in the survey, but we do guarantee we consider each one. And don’t forget: if you have any questions, comments or concerns, do speak with your child’s class teacher or to Miss Hague, our Head of School. They’re often around at the start and end of the school day.

1. My child is happy at Scholes (Elmet) Primary School.
92% agreed or strongly agreed – this is just a little lower than the 2017 figure.
Of the eleven comments, seven were positive:
‘My daughter has lots of friends at school and is happy with the teachers and staff she has currently.’
‘My two [children] have just started this school and they love it. It feels so much better than at their old school.’
The remaining comments were also positive, but with some apparently minor concerns that didn’t seem to be causing the respondents undue concern. However, we encourage any parent / carer to alert us if their child doesn’t seem as happy to come to school as they might: we want Scholes (Elmet) Primary to be a happy and healthy place to learn.

2. My child feels safe at this school.
96% agreed or strongly agreed and the remaining three respondents indicated they weren’t sure. This is a slight increase from 2017, which is encouraging.
All the comments were positive. It’s also really encouraging that some commented about staff addressing issues effectively:
‘If there are ever any issues I and my child feels there are many valuable support mechanisms in place.’

3. My child makes good progress at this school.
We’re really pleased to see a marked improvement here: 91% agreed or strongly agreed, up from 74% in 2017. The increase reflects the efforts we’ve made since our Ofsted inspection – new initiatives and hard work from all the teaching staff.
Despite the much better results here, this statement also prompted comments which included some concerns. Not all of the concerns related to progress, but those that did were often quite specific to one area. Some were apparently contradictory, too – one parent described progress in Maths being strong and another thought her child had progressed better in English.
We’ll review the comments, especially if they can be traced to particular classes.

4. My child is well looked after.
97% agreed or strongly agreed – another slight improvement. One respondent disagreed (please talk to us about your concerns so we can try to resolve these) and one wasn’t sure.
Comments here are varied. One area that was mentioned twice is more adults to supervise at lunchtimes – we agree and we’re trying to address this in two ways: new teaching assistants are expected to work at least part of the lunchtime, and continued recruitment of lunchtime supervisors.

5. My child is taught well at Scholes (Elmet) Primary School.
92% agreed or strongly agreed. This was another statement that has seen the proportion in agreement jump considerably: it’s up from 76% last year, and again reflects the big improvements we’re making in school.
‘There is always room for improvement which you seem to be implementing all the time. Keep up the good work.’
It’s great to read praise for individual teachers, such as…
‘Miss Bainbridge has done a great job getting them prepared and confident for SATS.’
‘Mr Gathercole is a brilliant teacher…’
‘Mrs Flynn is a fantastic teacher; when they have stay and take part session I always feel she is great at capturing the children’s attention and my son speaks so highly of her and with such excitement of everything he learns.’
It’s also important to note positive comments about things which can concern some parents / carers…
– mixed age classes: ‘I was worried about Mrs Latham’s split class but [my son] has done very well there.’
– part-time teachers sharing a class: ‘At the moment my daughter has two excellent teachers.’
Out of many positive statements, there was only one that was critical, and it concerns an incident we would have been able to address at the time. If you have any specific questions, comments or concerns, please do raise this with teachers or Miss Hague at the time.

6. Adults in school make sure pupils are well behaved.
Positive responses to this statement have increased steadily over the past couple of years. Now, 90% agreed or strongly agreed – an increase of seven % points from 2017.
As with statement 4, comments here also referred to lunchtimes – we’re trying to address this (see previous response).
Other comments referred to specific individuals and it would be unfair to include any remarks here, other than say we work closely with many different support agencies with the aim of making sure all our pupils are as well behaved as possible.

7. Scholes (Elmet) Primary School deals effectively with bullying. (Bullying includes persistent name calling, cyber-bullying, racist and homophobic bullying.)
58% agreed or strongly agreed.
Of the remaining respondents, all but four indicated they weren’t sure. It’s quite typical that there is a large proportion of parents / carers who indicate they are unsure  – respondents cite the reason for this being that their child hasn’t encountered bullying: ‘My children not had any experiences of the above for me to be able to answer’.
We’re also reassured that comments included some that expressed confidence that we would address the issue: ‘Luckily, neither of my children have been the victim of bullying in the extreme. However, whenever there have been low lying issues and I have needed to speak to school, I feel that any issues have been dealt with and concerns listened to.’
Around the same proportion as in 2017 disagreed with the statement. We want to address these sort of concerns – please do make sure you speak with Miss Hague about concerns you may have.
Incidentally, it’s always worth mentioning two core ‘STOP’ messages about bullying. We define bullying as upsetting or harmful behaviour which is Several Times On Purpose, and we encourage children to Start Telling Other People before it becomes a problem. Please help us reinforce this message at home, too.

8. The school is well led and managed.
88% agreed or strongly agreed. Whilst there’s still room for improvement, this statement is one which has increased a lot: 62% in 2016 and 73% in 2017.
In Miss Hague’s first full year as Head of School, it’s great to note that most of the comments praise her:
‘Miss Hague and Mr Roundtree lead the school well and are making great changes. They are both available to speak to and I particularly like that they spend time outside at the beginning and end of the day.’
‘I also think Miss Hague is an excellent head and is very approachable.’
‘Miss Hague is a very approachable and responsive head.’
Two other comments raised some concerns about our school being part of a federation (for example: ‘I think more can be done to communicate the benefits of being a federation’). The federation is something that governors and school leaders review regularly, and it was mentioned by our School Improvement Advisor in his final report of the year (June 2018): ‘The federation has benefited each of the three schools involved – allowing the sharing of good practices, CPD, leadership development and moderation. The Executive Headteacher utilises the skills of his extended middle and senior leadership team well’. As well as the benefits listed here, there are economies to be made when we share resources or buy a service as a group of three schools (theatre groups visiting us, for example).

9. The school responds well to any concerns I raise.
This is another area that’s increased quite a lot: 73.0% agreed or strongly agreed in 2017, and now 86% do (9% didn’t know, presumably because most have not had any reason to raise a concern, and 5% disagreed). Concerns include what the respondent felt to be an unsatisfactory outcome and the need to follow-up an issue. Most comments were positive: ‘I feel confident to give feedback and things have been changed as a result’.

10. I receive useful information from the school about my child’s progress.
83% agreed or strongly agreed – this is almost 20 % points more than last year’s 64% figure, and that was almost double the 2016 proportion.
Most concerns stem from parents’ / carers’ meetings, and we’re acting on what you say. Concerns often referred to the time gap between updates on your child’s progress. To help, we’re going to tweak what we do so that parents’ evenings are still towards the end of Autumn 1 and Spring 1, but we’ll supplement this with the Learning Updates being sent home in Autumn 2 and Spring 2 rather than during the parent-teacher meetings. This means you’ll be updated on progress five times in the year: every half term in Autumn and Spring, and then the annual report in Summer (and you’re welcome to make an appointment to discuss the report, too). Realistically, we can’t act on every comment: one suggestion was longer time slots, but we’ve already increased these from five to ten minutes – a change that stemmed directly from last year’s survey. (You’re also welcome to arrange a longer meeting at a different time.)
There was quite a lot of praise for our website, which is great, because teachers invest time to post class news stories to keep you updated with the learning going on.

11. Would you recommend us?
 91% would recommend us. This is another area that shows a substantial increase – thank you. We’ll keep trying hard until we achieve 100%!

Finally, we asked you to tell us about things you like and the things we could improve on. 32 suggested areas we could improve on while 50 respondents listed something positive.

The things mentioned vary quite a lot in both lists. It’s worth noting that some things appear in both lists (especially homework, after-school clubs and communication), suggesting we’re not always going to be able to please everyone all the time!

Many of the areas that could be improved according to respondents have been mentioned already (communication, for example). Others include the cost of school trips, moving away from 2.30pm finish on Mondays and more competitive sports. We’ll review all the suggestions.

However, one thing we can’t change is the fact we currently have an intake of 45 and that means we have to have mixed age classes. We don’t see this as a major problem, other than in Maths and we’ve taken steps to address this in Key Stage 2 by employing a fourth teacher. We could change the organisation of classes (for example, we could organise to have fewer mixed age classes), but that can lead to just as many problems and concerns. Over time, we’re working hard to organise the mixed age classes more fairly, but if this is something that causes you concern, please speak with us to explore the issue.

Things you liked include the friendly atmosphere, the Living and Learning statements (and other values we promote), and the fact Miss Hague and teachers are visible:
‘I like everything about the school! Teachers and support staff are friendly, caring, supportive, approachable and deal with any issues quickly.
I also particularly like the new system of a specific homework book, and books for other subjects – it’s nice to be able to look through and see the progress your child is making during the year.
The management team/SLT are also fantastic!
Thank you :))’

Not long to go...

Posted on 27 August 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Has your child sent us a postcard? We’d love to hear from them!

When your child returns to school after the summer holidays, the first topic they’ll be learning will be Where in the World?

To help with this, we’d love it if your child sends us a postcard. There will be prizes for the best-written postcard, and, naturally, they’ll all go on display.

The postcard could be from Spain or Scarborough, a city-break or an outdoor adventure, a day-trip or a fortnight away. More importantly, it could be real or made-up… we might get postcards recounting your child’s adventures in space, even!

Your child doesn’t need to have gone anywhere this summer to write about what they got up to, so there’s no excuse for them not to join in.

All we ask is that your postcards arrive by Monday 10 September – that’s the start of the second week back (so they could even write a postcard from that weekend!).

The Where in the World? topic will develop the children’s geographical knowledge and skills. The world is a big place that is getting more and more accessible but how much do we know about it? We’ll be swotting up on names of capital cities, countries, continents and oceans (depending on the age of your child). Get out your maps and test each other at home. Who knows all the capital cities in the UK? Can anyone name the five continents? We’ll also develop map skills so get out there and give each other directions to get from ‘A’ to ‘B’!