News

Latest news from around the school

Year 3 /4 - You're amazing

Posted on 12 September 2019 by Miss Hague

Yesterday our Year 3 /4 classes went to Go-Ape at Temple Newsam.  Everyone had a great time and were certainly full of exciting stories when they came back!

Last night, we received an email from Go-Ape to complement us on our children.  They described them as the most polite, well mannered and enthusiastic school they had ever had on the course!

Well done Y3/4, we couldn’t be more proud of you.

 

Homework policy update

Posted on 12 September 2019 by Mr Roundtree

Each year in the annual survey of parents and carers, we ask what you like most about our school and what you think we might be able to improve. We always get lots more people telling us things they like – thank you for this! We do also welcome your suggestions for improvements – whilst we can’t always act on all the suggestions, we do always read and consider them.

One area that comes up every year is homework. Some of you want more, some of you want less. Some of you like the Creative homework, some of you thinks it takes too much time.

This year, we’ve listened to what you tell us and thought about ways we think we can improve:

  • We’ve reminded teachers to make sure homework is purposeful.
  • We’ve reviewed the guidelines as to how long we recommend your child spends on their homework – the new guide is no more than 30-40 minutes, which includes for Creative homework.
  • We’ve reflected on the amount of the three different types of homework (Talk Time, Creative and Practice makes Perfect) so there’s hopefully a better balance to suit more pupils (and parents).

We hope the new changes will mean continued happy and healthy learning at home as well as at school. Read the policy and download a Homework Guide.

Have you signed up to receive the useful National Online Safety guides?

Posted on 11 September 2019 by Mr Roundtree

National Online Safety believe in empowering parents, carers and trusted adults with the information they need to hold informed and age appropriate conversations about online safety with their child, should they feel it is needed. Every Wednesday, they produce guides to focus on specific platforms/risks which they believe trusted adults should be aware of.

 Join their Wake Up Wednesday Campaign.

Top ten tips for travel and traffic

Posted on 11 September 2019 by Mr Roundtree

These top ten tips are really worth having a look at. They might come from Road Awareness For Toddlers (RAFT), but we reckon there are lots of ideas for older children, too.

How is your child getting to school?

Posted on 11 September 2019 by Mr Roundtree

Start the new school year with good travel habits! Plan your journey well so your child can be as active as they possibly can – walking, cycling, scooting, ‘park and stride’ and even taking the bus are all far healthier than travelling by car.

Help your children to be healthier, happier, more independent, resilient and ready to learn: download information from Bright Kidz to help plan your journey.

Scholes Tennis Club Table Top Sale

Posted on 10 September 2019 by Mrs Latham

Please come along to grab a bargain and support Scholes Tennis Club. Contact Kirsty to reserve a table.

ALDI sticker collection

Posted on 06 September 2019 by Mrs Latham

Aldi have launched a sticker collection scheme that we are hoping to benefit from. Please bring any stickers you collect into school. There is a collection bucket in the entrance. Thank you.

 

Living and learning

Posted on 06 September 2019 by Mr Roundtree

As we return to school, we begin our Living and Learning theme with a focus on manners: I can greet someone politely.

We’ll then continue by thinking about the ‘8 Rs for learning’. This theme is about promoting good learning behaviour for your child.

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 08:50.
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 ‘stars’ and ‘steps’ 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 parent noticeboard in the playground and also on the school calendar.

Annual survey: you said, we'll do

Posted on 06 September 2019 by Miss Hague

Thank you to those parents who completed the annual parent/carer survey. Your comments give us the opportunity to not only celebrate those things you think are great about our school but also to consider ways to improve. Mr Roundtree has already presented an overview; I’ve identified three areas which we’ll work on in school. Whilst it is impossible to attempt to respond to all comments, we do read every one. 

This year, a few people raised the question of why Year 3 children didn’t continue to swim as they had in KS1. One of the National Curriculum requirements is that, by the end of KS2, children can confidently and proficiently cover a distance of at least 25 metres. At Scholes, we’ve historically always taken our Y4 children swimming. We’ve already considered this. We agree that it would make more sense for this to be Y3 children so they could continue their swimming experience. However, to do this involves taking two groups in one year to achieve the ‘switch’, and this would be really difficult from a staffing and financial point of view. As a compromise, we plan to identify those children in Year 3 (and in Year 5) who are not yet as confident in the water – they’ll get additional sessions from our swimming instructor here at our own pool.

Homework was another thing raised in the survey. The right amount of homework is always difficult to achieve: some parents want school to provide more learning opportunities at home and others want none at all. We think reading and times table practice is essential. Some comments mentioned that the creative homework was difficult for children to achieve without parents supporting them to do research. As a result of this, we will add to our homework policy that creative homework should only come at the end of new learning – when the children have all the information they need. This means your child won’t need much help at all – they’re demonstrating what they’ve learnt in school.

Another comment raised was around internet safety. Over the next few weeks, we’re holding year group information evenings. At each of these evenings, we’ll share with you what internet safety looks like for your child using a new publication from the Department for Education. We’ll also share a few top tips that you can be aware of at home.

Annual survey results summary, 2019

Posted on 28 August 2019 by Mr Roundtree

Every year, we invite you to complete the annual survey of parents and carers. Thank you to the 79 people who completed the 2019 survey.

The agree/disagree statements were closely based on those that Ofsted use for their Parent View. This gives you the chance to tell Ofsted what you think about your child’s school, from the quality of teaching to dealing with bullying and poor behaviour.

We also asked whether you’d recommend the school and invited comments about what you like and what we could improve on.

We’re delighted that the statements prompted very positive responses. Particularly positive responses can be seen for important statements which earned 100% agreement (My child is happy at Scholes (Elmet) Primary School and My child feels safe at this school) and one which earned 99% (My child is well looked after). Also very positive was that 96% of parents would recommend us to others.

The statements, with one or two typical comments, are:

  1. My child is happy at Scholes (Elmet) Primary School. (‘Both children go to school happily every day and speak fondly of their teachers and everything they do in class’ and ‘The fact that my child is happy to go to school in the mornings and seems happy at pick up strongly suggests they are.’)
  2. My child feels safe at this school. (‘[My daughter] feels very safe and understands the rules.’)
  3. My child makes good progress at this school. (‘[My son] has made massive progress in the short time he has been at Scholes.’ and ‘Making great academic progress. Very pleased with the teaching.’)
  4. My child is well looked after. (There were only three comments here, and they relate to specific concerns regarding children eating/drinking – we’ll look into these.)
  5. My child is taught well at Scholes (Elmet) Primary School. (‘Mr Catherall is a fantastic teacher.’)
  6. Adults in school make sure pupils are well behaved. (‘Pupils are invariably polite and courteous towards visitors’ and ‘Never get to see them during school hours so no idea. The children I see outside school hours all seem polite and well mannered.’)
  7. Scholes (Elmet) Primary School deals effectively with bullying. (56% agreed with this statement: ‘We were really pleased with how Mrs Hague addressed the friendship group issues that arose.’ Many people (41%) responded by saying they don’t know: ‘Luckily, we’ve never experienced bullying.’)
  8. The school is well led and managed. (‘I have no direct involvement but there seems to have been a lot of positive changes made in the last couple of years.’ and ‘Miss Hague is fab and could not be more helpful.’)
  9. The school responds well to any concerns I raise. (‘All queries are dealt with fairly and efficiently.’ and ‘I have not raised any concerns so far but any questions I have had have been answered promptly, openly and well.’)
  10. I receive useful information from the school about my child’s progress. (‘The reports are great to see. Keeps us up to speed of my child attainment and can then raise concerns by seeing the teacher or headteacher if required.’)

Tell us something you like about the school.

48 comments received, some of which relate to very specific reasons, but typical comments include praise for our teachers and other staff, the swimming pool and the friendly atmosphere. ‘Scholes (Elmet) Primary School is a fantastic school with a strong team of enthusiastic teachers that try their very best to make learning as fun as possible’; ‘My child likes his teacher and his happy to go each day to school’; and ‘My child does enjoy more of a active way of learning and I feel like Scholes have a good mixture of this’ are typical comments which we appreciate greatly!

Any reference here or throughout the survey to particular teachers will be passed on to teachers, who welcome the feedback as part of their commitment to performance improvement.

Tell us something the school could improve on.

35 comments received, although many of these are actually neutral or even positive comments like ‘Nothing really’ and ‘I am happy with all areas at the moment.’

As in previous years, the majority of comments reflect conflicting viewpoints, especially in relation to homework: some want more, some want less; some don’t like the creative homework, some don’t like the whole-school homework tasks… The conclusion, as in previous years, is that we can’t please everyone all the time about an issue like homework, but we will keep reviewing this. One other common issue that was raised relates to school dinners – we’ll pass on this feedback to our caterers.

The survey results and the comments will be passed to Miss Hague, as Head of School, who will review the feedback alongside me, as Head of Federation, in order to identify up to three key actions that we will do. Miss Hague will also feed back to staff any particular concerns that were raised as well as – far more common – make sure staff are aware of the praise they’ve earned.