At Winyates Primary School, we aim to deliver a broad and balanced curriculum across both Key Stages. We are an equal opportunities school and all the pupils are entitled to the same curriculum and opportunities regardless of gender, social or ethnic origins, physical disability or academic ability. We offer a curriculum based on the programmes of study outlined in the National Curriculum in English, Maths, Science, ICT, Design Technology, History, Geography, Art, Music, PE. and RE. We have developed our own framework for teaching all the required subjects to ensure continuity and progression. In all the curriculum areas it is our intention to foster positive attitudes and set high expectations.
For Foundation and Key Stage 1 children (Reception, Y1 and Y2) the actual teaching/learning time available in the week is 21.5 hours and for Key Stage 2 children (Years 3, 4, 5 and 6) it is 23 hours excluding registration, assemblies, playtime and lunchtimes.
The Foundation Stage covers the education of children from three to five years of age and therefore includes our Reception year. The work covered in this year is intended to build on their pre-school experiences and the curriculum is designed to emphasise active learning. To this end, the teacher will provide a variety of first hand structured experiences designed to give the children every opportunity to learn. The work is carefully planned and opportunities are given for specific teaching, discussion, independent learning and structured play. The curriculum is based on the following six areas of learning:
Personal, social and emotional development
Communication, language and literacy
Knowledge and understanding of the world
Literacy and Numeracy hours are taught daily in all classes in both Key Stages and an element of both of these is also introduced into the Reception class to prepare the children for the structures and routines that they will meet in Year 1. These two areas are of great importance in school and underpin much of the curriculum. The overall aim in Literacy (English) is to enable pupils to develop their ability to listen, speak confidently, read with understanding and write, all of which are central to their learning. The Numeracy Strategy places a lot of emphasis on mental arithmetic. This is a regular feature of the daily lesson followed by the main teaching activity and finally the opportunity to sum up the main teaching and learning points of the lesson.
Information and Communication Technology is taught in all age groups and opportunities are given for discrete teaching and learning of skills as well as using a range of hardware and software to reinforce other areas of the curriculum. The School has a small computer suite and all classes have a minimum of three computers with access to the internet. The School is completely networked and other hardware facilities include a scanner, a digital camera, whiteboard technology and Roamers.
As part of the Personal, Health and Social Education that the School offers, the Governors have decided that sex education will form part of the School's curriculum. A copy of the policy statement is available for inspection and parents will be invited to review materials intended for use in sex education lessons. The use of outside speakers on this topic will be confined to the school nurse (who is known to the children) and a teacher will also be present for all lessons. Parents can withdraw their children from all, or part, of the sex education programme by informing the Headteacher in writing. It is a requirement of the National Curriculum in Science for all pupils to be taught about human development and reproduction. Parents are not entitled to withdraw their children from this teaching.
The school follows the Cambridgeshire Syllabus for Religious Education and pupils are given the opportunity to explore the beliefs of other world faiths and compare these to Christianity. Throughout, it is our aim to develop a greater understanding, respect and knowledge of all faiths and thereby encourage a greater sense of citizenship. Parents have a statutory right to withdraw their children from Religious Education and from school assemblies if they wish. If you would like to exercise this right please inform the Headteacher in writing.
All children in Key Stage 2 will have the opportunity to go swimming for one term in each academic year. We hope parents will agree that being able to swim is an important asset for any child and will be agreeable to their child taking part in the course. Indeed, we look upon it as an integral part of the school curriculum for children of this age, and expect that if children begin they will attend regularly every week so that improvement can be expected. Swimming is also part of the National Curriculum in Physical Education.
The School holds Sports Days for each Key Stage. During these events all children are continuously involved. There is a degree of competition in the events and the children take part in activities that not only encourage their individual performance, but also contribute to the achievement of their team.
Assessment of what has been taught and learnt takes place regularly. Reading and spelling tests are administered twice yearly to all children who are 6+ years. At the end of Key Stage 1 (7+ years) and Key Stage 2 (11+ years), children undertake national tests and tasks to assess their progress in the three National Curriculum core subjects of English, Maths and Science. Pupils in Years 3, 4 and 5 will also undertake end of year QCA tests in English and Maths. You are welcome to call at School and make an appointment to discuss your child's progress and particular concerns at any time that is mutually convenient. More particularly, a written report will be sent home towards the end of the summer term and Parent/Teacher Consultation evenings are held in October, March and July of each school year.
Children who have Special Educational Needs (SEN) are identified through regular assessment. They are then given additional support by their teacher and, where appropriate, a Teaching Assistant. The School makes every effort to cater for the needs of all pupils with SEN and Individual Education Plans are put into place when required. Parents are encouraged to be part of the assessment process and will be asked to discuss their child's educational needs at specific times during the year. We will involve other outside agencies when we believe there is a need and permission from parents will always be sought before this happens. The school follows the New Code of Practice for SEN and a copy of the Schools SEN Policy is available on request.
Education is free and all that the children need at school for their lessons will be provided. In an attempt to enrich and/or extend children's learning we sometimes suggest we take them on visits, bring in outside speakers, theatre groups, musicians or extend the curriculum (such as in swimming). The 1988 Education Act does not allow us to charge for such activities. However, we have limited funds to subsidise such ventures and hope that parents will be willing to make a voluntary contribution (which is always kept as low as possible) when approached.
As part of the School's Homework Policy the children are sometimes given homework as part of their learning. This may take the form of reading, researching information, learning table facts or parts for plays, practising spellings or completing particular written tasks. From the earliest year we encourage our children to take home their reading books to share with you. We trust that you will take an interest in such work and arrange for it to be done in a suitable place away from distractions.
The Governors hope that complaints about the curriculum, religious worship or related matters will continue to be dealt with by informal discussion between parents and the School. When the matter cannot be resolved in this way, a formal complaint can be made to the Governing Body and, if then still unresolved, to the Local Educational Authority.