Wilbarston Parish Council

Serving the people of Wilbarston

Village Sign

Clerk: Mrs Becky Jones
1 Castle Road, Wellingborough
Northamptonshire NN8 1LL

Tel: 01933 273028

Wilbarston CEVE Primary School Report

ACPC report 2019

We had another busy and successful year at school over the last year. Our year 6 children moved on to new schools and it was lovely that during their exit questionnaires they told us that we had achieved our vision of giving them key skills and leaving with happy memories of their time with us. We are delighted when children tell us that.

It was a busy year for staffing with a new teacher in our Foundation Stage, Victoria Burgess, and Katie Curran on maternity leave from November to late June. Rebecca Fortnum who taught Year 3/4 also moved on to gain experience in a larger school setting.

From September we restructured our office and now share our new School Business Manager. Michelle Johnston who was our School Bursar is now our School Business Manager, shared with Rushton Primary. Mrs Johnston completed a 2-year qualification for this role and this means we have an administration clerk (Emma Brown) in the office on Thursdays and Fridays. It is great for Mrs Johnston, who we value greatly as she is now promoted to schools' finance and health and safety in both schools, and it means we retain her as an employee rather than losing her as part of her promotion.

During the last year we have had another successful year for our Key Stage 2 results – once again they improved and our maths results at the highest level (representing age 14) was outstanding with 64% of the children gaining this level. We were thrilled with the hard work we have put into our maths improvements paying off. We also made maths the focus of our peer assessment programme. Within the MAT schools, senior leaders work in groups to monitor and investigate a key issue each year. This was an area we had worked on to improve and we are delighted with it. We must now improve our writing standards at the highest level, which is a real challenge as although our children read what they read tends to be popular fiction which doesn't help them attain the highest level. At this level, children should demonstrate what their own individual writerly style – this is very tricky for 11 year olds!

This year we are working hard to improve our writing standards in each class so that the children build those skills for that higher standard in time. We are also working hard to publicise our school to build numbers at this challenging time. The housing market is stagnant and the new builds have failed to generate the numbers of children expected by developers and the County Council. Most schools in the MAT have many spaces. Loatlands was extended to manage the new estate growth and still has empty classrooms. We are now in 4 classes. We now have a public Facebook page to show off all the exciting things we do at school and our website has been revamped to be more attractive and modern and also links into Google so we have higher web visibility for those looking for schools in our area.

We said farewell to Rev. Sally Hughes in December as our school vicar. At our Christmas Service we presented her with a commissioned carving to thank her for all her hard work over the years. She is much missed. We are having half termly visits from the schools' vicar from the Diocese, Rev Doug Spencely, to provide some input to children from the church. We are also still seeking support from other sources. Of course, we are delighted that Sally remains a valued governor at the school.

In March we had our scheduled OFSTED inspection, which came a few months early. We are delighted that the inspector recognised the hard work of the whole staff team, our partnership working with parents and the dedication of our governors during the process. The inspector agreed the focus of our improvement work on reading and writing was appropriate and could see the impact of work so far in this area. Our children attain well against national standards – we were the highest performing school in the Kettering area last year; but due to the change in curriculum and tests since 2014 children's progress has appeared less positive. From next year children will all have taken the new SATS so comparison will be on a level playing field. That said, we know our children read but do not read widely. We are working to develop our English scheme to ensure pupils experience a wider range of reading material that they would not choose and that they are able to model some of the styles and techniques used more confidently in their own work. This would allow more pupils to attain the higher standard of "greater depth" than do at present. This is an issue for many schools in our MAT and across the country so we are not alone in tackling this issue.

Also on the positive side the inspector commented on how well our children enjoyed school, the strongly positive parental views of school and that our children enjoyed great relationships with each other and the staff.

In other news, we have 2 new governors who have joined our board and different committees. We are being supported by the Diocese pastorally so Rev. Doug Spenceley continues to come to lead worship and our main church services. We had a lovely Easter service that was well attended by families before the Easter break.

This term the Y2 and Y6 children have their SATS tests and we will enjoy our traditional Midsummer Fair, Choral Festival and the usual Sports Day picnic and races, Wilbarston's Got Talent, the Potted Sports event and, finally, the Leavers Service.

Finally, we have school hens! The children in Robin Class (our youngest) hatched some hens from the Happy Egg Company and we now have 3 hens laying eggs. The children love this. We also had a mobile farm pay a visit. We have also revamped our garden area with the help of some volunteers and the Flamingos class. Among the new beds, we created a school community garden bed with families donating bulbs – it will be riot of colour and all shapes and sizes.

As can be seen, another very busy year in our church school.

Posted: Wed, 15 May 2019 10:36 by Becky Jones

Tags: School, Reports, community