St Winifred’s Catholic Primary School
School Prospectus 2023 – 24
At St Winifred’s Catholic Primary School:
At St Winifred’s Catholic Primary School, children are loved and taught to become responsible, successful and happy. They learn to work independently and as part of a team to share and respect each other’s needs.
They are nurtured throughout their years here with the Gospel values of:
We aim to instil in our children the importance of community so they are respectful and appreciative of those around them.
At St Winifred’s, we have an open and friendly atmosphere within the School. Parents and carers are encouraged to become active in the life of the School.
St Winifred’s School is an important part of Our Lady of Lourdes Parish. Together we form a wonderful community. In School, the children, parents, carers, parish priest, governors and staff work together to help children develop an understanding of their faith. Children join with the Parish to celebrate Mass on a regular basis. The school also participate in parish events such as the Carol concert.
Parents and Carers
We are very proud of the relationship we have with the parents and carers in our School. We are a strong group and benefit from mutual respect, trust and understanding. The good of the children is at the centre of every decision we make and all the work we do. We like to work together with parents and carers to ensure that children fulfil their true potential.
We encourage parents and carers to come and see staff if they have any concerns or worries about their child or if there is something we should know about; a change in family circumstance, news that may impact on the child. We have an open-door policy and parents are welcome to come and see teachers after School and either speak then or arrange a convenient appointment.
Each term the teachers formally report to parents on the progress of children during Parents’ Evenings and a written report is sent home in the summer term. During the year all children will take part in Masses and performances, which parents are invited and encouraged to attend.
Our Home School Agreement sets out the responsibilities of parents, School and children in detail. This is given to all parents and carers when the child comes into the School. It is reviewed annually.
There are several ways in which parents and carers can support their child:
- Sharing books and listening to your child read.
- Supporting any homework set by the class
- Talking to your child about general things helps to improve communication and vocabulary.
- Accompanying children on class outings.
If you have any time to spare and would like to help us in any way we would be delighted to welcome you into the School.
At St. Winifred’s, we believe that Religion is a relationship, a relationship of love between the child and God, and between the child and other people: in a community. Religious Education fosters this relationship through daily prayer, Acts of Worship and Celebrations of Liturgy. As a Catholic school we feel it is important that children learn how to co-operate with others, respect others and forgive others. Scripture, teachings of the Church and the teachers’ own witness and example are the means by which these are taught in our school.
As a whole school we follow the national Catholic R.E. scheme entitled ‘The Way, the Truth and the Life’. The aim of this programme is to explore the religious dimension of questions about life, dignity and purpose, within the Catholic tradition. Links are made with the pupils’ own experiences and with universal experience. Links are also made with the experiences of other faith traditions to promote tolerance and mutual respect. The programme is therefore both ‘objective’ and ‘subjective’. It presents a systematic presentation of the Christian event, message and way of life, in contexts appropriate to the age and stage of development of each child.
Father Emeka, from our Parish church, regularly visits the school, and are a link with the wider community of the church. Our children are supported by the school in the preparation for the Sacraments of Reconciliation and the Eucharist.
Prayer Life and Worship
The school holds collective worship regularly throughout the week; through school assemblies as well as in class. Our Parish priest celebrates Masses with the children. The children are involved in preparing these celebrations themselves and parents/carers are warmly invited to attend and share the children’s work and worship with them.
Prayer and Liturgy gives us:
- A sense of special time
- A sense of special place
- The intention of focusing on matters of worth ‘beyond the everyday’
- A sense of occasion.
Times of Prayer and Liturgy are educational, planned learning experiences. They contribute to the education of the pupils and facilitate spiritual growth and respect of each other’s religious beliefs and practices. This may be done by evoking the sense of beauty, awe, wonder or feelings of pride, pity, sharing or by exploring the spirituality of life and experience.
The Governing Body
Our Governing Body consists of a number of volunteers as well as the headteacher and parish priest. The governors help to appoint staff, decide on policies for the School, deal with admissions and appeals as well as a multitude of other important functions. The governors work closely with the headteacher offering support and advice.
The School Day
School begins for all pupils at 8:45am each morning. Key Stage One and Two children make their own way into class as they arrive at school through the main gates from 8:30am. Early Years children are escorted to the EYs entrance on Newstead Road.
The whole School has a fifteen-minute break during the morning. Lunch is served from 11.30 to 1.30. Pupils in EYFS and years 1, 2 and 3 have their lunchtime from 11.30 to 12.30. Years 4 to 6 have their lunchtime from 12:30-13:30. The School day ends at 3pm. Parents are asked to be prompt when collecting children. The main gates are open from 2:50pm.
Our School has a wonderful Nursery that offers part time (15 hour) places in either morning or afternoon sessions as well as full time (30 hours) places for those who qualify for this funding or wish to pay. The School Office is happy to assist parents and carers with any inquiries.
Children who attend our Nursery do not automatically gain a place in our School.
Early Years Curriculum (Nursery & Reception)
At St Winifred’s, we recognise the importance of giving our children the best possible start to their education by planning and implementing teaching and learning opportunities that supports them in reaching their full potential. In order for us to achieve this, we aim to:
- Work in partnership with parents and carers to encourage independent, happy learners, who thrive in school and reach their full potential from their various starting points.
- Understand and follow children’s interests and provide opportunities throughout our EYFS curriculum to support learning, consolidate and deepen knowledge and ensure children meet their next steps.
- Create a well-structured, safe and stimulating learning environment both indoors and outdoors which supports all areas of learning and development.
- Encourage children to develop self-confidence and decision-making skills.
- Promote enjoyment for learning through providing purposeful, fun and challenging play opportunities.
- Encourage children to develop their sense of curiosity through hands on learning, exploration and discussion.
- Prepare children to reach the Early Learning Goals at the end of the Foundation Stage and ensure children make good progress from their starting points.
- Support effective transition into the next stage of their education into Year One.
At St Winifred’s we recognise that children learn most effectively when they are healthy, safe, and secure, when their individual needs are met and when they have positive relationships with the adults who care for them. We provide a setting that encompasses a safe and stimulating environment where children are able to enjoy learning and grow in confidence that helps them to achieve their fullest potential from their various starting points.
We follow the revised ‘Statutory framework for the early years foundation stage’. All areas are planned for to ensure there is a broad, balanced and progressive learning environment and curriculum.
The children learn new skills, acquire new knowledge and demonstrate understanding through the seven areas in the EYFS curriculum:
Prime areas of learning
- Communication and Language
- Physical Development
- Personal, Social and Emotional Development
Specific areas of learning
- Understanding the World
- Expressive Arts and Design
These seven areas are used to plan children’s learning and activities. Planning for this curriculum is designed to be flexible so that a child’s unique needs and interests are supported. We encourage active learning to ensure the children are motivated and interested. A great emphasis is placed on encouraging children to talk and communicate with both adults and their peers. We take time to get to know children’s interests and their likes to enable us to effectively support their learning. Our creative school curriculum is based around a different book each half term. These story books excite and engage the children and provide a love for reading.
Daily whole class and small group time activities are carefully planned for and delivered. These focus on different areas of the EYFS curriculum and allow children to learn in an exciting way and develop their next steps in learning. There are also a range of stimulating and engaging activities which the children can access independently within the classroom environment, allowing children to apply their learning within different contexts and a variety of opportunities for child-initiated play are provided.
We ensure activities support the Characteristics of Effective Learning to ensure learning takes place. These are:
- Playing and exploring – children investigate and experience things, and ‘have a go’;
- Active learning – children concentrate and keep on trying if they encounter difficulties, and enjoy achievements;
- Creating and thinking critically – children have and develop their own ideas, make links between ideas, and develop strategies for doing things.
Mathematics – Maths is taught daily through exposure and exploration of number, shape and measures and singing. It often encapsulates real life scenarios for example, cookery (weights and measures), shopping (money role play) and general day to day teacher daily activities and routines.
Teaching of phonics – We use ‘Little Wandle, Letters and Sounds Revised’ as our synthetic systematic phonics programme to teach children to read quickly and easily. Synthetic phonics – is simply the ability to convert letters or groups of letters into sounds that are blended into words.
Play – A huge amount of the Early Years curriculum implementation is through Play. It is one of the main ways in which children learn and develop, it is an integral part of a child’s Early Years Foundation Stage and supports their learning journey. They develop language skills, emotions, creativity and social skills. Play helps to nurture imagination and give a child a sense of adventure. Through this, they can learn essential skills such as problem solving, working with others, sharing and much more. In order to ensure that children progress in all areas of learning we provide a balance of child initiated and adult led activities. Children in the EYFS learn by playing and exploring, being active, and through creative and critical thinking which takes place both indoors and outside.
Assessment – We strive to ensure that our children’s progress across the EYFS curriculum is good from their varied starting points and that children reach the Early Learning Goals at the end of Reception and to be near National expectations.
The Reception Baseline Assessment (RBA) is a national statutory assessment that is administered at the beginning of the reception year. This will form the baseline for primary progress measures, allowing schools to receive credit for the progress their pupils make throughout their time in primary school. The baseline assessment will result in a score that forms part of each child’s baseline profile. By having a good understanding of the child’s abilities when they start school, class teachers are able to measure each child’s progress and plan for next steps in learning. The baseline assessment is face-to-face with a mixture of tasks and observational checklists.
Through the year members of the teaching team make regular observations of the children’s learning to ensure their next steps are met. These are collected in each child’s Learning Journey and online using ‘Evidence Me’. We regularly assess where the children are using the ‘Development Matters’ and ‘Birth to 5’ and then ensure our planning, adult interaction and learning environment support children to reach their next steps.
Summative assessment compares children’s attainment to age related expectations using month bands in the ‘Birth to 5’. This is tracked to ensure rates of progress are at least good for all children, including vulnerable groups such as those with SEND or who are disadvantaged.
Assessment judgements are moderated both in school and externally with local schools.
Feedback is given on children’s learning. Formative assessment within every lesson helps teachers to identify the children who need more support to achieve the intended outcome, and who is ready for greater stretch and challenge through planned questioning or additional activities.
Transition – Staff support transition into Key Stage 1. Preparing children for Year 1 with visits to their new class, meeting the teacher and ensuring the environments are similar at the end of Reception and the start of Year 1.
We keep parents informed and we meet regularly with parents and carers to ensure children’s transition into school and through the EYFS is happy and allows them to reach their potential with the support needed. This includes Stay and Play mornings, parent workshops, assemblies to celebrate successes, engaging with parents, home visits, and parent consultations.
Keys Stage 1 and 2 Curriculum
As the children move from EYs through the school, we continue to offer pupils a creative curriculum which interests and inspires them. Pupils are challenged to achieve their potential, intellectually, socially and spiritually. We provide a broad, balanced and relevant curriculum that meets the needs of each individual child. We encourage children to work independently, to develop skills and establish concepts in order to have access to the National Curriculum. We build upon the children’s own experiences so that they grow in confidence, self-esteem and respect for others.
At St. Winifred’s we recognise that English is a vital component in concept formation in all areas of the curriculum. Our aim is to develop each child’s ability to understand, communicate, interpret and appreciate the world around him/her. The English programme at St. Winifred’s promotes the four key components: speaking, listening, reading and writing. We use a book-based approach, immersing the children in a literary world, creating strong levels of engagement to provide meaningful and authentic contexts for learning.
We aim to teach all pupils:
- To listen attentively with understanding and appreciation.
- To speak confidently and clearly, and to use appropriate language for different occasions.
- To read fluently and accurately with understanding, enjoyment, feeling and discrimination.
- To communicate in writing with confidence, pleasure and a sense of purpose, for a wide range of audiences.
- To write competently by developing the skills of handwriting, spelling, punctuation, syntax and usage. We encourage the children to use cursive script when writing.
These skills are taught in the context of a wide range of real and purposeful activities. We foster a very positive, caring and stimulating approach to books in order to develop each child’s awareness of good literature.
This is achieved by:
- Activities that promote reading for enjoyment and pleasure.
- Maintaining a rich book environment throughout the school.
- Reading aloud to children, throughout the week, stories and poems which expose them to the language of Literature and help them to become readers for life.
- Creating a partnership with parents involving regular reading with the children at home and at school.
English is taught every day in a variety of ways including the writing for a purpose, story times, discussions, through extended writing, word processing and desk top publishing etc.
‘Little Wandle, Letters and Sounds’ are the programmes currently used to teach phonics at our school.
Mathematics teaches us how to make sense of the world around us, through developing a child’s ability to calculate, to reason and to solve problems. It enables children to understand and appreciate relationships and pattern in both number and space in their everyday lives. Our aim at St Winifred’s Primary school is to equip children with the knowledge, skills, understanding and confidence to reach their full potential in the subject.
All classes have a weekly lesson of Music, Dance and Spanish (KS2), taught by specialist teachers.
For further information about all the subjects that form our engaging curriculum, please visit our website.
Each term, teachers organise visits for children related to an area the children are studying. Across the school, children visit a variety of venues such as museums, galleries, theatres, parks and forest schools for exhibitions and field trips to complement their learning.
We are now re-launching our extra-curricular activities. Prior to the pandemic we offered a wide variety of after-school, morning and lunchtime activities including; football, tennis, French, art, dance, digital leaders, multi-sports, Musical theatre, Lego and board games. These are run throughout the year and each term children have the opportunity to change their club/s. Year 6 also enjoy a four-day adventure in the Isle of Wight. All of these trips are activity based and offer children a wealth of new experiences.
We offer instrument lessons – drums, flute, clarinet, violin, brass and guitar. These are offered to children from year 2 upwards during the school day. Prices are very competitive and the hire of instruments are available too at minimal cost. The children’s musical talents are showcased at concerts and productions for parents during the academic year.
Uniform can be purchased from a range of high street stores or on line. We have also arranged for our uniform (with optional logo) to be available on the ‘School Trends’ website, link below:
We also do ask parents to donate good quality used uniforms to the school, these are on offer for all families, who wish to use it.
Ties and bags are available for purchase in the school office.
Please refer to the Uniform Policy for further details.
We ask all parents and carers to support us in this school uniform policy by sending their child to school correctly dressed and ready for their daily schoolwork. The children are allowed to come to school in their PE kits on the days they have PE.
St. Winifred’s is an inclusive school community. If there are genuine reasons why parents or carers want their child to wear clothes that differ from the school uniform, the school will look sympathetically at such requests. Similarly, should an item of school uniform prove problematic for a pupil with disabilities then parents or carers are invited to draw this to the attention of the head teacher. We will ensure that we work with parents and carers to meet individual needs as far as possible.
We will also support any families who are in need, by providing items of uniform.
We are a healthy School. Delicious School lunches are provided at a cost of £2.30 per day payable weekly or half termly at the School Office. Children may bring a packed lunch from home. Please see our Packed Lunch Policy. All children drink water with their lunch and School lunches also offer milk. We have a policy of no nuts due to allergies. Special diets are organised by the school catering contractors. Currently all children in Reception and Key Stage 1 receive free school meals, but if you believe your child may be entitled to free school meals according to the government set criteria, please enquire at the School Office as there are further benefits for this group of people.
We have an Inclusion Manager in School, who works with children throughout the School who have special educational needs. She works in collaboration with class teachers and teaching assistants. They focus on individuals and small groups of children in order to help them make progress. Our Inclusion Manager links with other schools, and a range of outside agencies, who offer support and advice.
There is a strong emphasis on self-discipline and respect for all members of the School community. Children learn that school is a place where they live alongside many other people and this means sharing equipment, books and teachers’ attention. Children are expected to always do their best. We teach children to be kind and thoughtful and not to hurt or abuse other children by word or action. Expectations of behaviour are high and these are met.
Parent and Teacher Association (PTA)
We have a very active and enthusiastic PTA known as The Friends. All parents automatically become a member of the PTA as their child starts at St Winifred’s. We encourage you all to support the wide range of events which are organised from quiz nights to festive nights to our annual family fun day. These all raise money to support projects within School and they also help us to maintain the strong community spirit we so enjoy here.
If children have slight accidents in School they are treated by a trained first aider. If an accident appears to be serious, parents will be notified should hospital treatment be necessary. Parents will be notified by phone if a child has a bump to the head. For other injuries we will send a note. All accidents are recorded in the accident book.
If your child requires medication in School, such as an asthma pump or epi pen, a form from the School Office must be completed by parents to allow the School to administer it.
If your child becomes unwell we will let you know and ask you to come to School if necessary. It is therefore very important that the School has a telephone number where parents or carers may be contacted during school hours. If this changes, we must be notified immediately.
We are proud of our excellent attendance record at St Winifred’s. It shows children want to come to School and parents trust that the staff will care for the children and contact them if it is deemed necessary. Children are expected to be in School every day except on an occasion when poor health prevents this. If your child is absent from school please telephone us by 9 am. If your child has an appointment during the day a known adult will need to collect them and sign them out at the office. Holidays are not allowed during term time. A child will only be allowed time off from school in very exceptional circumstances.
Parents and visitors must not use the School car park during school hours either for parking or turning. The zigzag lines outside the School on Newstead Road are mandatory. Parents who park on these lines before and after school are liable to receive a parking ticket from the police. These rules have been made for the safety of your children.
Parking around school can be difficult, due to restrictions. We encourage children to walk to School as often as possible or take the bus and walk. We allow children to cycle or scoot to school with their parents’ permission and have provided bicycle shelters for this purpose.
There are many documents on our website which will give you more detailed information about our school. We are happy to print any of these documents for you on request.
St Winifred’s Catholic Primary School