Message From CEO – 11 November 2018
So many people across our Trust – teachers, leaders and parents – have been setting the highest expectations of what our pupils can achieve. The range and quality of learning opportunities evident this week across our Trust, as you will see, have been amazing.
Norton Fitzwarren Church School are excited to be the latest School to be invited by Avon & Somerset Police to join their ‘Mini Police’ scheme, which was originally piloted in the Bristol area.
Twenty pupils from key stage 2 have been chosen to join. Their brief is to make a positive difference both within school and the wider community. They have already experienced some of the day to day work of our local police officers and are implementing some new ideas within school.
Teacher, Hope Culverwell is coordinating with the schools PCSO to ensure the pupils of the mini police use their extra responsibility wisely.
Norton Governors are very proud that their school has been given this opportunity for pupils to create positive relationships with local police.
Pupils from Cheddon Fitzpaine Church school have also been involved in valuable community work planting a tree at the new Somerset Wood with soil provided by Ypres.
Batheaston Church School have been celebrating their Civilisation Day. They created a trading station and had fun sharing their wares and exchanging currency.
The children in Apple Class at Batheaston also had a very happy Diwali Day this week.
St Saviour’s Junior School has been rated among the very top in the country for its innovative use of play times, just one year after becoming part of a new programme aimed at improving pupils’ well being and performance by encouraging high quality play at break times.
The school is set to be awarded the Platinum Award from the prestigious Outdoor Play and Learning (OPAL) organisation.
St Michael’s Junior Church School have been excited to meet their new reading ambassadors from Bath Spa University. Gifts were given and the ambassadors were introduced to Reader Resilient.
Churchfield Church School children have been busy collecting food to send to their local foodbank inspired by their focus on Harvest, led by Rev. Dan and Rev. Sharon. The Senior Pupils delivered the food and were given a tour of the Foodbank, showing the children the food store and explaining how families can access the gifts. The Churchfield collection was the largest sent in from any school in the area and was gratefully received.
Year 2 pupils at St Andrew’s Church School in Taunton have just started learning about the Great Fire of London. For homework they were set the challenge of researching how buildings would have looked at that time and to make their own model building. Here are some examples of the amazing work that has been handed in so far.
St James Church School have been selected as one of the first schools in Somerset to receive a free copy of the book “The Lost Words”. The book is a collection of acrostic poetry based around words from the natural world. Crowd funding across the country, has raised money to ensure schools receive a copy of this book. Claire Carter from BBC Somerset filmed the school receiving the book on Friday from John Fish, the crowd funding organiser.
Acrostic poems are based on words such as bramble, heron, ivy and conker.
Staff from the seven schools that make up the North Somerset Hub met together on Wednesday to launch a joint teaching and learning project.
The theme of the event was “The Importance of Questioning” and colleagues collaborated to look at various approaches to questioning, and to agree a shared approach. As well as sharing reading material and their own good practice, colleagues observed a demonstration lesson and unpicked the key strategies and approaches used to ensure children were being exposed to greater depth thinking through well-crafted questions. Colleagues have now taken away ideas to try in their own classrooms and future staff meetings in school with continue this work. They will all meet up again in the Spring term to review what has been successful.
The event was the first of a series of meetings planned in the North Somerset Hub that have been entitled “The Three P’s – Planning, Pedagogy and Practice”, aimed at bringing colleagues from St John the Evangelist, St Georges, St Mark’s, Trinity, Court De Wyck, Kingshill and Churchfield schools together to collaborate and share their high quality practice.
Finally, this week I attended a wonderful Remembrance event to commemorate 100 years since the end of World War I at St Mark’s Church School. Following readings, singing, prayers and playing of the Last Post, parents, pupils, teachers, veterans and members of the local community walked a mile around the friendship pathway. The event was a poignant reminder for us all of the enormous sacrifices made during World War I.
The range of high quality learning taking place across our Trust this week is inspiring and uplifting: developing pupils skills in reading and mathematics; encouraging pupils to get involved in their community; enhancing play opportunities for all: encouraging creative problem solving skills; supporting pupils to think about others; fostering pupils’ artistic skills; developing scientific understanding. It is your hard work, skill, creativity, optimism, determination and commitment that enables our pupils to achieve the most amazing things.