As you are aware we were recently inspected by Ofsted.
The inspection summary for Elmhurst judges us as ‘Requires Improvement’ (RI). We are disappointed by the overall judgement and, although we feel that the report does not necessarily represent aspects of the school we know, we are aware that there are areas of improvement needed. It was acknowledged in the feedback meeting, but not evidenced in the final report, that a great deal of progress had been made since the last inspection. The framework changed in September 2019 and we were inspected under the new framework.
Despite the overall RI grade, the report also highlights the many strengths that are rated as good by Ofsted. The categories of Personal Development and Behaviour and Attitudes were both recognised as good.
There were many strengths in the other two categories as well: reading for pleasure was recognised, the well resourced and welcoming library, rapid improvement in the teaching of maths, pupil enthusiasm, SEN provision, attendance, extra-curriculum provision and opportunities and a strong culture of safeguarding, including mental health, PFSA and ELSA support, all came out as positives.
There are, as always, areas for improvement. Many of the areas already feature significantly in our School Development Plan and work had already commenced on these aspects back in July 2019.
Our recent SATs results are indicative of the progress the school is making in the key areas of maths and literacy. Pupil attainment in all subjects increased over the previous year. Attainment in writing was above the national average. Attainment in maths rose by 11% from the previous year.
Our values and ethos have not changed. The Governing body and staff at the school are as determined as they always have been to give your children what they deserve: a broad and balanced education in a happy, caring school, where your children, as ever, will develop a love of learning, respect and resilience.
The Ofsted report may be found below and on the website. A hard copy is available on request. If you would like to discuss the report with Mike or Tracy please come and do so. The parent teacher meetings next week will provide a great opportunity to pop in!
Finally, we would like to thank all of the children, parents, families, staff and governors for all of their ongoing hard work and commitment to our school. We would also like to thank all of the parents and guardians who completed the online survey which demonstrated the overwhelming support for, and positivity, about the school. Thank you!
Tracy and Mike
- Year 3 – 94.4%
- Year 4 – 98.0% – a fantastic week, year 4. Well done!
- Year 5 – 95.1%
- Year 6 – 96.6%
Non- uniform for Rowan, Cedar and Fir class tomorrow – pebble reward. Well done!
Don’t forget the ESA Bingo tomorrow evening – it’s always a fun evening!
What’s happening next week? w/b 10th February: (click on the date to go to the school calendar)
Monday: NSPCC assembly – please make sure all sponsorship money is returned.
Tuesday: Safer Internet day: see message below. Parent-Teacher meetings – letters should have made their way home. Please book in asap.
Thursday: ESA bake off. Parent-Teacher meetings – letters should have made their way home. Please book in asap.
FRIDAY: SCHOOL CLOSED- INSET DAY.
Monday 17th to Friday 21st February: Half-term. School reopens on Monday 24th February
CSI maths day
On Friday 31st January, we were very fortunate to have a visitor from a company called AS Creatives come to school to work with children from each year group on some very exciting CSI investigations using maths from everyday life. Working together, children solved clues, which proved quite challenging at times, using their maths skills! Our pupils impressed the visitor, Jackson, who commented on “their enthusiasm, confidence and impressive maths knowledge”. I think it is safe to say, everyone enjoyed the experience.
In the afternoon, Jackson led the maths Family Learning Afternoon and got families engaged in activities which involved lots of thinking and puzzling. Children were encouraged to lead the discussions and suggest ways to solve the problems.
At the end of the session, families put their drama skills to the test as they were asked to make maths shapes with each other! Everyone left with a smile on their faces. Thank you to all the parents who joined in.
Congratulations to our Blue Peter badge winner!
Congratulations to Bertie, who is now the proud owner of Blue Peter Music Badge. Bertie wrote to Blue Peter to explain how he plays a range of different instruments, which they were very impressed with. The badge enables Bertie and his family to gain free access to over 200 Blue Peter Badge Attractions in the UK. Hopefully Bertie’s achievement will be an inspiration for other Elmhurst children to try and earn their own BP badge. Well done, Bertie!
Last Friday, we carried out our sponsored Danceathon for the NSPCC. We had a lot of fun and there was an impressive amount of moves happening all around the school. The Year 6 classes carried out an hour long dance whilst other classes did a five minute stint every hour. Buddy joined in with the fun around the school, spending most of his time flying through the air!
Please remember that sponsorship forms are due in by tomorrow: Friday 7th February.
Mental health and well being
Parenting can be the most wonderful job in the world but at some point all parents need a bit of help. Finding the right advice can be difficult. The most common topics that affect families have been linked to the best web-based information and local support. You can access those links here: cypsomersethealth
Safer Internet day- Tuesday 11th February
On 11th February 2020, we will be promoting Safer Internet Day. This year’s theme is #freetobe and we will be discussing our online identity and our freedom to be ourselves online whilst being safe and sensible. In school, we will be having a class assembly, hosted by the computing comrades and a poster competition across the school.
Our top three tips to being safe online are:
- Think before you post
- Only access age appropriate materials- Tik Tok is a 16+ app!
- Seek adult permission before accessing the internet
Gardening with Mrs Chard
Mrs Greenwell’s first group came out with me into the garden today, we had a fun time and achieved a lot. They turned lots of general compost, we also gave the leaf compost a turn and added more leaves which we collected, it’s great that so many of the children love to dig. Some of the children helped tidy one of the beds and rearrange it and they all had fun pushing each other in the wheelbarrows.
The weather was a mix of cold wind, rain and sunshine and it was a fairly muddy session, with some mud play painting the big beech tree with mud and putting handprints on it too.
We found a few millipedes today and a massive worm which caused me to go rushing across the grounds due to the squeals and noise thinking something had happened, to be met by exclamations of its a slow worm, no its a snake! Thankfully it was a garden worm.
Mrs Greenwell’s 2nd group will come out with me on Friday (tomorrow) and then the 3rd group will have their turn after the half-term break (due to the Inset day). Please remember suitable clothes for wet and muddy conditions. Thank you
Year 6 Bikeability Training
Letters have been sent to pupils who will be taking part in the Bikeability training on Monday 2nd/Tuesday 3rd March. Please complete and return the consent form as soon as possible to confirm your child’s place.
If you have applied for Bikeability training but have not received a letter, your child will be included in the group for Monday 30th March/Tuesday 31st March. We still have a couple of places available for these dates.
Please let the school know immediately if your child no longer wishes to take part in the training so we can offer the place to someone else.
Mobile phones in school
Please may we remind children and parents that pupil mobile phones are only allowed on school grounds if certain conditions are met.
- The phone must be named and labelled.
- It must be handed to the class teacher at the start of the school day. It will be returned at the end of the day.
- It must be turned off as soon as the child enters the school grounds and switched on again once the child has left the premises.
- Mobile phones SHOULD NOT be taken into the toilets.
We have many children who are flouting these rules. If caught, they will lose the right to bring a mobile into school. We will even consider a whole year group ban.
Year 5 and 6 are very close to this at this moment in time. We appreciate that many of the inappropriate messages are being sent outside of school, and this is beyond our control, but the children are bringing the issues into school so we need to be proactive.
After school clubs
Apologies for the confusion around football club yesterday. Mr Roach will not be able to do football next week either. We will let you know about football after half term.
Choir will run as normal after half term. Please make sure you contact the school office to let us know if your child will not be attending.
There will be no other after school clubs during the second half of the term.
Mr Mullen’s book reviews
Mr Mullen now has his own section on the website for his book reviews. He has read some really great books. If you read a great book and would like to recommend it to others, I am sure that Mr Mullen will let you share his web space! Just email it to Mrs Edwards or Mr Mullen.
A good deed for the week: Teach someone something about another culture.