Parent Handbook – M
Our school expectation is that normal work in books will always be marked. We mark for several reasons:
- To show a child that their work has been acknowledged and valued
- To give specific praise
- To indicate whether a child has met the Learning Objective of a lesson
- To give a child next steps for their learning
When you see your child’s work, you may find some errors (e.g. in spelling or punctuation) that have not been corrected. This is not a teacher making a mistake or being lazy – when we mark we focus on the specific purpose of the lesson. Sometimes teachers will also address key skills in other areas but we are always keen to ensure children stay positive about their achievements – work covered in corrections can be disheartening to children when a book is open the next day.
If a child has a specific long-term medical condition that means they need prescribed medicine to keep them in school they will need a Care Plan, written in partnership between school and home (and often alongside the School Health team) to ensure that staff are appropriately trained in order to support their needs in school. If this is the case for your child, please talk to us so we can arrange this.
A number of children across school have inhalers for asthma or similar conditions involving breathing difficulty. Children sometimes keep an inhaler with them but we always ask for them to have one also stored in the school office. Children with a known allergy will also be expected to have an epipen and/or antihistamine (e.g. Piriton) in the school office. With all conditions such as these, we will be in regular contact with parents regarding an appropriate Care Plan for their child.
For shorter-term conditions, we are not compelled to give medicines to children. However, we will usually do so in the interests of keeping children in school rather than having to be at home. If you wish your child to be given medicine during the school day, please ask for a consent and information form from the school office. If there is anything we are unsure of we will then ask for clarification. If staff are in any doubt, they will not give medicine.
We provide milk for all children in Reception throughout their first year at school. Parents do not need to provide any payment for this. Please advise us if your child cannot drink milk and/or would prefer water as an alternative. We do not offer milk in school as an option for children older than Reception.
It is very rare for children to be expected to have any cash in school. If parents are sending money into the school office via their child we ask to put this into a clearly named and labelled envelope.
On occasional days, children may be invited to bring in some money for a special occasion (e.g. a FGF event such as a Mother’s Day Sale). They are encouraged to keep this somewhere safe – younger children will typically hand this into their teacher at the beginning of the day anyway and older children are more than welcome to ask their teacher to look after it for them if they would like.
More able pupils are defined within school as those who have exceeded age-related expectations (or shown the potential to be able to) at any point in their school career.
Whereas “Gifted and Talented” pupils is a relatively small number across school, it is characteristic of Grange Farm cohorts that a large proportion will be defined as “more able”. Our data tracking processes in school help us to target this group to ensure we are continuing to challenge them throughout school – this avoids the danger of seeing them as a group who are reaching a good level and therefore do not require specific attention. In actual fact, specific attention is required to ensure they can make expected or better than expected progress.
More able children are challenged with effective differentiation strategies in their day to day lessons. This can include different work, targeted questions and specific adult support. They may also benefit from targeted activities such as workshops or special events but we firmly believe that things like this are additional bonuses and it is the day to day challenge that is the most important factor in them making progress.
You will know if we would consider your child as more able through parents’ consultations and end of year reports.
New for 2018!
Multiplication Monsters is our new approach to celebrating the work that children put into learning their times-tables (and indeed related division facts and a number of other key mental maths recall skills).
For more information please see the parent information booklet in the Maths section on the “How do I Help my Child?” page of the website.
Music is an integral feature of life at Grange Farm. Children sing traditionally in assemblies and also have the opportunity to sing regularly in performances and, if they wish, in the Glee Club (who attended Young Voices this year and have plans to do so again in future years).
All children also have Music lessons as part of their broad curriculum experience including singing and tuned/untuned instrumentation.
We also have independent music teachers in school who offer individual and small group lessons to children in piano, guitar, drums and flute. Letters come out periodically asking parents if they would like their children to learn an instrument in this way (usually from Year 3 and above) – costs do apply. Parents need to be aware that children attending these lessons could miss other curriculum lessons in order to do so.