Updated - 06.11.18

School Development Plans

At Wheatley Hill Primary School, we are constantly looking for ways to improve our school to continue to build upon our previous achievements. In order to continue to grow as a school, we constantly evaluate and reflect upon all the work we do in school. We then use this "School Self Evaluation" to create a "School Development Plan". This development plan outlines exactly what we intend to do over the coming year to improve our school in all areas. Our current School improvement Priorities are shown below.

 

The school improvement priorities have been selected following extensive discussions and consultation with our teachers, governors, parents and pupils as well as representatives from the LA and the wider community. Our next priorities have been grouped under the New Ofsted Common Inspection Framework Headings:

 

Overall Effectiveness

  • Priority 1: To improve parental involvement and community cohesion with recognised impact on pupils progress, behaviour and welfare.

  • Priority 2: To improve the overall attendance of pupils in school.

 

Effectiveness of Leadership and Management

  • Priority 3: To implement an effective system to track staff performance management targets as well as support the use of Performance Related Pay.

  • Priority 4: To ensure current SEND school policy is in line with new SEND reforms of the Children and Families Act – including statutory assessment processes and the Durham and school SEND offer.

  • Priority 5: To improve the overall effectiveness of Senior, Middle Leaders and Co-ordinators in school.

 

Quality of Teaching, Learning and Assessment

  • Priority 6: To improve the overall quality of teaching and raise standards to outstanding.

  • Priority 7: To develop an effective systems to track pupil progress and attainment using “Life without Levels."

 

Personal Development, Behaviour and Welfare

  • Priority 8: To use effective and consistent clear behaviour management strategies resulting in a purposeful ethos of support and engagement.

 

Outcomes for Children and Learners

  • Priority 9: To accelerate pupil progress in writing.

  • Priority 10: To develop an innovative and exciting curriculum that increases levels of enjoyment and equips pupils to apply their basic skills.

 

The Effectiveness of Early Years

  • Priority 11: To implement objective led planning through an imaginative curriculum based upon children’s current interests.

  • Priority 12: To develop the outdoor learning space to offer further challenge, building on children’s resilience and independence skills.

  • Priority 13: To raise attainment in writing.

Emerging Priority for Academic Year 2017-18 (The Year of Science)

  • Priority 14: To raise the profile of Science across school including within the EYFS provision.

 

Specific details of how we intend to tackle these priorities can be found in the "School Development Plan"

 

Evidence of School Development

Overall Effectiveness

Priority 1: To improve parental involvement and community cohesion with recognised impact on pupils progress, behaviour and welfare.

  • Development of new school website. Although ongoing, the new website once complete will be much simpler for parents and members of the community to access. It will also be much more pupil and parent centred with a pupil blog, photo galleries and links to all of our social media streams.

  • Development of our school social media foot print. We have recently launched our improved Facebook and Twitter streams for the school, and already the feedback from parents and members of the community has been very good. An excellent example of this is the response to the publication of photographs and updates during the recent Lake District Residential trips. All new parental consent forms to support this social media set up are being prepared in line with school policies for the new academic year.

  • Our “Friends of the School” group has really taken off in recent months and they are currently working exceptionally hard to plan, organise and gather resources for the school summer fayre. The “friends” are working very well with Mrs Anson to make all of the relevant preparations and have engaged well with the local community and businesses to gather donations and prizes. There is also a weekly coffee morning in school, which allows minor issues to be addressed and parents supported in an informal setting.

  • We recently hosted two social work students in school to support our familiesin school. This was the first time the school has hosted such students and although many aspects of the placements went well, a number of lessons were learnt and we feel these placements will be even more effective in future. During the placement, the students hosted parents meetings and implemented new school procedures around headlice management and how we can support parents.

  • We have been holding many more opportunities for parents to be in school for a variety of reasons. Parents have been in school for celebration events like the Easter service and the Science week, both of which were very well attended and again the “friends” were very helpful during these events. Parents have also been in school as volunteers supporting the children’s learning in a number of classes including in EYFS and Yr 1 helping children prepare for their KS1 Phonic Assessments. We also recently held a parent’s forest school session, where parents came with their child and took part in a range of forest school activities. This was very well received by parents and the feedback was excellent. We also celebrated our Father’s Day Lunch in school with a number of our children’s father’s, who were able to join us for lunch.

Priority 2: To improve the overall attendance of pupils in school.

  • We are now offering our low cost breakfast club every day in school in order to allow pupils to get into school earlier. Parents on occasion have been offered access to the breakfast club for free (Subsidised by the school following attendance meetings) for a short period of time in order to help improve their attendance.

  • Our regular attendance meetings are taking place and attendance contracts signed by parents. These contracts are reviewed every 4 weeks and sanctions or referrals to EWOs made if attendance has not improved.

  • Children are rewarded weekly for excellent attendance and punctuality.

  • Our late register has moved back to 9:05 to increase our expectations of pupil punctuality. We would like to move this back further to 9am in September as we feel children miss too much intervention and quality teaching time be being more than 5 minutes late. (Most interventions and work based activities have begun by 9am)

  • A behaviour and attendance team of children have been established within the school council. This group of children will be kept up to date with school behaviour and attendance information. This will allow them to feedback the pupil voice and suggest ideas.

Effectiveness of Leadership and Management

Priority 3: To implement an effective system to track staff performance management targets as well as support the use of Performance Related Pay.

  • Blue Sky Performance Management system has been implemented in school and will be utilised from July. The system links SDP objectives to performance management targets for teaching staff. This allows us as a school to ensure that all the targets and work our teachers carry out link back to our SDP priorities. The system also allows us to link CPD and lesson observation information to teacher’s performance for a comprehensive picture of a teacher’s performance and impact.

Priority 4: To ensure current SEND school policy is in line with new SEND reforms of the Children and Families Act – including statutory assessment processes and the Durham and school SEND offer.

  • The school has put steps in place to change the way children who are allocated to our LRB are taught in school. The SLT, SENDCO & Virtual Headteacher of the LRB discussed the current teaching approach used within the LRB, and as a team decided that this was not the most effective practice. Therefore beginning in September all children allocated to our LRB will be taught in classes and the SALT will take place within the classroom. Children will only be withdrawn from class in order to access SALT interventions that cannot effectively be taught or carried out within the classroom.

  • In order to better support our children with identified cognition and learning difficulties and those who are working well below ARE (Age Related Expectations) each of our classrooms are currently designing a practical learning space for these children, where they can access play based learning activities. 

Priority 5: To improve the overall effectiveness of Senior, Middle Leaders and Co-ordinators in school.

  • Mrs Devine is now a recognised educational coach within our Peterlee Partnership of schools and is available as a coach to support teaching staff needing support.

  • A clear staffing structure has been established in school and this is available to all parents and members of the community via our school website.

  • Staff members have all attended relevant CPD for their subjects including networks, moderations and workbook scrutinies.

  • We have began to identify members of staff to take part in the NPQSL programme in September.

  • The School SLT meets regularly to discuss school issues, minutes are taken at these meetings and made available to all staff members where appropriate.

  • The headteacher is to begin Peer Review Training in September, where he will take part in observations of other schools and in return other headteachers will visit our school to support our self evaluation judgements.

Quality of Teaching, Learning and Assessment

Priority 6: To improve the overall quality of teaching and raise standards to outstanding.

  • Wheatley Hill Educators – The school has developed our model for educators which outlines all of the educators children have and the importance of these educators. This outlines the importance of parents, teachers and the need for a rich learning environment.

  • Our model for outstanding teaching and learning has also been developed in conjunction with Education physiologists, neuroscientists and the research from the Educational Endowment Fund. The model outlines the key steps that our teachers must follow in order to ensure and promote outstanding teaching and learning in their classroom.

  • Implementation of “Gem Powers” & “mindfulness” in school to promote pupil engagement and understanding of their own learning. This has been possible through the development of a working partnership with Tom Robson an Education Neuroscientist. Tom Robson’s work has been shown to have a massive impact on pupil learning in schools and we intend to develop and merge this into our school curriculum / teaching from September.

Priority 7: To develop an effective systems to track pupil progress and attainment using “Life without Levels."

  • The school is currently moving away from a test based approach to assessment towards a more pupil progress evidence based approach. The reason for this is because we feel that children taking tests regularly is not an effective way to measure pupil learning, unduly stressful and that time in school could be more effectively utilised. Our new assessment approach will put the power of assessment back into our teacher’s hands rather than relying on tests to tell us about the learning of our children. We believe that we would rather “Capture the children’s learning” rather than relying on a test to tell us what the children have been able to remember.

  • We have also recently developed a simple, effective method to record pupil progress in all foundation subjects – as previously learning in these subjects has not been recorded.

  • We have also established a new assessment system that does not assess pupils for any academic performance but rather for their personal & social progression. This allows us to track how children are growing into well rounded individuals – a much more useful real world measure of what kind of children our school is producing.

  • The school has also implemented a forest school tracking system (the only school known to do this in the area), this allows us to track pupil progress both in and outside of the classroom.

Personal Development, Behaviour and Welfare

Priority 8: To use effective and consistent clear behaviour management strategies resulting in a purposeful ethos of support and engagement.

  • The BIM and SLT have updated and refined our in school behaviour tracking systems to allow us to more closely monitor and analyse behaviour incidents in school. The new system allows us to identify exact times and causes of incidents in school. The new systems also allow parents to be involved much more quickly if appropriate and support put in place effectively.

  • The school now effectively uses CPOMS – an online management tool for recording behaviour and safeguarding concerns. This is a very secure system and is very effective because it allows incidents to be gathered, reviewed and compared. The system also allows us to identify trends and patterns in behaviour and concerns recorded.

  • The School has also recently introduced VIVO rewards in school as a new pupil rewards system. This online approach allows pupils to take ownership of their own reward points. Pupils gather points for various reasons in school and they can they spend their points in the online shop. Objects purchased are then posted out to the school. This system is used by Wellfield and will support our pupil transition to the school when they leave as accounts can be transferred.

  • Our playground improvements have began in order to support pupils to take part in positive play at lunchtimes. The grass area has been installed and this offers a safe place for pupils to take place in construction based activities & play based learning activities.

  • We have also moved our lunch to three sittings as it will allow pupils to spend more time outside taking part in positive play based activities rather than sitting in the school hall waiting to leave.

  • The school council has been expanded and given a much larger role in managing the life of the school. We believe this will have a very positive impact as the pupils will not have a much stronger voice and they will be able to give opinions & ideas about possible changes.

Outcomes for Children and Learners

Priority 9: To accelerate pupil progress in writing.

  • Pupils in school have been given many more opportunities to write across the curriculum and apply their writing skills in a variety of other subject areas effectively. Examples of the pupils extended writing and writing for different subjects can be seen in classroom displays and in topic workbooks.

  • The school has increased our number of school visits and in school visitors this term and this has had an excellent impact on the quality of pupil writing produced. Examples of pupil writing linked to specific visits and trips can be seen in the priority evidence file. Some of the in school visitors to support writing has included author visits, story teller visits and “Play in a Day” workshops.

  • All new members of teacher staff were required to teach a lesson that demonstrated “quality modelled writing”, this ensured that new staff members would be able to teach writing to our children effectively.

Priority 10: To develop an innovative and exciting curriculum that increases levels of enjoyment and equips pupils to apply their basic skills.

  • We have established a SLA with a forest school leader (HLTA). She is in school on a Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday and takes a lead on all forest school within school. The impact of this is being tracking using our forest school assessment framework but initial feedback from staff members, parents and visitors is very positive. The forest school open day was well attended and all children in school love accessing our new forest school area in school. The school recently was awarded a substantial grant which we are planning to use to develop and extend this provision.

  • From September we have also established a SLA to incorporate quality outdoor education into our curriculum, this will include beach schools and outdoor adventurous activities like climbing & canoeing. The innovative aspect of this approach is that these activities will be linked to the National Curriculum and children will be assessed against National Curriculum objectives whilst taking part in these activities.

  • To support the development of Art, design and technology in school, we have began the development of “Studios” in each of our classrooms. These are an open ended resources space where children can take part in a range of art, design and technology activities independently or under teacher direction. These areas are very naturally furnished and a based around the Reggio approach of EYFS.

  • The STEM room. As we will have a spare classroom space in September, we have began to draw up plans to turn this room into a STEM room (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics). The room will be set up half as a science laboratory and half like a food technology room, where groups of children can be taken to learn in a dedicated subject space. This will allow us to equip the room with specialist equipment and resources that the children may not normally encounter.

The Effectiveness of Early Years

Priority 11: To implement objective led planning through an imaginative curriculum based upon children’s current interests.

  • All EYFS members of staff have been on CPD for floor book planning and child consultation. This will support staff to move towards a child initiated approach to planning.

  • EYFS leaders and teachers have been on CPD for objective led planning and Capturing learning effectively in Nursery and Reception.  

Priority 12: To develop the outdoor learning space to offer further challenge, building on children’s resilience and independence skills.

  • EYFS is currently under going a large scale building project. The project will provide improved access to the outdoors, which will allow continuous free flow outdoor access.

  • The school have developed a forest school learning area outdoors, which has a fire pit, mud kitchen and outdoor classroom.

  • The outdoors indoors - as we continue to develop our EYFS into a Reggio based learning environment, we are continuing to bring outdoor elements and materials into our indoor learning spaces.

  • We have bought new waterproofs and outdoor clothing for our younger children.

Priority 13: To raise attainment in writing.

  • As part of our EYFS developement, we have redesigned and remodelled the continuous provision on offer to the children. The provision has be designed to allow children opportunities to write at any time.

  • We are moving towards a child led approach to writing where the children are empowered to write independently.

  • We are beginning to host 2 year old children from September and the hope is that by having children in our school from an earlier age it will allow us to begin putting educational building blocks in place sooner therefore accelerating future writing capacity.

Emerging Priority 2017/18

Priority 14: To raise the profile of Science across the school including within EYFS

 

 

 

 

 

School Development

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Contact Details

 

Head Teacher - Mr Alan Scarr

Wheatley Hill Primary School, Wheatley Hill, Durham, DH63RQ

Tel - 01429 820594

E-mail: support@whprimary.com

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