Miss O Kelly & Mrs A Horniman
Thursday 21st July 2016
Dear Parents and Carers,
The 2015-2016 academic year is coming to a close bringing another year to a finish. With such busy lives we like to take this opportunity to share things that have happened in school over the past year which sometimes may have passed you by or because it wasn’t directly related to your child or year group we didn’t share it.
Over the last year the teachers and teaching assistants have worked super hard to make some fabulous displays along our corridor’s, in the classrooms, the library, garden room and the main hall. We hope you’ll agree that the school reflects learning and these displays have been interactive being worked upon by the children, staff and parental views. The classrooms have followed the classes topic work in their displays – they’ve been quite inspirational don’t you agree?
This year we have been on a voyage to find our whole school vision, during lessons and assembly time the children have really got involved. They have given us new values which have been displayed around the school during Term 5 & 6, been imaginative with a new school slogan and this will continue to be a priority into next year when we will have a new school emblem. We opened up our mail box to parents, governors and the community around us with a survey to find out what is expected from the school and what people wanted and how they see us. This was quite illuminating! We shared the outcome of this in a report which is also on our website.
We have had “Happy Hours” throughout the year, have you managed to join us for one? They are our opportunity to show parents, carers, the community and other professionals what our lessons are all about in a range of topics – this terms our focus has been science.
Alongside our happy hours we have also run several parent forums. As a result of one such forum with regards homework we have rewritten our homework policy and made homework more consistent across the school. Our monitoring of this has shown that the majority of both children and parents are much happier with the level and types of homework. Our most recent forum linked to our school vision, your opinions and views have really helped us shape the vision of our school and the future.
Have you looked at our website recently? We have been updating our class pages with lots of photographs from daily life around school, our newsletter is added weekly and the last years’ worth can be found on the newsletter tab. We have a section all about our governor and the policies they have put in place, copies can always be requested from the office.
Our school council have had a phenomenal year! They are elected by each class and really want to get involved and do some good. They have led assemblies this year on topics such as bullying and the national campaign of “Take my friend to school” which included a special visit from Mark Harper who is now championing this cause to national government and beyond. Next year they will get involved in fundraising and many other issues which are important to their classes and the lives of children.
This year we took the opportunity to change our celebration assemblies from weekly to a monthly one, giving parents lots of notice of when they would be and making it a longer session. They now give us a forum to showcase the children’s learning and celebrate their achievements. They aren’t just open to parents, you are welcome to invite grandparents, other family members and the wider community as we do love to share!
The new curriculum has been on its second year cycle and our children have been learning from exciting new topics. Children in year six and two have completed the new SATS being the first to complete them under this new curriculum. The children really embraced the changes to the new KS1 and KS2 SATS – this showed their great resilience, strength in character and growth in their comfort zones. With the removal of levels the children are now assessed against age related expectation which was why we changed the way we share with you at the end of a year how they have progressed in their reports. The new report format includes information on effort and attainment of grades to help you get a wider view of their time in school. We know that Tibberton children are bright and eager to learn, they are therefore working above age related expectations. We as a school have worked extremely hard to write our own steps to mastery which ensure all children are challenged to be the best they can be. Behind the scenes our teaching staff have been working with other school to moderate our English and Maths, checking their judgements against others in the profession, locality and county. During these meetings we have received some extremely positive comments on both the quality and quantity of our writing – in fact we are very proud to be able to boast that we have become a good practice school for the Local authority for this.
Our teaching and learning is continually improving and developing. This remains a focus; We continually update Tibberton’s learning charter with national changes.
SATS with the changes this year to SATS it could have proved a difficult time for both the children and schools. Nationally in Year six, 53% of pupils reached expected standards in reading, writing and mathematics, at Tibberton however 89% of our children achieved age related or better in reading and 100% achieved age related or better in mathematics, writing and SPAG (grammar and punctuation tests) – This is absolutely fantastic we are sure you’ll agree? We were delighted by the results but then we received a telephone call from the local authority to congratulate us too, what a fabulous accolade! We have equally impressive results for year two with 72% of our children being at the expected or better than in Writing, 76% in reading and 83% in mathematics. Year two you really should be very proud of yourselves, we are. Year one also sat a phonics SAT this year and we are delighted to share with you that 88% of the class was graded as working at the expected or better than standard.
Team Tibberton has been in action again throughout the year competing in;- football, multisport’s, tennis, gymnastics, quick sticks hockey, cricket, tennis, cross country, high five netball, mountain biking, archery, rugby, rounder’s, panathalon, swimming and athletics. Your children are a joy to behold with a fabulous team spirit, massive amount of drive and determination to do well. It hasn’t always been about winning, although our trophy cabinet has been successful again this year we like to see but it’s also about wellbeing both physically and mentally, sportsmanship and pride. We had another fantastic healthy and fitness week, the children tried new sports and learnt about nutrition. This year we have also been awarded the Schools Games Bronze mark by Sainsbury’s for our achievements. Our afterschool sporting clubs are as popular as ever and frequently oversubscribed which is quite a testament in such a small school.
Tibberton governors have continued to be supportive and involved. We’ve had new governors join us bringing with them new strengths, knowledge and experience and we’ll be saying good bye to some too this summer. There has been a shuffle around in line with county and national guidelines for community and parent governors but still they play their part in helping us to educate your children, offering time to listen to readers, practise spellings, join in during our enrichment weeks, monitoring our school development plan and in the case of some governors odd jobs too!
This year we have once again had a team of playground leaders made up of Year fives. They introduce the children to different playground games, encourage children to join in and help to make our playground a happy and fair place to play during morning, afternoon and lunch breaks.
We are sure you’ll agree that our wrap around care is an excellent addition to the Tibberton CP School community. Breakfast club is a home from home place where the different age groups mix, eat, play and help each other before school. The increase of hours for our after school club due to demand is really going from strength to strength with it regularly being at capacity. The children love coming to both as it offers them opportunities to socialise and play with different children, play games, get outdoors when the weather allows and have some lovely down time in the safe confines of the school area.
When you come back after the summer if you haven’t already noticed please do have a look at the new surfaces under our trim trail and train, this has all been thanks to the PTFA and there super hard work raising money this year. They also applied for a big lottery grant which really boosted the funding pot and has helped us get work underway before the end of term. Tibberton’s PTFA really are a fantastic group and do a lot to support the school with treat stall, valentine disco, quiz night, parent’s panto and much much more. They are always looking to new people to join their merry bunch so why not get more involved next year and bring your expertise and ideas to the table. We are also very excited about the extension to the nursery building, this will be well on the way to competition come September.
Our marking and feedback policy has been updated throughout the year and ensures that there is a consistent approach across the school providing the children with their next steps. It also sets challenges for children to apply their new skills and opportunities for peer and self-assessment.
Last year we had violins for ten weeks in Year 3 & 4, this year we have enjoyed a woodwind instrument for whole class lessons. Mrs Horton joined the children for ten weeks of free instrument hire and lessons from Gloucestershire Music before a group of 10 children continued on with their clarinet lessons. We have enjoyed a group performance by the children during assembly and hope that as some children are continuing on again in September to have them play in one of our celebration assemblies so that we can share their talent with you. We have said goodbye to our guitar and keyboard peripatetic teacher for the time being but will be saying hello to Mr Mason with piano lessons this coming year which is very exciting, we’re looking forward to having the children who take these lessons show us how much they learn. Before you know it we’ll have enough musicians for a whole orchestra – now there’s a thought!
Now that brings us onto the triumph that is “Play in a week”. Hagbane’s Doom was a dark and mysterious tale which many of us might not be familiar with but when the children sang, danced and acted it was just brilliant. It takes a lot of hard work by everyone in school to get ready for this Tibberton tradition and it really shows. A huge thank you must also go to parents who source and provide suitable costumes so super quickly without much knowledge of what exactly the “Red Top and shorts” might make their child into. Another person we can’t forget is Mrs Rackliffe who offers her expertise to help the children rehearse their lines during the first few days. Play in a week is a fabulous tradition and long may it carry on. The community are wonderful at helping us enrich our curriculum, thank you to our church and library assistants who support us all year.
We participated in the Young voices concerts in Birmingham again this year with great success. It’s plenty of hard work which starts for the children by joining the choir and practising weekly from September and end with the fabulously long but highly worthy day out to Birmingham for the concert with 5000 other primary school children. The new pack with information for 2017’s concert arrived this week and will be giving Mrs Kitto all sorts of ideas for choir to practise come September!
Not only do our children love to participate in sports but our after school dance clubs are always a brilliant session. This year we have sent a troupe of dancers to Ribston hall dance festival in the spring & more dancers to Forest of Dean country dancing festival this summer term.
In Year Six, like a rite of passage we have sent our children to The Isle of Wight with our cluster schools from the GloWMaTCH. It’s such a character building week and one which children look forward to right the way through school. It also offers there teacher to spend some quality time building a relationship with the group which will carry on throughout the year. Stopping in Portsmouth on the way to see the Marie rose before heading onto the Red funnel ferry and travel to the Isle of Wight. They spent the week taking in all the sights and sounds of the Isle, working with new children and creating memories. When Friday comes round and they headed back to us in school they were just full of stories and tales of what an amazing time they had. Current year fives – it’s your turn next!
2016 meant it was the year for PGL again, Year three & four spent a weekend in Ross-on-Wye doing as much outdoor stuff as they could cram in! For many of the children it was their first time away from their families. We have added the photographs from the weekend to our website but the general consensus was Fan-bloomin-tastic!
And so we bring another year of Tibberton Community Primary to an end, this year has been no exception but each year it makes your heart swell with pride to think that another year group of children will move onto the next phase of their education and the future and we will welcome another fifteen children on our September intake. It’s good to be a Tibertonian.
Olivia Kelly and Amanda Horniman