The Governing Body of Short Wood Primary is pleased to be able to report on yet another busy and successful year. We are extremely fortunate to have a wealth of experience, skills and expertise amongst our team who have worked hard to hold the school to account on behalf of the pupils, parents and the community.
There have been significant challenges this year with a new assessment process, new national curriculum and new SATs to name but three. We appreciate the tremendous efforts put in by all staff who have worked so hard to ensure that our children were given the best possible chance to achieve.
How do school leaders and Governors promote school improvement?
Improving the outcomes for our children is a key priority for all school leaders and Governors. We strive to provide the best possible opportunities to allow all children to succeed.
Governors take an active role in liaising with curriculum co-ordinators to ensure that their knowledge of the curriculum and how it is taught at Short Wood is firmly understood. Detailed feedback is received from individual Governors at the termly meetings. The school were very proud to achieve the Artsmark Platinum over the course of the year reflecting our commitment to participating in extra ordinary art and culture.
The Governors also monitor and challenge our School Development Plan (which is a three year plan of improvement). At the end of the summer term the Governors worked with the School Leadership team and our Local Authority School Improvement Partners to undertake a full review of our Development Plan and have created a new set of aims and objectives for a new plan for the new academic year.
- Raising standards and accelerating the progress made by all children across the curriculum
- Improving the wellbeing and resilience of our pupils
- Ensuring a high quality of teaching and learning experiences
- Our new plan will be written during the Autumn term of 2017.
The Governors regularly meet with the staff undertaking book scrutinies, have meetings with the children and undertake learning walks. These have all contributed to the rigorous monitoring of the school.
Developing the ICT resources for teaching and learning has been a focus for the Governing body. Governors have had a key role in ensuring the services we receive to enable the use of ICT are robust enough and, where required, improvements are implemented ensuring value for money.
How do we make sure our pupils are healthy, safe and well supported?
The children’s safety and wellbeing underpins all the considerations and decisions made by the Governing Body.
We are very pleased to confirm that the school once again has been awarded the Sainsbury’ School Games Mark Gold for our commitment, engagement and delivery of competitive school sports. The school was also awarded an Energise award for the range of physical activities both within school and in the community. There was recognition of the importance placed on PE and the ‘positive impact PE has had on the health, wellbeing and academic achievement of our young people’.
Many of our school teams were successful this year in local competitions but we also focus on good sportsmanship and the fun of taking part. The school also undertakes a wide range of outdoor education in the form of Forest School and a wide range of activities with Arthog Outreach e.g. canoeing, rock climbing, bush craft and lots of others. The children build resilience, problem solving, team work skills as well as having lots of fun.
During the summer term the school introduced a picnic lunch menu to other school meal provision. This is providing an additional healthy meal choice for all the children.
All the school staff and Governors are fully up to date with their safeguarding training. We have four fully trained Designated Safeguarding Leads who regularly attend Local Authority training and updates.
The school has implemented a new on line recording system for safeguarding this year which is proving to be very useful.
The school has provided e safety education for pupils and parents this year and remains vigilant on protecting pupils and highlighting some of the dangers of some on line sites.
The schools anti bullying policy continues to be reviewed annually by the School Council members, teachers and a Link Governor. All children are given the opportunity in class to discuss this policy as it is re-launched each year.
Following our Ofsted inspection in March 2015 which stated that our spiritual, moral, social and cultural was outstanding; we continue as the Governing Body to ensure that we maintain that high standard.
In conversations with pupils Governors have confidence that children feel safe and happy at Short Wood. Our school has a robust vetting procedure of adults and visitors to school this is overseen by the Chair of Governors at regular intervals.
The Governing body have played a full and active part in the recruitment process to ensure we secure the best possible teaching and support staff in school. We had five new teachers to the school at the beginning of September 2015, four of these have completed the year and are staying into the next academic year.
The Accelerated Learning Teachers have remained a successful addition to each Key Stage working in partnership to provide focussed small group teaching.
As in previous years, the Governing Body has appointed an external adviser to act as consultant during head teacher appraisal process. This process ensures that the Governors set realistic yet rigorous targets for the head teacher. These targets have been closely monitored and we are pleased that they have been translated into positive outcomes for the children.
We are trying to improve:
Teaching and Learning – this is always of high importance as we are constantly aiming to raise standards and provide the best possible education. We want to make sure that all pupils learning is at a good pace and it is consistent across school. The children are aware of what is expected of them in every lesson.
We are also working hard to challenge our more able children to provide opportunities to excel in a wide range of subjects.
Our Committee Structure
We now have two full Governors meetings per term. At the first meeting we set a full and varied action plan for the term. This enables Governors to target specific areas to review and challenge. We undertake training with the Local Authority to make sure we have the appropriate skills to support the drive for continued school improvement.
This year we have said “Goodbye” to three Governors and wish to thank them for their contribution and dedication to the school and the role of Governor.
We have also welcomed a new Governor to the team and we look forward to her contribution during her term of office.
The Governors nominate a small team of Governors with the appropriate skills and experience to monitor our school budget and make strategic financial decisions. We monitor the budget carefully and consider thoroughly any proposals in light of the aims and objectives of the school. We are also proactive in supporting the school with any bids for specific projects.
Details of the Pupil Premium expenditure and the Sports and PE funding can be found on the school website.
As school Governors we are always aware that a great deal of our work goes on out of sight of the public view. Our team is a mixture of appointed and elected individuals with a wide range of skills and expertise to bring to the role. We all have on collective aim to see all the children at Short Wood grow and develop into happy, well rounded citizens who are keen to work hard and succeed.
We know as parents you all feel the same. We would like to record our thanks to your for supporting both your children and the school over the last school year.