Since September 1989 all maintained schools in the country have been required to teach the subjects described in the National Curriculum. For primary children this consists of the following subjects: English, Mathematics, Science, (the ‘core subjects’) Art, Geography, History, Music, Physical Education, Design and Technology, Religious Education and Computer Science. In addition, our school teaches Personal, Social, Health, and Citizenship education (PSHCE) as well as Swimming and French.
All children work on the same curriculum, but can progress at their own speed, through differentiation. Our Teaching Assistants help the teaching staff – particularly with the delivery of Special Education Needs programmes.
Children are continuously assessed to ensure they are reaching their potential, through both teacher assessment and formal testing. In year 6 the pupils sit the government national tests known as SATs.
There are age related expectations for all subjects. It is expected that the ‘average’ child will be working within these expectations and we will endeavour to challenge many to work beyond. Our key aim is to ensure that all children make good progress against their own personal benchmark from the end of KS1.
The philosophy, approach and requirements as set out in Hertfordshire’s policy statements have been adopted for the school. Our own policy documents are regularly reviewed and updated by the staff and Governing Body.
Sex and Relationships Education forms part of our PSHCE programme in all year groups. Pupils are encouraged to give due regard to moral considerations and the value of family life. They are also taught to understand that families come in many different forms. At this school we believe strongly in inclusion for all. We respect the similarities and differences of all the members of our school and the wider community.
Our collective worship and religious education are non-denominational in character. Religious Education is given in accordance with the Hertfordshire Agreed Syllabus and is consistent with the requirements of the Education Reform Act, 1988. Parents may withdraw their children from the arrangements for worship and religious education, but these requests must be made to the Headteacher in writing.
We endeavour to offer an engaging and enriching curriculum which extends outside of the confines of the classroom, supported by our CHILL OUT sessions (Cunningham Hill Independent Learning for Life Outdoors). In partnership with Highfield Park, we take all children to engage in activities and sessions in an outdoor setting on a regular basis. As a school, we strongly believe that these enrichment activities add and improve learning for children, both academically and socially.
All policies are available on request from the school office. Many are available to view on the school Web-site.
We believe that home and school should work closely together developing literacy, mathematics and other skills so that they become part of everyday life, and are not simply seen as something taught by the teacher at school. We think that homework can help to maintain pupils’ enthusiasm for learning, can reinforce work carried out and can develop independent learning, as well as allowing parents to take an active role in children’s learning. However, we also value the importance of families having the time to do activities together outside of school and so we don’t give children homework that has to be completed over weekends and none is given for holidays, unless it is of a voluntary nature.
At present children in years 3 and 4 will have 1.5 hours of homework a week, and years 5 and 6 will spend an average of 30 minutes a day on homework.
Each child will have a homework book which will provide a grid with a range of activities for children to choose from each half term. The children will be informed how many activities will need to be completed. There are other core homework tasks of reading each night and mental maths activities eg. Tables practice to be carried out 3 times a week. Parents are asked to sign at the end of each activity and the homework books are then handed in to the teacher for marking. It may be appropriate for some children to spend more time focusing on the core homework tasks to help boost their learning and this will be agreed with parents on an individual basis. The school’s Homework Policy, based on government guidelines, is available from the Headteacher on request or may be downloaded from the school’s website.