Welcome to another new year. We hope that this year will be as successful as the last. As a Catholic school we are concerned about educating the whole child and although last year we had the best ever exam results in Year 6, we celebrated many other successes which all went to shape your children’s lives.
The importance of being stewards of God’s world and looking after His creation remains a key focus for our school. Each class studies a particular sustainable ‘doorway’: for example water, waste, energy. We had a bio-mass boiler installed at the beginning of last year and during this summer holiday an array of solar panels which all helps to reduce
English and Maths – we were obviously delighted by the extremely high results in end of key stage tests in both Y2 and Y6 and our 98% result in the Y1 phonics screening check was well above the national average, but most important is the teacher assessment results which focus on the day to day work of your child rather than the score achieved in a single test at the end of the year.
In science we achieved the Primary Science Quality Mark in March; the huge variety of children’s experiences in the subject was commented on by the assessor in the feedback; from the huge variety of investigations they take part in to the range of science trips organised. Our science careers day when scientist parents talked to children about their experiences was a highlight.
Another success was the outstanding grade we achieved last year in all areas of Religious Education. Ten percent of the curriculum is devoted to RE and although the focus is mainly on learning about our own faith, we study other faiths to quite a depth. In this way we can encourage tolerance and understanding so that children will have a greater understanding of their peers’ lives especially as they move on to secondary school where other children may have different value judgements. To this end we make a point of visiting Maidenhead’s Mosque, Gurdwara and Synagogue as well as the beautiful Hindu temple in Neasden. Children’s spiritual and moral development is at the heart of religious learning and we try to ensure that the quality of worship is high. This year we aim to develop our outside space to include an area for prayer and worship.
In PE we enter many competitions and tournaments to give the pupils opportunities to develop physical skills, represent the school and develop good attitudes to sportsmanship. Last year we took part in the following competitions/festivals: hockey, tag rugby, tennis, football, netball, cricket, athletics, dance, orienteering, cross country, fencing and bench ball. No wonder we were awarded the Sports Mark Gold last year.
Our music curriculum is outstanding. We are so lucky to have Mrs Arnold who teaches music to all. At one time she was even the music adviser for the borough. Over the last ten years she has produced large scale productions, helping your child ‘find their voice’. Those of you who attended African Jigsaw in July will have witnessed first-hand this amazing production and the confidence displayed by the pupils in Years 4, 5 and 6.country, fencing and bench ball. No wonder we were awarded the Sports Mark Gold last year.
The school was so proud when Mrs Rodrigues was awarded Language Teacher of the Year. The children learn Latin, Japanese, Spanish and French in their journey through the school by way of a range of exciting and engaging activities. We also offer a range of after school language clubs-even Mandarin.
The PTA, who continue to work cheerfully and tirelessly to provide those extra resources that make our school unique, are a real asset and the school would be a poorer place without them in so many ways. We could not maintain the swimming pool without their contribution and how many schools have their own pirate ship? They raise around £20,000 every year-an amazing amount. Don’t forget the PTA is not an exclusive club – all parents and carers are welcome to get involved.
We are lucky to have Fr Pepe who is so willing to visit the school and the children and is keen to build a relationship with them once they leave Y6. He is a personal support to many of our staff and parents.
Our school governors are a most committed group who act as a critical friend to ensure your child’s education is the best it can be. Meetings can often run late into the evening and a considerable amount of training is expected by all members of our governing body to ensure that they provide challenge and rigour to the school.
Finally, I would like to mention the fact that all of these wonderful activities and results would not be possible without our dedicated, hardworking staff, who give their all to the school because they love their pupils. Our aim is for all St Edmund Campion pupils to develop their talents so they will be happy, well rounded, well-educated individuals who are able to maintain good relationships with adults and other children, both now and in the future.
P A Opalko