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Learn Love Laugh Live LIST OF CONTENTS • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • •

Introduction Letter from the Chair of Governors Governing Body of Groes Primary School Staff Vision & Aims of the School General Welfare of Pupils Admissions School Uniform Attendance School Hours Term Holidays 2011/12 Rules and Discipline The School Curriculum Children with Additional Learning Needs After School Clubs Homework School Council Parents and the School Charging and Remissions Lunchtime Arrangements Parent Teacher Association Toddler Group Car Parking Equal Opportunities Complaints Procedure Advice to Parents Key Stage Results Leave of Absence for Annual Holidays


GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES INTRODUCTION The aim of this booklet is to give parents information about the school. The information is correct at the time of printing in the Autumn Term 2011. School policies are available on our website. The school is situated at the Eastern end of Port Talbot and was built in 1973. It is surrounded by a hard playing area and the adjacent playing fields are shared with Dyffryn Comprehensive School. After a fire in November 2001, major refurbishment took place involving the rebuilding and redesign of the infant part of the school.


Mrs L Jefford Groes Primary School Bertha Road Margam Port Talbot SA13 2AW Tel: 01639 886541 Email:


Councillor J Rogers B.E.M. J.P. 6 Prince Street Margam Port Talbot


GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES A Letter from the Chair of Governors I am delighted on behalf of the Governing Body, to welcome you and your family to Groes Primary School. This handbook is intended as a guide to the school and we hope you find is useful. The Governing Body have always given full support to the professional and dedicated staff at Groes, especially during periods of great educational change. We are aware, as Governors of the increasing powers that are being put into our hands, yet we have always sought and will continue to seek the experience and expertise of the Staff before exercising this power. The Governors meet on a termly basis, and will be glad to hear of any suggestions that you may have that are relevant to our responsibilities. Yours sincerely

J. Rogers Chairman of Governors


LEA Representatives

Community Governors

Councillor J Rogers B.E.M. J.P. Mr N Smith Mrs L Donovan

Mrs A Harvey Mr K Edger Mr C Walters

Parent Governors Mrs L Comer Mrs C Tossell Mr M Tambini Mr I Mainwaring

Non Teaching Governor Mrs C Edwards Teaching Governor Vacancy


Clerk to Governors

Mrs L Jefford

Mrs L Gaunt



Who works at Groes Primary? Administration Officer Lesley Gaunt Music Alison James

Lunchtime Supervisors Susan Bodenham Irene McKenna Annette Bartle

Caretaker Rod Evans

Playgroup Nicola Manley Lollipop Lady Susan Bodenham

Cleaning Staff Marlene Plested Tina Needs

Teaching Staff Louise Jefford (Headteacher) Kate Key (Deputy Headteacher) Louise Evans Lisa Francis Ceri Scourfield Jenny Tomkins Emma Wassall Paul Williams

Kitchen Staff Melanie Eley Tracey Phillips Jordannah Eley

Teaching Assistants Dee Evans Yvonne Morgan Claire Edwards Kyle Jones Lisa Comer Paula James Melissa Talbot

School Bursar Lynne Williams Music Peripatetic Alison James Welsh Peripatetic Neris Jones

Breakfast Club Melanie Eley Annetee Bartle Lisa Comer Anneli Rowland


GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES OUR VISION FOR THE SCHOOL The Governing Body and staff at Groes invited stakeholders to contribute to the vision of our school. We are committed to this vision and it underpins everything we develop within the school and forms the focus for our improvements.

OUR VISION We will cherish and inspire every child to sparkle and shine in their own right, and provide them with skills for life in order to help them fulfil their dreams and aspirations. Our family ethos will provide a love of learning, plenty of laughter and an abundance of love.

In order to achieve our vision we aim to :• Create purposeful experiences that will challenge and inspire individuals to achieve personal success and recognise their own values and self worth. • Provide a vibrant, and high quality resource ensuring that children are safe, secure and have the desire to learn. • Offer the school and its partners a communication and support network where all come together to share opportunities and a sense of pride in their locality. • Ensure children have a love of learning where they remain central to a stimulating, innovative and varied curriculum. • Incorporate a trusting, nurturing environment that is open and honest where children will be encouraged to be respectful and responsible and motivated to learn. • Work together, proudly, towards a common goal.

Learn, Love, Laugh, Live


GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES GENERAL WELFARE OF PUPILS How do I know my child is safe and cared for? Everyone who is in contact with our pupils have a duty of care to the children and also takes a part in the responsibility of their overall progress and well-being. Should any significant problems or changes occur at home that might affect progress or behaviour in school, you are asked to inform the class teacher or Headteacher so that pupils can be monitored more closely to pre-empt any difficulties. Likewise, if a child appears to be unhappy in school, or is having difficulties of any kind, it is important that there is good home-school communication so that appropriate steps are taken to remedy them. Child Protection & Looked After Children The Headteacher is the designated teacher for Child Protection and also has the responsibility for children who are looked after by the authority. If any person has a concern for any child within the school, their concerns are reported to the Headteacher or the Deputy Headteacher. Premises The main hall separates the junior and Infant departments and both sides of the building have toilet facilities that are suitable to each age group. Both male and female toilets are clearly labelled. The first aid room accommodates the disabled toilet, a shower and a changing bed. All areas with toilet facilities are cleaned on a daily basis.

What if my child is ill in school? When a pupil is taken ill during the day, every effort is made to contact the parent. Where this fails, the responsible adult whose name is recorded at school by the parent is contacted. It is essential therefore, that these numbers are kept up to date.

Some children need to take medication during the school day. If so, parents are requested to complete a Request of Administration of medicine at school form from the office before any medication can be administered. What if my child needs medical treatment? In the case of a minor accident, first aid is administered in school. All responsible adults in the school have received first aid training and there is an appointed trained First Aider in the school. Should further medical attention be needed then the procedure for parental contact will be followed. Should an accident occur of a more serious nature then the following procedure will apply:1. Immediate first aid be administered at the school 6

GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES 2. Parent contacted and recommended that the pupil is either taken to their own G.P. or the nearest hospital, as appropriate. 3. If parents of other named adults are not available, then the ambulance will be called. 4. Where a child needs immediate transportation, a member of staff will accompany the child to the hospital to minimise distress and will remain with the pupil until the parent arrives.

Is my child’s health checked? The school medical and dental officers visit the school annually, and make their own clinical notes. Eye/hearing/speech tests are administered by medical staff if requested by the Headteacher after parental consultation. The school is also committed to the Healthy Schools initiative. The school also has close links with both the Education Welfare Service and the LEAs Psychology Service.

Is the school a safe environment for my child? Building Health and safety is everyone’s responsibility. Any hazards are reported to a member of staff and are dealt with as soon as possible. Any change that needs to be made to the school as a result of any investigation is done through local education authority procedures, advice and guidance. Fire Fire drills take place once a term and all electrical equipment is tested annually. Risk assessments and evacuation procedures are reviewed annually. CRBs All persons that work with the children in our school can only do so with an enhanced criminal records bureau check. Security The school has a security pad at the entrance to the school and all visitors report to the main entrance. There are security locks on all the doors, and pupils are told not top open any doors to people they do not know. Entry for parents and visitors is via the main entrance, and they should report to the school office to sign the visitor’s book. Playground Safety The playground gates have signs reminding visitors that gates are to be kept closed and at times some gates are locked for the safety of the children. Parents are asked to be mindful of other pupils. Any problems must be resolved through the teaching staff. Parents must not confront other parents or reprimand other children on the school premises. Parents meeting children from the playground at break times or lunchtimes must go to the office. End of day handing over safety At the end of each day, all our younger pupils are handed over to their families. Parents/careers must inform the class teacher of who will be collecting their children from school. Children will be kept in school until a 7

GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES member of their family comes to take them home. Parents / carers of older pupils who wish their child to walk home must provide the school with written consent. Dogs are not allowed onto school premises. No smoking is permitted on the school premises. ADMISSIONS How do I apply for my child to start at the school? An Admissions Application Form needs to be completed and sent to the Authority prior to your child becoming 3 years old. These forms are available from the authority or you can collect one from the school. Admission arrangements will be advised in writing. Children are admitted to our Nursery as soon as possible after their 3rd birthday. Families are invited to visit the school and spend time with staff who will then arrange a suitable admission schedule. Some children take longer than others to settle, but their progress is closely monitored by the staff, and families are kept fully informed of the developments of their children. All parents of pupils due to transfer from nursery class to reception class at the end of the academic year will be sent an Admissions Application Form by the Authority during the Autumn Term. They will then be notified in writing early Spring Term. SCHOOL UNIFORM What will my child wear to school? While it is not compulsory for Primary school pupils we encourage all our children to wear uniform. Burgundy sweatshirt/cardigan with school logo Pale Blue polo shirt Grey trousers / skirt / pinafore Black shoes You can purchase the uniform from the ‘Image’ shop in the Aberafan shopping centre. Fleeces and rain jackets are also available.

PE Kit - plain white T shirts and black shorts. These can be purchased from large supermarkets and are usually very reasonable. Trainers are needed for outside games 8

GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES Book bags with the school logo, can be purchased from the school. No jewellery is permitted. Children can wear a wristwatch and those who have pierced ears may wear small stud earrings though they will need to remove them for physical activities. Otherwise, earrings will be covered with a plaster.

ATTENDANCE What if my child doesn’t attend school? All schools are required to distinguish in their attendance registers between authorised and unauthorised absences of pupils of compulsory school age. If your child is ill we ask you to contact the school on the first day of their absence. This information is noted and recorded on the school register. You are able to take your child out of school for a maximum of 10 days within a year for a holiday though this is not advised as they miss so much learning. 1 day absence equates to 5 hours of teaching time and it soon mounts up. Children find it difficult to catch up on missed teaching time. If you do choose to take your child out of school for a holiday we ask you to request this in writing. The educational welfare officer (EWO) works closely with the school in monitoring our attendance levels. Pupils whose attendance falls below 90% are monitored and the EWO will support these families. There is a regular whole school celebration whereby pupils are rewarded for good attendance. Pupils Attendance Record 2010/11 Group Session Summary Period:

01/09/2010 AM to 21/07/2011 PM


Whole School

Sessions Attendances Authorised absences Unauthorised absences Possible Attendance Including Approved Educational Activity Lates before reg closed Lates after reg closed Unexplained absences


53251 3633 411 57295

92.9 6.3 0.7

0 1001 15 0

0.0 1.8 0.0 0.0


GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES SCHOOL HOURS What are the times of the school sessions? The school hours are: 8.50 a.m. – 12.00 noon 1.00 p.m. – 3.20 p.m. Morning Nursery session runs from 8.50 – 11.20 a.m. Afternoon Nursery session runs from 12.50 – 3.20 p.m. In case of wet weather the children will be allowed into school from 8.40 a.m. The school office is open from 8.50 a.m. – 3.20 p.m. daily. The total amount of time spent on teaching during the week including Religious Education but excluding Daily Worship, registration and breaks is 23.5 hours. BREAKFAST CLUB Can my child have breakfast in school? Breakfast club runs from 8.10 a.m. – 8.40 a.m. each morning where the children can have breakfast before school starts and is served until 8.30 a.m. The club is optional, free and all children can attend. The children have a choice of cereals, toast and a drink. Children are supervised in the hall and on the playground after they have eaten breakfast.



Autumn Term 2011

Begins Half Term

Friday 2 September Monday 24 October


Friday 23 December Friday 28 October


Friday 30 March Friday 17 February


Friday 20 July Friday 8 June

Spring Term 2012

Begins Half Term

Monday 9 January Monday 13 February

Summer Term 2012

Begins Half Term

Monday 16April Monday 4 June

All schools will be closed on Monday 7 May 2012. INSET days will be arranged by the school during the school academic year.


GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES RULES AND DISCIPLINE What is the school behaviour policy? Every community needs clear, enforceable rules in order to protect people and property and to ensure an efficient organisation. Our school rules are kept to a minimum and are based on consideration and respect for others and their property. The school operates an Assertive Discipline policy, whereby children are encouraged to behave in a responsible way and are rewarded accordingly. This is done on a class basis. The Assertive Discip;ine policy and the Anti-bullying policy are both available on the school website. The children are expected to show a caring, responsible attitude in all they do. If a pupil shows unacceptable behaviour they will be disciplined by staff. In more serious cases the parents of the pupil will be informed in order to work together to maintain an acceptable standard of behaviour. If exclusion is necessary the parents, Governors and LEA will be informed. Bullying is not tolerated and issues that are brought to our attention are dealt with seriously. In order to reinforce the acceptable standards of behaviour a Merit Award Assembly takes place every week, where pupil’s achievements are recognised by the class teachers. They are given for a variety of reasons e.g. academic work, good behaviour etc.

THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM What will my child learn at school? Pupils in all age groups pursue a wide curriculum covering many areas of development. Each child’s needs and abilities are considered and care is taken to ensure at all times that the needs of the children are met. Pupils are taught in English and Welsh is taught as a second language.

Foundation Phase Children from age 3 – 7 are taught within the year groups known as Foundation Phase; Nursery, Reception, Year 1 and Year 2. Foundation Phase has 7 areas of learning:• Language, Literacy and Communication Skills • Personal and Social Development • Mathematical Development • Knowledge and Understanding of the World • Physical Development • Creative Development • Welsh Language Development



Key Stage 2 Children from age 7 – 11 are taught the National Curriculum known as Key Stage 2; Years 3, 4, 5 and 6. After Year 6 they move on to Dyffryn Comprehensive School and enter into Key Stage 3 at Year 7. The National Curriculum consists of: • English • Maths • Science • Information Communication Technology (ICT) • Welsh • Design and Technology (DT) • Physical Development (PE) • Religious Education (RE) • Music • Art • History • Geography The work planned for children through both Foundation Phase and Key Stage 2 is organised according to the schools agreed policies. During the school years the children will experience a wide range of teaching and learning styles, with as many first hand experiences as possible. Visiting teachers also provide extra expertise through the Peripatetic Music and Welsh Services. At school Welsh is taught as a second language throughout Foundation Phase and KS2. We endeavour to promote our language and culture by creating an appropriate atmosphere with the use of displays, signs and pupils’ work. Sex Education The school’s programme of Sex Education is part of our broad based social education. It is based on the Local Authority’s Policy, and is taught in a sympathetic and sensitive manner. Older pupils will receive information regarding the implications of changes at puberty. Parents may view our policy statement and they have the right to withdraw their children from Sex Education should they wish. Religious Education Moral and Religious Education is a compulsory element within the Curriculum and is taught in accordance with the Authority’s agreed syllabus. Parents have the right to withdraw their children from R,E, provision in the school as well as assemblies. 13


CHILDREN WITH ADDITIONAL LEARNING NEEDS What if my child needs extra support? Consideration of children’s Special Educational Needs forms an important part of school life. All children are special and all deserve and need the help and support that we can give them. The co-operation of parents is actively sought and encouraged where pupils are experiencing difficulties. We will make extra time available for you to come and discuss ways in which you can give your child extra help. Using their professional experience the class teacher along with the Special Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) will produce and adopt Individual Education Programmes to monitor the progress of children who are placed on our Special Needs Register as outlined in the Special Needs Code of Practice. For all children with special needs including those pupils with statements for SEN, the school closely follows the principles, practices and procedures outlined in the Code of Practice which is a guide for identification and assessment of individual pupil special need requirements. We have excellent links with outside agencies that provide specific expertise, skills and support by recommending helpful strategies for intervention for those children on the SEN register. All pupils with Special Needs including those with a statement have access to the curriculum at a level that is appropriate. Work is carefully planned and differentiated according to each pupil. The SENCO offers advice and works in close partnership with class teachers. The writing of and working with I.E.P.s is in conjunction with class teachers and SENCo. Pupils with disabilities As part of our inclusion policy children with disabilities are given opportunities and included into school life as fully as possible. As part of the PSE curriculum all children are made fully aware of what disability means. At Groes there is ramp access into the school and the building is on one level. The doors are all wheelchair accessible. Support is given when necessary to enable all children to access all parts of the curriculum. Parent of pupils with a disability should arrange a meeting with the Headteacher and the additional learning needs co-ordinator. The Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) 1995 defines a disabled person as one who has ‘a physical or mental impairment which has a substantial and long term adverse effect on a person’s ability to carry out normal day to day activities’. This would include, for example sensory impairments affecting sight and hearing, learning disabilities, severe disfigurements and progressive conditions where impairments are likely to become substantial. 14


SPORT AND AFTER SCHOOL CLUBS What else does the school offer out of school hours? In addition to the statutory curriculum for Foundation Phase and KS2 the school offers as many after school clubs, some of which are sports. The school has access to Dyffryn Comprehensive School playing fields for football, rugby and athletics and we enter as many inter schools sporting events as possible. After school clubs vary according to the time of year and pupil interest. Clubs that have been available include; football, rugby, cricket, gymnsatics, knitting, computer, cookery, forest schools, able and talented, homework. After School Child Care – “Bizz ‘Z’ Kidz” There is also a child care club which runs from 3.20 – 5.15p.m. every day of the week. There is a small charge for this club as it is not organised by the school staff. The children have time to relax, play games and have drinks and snacks.

HOMEWORK Will my child get homework? At Groes we want our pupils to enjoy showing you at home what they have been learning in school. Therefore, we refer to homework as “Love to Learn”. Children are encouraged to read at home every night and we would like you to talk with your children about what they have been learning in school. Children are encouraged to practice skills at home and make efforts to extend their learning. The homework policy is reviewed annually and is also available on the school website.

SCHOOL COUNCIL Will my child have ‘a voice’ within the school? Children can be elected as school councillors, eco councillors and prefects. These pupils then meet regularly to discuss school issues that have been discussed within classrooms.



PARENTS AND THE SCHOOL How can I help? The partnership between school and home is of paramount importance, and parents are always welcome to visit the school. We follow an open door policy. If you wish to see a class teacher then we will ensure that an appointment is made as soon as possible. If you come in to school on a regular basis and offer to help with groups of children you will be asked to complete a CRB check before you start. Every effort is made to inform you of what is going on in school through regular letters, newsletters and class newsletters. At the beginning of the year parents and children(where appropriate) are asked to sign a home school agreement which commits to a home school partnership. This agreement focuses on extending the learning at home, attendance, behaviour and punctuality. CHARGING AND REMISSIONS Will I have to pay for anything? The organising or school trips and activities play an important part in the education of our pupils. Many such trips are organised during the year in order to support the work that the children do in the classroom. Parents are sometimes asked for a donation in order for the school to provide these valuable experiences for the children. LUNCHTIME ARRANGEMENTS What will my child do for lunch? A school lunch is provided to those who want one; the current cost of school meals is £9.75 per week (£1.95 a day). Dinner money should be paid each Monday for that week. Please put the money in an envelope with your child’s name, class and amount of money that is inside the envelope. Dinners can also be paid for by cheque, and these should be made payable to ‘NPTCBC’. A weekly menu is on display at the front of the school and parents/carers may decide what days they would like their child to have school lunch. Provision is also made for children to bring packed lunches if they so wish. We do not allow any glass bottles or containers for safety reasons. Families that are entitled to free school meals need to complete an application form before they can be provided free of charge. These forms are available from the school office. If you wish to take your child home for lunch you will need to notify the school beforehand.


GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES PARENT TEACHERS ASSOCATION How can I get involved in helping the school? The PTA is an organisation in the school and is of great benefit to all concerned. The committee holds regular meetings throughout the year where events are organised. Money raised through these events is used to purchase extra luxuries for the children. TODDLER GROUP How can I get my toddler involved in the school life? Families are encouraged to bring pre-school children to our toddler group session that takes place every Tuesday morning at the School hall. This is an ideal opportunity for children to experience our school in readiness for entry into our Nursery. It provides them with the chance to mix with other children of their own age in a school environment. It also provides a chance for parents to share time together, and to become familiar with the expectations that we have of children when they are fully admitted to school. There is a minimal charge to cover the cost of refreshments and the group is open to all preschool age children. It must be pointed out however, that parents must be responsible for their own children whilst on the school premises.

CAR PARKING Where do I park at the school? The school car park is for Staff use only. Taxi firms that gain permission from the school may park in the bay outside the school gates, though the driver must remain in the car at all times. No other vehicles should be parked in this bay. The entrance to the school should be kept clear especially when children are coming into and leaving school. We would ask that if you bring a car to school either to collect or to bring your child to school, that you park it safely and legally. Regular checks are made by the police and we have been informed by them that illegally parked cars will be booked. Vehicles are not permitted to enter the school gates during the times displayed on the school gates. Arrangements can be made with the school for disabled drivers bringing and collecting pupils to and from school. EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES Our school policy for Equal Opportunities addresses every aspect of our work at Groes. All achievements are celebrated and all children and adults are expected to have respect and tolerance in all areas of school life. This includes respect for others age, ability, race, culture, religion and opinion.


GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE (Section 23 Education Reform Act 1988) The Local Education Authority has made arrangements under the above Act to receive complaints about all its maintained schools. For further information regarding the complaints procedure please contact the school. If there are any concerns however, parents are asked to contact the class teacher, Headteacher or parent Governor, in the first instance. ADVICE TO PARENTS Often parents, children and other members of the public would like schools to know their views. Sometimes there are meetings when this is possible. On other occasions a personal comment is more appropriate. Communication, written or spoken, is valued as part of the partnership between home and school and community. Co-operation between parents/carers, staff, community and governors leads to a shared sense of purpose and a good atmosphere for our school. Should I pay a compliment? Certainly. Staff at the school are always pleased to learn that things have gone well and are appreciated. Should I tell them my concerns? Definitely. All members of staff want to know as soon as possible if something concerns you or your child. They can then investigate and give you a response. If need be, they can also take steps to remedy the situation. Misunderstandings can be cleared up. Everyone benefits from the speedy resolution of difficulties and from suggestions for improvement. Should I complain? Yes – if you believe that something is seriously wrong. Your view can then be considered and an investigation can establish whether there is something wrong which needs to be corrected. The school’s response will be based on the governors’ agreed policy and will seek to be fair to all concerned. Writing down your complaint helps to clarify exactly what you are complaining about. Whom do I contact? That depends on the particular situation. Often the teacher is able to deal with the matter. More serious problems should be referred to the Headteacher or a designated senior member of staff. Mutual courtesy is to be expected and ensures that things go smoothly. There should always be discussion in the hope of solving difficulties informally. Most problems are solved in this way. A complaint about the Headteacher goes to the chairperson of governors. 18

GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES Complaints about the chairperson of governors should be referred to the vice chair and complaints about the whole governing body can be referred to the LEA complaints officer. SCHOOL RESULTS See charts over page for KS 1 and KS 2






GROES PRIMARY SCHOOL YSGOL GYNRADD GROES Dear Parents / Guardian Holidays in Term Time All applications for holidays in term time will be considered on an individual basis. The maximum number of days holiday which can be taken in term time is ten days between 1 January and 31 December in any one year. When considering family holidays consider the effect the absence from school may have on your child’s development. Homework will not be provided for children whilst on holidays taken in term time as they would not have covered the work in class. The make an application please fill in the form below and send it to school two weeks before the date of your holiday. Extra forms are available from school. Yours sincerely

L Jefford Headteacher

Application for Leave of Absent for Annual Holidays I request that …………………………………………………….. (Name of child) Be granted leave of absence from ……………………………………………… (name of school) From ………………………………………….. To …………………………………….. dates In order to go on Annual holiday.

Signed ………………………………………………………………………. Parent/guardian Date ……………………………………………..


Groes Primary Prospectus 11 12  

Groes Primary School Prospectus

Groes Primary Prospectus 11 12  

Groes Primary School Prospectus