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ST FRANCIS CATHOLIC PRIMARY SCHOOL

School Prospectus

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The Prayer of St Francis Lord, make me an instrument of your peace. Where there is hatred, let me sow love. Where there is injury, pardon. Where there is doubt, faith. Where there is despair, hope. Where there is darkness, light. Where there is sadness, joy. O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek to be consoled, as to console; to be understood, as to understand; to be loved, as to love. For it is in giving that we receive. It is in pardoning that we are pardoned, and it is in dying that we are born to Eternal Life. Amen.

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t Francis Catholic Primary School Welcomes you

On behalf of the school community, I would like to warmly welcome you to our happy and friendly school. With this prospectus we hope to give you an indication of what we are able to offer to your child and you. We would like to give you a sense of our school and the Christian values which underpin what we seek to achieve. We are very proud of our achievements from all parts of our community, which is involves our Governors, Staff, PSFA and children. Starting nursery school or school is a very big step for children. At St Francis Catholic Primary School we will do all that we can to try to ensure that your child feels happy and secure in all aspects of school life. We believe that the key to success is a strong partnership between parents and school to give children them confidence to try for themselves. Under the requirements of the National Curriculum we will endeavour to give each children a broad and balanced education, plus give them access to a range of extended opportunities which will support individual development. There are clear procedures and policies in place throughout the nursery and school, which focus both on academic achievement and personal success, alongside physical, spiritual, social and moral development. The school’s extended services include After School Club, Chums carer and toddler groups, drop-in advice sessions with our Parent Support Advisor, afterschool clubs and outside sports agencies. I am extremely proud to lead a school with such a committed and hard working staff and governing body, with positive Church links and an active and supportive PSFA. Should you make the important decision for your child to join our school, we know that you and your family will soon feel very much at home with us. You are welcome to make an appointment to tour the school and see for yourself what we can offer your child

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t Francis Nursery

At St Francis Nursery we offer free daily morning sessions of exciting play based learning experiences each week. Nursery places are offered to 26 children from the age of 3. Our Early Years Foundation team is enthusiastic, experienced and consists of qualified teachers , nursery nurses and assistants. Your child will be supported by all staff and will also be allocated a key worker to support children and families. We encourage an open door policy with regular opportunities to be involved in your child experiences.

Communication Parents receive regular newsletters about the life of the school and information about what their children are learning.

Nursery Induction At St Francis induction is planned carefully to ensure the smoothest start for both children and carers. We begin with meetings for carers and then visits to individual homes to see children in their everyday environment. Children are then invited to a taster session to meet the team and their peers.

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The Curriculum for the Foundation Stage is structured into seven areas of learning, all of which have their own goals. Children have free access to learning areas both inside and outside. We realise that children have different interests and these are taken into account when planning activities, helping the children to progress towards achieving set goals at the end of their time in Reception. Personal, social and emotional development Physical development Communication and language Literacy Mathematics Understanding of the world Expressive arts and design

The Key Stage One & Key Stage Two have taken ownership of the curriculum and use ‘Creative Curriculum’, which allows teachers to plan and deliver the best curriculum for the specific child in their care. This allows for children to receive a rich and varied experience that goes far beyond the minimal entitlement as identified in the current National Curriculum and is supported by a government commitment to give schools more freedom from prescription and bureaucracy. We also support the Every Child Matters agenda which aims to achieve the following outcomes for every child: Being healthy: enjoying good physical and mental health and living a healthy lifestyle. Staying safe: being protected from harm and neglect. Enjoying and achieving: getting the most out of life and developing the skills for adulthood. Making a positive contribution: being involved with the community and society and not engaging in anti-social or offending behaviour. Economic well being: not being prevented by economic disadvantage from achieving their full potential in life.

Assessment— How well is your child doing? School staff will make observations of your child’s abilities throughout each day to form their next steps for learning and will also arrange mini assessments to check their progress at regular intervals. They will keep evidence of work and write reports, to provide information about progress and these will be shared with you at consultation evenings

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THROUGH TEACHING ICT we equip children to participate in

a rapidly-changing world where work and leisure activities are increasingly transformed by technology. We enable them to find, explore, analyse, exchange and present information. We also focus on developing the skills necessary for children to be able to use information in a discriminating and effective way. ICT skills are a major factor in enabling children to be confident, creative and independent learners.

Music takes a significant role at St Francis Catholic Primary School. Singing is a natural part of learning throughout the school. Each year Wider Opportunities deliver violin lessons to all pupils and their teacher in Y5; this continues into Y6 with Break Out groups. Sing Up concerts, String Concerts and Guitar Club all give opportunities for children to perform. Children receiving music lessons outside school are encouraged to perform at concerts and celebrate their achievements. Masses, assemblies and hymn practices are also wonderful occasions where children can accompany the singing and practise using their skills.

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t Francis After School Club

We strive to provide a variety of play opportunities for children, within a safe, stimulating and child orientated environment. We hope families will access this facility and celebrate its achievements. After School club is open to children within our school, from Reception to year 6 and runs for 2 hours during term time. Whilst in our care the children are given a light healthy snack and drink and we provide a wide range of stimulating and fun activities and play opportunities .These activities may include: painting; sports; model making; group games; non-cook cooking; music; paper crafts and sewing. As well as providing some structured activities, board games, sports equipment and paper crafts are always available. Weather permitting, we all go outside for at least half an hour to get some fresh air and run around.

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t Francis Our Catholic Family

Our Mission is to provide an excellent education, within a loving, caring community, based on the life and teachings of Christ and traditions of the Church, in which each individual, as a reflection of Christ, is enabled to reach his or her full potential. We hope to help children to look to Our Lord for guidance and direction in their lives. The Christian Gospel message supports and sustains everything which happens in the school so that the Catholic Christian faith, which is taught explicitly in the classroom can take root in the hearts and minds of all our children.

AIMS AND OBJECTIVES OF RELIGIOUS EDUCATION

Passover Meal

In religious education the school aims to promote: knowledge and understanding of the Catholic faith to develop appropriate skills; for example, ability to listen, to think critically, spiritually, ethically and theologically, to acquire knowledge and organise it effectively; to make informed judgements; to foster appropriate attitudes, for example, respect for truth, respect for the views of others; awareness of the spiritual, of moral responsibility, of the demands of religious commitment in everyday life and especially the challenge of living in a multicultural multi-faith society. In school we follow the “Learning and Growing as the children of God” scheme and support the spiritual development of children in prayer and collective worship. We expect all members of the school community to witness to the life of Christ in their relationships. We aim to develop partnerships with families and support parents who are “the first teachers of the child in the ways of the faith”. We work closely with the parish priest and develop partnerships with the parish community through masses, sacramental preparation and supporting events.

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t Francis Admissions

The Nursery admits 26 children in September, who will be four years old during that academic year. Application forms are available through school, and all applications are considered by Governors. Admission to main stream school are dealt with by a common application form which is available through the Local Authority. Our criteria for admissions are followed by the Local Authority and are available from our website—www.st-francis-p.walsall.sch.uk. The school staggers the intake days for children starting Nursery and Reception. We value this time, ensuring we get to know your child and that this exciting period will help to settle your child into the routines of the school

How do we organise classes and teaching and learning? The children are formed into 8 classes by age, starting with Nursery which has an in-take of 26 part time pupils. The rest of the classes have a maximum of 30 children. Each class has a trained and experienced assistant who give support to the pupils

DOES A CHILD NEED EXTRA HELP! Every child is an individual with different interests and strengths. Some children at various times may need ‘additional’ or ‘different’ types of support. The school has a Special Education Needs Co-ordinator whose role it is to ensure that correct interventions are in place. After consultation with parents/carers, they will seek advice from other relevant professionals to provide the best appropriate support. We have a dyslexia friendly environment.

THE WELFARE OF YOUR CHILD

is of the utmost importance

to us. The school has a Parent Support Advisor who works directly with parents and carers to help children get the very best out of school and to help support families with any issues, problems or concerns. In addition to all of the above the PSA will also be responsible for; Providing access to information Supporting parents and families in all issues relating to school life Improving school attendance Improving behaviour in school

Our Learning mentor provides a complementary service to teachers , addressing the needs of children who require assistance in overcoming barriers to learning in order to achieve their full potential.

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We are one of only a handful of primary schools in Walsall who teach HEARTSTART. The Heartstart programme includes skills such as: assessing an unconscious patient, performing cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR), dealing with choking, serious bleeding, helping someone that may be having a heart attack

TAKE A BREAK at the weekly coffee mornings. A Budding Chefs

chance to socialise, share a cuppa and chat with other parents and friends.

Bonjour! Hola ! We have a cooking class which enhances and supports the school curriculum in school time and provides a weekly after school activity.

Learning languages from an early age gives children the ability to build their knowledge, confidence and experience. All junior children take part in weekly French lessons, with the opportunity to explore

A taste of independence - Children in Year 5 and Year 6 are given the opportunity to spread their wings and gain a taste of outdoor life, inter mixed with a reflective experience at bi-annual residentials to Manor Adventure in Shropshire and Alton Castle, which is the Catholic Youth Retreat Centre in Staffordshire. These are thoroughly enjoyed by all the children.

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t Francis Photo Album

For further information please ring the school: 01922 682583 Or email us : postpox@st-francis-p.walsall.sch.uk Our website : www.st-francis-p.walsall.sch.uk 11

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