News

Latest news from around the school

Best of British themed menu

Posted on 12 September 2018 by Mrs Taylor

Catering Agency, our school meal provider, will be running a special themed menu on Thursday 04 October.

Please contact the office, by Wednesday 26 September, if your child would like a school dinner on this day.

High school application deadlines...

Posted on 05 September 2018 by Mrs Craggs

Leeds City Council writes:

Is your child currently in Year 6? If so, it’s time to apply for a secondary school place!

If your child is due to start secondary school in September 2019 you should apply for a place from 01 August 2018. The deadline for applying is 31 October 2018.

You need to make your application online at www.leeds.gov.uk/secondaryschool

If you need any more information please contact the admissions team on 0113 222 4414.

Frequently asked questions

When can I apply for a place at High School Year 7? 

The application process is available from 1 August 2018 to 31 October 2018.

How do I apply for a place?

You can apply online by going to www.leeds.gov.uk and searching for school admissions.  If you need assistance with the application you can call us on 0113 2224414 or email us at [email protected]. There is also a video on www.leeds.gov.uk which offers advice and guidance.

What are admissions policies?

Admissions policies set out how schools will offer places, and who will be offered a place first if there are more applications than places available at the school. The criteria set out in the admissions policy will be used to rank all applications and then places will be offered from the top of the list of applicants until the year group is full.

It is important that you look at the admissions policy for each of the schools you are including in your list of preferences as different schools have different admission policies. Admissions policies for all kinds of schools (Community, Foundation, Voluntary Aided and Academy schools) can be obtained from schools directly, found on the school website, on the Leeds City Council website at www.leeds.gov.uk/residents/Pages/Admissions.aspx, or by contacting the Admissions Team on 0113 2224414.

How are places offered?

The local authority is required to co-ordinate all applications for year 7 places. This means the Local Authority receive all applications centrally, work with schools who determine their own admissions to gather information from them, and send out all the offer letters, making sure each child only receives one offer.

We consider all preferences at the same time and aim to offer your highest preference possible, but whether we can offer you the place you want for your child will depend on your circumstances, the schools you have asked for and their policies, the  number of applications they have received and the circumstances of all other applicants to that school.

I have good reasons why my child should attend my first preference school – so you have to offer them a place there don’t you?

Many parents have good reasons why they would prefer their child to attend a particular school, but while parents have the legal right to express their preference, this is not the same as free choice about where their child is admitted. School admissions policies provide very clear criteria about who can be prioritised over others for a place and you should review the policies to see whether your child meets any of these priority criteria. If they do, please tell us on your application so that the admissions policy can be applied to your application for each school correctly.

What is my priority school/catchment area?

One priority which many admission policies include is a priority for children requesting a place where they are living in the priority catchment area or where the school is their ‘nearest’ school. It’s important to look at the school policy as not all schools include this priority. You will receive a letter telling you which school is your catchment priority school.

Distance (measured in a straight line) is also often used as a tie break within each priority, so all children who meet the ‘catchment’ priority will also be ranked in order of distance from the school. There is no guarantee that you will be allocated a place at your priority catchment school if you request it – each year it depends on the number of children requesting the school who meet this priority.

It is important that you look at each school admission policy and all other available information before making a decision about your preferences as it is important to consider whether you have a realistic chance of being offered a place.

Does it matter what order I list my preferences?

Places are not offered on a ‘first preference first’ basis – it is against the School Admissions Code for this to happen. When schools are ranking their applications in line with their admissions policy, they don’t know which preference number you gave to that school.

Your preference order is only used by the Local Authority when they are making the offers on behalf of the school, and it only influences which offer is made where you could be offered more than one of your preferences.

The Local Authority is obliged to offer you the highest preference school which your child qualifies for so please put the schools in order of where you would like your child to attend.

If I only provide one preference, do you have to offer me that school?

No. Providing just one or two preferences does not in any way increase your chances of being offered a place at these schools as your application for each school is ranked in line with the admissions policy. If the Local Authority is unable to offer a preferred school, you will be offered a place at any school with a vacancy available after all other applications have been considered, so not using all five of the available preferences actually decreases the chances of you being offered a preferred place.

Can I find out which schools are closest to my home?

You can contact the Leeds City Council Admissions Team on 0113 2224414 or send an email to [email protected] to ask for this information. Please remember to include your address when contacting us. Our measurements are based on a straight-line distance from the school to your address. Previous allocation maps for secondary schools are on the Leeds City Council website www.leeds.gov.uk/admissions. These show the distances from home to school for the people who were successful in gaining places last year so give an indication of your chances of being offered a place. Most online mapping tools only use postcodes and not the full address. If you want to know your nearest priority school you must ask us for details; you should also receive a letter in July which will give details of your priority school and your five nearest schools by distance but you don’t need this letter to apply.

What is the ‘furthest allocation distance’?

In the information provided on the Leeds City Council website, ‘furthest allocation distances’ are stated where this information is available.

Furthest allocation distances are the distance the last pupil allocated a place at a school under one of the distance priorities (in the Leeds City Council policy this is Priority 3 – Priority Catchment and Priority 4 – non-catchment) lived from the school.

Further details of allocation data can be found at: www.datamillnorth.org/dataset/secondary-school-allocations

When will I find out which school my child has been offered?

1 March 2019 is National Offer day. You will be sent an email on this day with your offer letter attached or if you did not apply online a letter will be sent out by second class post and you will receive it a few days after the 1 March.

What should do when I receive my offer of a place?

You should accept the offer of the school place directly with the school. Accepting a lower preference offer will not affect your position on a waiting list or your right to appeal against the refusal at any other school.

What happens if I don’t get offered a place at the school I want?

If you don’t get offered a place at the school you would prefer, you can request to go on the waiting list. You can also appeal against the decision to refuse a place at a school, although appeals can only be granted in specific circumstances.  More information will be provided with your offer letter.

What happens if I move into the area or change address?

If you move into the area or change address between the closing date in October 2018 and the start of the new school year in September 2019, you must let us know as this could affect your application. We will try our best to offer your child a place at the school you prefer. If there are no places left at any of the schools you wanted, we will offer your child a place at the school closest to your home with available places. Remember that we will find your closest school by measuring in a straight line. If you move to a new address, we will ask you to provide written proof of your new address and written proof that you have left your previous address.

Useful numbers and contacts

Leeds City Council website:  http://www.leeds.gov.uk/residents/Pages/Admissions.aspx

Admissions team: phone 0113 222 4414 email [email protected].

Transport:  Application forms, guidance notes, Leeds Children’s Transport policy, Under-16 Photocards and information about bus travel can be obtained at: www.metro.com/schools.  If you need information on your ‘Nearest Qualifying School’ or have other general school transport questions please contact the Leeds Education Transport Assessment Team on 0113 348 1122 or [email protected].

Elective Home Education: phone 0113 378 5028.

Attendance Team:  phone 0113 378 2480.

School meals: To apply for free school meals please contact 0113 222 4404.

School uniforms and other expenses parents should contact the school their child will be attending for information about help with school uniforms.

Special Educational Needs Information: For children with an existing Education Health and Care Plan (EHC) parents should contact their SEN casework officer phone 0113 378 5256.  For general information, support and advice about SEN and disabilities contact the Leeds Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) Service phone 0113 378 5020.

Annual survey of parents / carers 2018 - results

Posted on 05 September 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Thank you to all of you who completed the Summer 2018 parents’ and carers’ survey. This news post is a repeat of one published at the start of the summer holidays, in case you missed it then.

This year, the number of responses dropped a little, from 71 to 58 of you. The responses came from an even spread of all the classes throughout school, which helps to make the feedback balanced. Below is a summary of what you’ve said. Lots of you added some comments after each question; we’ve included here just one or two that represent typical responses.

This year, for most statements, one (and sometimes two) people have either disagreed or indicated they weren’t sure. The survey was anonymous unless respondents chose to leave a name so we’re not necessarily going to be able to resolve any individual problems (although we will review our provision, as we always do). We really encourage any parent / carer with a problem to speak to us so we can explore the concerns more effectively.

Please do remember that what you say is important to us. We can’t guarantee we can accommodate everyone’s wishes or opinions expressed in the survey, but we do guarantee we consider each one. And don’t forget: if you have any questions, comments or concerns, do speak with your child’s class teacher or to Mrs Weekes, our Head of School. They’re often around at the start and end of the school day.

1. My child is happy at Moortown Primary School.
The results here broadly match those of last year. 74% of you strongly agreed with this, and 24% agreed – this is great! Encouragingly, no respondents disagreed whilst one indicated they weren’t sure.
There were nine comments for this statement, all of which were positive.
‘[My child] loves school. It’s a great thing as a parent to be able to send your child to school happy and excited about the day ahead.’
‘Both children very happy at school – always keen to attend, see their friends, and usually lots to talk about at the end of the day.’

2. My child feels safe at this school.
All but one agreed with this statement, with over 75% agreeing strongly. As with statement 1, one respondent indicated they didn’t know.
We take safeguarding at Moortown Primary very seriously so we’re really happy about this – we’ve nearly always been rated 100% for this statement in the past.
Comments back this up:
‘They are clear about the school rules which help keep them safe, and know what to do or who to speak to if things need addressing. The school tackles potential issues head-on and discusses wider safety issues in an age-appropriate way.’
‘Safeguarding and anti-bullying policies work well.’

3. My child makes good progress at this school.
The same proportion as last year (95%) supported this statement: 60% of you strongly agreed with this, and 34% agreed. Three respondents disagreed.
There was one critical comment. We’re sad and concerned this respondent feels this way. We’d love to be able to discuss this more – please do get in touch if this was you. It’s worth noting that assessment data shows that proportions reaching a higher level are nearly always higher than those nationally, for all year groups we have data for and for all subjects. For example, if we look at outcomes at the end of Key Stage 2, those who reach ‘greater depth standard’ (the higher level) are:

  • Reading: 45% (nationally: 28%)
  • Writing: 48% (nationally: 20%)
  • Maths: 41% (nationally: 24%)
  • Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling: 76% (nationally: 34%)

The remaining comments were broadly positive. Our newest recruit in 2017-18 was delighted to read this, for example:
‘We are thrilled with the progress that [our child] is making in Year 1, particularly with his reading and Maths. Mr Parker and Mrs Tiffany are amazing at ensuring he continues to develop and work to his best ability, in a fun and engaging way. He is always teaching me something new he’s learnt at school!’

4. My child is well looked after.
All but two of you agreed here (97%). The proportion who strongly agreed was even higher than last year (78%).
There were five comments, four of which were positive:
‘All adults at the school prioritise the welfare of the children. All staff seem to understand the individual needs of each child, which reinforces the happy and healthy place to learn. Particular thanks to Mrs Small who has been excellent at helping [one of my children] in increasing resilience.’
‘The school has made exceptional efforts to assist my son…to get the best outcomes possible.’
The one concern raised will be passed on to our staff qualified in first aid:
‘Couple of times child had minor injuries that were not attended to.’

5. My child is taught well at Moortown Primary School.
All but one of you (98%) agreed with this, the vast majority agreeing strongly (81% – over ten % points higher than last year).
With all the comments resoundingly positive, we’re at a loss as to how we might be able to best support the parent / carer who disagreed with the statement, other than to again say please do get in touch if this was you.
‘My child is provided with…assistance and opportunities to help him grow emotionally and academically. The teaching staff work collaboratively and with a passion to deliver the best education they can – stretching to find and acquire additional resources to make a difference.’

One of the things we feel we do especially well at Moortown Primary is recruitment: we’re proud to have recruited teachers who are great in the classroom and also work well with the existing team and naturally fit our ethos of being a happy and healthy place to learn (and to work). This is why we’re especially pleased to see Mr Parker praised again, in this case by two different parents: ‘We are thrilled with the way [our son] is taught. He really admires and respects Mr Parker and Mrs Tiffany as well as all the other staff in school. Teaching is always delivered in a fun and engaging way.’ and ‘[My son] is always singing the praises of Mr Parker he really enjoys his lessons.’ Well done, Mr Parker!

6. Adults in school make sure pupils are well behaved.
The results here are similar to 2017: 62% strongly agreed and 34% agreed. Two respondents disagreed.
Four comments were made. Three are entirely positive, such as: ‘When we are invited into class for end of topic reviews or “watch us while we work”, the behaviour of the children is excellent.’
One of the four comments was less positive, citing a particular incident in school. We weren’t made aware of the incident at the time otherwise we would have aimed to resolve the matter. It may be too late now, but please do get in touch if this was you.

7. Moortown Primary deals effectively with bullying. (Bullying includes persistent name calling, cyber-bullying, racist and homophobic bullying.)
The proportion in agreement has risen this year: 34% strongly agreed and 52% agreed. Nobody disagreed. Over the years of carrying out the survey, it’s become quite apparent that the proportion of parents / carers who indicate they are unsure (this year, 14%) explain the reason for this is that their child hasn’t encountered bullying (‘We’ve had no issues with bullying, so cannot comment specifically’).
We’re not complacent and so we’re grateful for respondents who praised the workshops and website posts about bullying: ‘[I was] also impressed with the workshop and various news articles throughout the year to raise awareness (of cyber-bullying, in particular).’
Incidentally, we define bullying as upsetting or harmful behaviour which is Several Times On Purpose, and we encourage children to Start Telling Other People before it becomes a problem. Please help us reinforce our ‘STOP’ messages at home, too.

8. The school is well led and managed.
77% strongly agreed (an increase on 2017) and 21% agreed; one person disagreed.
All four comments were positive, including:
‘I strongly believe that the management and staff within the school are exceptional.’
‘Very visible and approachable leadership team. Mrs Weekes is always available to talk to if needed. Communication is excellent e.g. at school gate, encouraging parental engagement before / after school, via social media and the website.’

9. The school responds well to any concerns I raise.
55% of respondents strongly agreed and 38% agreed – a slight increase to last year’s figures, although two respondents weren’t in agreement and two others were unsure (although this is likely due to those two respondents not having raised a concern).
Well done to our office staff: ‘School office continues to be excellent in dealing with general enquiries (thanks to Mrs O’Malley and Mrs Russell).’

10. I receive useful information from the school about my child’s progress.
43% agreed strongly with this and 53% agreed. Two respondents disagreed.
Your comments here have been especially helpful. Out of eight comments, four referred to the frequency of the updates. We’re going to act on this by changing when we provide you with the Learning Updates. These were previously given to you at parents’ evening. Next year, we’ll send these home at the end of the Autumn and Spring terms. This means you’ll have an update at the end of Autumn 1 (the parents’ evening), Autumn 2 (the Learning Update), Spring 1 (the second parents’ evening), Spring 2 (the second Learning Update), and then the end of year report in the Summer.
One respondent said ‘I’d like an end-of-year parents’ evening’; whilst we don’t routinely organise for this except for Reception parents / carers, we will do more to encourage parents to arrange a follow-up meeting to review the end of year report.
Thank you for your feedback here; we hope the small changes we make will make a big difference to you.
Don’t forget to also try to attend as many Watch Us While We Work sessions, learning workshops, and homework / topic reviews as you can – these may not directly inform you of your own child’s progress, but they do do help to give a flavour of our standards and expectations.

11. Would you recommend us?
98% agreed that they would (thanks!); one person disagreed.

Finally, we asked you to tell us about things you like and the things we could improve on. Almost twice as many responses listed things people liked than didn’t liked, which is great.
With such open-ended questions, we end up with very varied responses so it’s hard to summarise what was said here.

The things people didn’t like largely echoed things that have already been said – more frequent information on progress, for example. Other things mentioned include issues where we might never reach a consensus amongst parents (such as homework – some want more, some want less) and problems that we’re working on (such as a lack of green space – this is coming – and traffic outside school). Some mentioned things that might be more down to personal preferences (like our website) and others raised things which we’ll definitely consider (tweaking School Council elections, for example).

Similarly, the things people like are varied, but things like the friendly atmosphere, the community feel and our systems to manage behaviour all get mentioned quite a few times.
‘It is wonderful how the children all know each other. Moortown Primary instils a wonderful community ethos and encourages the children to look out for and after each other.’
‘Moortown has always had a family feel. The way staff greet everyone at the gate and say hello whenever they are passing, shows that all staff genuinely care about all pupils, regardless of whether they have them in their class or not.’
‘Great safeguarding measures in place, inspirational teachers and leaders, nurturing environment, school promotes motivation for learning.’
‘The school feels like a village school which is extremely rare in a major city!’

Thanks again for taking the time to complete this year’s survey.

Living and Learning

Posted on 02 September 2018 by Mrs Taylor

As we return to school, we begin our Living and Learning theme with a focus on manners: I can greet someone politely.

We’ll then continue by thinking about the ‘8 Rs for learning’. This theme is about promoting good learning behaviour for your child.

Each week, we’ll focus on two different ‘Rs’. We use an animal to symbolise each ‘R’, which might help your child remember all eight – can your child remember which animal matches the correct ‘R’?

You can support your child at home – we’ve listed a few ideas to help you below. Ask us if you’ve any questions or comments.

Download top tips for promoting the 8Rs for good learning behaviour.

I can show I am ready to learn.

Make sure your child is at school for a prompt start of 08:50.
Make sure your child has had plenty of sleep so they are alert and ready to learn at all times.
Encourage your child to ask lots of questions – that shows they want to learn!

I respond to feedback.

Ask your child if they remember their ‘stars’ and ‘steps’ in English and Maths.

I take a safe risk.

Talk about the difference between a safe and unsafe risk.  At school, we want your child to take a safe risk by having a go at answering, even if unsure; trying something new and attempting harder learning.

I take responsibility for my own learning.

Provide time and space at home so your child is able to organise themselves: their PE kit, reading book, homework, spellings and tables… Don’t organise everything for them!
Make a link between rights and responsibilities: your child has the right to a great education, but needs to be responsible for their own learning.

I am resourceful.

Encourage your child to be organised so they can play with a range of different toys.
Encourage your child to try new ways to solve a tricky problem.

I am resilient.

Encourage your child to keep going! Set a tricky challenge or puzzle for your child to do.
Encourage your child to think of different ways of doing things.
Don’t let your child win when they play a game – they need to experience losing, too!
Celebrate mistakes as opportunities to learn – be happy that your child found some learning hard and encourage them to ‘bounce back’ and learn from the experience.

I remember.

Make sure they have time to learn spellings, number bonds and times tables – a little practice daily is best.
Play memory games:

Kim’s game: show them objects for 30 seconds… can they remember all the objects?
Can they build up the sequence, ‘I went to the shop and I bought an apple’… ‘I went to the shop and I bought an apple and a bike.’… ‘I went to the shop and I bought an apple, a bike and a cucumber.’ etc … Take turns!

I reflect about my learning.

Talk with your child about what they’ve learnt, asking questions about:

how they learnt
why they learnt it
when they’ll use their learning
how they would teach this to someone else
what learning might link with what they’ve learnt today etc

As well as covering the 8Rs for learning, pupils will also learn about their rights and responsibilities.

Finally, we end the half term learning about democracy (one of the British Values).  All children have the opportunity to experience democracy in our annual School Council elections.  More details to follow.

Our full Living and Learning long term plan is available on the health pages and you can keep up to date with our weekly Living and Learning statements on the parent noticeboard in the playground and also on the school calendar.

Not long to go...

Posted on 27 August 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Has your child sent us a postcard? We’d love to hear from them!

When your child returns to school after the summer holidays, the first topic they’ll be learning will be Where in the World?

To help with this, we’d love it if your child sends us a postcard. There will be prizes for the best-written postcard, and, naturally, they’ll all go on display.

The postcard could be from Spain or Scarborough, a city-break or an outdoor adventure, a day-trip or a fortnight away. More importantly, it could be real or made-up… we might get postcards recounting your child’s adventures in space, even!

Your child doesn’t need to have gone anywhere this summer to write about what they got up to, so there’s no excuse for them not to join in.

All we ask is that your postcards arrive by Monday 10 September – that’s the start of the second week back (so they could even write a postcard from that weekend!).

The Where in the World? topic will develop the children’s geographical knowledge and skills. The world is a big place that is getting more and more accessible but how much do we know about it? We’ll be swotting up on names of capital cities, countries, continents and oceans (depending on the age of your child). Get out your maps and test each other at home. Who knows all the capital cities in the UK? Can anyone name the five continents? We’ll also develop map skills so get out there and give each other directions to get from ‘A’ to ‘B’!

Has your child sent us a postcard yet?

Posted on 13 August 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Over the summer, we’d love to hear from you!

When your child returns to school after the summer holidays, the first topic they’ll be learning will be Where in the World?

To help with this, we’d love it if your child sends us a postcard. There will be prizes for the best-written postcard, and, naturally, they’ll all go on display.

The postcard could be from Spain or Scarborough, a city-break or an outdoor adventure, a day-trip or a fortnight away. More importantly, it could be real or made-up… we might get postcards recounting your child’s adventures in space, even!

Your child doesn’t need to go anywhere this summer to write about what they’ve got up to, so there’s no excuse for them not to join in.

All we ask is that your postcards arrive by Monday 10 September – that’s the start of the second week back (so they could even write a postcard from that weekend!).

The Where in the World? topic will develop the children’s geographical knowledge and skills. The world is a big place that is getting more and more accessible but how much do we know about it? We’ll be swotting up on names of capital cities, countries, continents and oceans (depending on the age of your child). Get out your maps and test each other at home. Who knows all the capital cities in the UK? Can anyone name the five continents? We’ll also develop map skills so get out there and give each other directions to get from ‘A’ to ‘B’!

Annual survey of parents / carers 2018 - results

Posted on 26 July 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Thank you to all of you who completed the Summer 2018 parents and carers survey. This year, the number of responses dropped a little, from 71 to 58 of you. The responses came from an even spread of all the classes throughout school, which helps to make the feedback balanced.

Below is a summary of what you’ve said. Lots of you added some comments after each question; we’ve included here just one or two that represent typical responses.

This year, for most statements, one (and sometimes two) people have either disagreed or indicated they weren’t sure. The survey was anonymous unless respondents chose to leave a name so we’re not necessarily going to be able to resolve any individual problems (although we will review our provision, as we always do). We really encourage any parent / carer with a problem to speak to us so we can explore the concerns more effectively.

Please do remember that what you say is important to us. We can’t guarantee we can accommodate everyone’s wishes or opinions expressed in the survey, but we do guarantee we consider each one. And don’t forget: if you have any questions, comments or concerns, do speak with your child’s class teacher or to Mrs Weekes, our Head of School. They’re often around at the start and end of the school day.

1. My child is happy at Moortown Primary School.
The results here broadly match those of last year. 74% of you strongly agreed with this, and 24% agreed – this is great! Encouragingly, no respondents disagreed whilst one indicated they weren’t sure.
There were nine comments for this statement, all of which were positive.
‘[My child] loves school. It’s a great thing as a parent to be able to send your child to school happy and excited about the day ahead.’
‘Both children very happy at school – always keen to attend, see their friends, and usually lots to talk about at the end of the day.’

2. My child feels safe at this school.
All but one agreed with this statement, with over 75% agreeing strongly. As with statement 1, one respondent indicated they didn’t know.
We take safeguarding at Moortown Primary very seriously so we’re really happy about this – we’ve nearly always been rated 100% for this statement in the past.
Comments back this up:
‘They are clear about the school rules which help keep them safe, and know what to do or who to speak to if things need addressing. The school tackles potential issues head-on and discusses wider safety issues in an age-appropriate way.’
‘Safeguarding and anti-bullying policies work well.’

3. My child makes good progress at this school.
The same proportion as last year (95%) supported this statement: 60% of you strongly agreed with this, and 34% agreed. Three respondents disagreed.
There was one critical comment. We’re sad and concerned this respondent feels this way. We’d love to be able to discuss this more – please do get in touch if this was you. It’s worth noting that assessment data shows that proportions reaching a higher level are nearly always higher than those nationally, for all year groups we have data for and for all subjects. For example, if we look at outcomes at the end of Key Stage 2, those who reach ‘greater depth standard’ (the higher level) are:

  • Reading: 45% (nationally: 28%)
  • Writing: 48% (nationally: 20%)
  • Maths: 41% (nationally: 24%)
  • Grammar, Punctuation and Spelling: 76% (nationally: 34%)

The remaining comments were broadly positive. Our newest recruit in 2017-18 was delighted to read this, for example:
‘We are thrilled with the progress that [our child] is making in Year 1, particularly with his reading and Maths. Mr Parker and Mrs Tiffany are amazing at ensuring he continues to develop and work to his best ability, in a fun and engaging way. He is always teaching me something new he’s learnt at school!’

4. My child is well looked after.
All but two of you agreed here (97%). The proportion who strongly agreed was even higher than last year (78%).
There were five comments, four of which were positive:
‘All adults at the school prioritise the welfare of the children. All staff seem to understand the individual needs of each child, which reinforces the happy and healthy place to learn. Particular thanks to Mrs Small who has been excellent at helping [one of my children] in increasing resilience.’
‘The school has made exceptional efforts to assist my son…to get the best outcomes possible.’
The one concern raised will be passed on to our staff qualified in first aid:
‘Couple of times child had minor injuries that were not attended to.’

5. My child is taught well at Moortown Primary School.
All but one of you (98%) agreed with this, the vast majority agreeing strongly (81% – over ten % points higher than last year).
With all the comments resoundingly positive, we’re at a loss as to how we might be able to best support the parent / carer who disagreed with the statement, other than to again say please do get in touch if this was you.
‘My child is provided with…assistance and opportunities to help him grow emotionally and academically. The teaching staff work collaboratively and with a passion to deliver the best education they can – stretching to find and acquire additional resources to make a difference.’

One of the things we feel we do especially well at Moortown Primary is recruitment: we’re proud to have recruited teachers who are great in the classroom and also work well with the existing team and naturally fit our ethos of being a happy and healthy place to learn (and to work). This is why we’re especially pleased to see Mr Parker praised again, in this case by two different parents: ‘We are thrilled with the way [our son] is taught. He really admires and respects Mr Parker and Mrs Tiffany as well as all the other staff in school. Teaching is always delivered in a fun and engaging way.’ and ‘[My son] is always singing the praises of Mr Parker he really enjoys his lessons.’ Well done, Mr Parker!

6. Adults in school make sure pupils are well behaved.
The results here are similar to 2017: 62% strongly agreed and 34% agreed. Two respondents disagreed.
Four comments were made. Three are entirely positive, such as: ‘When we are invited into class for end of topic reviews or “watch us while we work”, the behaviour of the children is excellent.’
One of the four comments was less positive, citing a particular incident in school. We weren’t made aware of the incident at the time otherwise we would have aimed to resolve the matter. It may be too late now, but please do get in touch if this was you.

7. Moortown Primary deals effectively with bullying. (Bullying includes persistent name calling, cyber-bullying, racist and homophobic bullying.)
The proportion in agreement has risen this year: 34% strongly agreed and 52% agreed. Nobody disagreed. Over the years of carrying out the survey, it’s become quite apparent that the proportion of parents / carers who indicate they are unsure (this year, 14%) explain the reason for this is that their child hasn’t encountered bullying (‘We’ve had no issues with bullying, so cannot comment specifically’).
We’re not complacent and so we’re grateful for respondents who praised the workshops and website posts about bullying: ‘[I was] also impressed with the workshop and various news articles throughout the year to raise awareness (of cyber-bullying, in particular).’
Incidentally, we define bullying as upsetting or harmful behaviour which is Several Times On Purpose, and we encourage children to Start Telling Other People before it becomes a problem. Please help us reinforce our ‘STOP’ messages at home, too.

8. The school is well led and managed.
77% strongly agreed (an increase on 2017) and 21% agreed; one person disagreed.
All four comments were positive, including:
‘I strongly believe that the management and staff within the school are exceptional.’
‘Very visible and approachable leadership team. Mrs Weekes is always available to talk to if needed. Communication is excellent e.g. at school gate, encouraging parental engagement before / after school, via social media and the website.’

9. The school responds well to any concerns I raise.
55% of respondents strongly agreed and 38% agreed – a slight increase to last year’s figures, although two respondents weren’t in agreement and two others were unsure (although this is likely due to those two respondents not having raised a concern).
Well done to our office staff: ‘School office continues to be excellent in dealing with general enquiries (thanks to Mrs O’Malley and Mrs Russell).’

10. I receive useful information from the school about my child’s progress.
43% agreed strongly with this and 53% agreed. Two respondents disagreed.
Your comments here have been especially helpful. Out of eight comments, four referred to the frequency of the updates. We’re going to act on this by changing when we provide you with the Learning Updates. These were previously given to you at parents’ evening. Next year, we’ll send these home at the end of the Autumn and Spring terms. This means you’ll have an update at the end of Autumn 1 (the parents’ evening), Autumn 2 (the Learning Update), Spring 1 (the second parents’ evening), Spring 2 (the second Learning Update), and then the end of year report in the Summer.
One respondent said ‘I’d like an end-of-year parents’ evening’; whilst we don’t routinely organise for this except for Reception parents / carers, we will do more to encourage parents to arrange a follow-up meeting to review the end of year report.
Thank you for your feedback here; we hope the small changes we make will make a big difference to you.
Don’t forget to also try to attend as many Watch Us While We Work sessions, learning workshops, and homework / topic reviews as you can – these may not directly inform you of your own child’s progress, but they do do help to give a flavour of our standards and expectations.

11. Would you recommend us?
98% agreed that they would (thanks!); one person disagreed.

Finally, we asked you to tell us about things you like and the things we could improve on. Almost twice as many responses listed things people liked than didn’t liked, which is great.
With such open-ended questions, we end up with very varied responses so it’s hard to summarise what was said here.

The things people didn’t like largely echoed things that have already been said – more frequent information on progress, for example. Other things mentioned include issues where we might never reach a consensus amongst parents (such as homework – some want more, some want less) and problems that we’re working on (such as a lack of green space – this is coming – and traffic outside school). Some mentioned things that might be more down to personal preferences (like our website) and others raised things which we’ll definitely consider (tweaking School Council elections, for example).

Similarly, the things people like are varied, but things like the friendly atmosphere, the community feel and our systems to manage behaviour all get mentioned quite a few times.
‘It is wonderful how the children all know each other. Moortown Primary instils a wonderful community ethos and encourages the children to look out for and after each other.’
‘Moortown has always had a family feel. The way staff greet everyone at the gate and say hello whenever they are passing, shows that all staff genuinely care about all pupils, regardless of whether they have them in their class or not.’
‘Great safeguarding measures in place, inspirational teachers and leaders, nurturing environment, school promotes motivation for learning.’
‘The school feels like a village school which is extremely rare in a major city!’

Thanks again for taking the time to complete this year’s survey.

Make-A-Wish skipping challenge

Posted on 21 July 2018 by Mrs Taylor

At the end of the Being Healthy themed week, we wore blue for our Make-A-Wish skipping challenge day.

There was some fantastic skipping on the day with many children challenging themselves with new skipping skills or improving the number of skips individually or with a partner.

Thank you for all the donations for our school charity.

We raised £196 for Make-A-Wish.

 

Balance, Pedal, Go!

Posted on 20 July 2018 by Mrs Taylor

This report highlights that, according to new research by Keep Britain Tidy, a third of primary school children have never been taught how to ride a bike.

We’re happy to say that following the recent Reception balance, pedal, go bike training sessions, 24 out of 30 children can now ride a pedal bike.  Two children missed their final session so the number could be even higher!  Prior to the training, four children could ride a pedal bike.

Well done to the Reception children who remained focussed through their sessions and used determination to achieve this key life skill.

These sessions were funded by our PE Premium and from the staff, parent and pupil feedback, this will be an initiative we will repeat next year too.

We hope the children will continue to develop their riding skills over the holidays – maybe going on a family bike ride; taking part in the Leeds Let’s Ride event on traffic free roads on Sunday 2 September; going along to a Let’s Ride Pop Up ride locally and most importantly using their bikes to travel to school when we return in September.

New school dinner menu

Posted on 20 July 2018 by Mrs Taylor

From September, our school dinner menu will be changing.  This menu, provided by our school meals provider Catering Leeds, will be served until February half term.

Through liaison with Catering Leeds, the vegetable choices and jacket potato fillings requested by the children have been incorporated into the new menu.

As well as on our website, the three week cyclical menu is displayed in the parent/carer noticeboard for you to discuss with your child.   If you would like a printed copy, please ask at the office.

Have a look for the days ahead to make your child aware of what the daily meals are.  All children now make their main meal choice at the start of the day.  This ensures they get their first choice of meal.

School meals continue to be free for Reception, Year 1 and Year 2. If your child is in Key Stage 2, please check for eligibility for free school meals. (It’s important to check for eligibility for younger children, too, because school receives additional funding for each child who is eligible for a free meal, even when they’re free in Reception and Year 1 and Year 2!)

If your child would like to start having school dinners, please inform the office. A combination of packed lunches and school dinners is also available.

Children are consulted on school meals through our regular School Council meetings.  Feedback may also be given by speaking to an adult in school or completing a suggestions/comments slip and posting it in their class I want to say box.  We have a few new dishes on the menu which we encourage the children to try.

Thank you to parents who also raise questions and give feedback.  We can then ensure this is passed on to the kitchen staff.