News

Latest news from around the school

Rio Challenge

Posted on 11 June 2016 by Mrs Taylor

This week, we have launched skills drills Rio Challenge.  Linked to the upcoming Rio Olympics, pupils can attempt a series of ten timed sports drills based around core skills from different Olympic events.  These include hockey, gymnastics, rugby and athletics.

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Children can be part of this online competition against their peers and other schools and we will be uploading times for the quickest drills.

The drills will be carried out in PE lessons and at lunchtime.  You could even have a go at home.

Rio challenge drills are led by Sports Leaders at lunchtime.

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Safe and secure...

Posted on 09 June 2016 by Mrs Weekes

To make sure that Moortown Primary School is a happy, healthy and safe place to learn, we invited a safeguarding expert to come in and review our practice.  As a result there was a safeguarding review on Wednesday 08 June.  The process took all day and was very thorough.  I am pleased to tell you that it was a very productive exercise and the report was very positive.  Here is a summary of what was said:

“The school is clearly committed to safeguarding its pupils.  The school has an integrated approach to safeguarding which ensures that children are kept safe.  There is effective training and support for staff, and a clear induction process.  The school’s systems for raising and recording concerns about children works well and is used by staff of all roles in school.  There is a rich learning environment which gives children a positive sense of self-worth.  Behaviour is well managed and clear processes are in place.  The school has excellent attendance and the children seemed very happy to be in school.”

Well done to everyone for this great report.

Brownlee Foundation triathlon

Posted on 09 June 2016 by Mrs Taylor

Well done to some of our Year 3 and 4 pupils who were part of 950 children competing in the Brownlee Foundation triathlon at John Smeaton Leisure Centre. This event has been hosted in preparation for the World Triathlon Series held in Leeds this weekend.  These children can be inspired to know that all three of the 2016 Mens Tri Olympic Team not only train in Leeds, but were born here too.

  • ‘I really liked the triathlon because it makes you fit and it was really fun.’
  • ‘I was really nervous at the start but I loved it.  It was challenging.’
  • ‘I really enjoyed it and I would like to do it again.’
  • ‘It was great fun because it gave you chance to practise different sports.’
  • ‘I loved it because of the excitement of it.’

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Euro 2016 themed menu

Posted on 08 June 2016 by Mrs Taylor

To celebrate UEFA’s European Football Championship 2016, Catering Agency will be running a special themed menu on Tuesday 21 June.  Please contact the office if your child would like a school dinner on this day.

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Meanwood Park Orienteering

Posted on 08 June 2016 by Mrs Taylor

Remember these?

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They are now part of a fun orienteering course in Meanwood Park.  There are ten owls to find and each has a letter to create a two word anagram.

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School leadership - a consultation

Posted on 06 June 2016 by Mr Roundtree

Consultation on proposal for Moortown Primary School to join the Federation of Scholes (Elmet) Primary School and Wetherby St James’ Church of England Primary School

The Governing Bodies of the Federation of Scholes (Elmet) and Wetherby St James’ Church of England Primary Schools, and Moortown Primary School, present this document for consultation.

We invite responses by Monday 18 July 2016 to the contact details at the end of the document in Section 6.

Introduction

At the existing Federation Governing Body meeting on 3rd May 2016, the meeting of Moortown Primary Governing Body on 10th February and 17th March 2016, and the joint Federation and Moortown Primary meeting of 23rd May 2016, the Governing Bodies of both the Federation of Scholes (Elmet) and Wetherby St James’ Church of England Primary Schools, and Moortown Primary School, decided to launch a consultation with parents/carers, staff and other stakeholders to consider the recommendation that Moortown Primary School join the existing Federation for their mutual support and advantage.

This document sets out the reasons why we are recommending this course of action and seeks your views. It also sets out the proposed timetable for implementation.

There will be discussion meetings for parents/carers and stakeholders of all schools. These will be held at:

  • 7pm on Tuesday 5th July at Moortown Primary School
  • 4pm on Thursday 7th July at Scholes (Elmet) Primary School
  • 9am on Friday 8th July at St James’ CE Primary School

You are free to attend any meeting regardless of which school you are connected with. We welcome your views on this proposal and therefore we urge you to attend.

What is a federation?

A federation is formed when two or more schools agree to work together on a formal basis through a single Governing Body.

Federated schools remain separate schools with separate budgets and separate Ofsted inspections. They also continue to report their results separately.

The federation we are recommending would have an Executive Head Teacher who is responsible for the performance of all schools in the Federation. The Executive Head Teacher would be supported by a Senior Leadership Team in all schools.

The decision to federate or not is determined by the individual Governing Bodies under a process set out in the School Governance (Federations) (England) Regulations 2012 as amended by the School Governance (Constitution and Federations) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2014.

A federation is not the same as collaboration, and it is not the same as academies or multi-academy trusts that you may have heard discussed recently in the media.

Why are we recommending this?

There is reasonable evidence to show that working in a federation has advantages for all parties, and most importantly, for the pupils. For governors, the key wish is to implement something that will enhance the learning experience for our pupils, and the following benefits have been identified for all three schools:

  • Access to wider learning experiences for children
  • Greater capacity to meet pupils’ needs
  • Continued school improvement through learning from others
  • Career development and progression opportunities for staff
  • Economies of scale, in both financial and time terms
  • Local authority support
  • Working in partnership with other schools brings about proven benefit for children’s learning
  • Future scope for leadership retention and recruitment
  • Growing partnership between schools is in line with national and local government policy
  • It will create consistency of policies and expectations and give consistency in children’s skills progression

The Governing Bodies of the existing federation and Moortown Primary have concluded, after very careful consideration, that the current and future interests of the three schools would be served best by Moortown Primary joining the Federation. This is not an amalgamation of the schools, and all three schools retain their own unique identities.

What would change and when?

Governors

The new federation would have one Governing Body to oversee the three schools, and this Governing Body would act in the best interest of the federation as a whole. The Governing Body, as now, would consist of elected parents and staff, representatives of the Local Authority, the Diocese, and across the community. The composition of the proposed Governing Body is shown in Section 4.

The new Federation Governing Body would commence on Thursday 1st September 2016, at which point the existing Governing Bodies of the Federation of Scholes (Elmet) and Wetherby St James’ Church of England Primary Schools, and Moortown Primary School, would be dissolved.

The new Federation Governing Body would have exactly the same duties and responsibilities as any other school as laid down by the Department for Education. Its role would be to make sure that the best possible standards of education and attainment are being provided for its current and future pupils. It would encourage, support and challenge the leadership team to achieve this. Proper regard would be given to curriculum co-ordination where appropriate and beneficial staff development and deployment, cost effectiveness and economies of scale and to meeting all statutory obligations.

Leadership

The Federation would have a single Executive Head Teacher (Head of Federation) leading all three schools. The Executive Head Teacher would take the lead in the strategic direction in all schools, supported in the day to day management of all schools by the Senior Leadership Team in each school.

Other staff will continue to be employed as per their existing contracts.

Curriculum

Joint planning and co-ordination across the three schools would offer a continuous learning journey for pupils while offering opportunities to staff for developing specialised areas as well as encouraging and utilising specialised skills.

Admissions

The Admissions Authority for all schools will continue to be dealt with by Leeds City Council.

Budgets

The budget of each school would remain separate but would be managed by the Executive Head Teacher. The Executive Head Teacher would report the budget status through the Finance Committee to the Governing Body. This process is the same as the one currently employed by the existing Federation and Moortown Primary School.

Federated schools are able to spend some money jointly across the schools in the Federation for the mutual benefit of pupils.

Proposed composition of Federation Governing Body

The composition of the Federation Governing Body is determined by Part 3 of the School Governance (Federations) (England) Regulations 2012 as amended by the School Governance (Constitution and Federations) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2014 and School Governance (Constitution and Federations) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2016. This stipulates that the governing body must not be smaller than seven members, and must include:

  • two parent governors
  • the headteacher, unless the headteacher resigns as a governor
  • one, and only one, staff governor
  • one, and only one, local authority governor

The governing body may appoint as many additional co-opted governors as they consider necessary. However, the number of co-opted governors who are eligible to be elected or appointed as staff governors under Schedule 2 must not, when counted with the one staff governor and the headteacher, exceed one-third of the total membership of the governing body.

In addition, there would be two Foundation Governors appointed by the Diocese.

 

Proposed timetable for implementation

Step 1 – Information gathering

February 2016 – May 2016

Step 2 – The separate Governing Bodies resolve to pursue the process towards creating a Federation Governing Body, and to consult on Federation

16 March 2016 and 21 March 2016

Step 3 – Consultation period (minimum 6 weeks required)

Monday 06 June 2016 to Monday 18 July 2016

Step 4 – Existing Federation Governing Body meets to consider responses to the proposals, and votes on whether to proceed with the proposals, with or without modifications.

Wednesday 20 July 2016

Step 5 – If agreed, then both the existing Governing Bodies would be dissolved and the new Federation Governing Body would be constituted.

Thursday 1st September 2016 

How do I respond?

The Governing Bodies of the Federation of Scholes (Elmet) and Wetherby St James’ Church of England Primary Schools, and Moortown Primary School, would really like to hear your views. It would be most helpful to have these in writing, so that we can review all of the responses together. You can voice your opinion by:

1.     Completing the attached questionnaire or writing a letter, sending it to:

  • Nigel Gray, Chair of Governors, Federation of Scholes (Elmet) and Wetherby St James’ Church of England Primary Schools c/o Scholes (Elmet) Primary
    Station Road, Scholes, LS15 4BJ
  • Becky Lawrence, Chair of Governors, Moortown Primary School, Shadwell Lane, Leeds LS17 6DR

2.     Emailing your views to:

  • Nigel Gray: nigel.gray@nhs.net
  • Becky Lawrence: becklylawrence@moortown.leeds.sch.uk

 

There will be discussion meetings for parents/carers and stakeholders of all schools. These will be held at:

  • 7pm on Tuesday 5th July at Moortown Primary School
  • 4pm on Thursday 7th July at Scholes (Elmet) Primary School
  • 9am on Friday 8th July at St James’ CE Primary School

You are free to attend any meeting regardless of which school you are connected with.

  • Moortown Primary School, Shadwell Lane, Moortown, Leeds LS17 6DR
  • Scholes (Elmet) Primary School, Station Road, Scholes, Leeds LS15 4BJ
  • St James’ CE Primary School, Hallfield Lane, Wetherby, West Yorkshire LS22 6JS

SEAL theme 'Changes'

Posted on 05 June 2016 by Mrs Taylor

As we enter our final half term, the next SEAL theme looks at Changes.

We begin with a focus on manners and I cover my mouth (when I cough, sneeze or yawn) is our weekly statement.

The ‘Vampire method’ can help to prevent germs spreading. By coughing or sneezing into our elbow, germs are not spread into the air or on our hands which may contaminate other things.  Don’t forget to ‘use your sleeve to cough and sneeze’.

Following this, we will begin the SEAL theme of Changes. This theme aims to equip children with an understanding of different types of change, positive and negative, and common responses to change. It aims to develop knowledge, understanding and skills in three key social and emotional aspects of living and learning: motivation, managing feelings and social skills.

The key ideas and concepts behind this theme are:

  • Change can be uncomfortable, because it can threaten our basic needs to feel safe and to belong
  • Change can also be stimulating and welcome
  • Both adults and children can experience a range of powerful and conflicting emotions as a result of change – for example, excitement, anxiety, uncertainty, loss, anger, resentment
  • Worries about change can be made worse by uncertainty, lack of information, or misinformation and lack of support from others
  • People’s responses to and ability to cope with change are very variable, and might be influenced by individual temperament, previous experience of change, and the nature of the change – chosen or imposed, expected or unexpected, within our control or out of our control
  • Some children may welcome most forms of change and dislike routine and predictability. Other children may find even small changes very difficult.

Within school, children, who are coping with or have undergone significant change, are supported in a variety of ways:

  • Our positive ethos within school
  • Support systems, from staff and peers, for children who have undergone change or who maybe new to the school
  • SEAL and circle time sessions where children feel safe to talk about their feelings
  • Class SEAL boxes for children to record any concerns
  • Preparing children wherever possible for planned changes for example, a change of class teacher, Key Stage or even school

Money Matters round up

Posted on 29 May 2016 by Mrs Taylor

This week we’ve had our whole school themed week, Money Matters.  There has been some great learning about how to spend, save, donate and get money.

‘It’s been fun and interesting to learn things we didn’t know about money.’

Some highlights include:

  • All classes visiting Barclays Bank.  Thank you to Steve Fergusson, the branch manager, and all his staff for supporting this.
  • Moneysense workshops with KS1 and KS2 classes.  Thank you to all volunteers from RBS and NatWest who supported these sessions.
  • Hearing about how our new school charities, Yorkshire Air Ambulance and Leeds Mind, use donations and also how one of our old school charities, St Gemma’s Hospice, have used our donations.
  • Donating money to our charities through our Hotshots sponsored event.  Please ensure sponsorship money is sent to school.
  • Donating loads of pennies to our charities too.
  • Seeing children starting to use their School Saving Club accounts – taking responsibility for managing their money.
  • And finally, to our parents and a governor who were able to spare time to come and talk to the children about their money-related jobs.

Watch out for the first homework after the half term where children can show what they have learnt during the week.

To find out more about how to support your child/children with financial education, here are a number of suggested websites.

The Jangle app contains interactive activities allowing parents and carers and their children to gain financial experience and to learn about money together in an active and varied way. They are focused on meaningful and relevant financial topics and are linked to the day to day real life experiences of children and their families – designed for children aged 7 – 11.

goHenry is a Pre-paid Card and App with unique parental controls, for young people aged 8 to 18.

Kwik cricket success

Posted on 28 May 2016 by Mrs Taylor

Congratulations to our Year 5/6 kwik cricket team, along with Harehills, who recently saw off Highfield and Alwoodley to qualify for the Leeds Kwik Cricket Finals at Weetwood on 17 June.

Well done and good luck in the final!

School Saving Club

Posted on 28 May 2016 by Mrs Taylor

This week, as part of our Money Matters themed week, was the first paying in session for children who have opened their School Saving Club accounts.


It was great to see children take responsibility and start to manage their money in their new accounts.

We have two more paying in dates this term and you are welcome to accompany your child to pay in their money.

  • Wednesday 22 June 3.15pm
  • Wednesday 20 July 3.15pm

Also, it’s not too late to open an account.  Please ask at the office for an application form.