At Whitchurch Primary School we have a friendly and experienced team that support those who need a little extra help and/or an extra challenge. Our Learning Support Team is made up of large number of support staff across each year group, and we work closely with a number of outside agencies. Support is given in a wide variety of ways, tailored to each child’s individual needs. If a child requires additional support, the process and intervention that is put into place will be through discussion with parents/carers and form part of a three-way process between the child as a learner, the teachers and the parents.
Able, Gifted and Talented Pupils
In every lesson our children are challenged to reach their full potential and to strive beyond it, but for those with a particular gift and talent there are plenty of opportunities within the curriculum and through extra-curricular activities for them to excel.
Gifted refers to pupils who achieve or have the ability to achieve at a level significantly in advance of their year group within our school, in the core subjects (English, Maths and Science). Talented refers to pupils who have this ability or potential in art, music, P.E., sport or creative art. More able refers to pupils in the top five to ten percent of each year group for core subjects.
The more able maths groups in Year 5 and 6 take part in the United Kingdom Mathematics Trust’s annual Junior Mathematics Challenge, which is an exam aimed at pupils in Year 8 or below.
There are many after school and lunchtime clubs and activities that enable Able, Gifted and Talented pupils to reach their full potential. These include QuadKids, an athletics club; Radio Station Club, where pupils broadcast live to the school; School Band and Grade 1 Club, for talented musicians; Whitchurch FM, a safe social learning platform for children; Film Club, which encourages critical writing; and a Book Club in each year group.
We are also a proud holder of the NACE Challenge Award, which recognises outstanding provision for Able, Gifted and Talented pupils.
For more information about Able, Gifted and Talented provision at Whitchurch Primary School visit the Frog Able, Gifted and Talented site.
Many of the children and staff at Whitchurch Primary School are able to speak more than one language. As a school, we are able to speak approximately 33 different languages, including British Sign Language and Makaton.
Occasionally we have families who have recently moved to England and arrive at school able to speak little to no English language. These children are referred to nationally as new arrivals.
At Whitchurch Primary School we will:
- Take account of the cultural, linguistic and academic needs of newly arrived pupils and recognise the positive contribution newly arrived pupils can make to our school.
- Welcome new arrivals with a whole school approach, ensuring that we have a carefully considered process for welcoming all new arrivals.
- Positively reflect the new arrivals’ language and culture throughout the school environment.
- Build partnerships with parents as an essential element of working with newly arrived children.
- The school is committed to upholding the United Nations Convention on the Rights of a Child. We promote a Rights Respecting ethos within the school; all children’s rights are respected and upheld.
- Newly arrived families are invited to visit the school and meet with a member of the EAL team prior to the child starting school.
- Priority areas around the school are labelled in the child’s home language e.g. toilet, classroom.
- The child is given a bracelet to wear with pictures of immediately useful phrases. The pictures are illustrated in the child’s home language and English.
- A personalised provision map of language support is put in place to include phonics, grammar, and topic vocabulary. Where possible, the child’s home language is used to facilitate learning English. Progress is reviewed regularly.
For more information about Language Support at Whitchurch Primary School visit the Language Support site on Frog.
At Whitchurch Primary School we are mindful that children spend a significant part of their time at school. We recognise that emotional concerns can be barriers to a child’s learning. The school has a variety of structures in place to identify and support a child experiencing difficulties of this nature.
Worry Eaters Each classroom has a worry eater, a place for pupils to share their concerns with their teacher. This facility is also available to children electronically via the school’s Worry Eaters site on our learning platform, Frog.
Social Skills / Art Therapy Mrs Maan assists children in developing social skills. Mrs Maan also completes ‘drawing and talking’ therapy.
Pets as Therapy: Read2Dogs We are very lucky to be affiliated with the Pets as Therapy national charity. Mrs Bradley visits us, every Monday morning, with either Flynn or Hotspur, her beautiful Irish Red Setters, and reads with selected children.
Life Coaching The school invests in life-coaching and mentoring for children that have experienced upheaval or struggle to manage their emotions.
Forest School The Forest School enables young people of all abilities to develop self-confidence and a sense of achievement through participation in forest skills sessions, which include using tools, building a fire, making shelters and willow weaving, all in a safe and supervised environment.
Winston’s Wish The school have links with the charity Winston’s Wish. Winston’s Wish work with children and families who have suffered a bereavement.
Food Bank The school have links with the Harrow Food Bank. The school are able to allocate food bank vouchers.
We believe the school’s strong pastoral ethos is a significant feature in the outstanding academic attainment of our students. We are always interested in developing this aspect of our curriculum. If you have any suggestions please contact the school office.
Pupils with Special Educational Needs
Whitchurch Primary School provides an inclusive, broad and balanced curriculum for all children, including those with special educational needs. The National Curriculum is our starting point for planning that meets with specific needs of individuals and groups of children. When planning, teachers set differentiated learning challenges and respond to children’s diverse learning needs.
There may be a minority of children with particular learning and assessment requirements that could create barriers to learning and progress. These requirements are likely to arise as a consequence of a child having special educational needs. Teachers take account of these requirements and make provision, where necessary, to support individuals or groups of children and thus enable them to participate effectively in curriculum and assessment activities.
Children may have special education needs either throughout, or at any time during their school career. Our SEN policy ensures that curriculum planning and assessment for children with special educational needs takes account of the learning needs of the child.
At Whitchurch Primary we also believe that more able, gifted children have special educational needs and we strive to ensure the needs of these children are provided for through our ‘Able, Gifted and Talented Policy’.
Aims and Objectives
• To create an environment that meets the special educational needs of each child;
• To ensure that the special educational needs of children are identified, assessed and provided for;
• To make clear the expectations of all partners in the process;
• To identify the roles and responsibilities of staff in providing for children’s special educational needs;
• To enable all children to have full access to all elements of the school curriculum and school life;
• To enable children in the school to work towards promoting a positive self image and self worth.
Please download our full SEN Policy
For information on the reforms please download the presentations below:
Harrow’s Local Offer – Information about services for young people with Special Educational Needs & Disabilities
Smile with Shiv – Information, Awareness and Fundraising for Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy
Whitchurch SEN Parent Cafe
Pupil Voice and Leadership
Pupil Voice and Leadership
The opinions of the children in Whitchurch are paramount in shaping the way the school works. The children are provided with plentiful opportunities to have a say in school life whether it be deciding on equipment or activities for playtime, planning a disco or discussing key issues. The children’s opinions are gathered in a variety of ways, for example, through surveys, questionnaires and discussions in class, in assemblies and on Frog (our learning platform). The children can also join a variety of committees that meet regularly, for example, the School Council and Digital Leaders. Pupils also have a variety of leadership opportunities such as the running of the radio stations and stationery shop. This relates to ARTICLES 12 and 13 of the U.N. Convention of the Rights of the Child.
We have a strong and active School Council which consists of a group of students who have been elected by our classes to represent the views of the pupils and raise issues with the Senior Leadership and Governors of the School.
The School Council are involved in important decision making, for example, they:
- take forward initiatives and projects on behalf of the pupils
- are involved in the strategic planning of the School Improvement Plan
- help improve teaching and learning
The School Council aims are as follows:
- To ensure the Senior Management Team and Governors respond to the views of all the pupils
- To have an opportunity to let teachers know pupils’ feelings and opinions
- To have a say in decisions that effect pupils in the school
- To play an active role in making Whitchurch Primary School a better place
- To help all pupils at Whitchurch Primary School to enjoy their education and feel safe being in school
We have two groups of digital leaders, who support with the teaching of Computing across the school. The infant team support other pupils in their own classes and are chosen by their teachers; the junior team, who applied for their roles, support teachers and pupils across the school and create and update the Digital Leaders site on our learning platform, which is full of tips and advice for pupils.
House Captains and Vice House Captains are Year 6 pupils who have been chosen for the role by their year group. Pupils are asked to give presentations and then elections are held. The role of the House Captains and the Vice House Captains is to organise sports events between the houses.
The school’s stationery shop is a non-profit venture run by Year 6 children. The shop is split into three categories: selling, ordering and human resources. In these subgroups the children take responsibility for the ordering of stock, trying new lines, budgeting, pricing, counting the money and arranging rotas for who is doing what and when.
To help children with their learning we use thinking maps, BLP (which stands for Building Learning Power) and Bloom’s Taxonomy higher-order thinking skills. This helps children with their everyday lives and encourages them to use their skills to enable them to further their learning. Once a week the children write in their Reflective Journal using a thinking map, about the things which they have learned that week and they link this to BLP. Children are encouraged to understand that they play an important part in their own learning, and as they get older they must take greater responsibility for their learning.
Trips and Residential Visits
Trips and Residentials
School trips are a powerful and positive teaching tool that help enhance pupils’ social, personal and emotional development. Activities in new environments can help teach life skills and improve independence. Learning outside the classroom can make lessons more memorable, and motivate and enthuse pupils to learn, adding value to pupils’ academic and personal development and providing opportunities for kinaesthetic learning (learning by doing).
The school runs a number of trips during the school day to enhance and enrich the curriculum. All year groups at Whitchurch participate in at least two educational trips during each academic year, building upon learning across all areas of the curriculum. Many of these trips are free, but for trips where there is a charge we ask parents to make a voluntary contribution; trips cannot go ahead if contributions are not made (see our charging policy).
Residential trips take place in years 4, 5 and 6. In Year 4 pupils take part in a one night residential to Kingswood Outdoor Activity Centre in Kent to develop self-confidence, resilience and problem-solving skills. In Year 5, children engage in water sports at Croft Farm Water Park in the Cotswolds for two nights. In their last year at Whitchurch, Year 6 pupils participate in a two night residential to Condover Hall in Shropshire. Pupils take part in a wide range of physical activities to further develop their resilience and confidence to approach experiences which are outside of their usual routine. There is a charge for all residential trips.
Ruislip Lido visit
Paradise Wildlife Park visit
Key Stage 1 Visits
Woodside Animal Farm visit
London Transport Museum visit
Pizza Express visit
Kew Gardens visit
Key Stage 2 Visits
Reveley Lodge visit
Natural History Museum visit
Hillingdon Outdoor Activity Centre visit
British Museum visit
Affinity Water visit
Kingswood Outdoor Activity Centre (one night residential)
Tower of London visit
Stanmore Treasure Hunt
Cross Lanes (one night residential)
Stanburn Blast Shelter visit
RAF Museum visit
Condover Hall (two night residential)
At Whitchurch we have a well-established Eco Garden that was created based on design contributions of the children, with funds raised by the school, supported by the PTA. The garden has a pond bursting with pond-life and raised beds for children to grow flowers and vegetables whatever their ability. There is a bird watching hut which can be used for life studies and lots of different exciting zones where children can explore and learn. We have a gardening club who tend the Eco Garden and grow flowers and vegetables that are used on a stall at the Summer Fair or sometimes used in Food Technology lessons. The garden is the perfect outdoor area to enhance learning in Science and across the curriculum.
Whitchurch Primary School runs its own breakfast club for the juniors in our well-equipped Food Technology room on a Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday from 8:30am. Toast is offered free of charge to the children.
Fun Development also run a breakfast club from 7:50am in the school hall. Visit the Breakfast and After School Club page for more information.
Children can come into the playground from 8:30am to meet friends, chat and play. The whistle is blown at 8:45am to start the day. The register is taken at 8:50am and the school day begins. We have silent reading first followed by an assembly, music rehearsal or lessons. Most classes have a Teaching Assistant to help with the children’s learning. For more information on the curriculum we provide please see our School Prospectus. Children are encouraged to bring a bottle of water every day which they can drink from throughout lessons. They also need a bag and pencil case with set equipment.
There are two times during the day that are spent in the playground with other children throughout the school. The members of staff on duty will be especially aware of, and look out for, Reception children. Older children are also very thoughtful towards younger children and enjoy taking them under their wing and looking after them. Please ensure your child has appropriate clothing for all weather conditions, for example: Winter – warm coat, hat, gloves, scarf; Summer – sun hat, apply sun cream before school, water bottle in school.
Lunch is from 12:10 to 1:10pm in the infants and 12:15 to 1:15pm in the juniors. The children eat their food then have access to the outside facilities for more free-time, or they can choose a club to join. We provide a hot meals service at lunchtimes or children can choose to bring their own lunches.
If your child is entitled to, or you think they may be entitled to, free school meals then please contact the London Borough of Harrow on 020 8863 5611. Most of you will be aware that local councils are facing significant cuts to their budgets and this is likely to result in a reduction of funding. In order to get the money that Whitchurch School is entitled to, we ask that parents who qualify for FSM apply for them even if they do not wish to take them up.
At Whitchurch Primary children can apply to join a large range of lunchtime or after school clubs run by staff within the school, such as chess, football and knitting. Please look at our Clubs page for more information.
After School Club
Fun Development run an on-site after school club in the school halls every evening. The children are provided with a snack and various play and sports activities or they can sit and complete homework or engage in quiet activities.
Walking Home from School
If parents/carers wish their Year 5 or 6 child to be allowed to walk home from school alone, they will need to send a written and signed letter to the school giving their permission.
In the education system there are often a multitude of acronyms that make understanding your child’s school life difficult at times. Here is a list that we hope will help you.
- A,G&T – Able, Gifted and Talented
- AHT – Assistant Head Teacher
- AST – Advanced Skills Teacher
- CT – Class Teacher
- DBS – Disclosure and Barring Service (criminal records check)
- DfE – Department for Education (government)
- DHT – Deputy Head Teacher
- EWO – Educational Welfare Officer
- EY – Early Years
- EYFS – Early Years Foundation Stage (birth to 5 years)
- FE – Further Education
- FSM – Free School Meals
- HLTA – Higher Level Teaching Assistant
- HT – Head Teacher
- ICT – Information Communication Technology
- KS1 – Key Stage 1 (Years 1 and 2)
- KS2 – Key Stage 2 (Years 3-6)
- KS3 – Key Stage 3 (Years 7-9)
- KS4 – Key stage 4 (Years 10-11)
- LA – Local Authority
- LO – Learning Objective
- LP – Learning Platform
- LSA – Learning Support Assistant
- NC – National Curriculum
- NQT – Newly Qualified Teacher
- Ofsted – Office for Standards in Education
- PSHE – Personal, Social, Health and Economic Education
- SATs – Standard Attainment Tests
- SEN – Special Educational Needs
- SEND – Special Educational Needs and Disabilities
- SIP – School Improvement Plan
- SLE – Specialist Leader of Education
- SLT – Senior Leadership Team
- SMSA – School Meals Supervisory Assistant
- SPaG – Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar
- TA – Teaching Assistant
- VLE – Virtual Learning Environment
Special Educational Needs
In the education system there are often a multitude of acronyms that make understanding your child’s school life difficult at times. Here is a list that we hope will help you.
- A,G&T – Able,Gifted and Talented
- ADD – Attention Deficit Disorder
- ADHD – Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder
- AEO – Assistant Education Officer
- ASD – Autistic Spectrum Disorder
- BESD – Behavioural, Emotional and Social Development
- BSL – British Sign Language
- BSS – Behaviour Support Service
- CAF – Common Assessment Framework
- CoP – Code of Practice
- EA – Equality Act
- EAL – English as an Additional Language
- ENT – Ear, Nose and Throat
- EO – Education Officer
- EOTAS – Education Other Than At School
- EP – Educational Psychologist
- HI – Hearing Impairment
- MLD – Moderate Learning Difficulties
- NAS – National Autistic Society
- OT – Occupational Therapist
- PMLD – Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties
- PSP – Pastoral Support Plan
- SALT – Speech and Language Therapist
- SCD – Social Communication Disorder
- SEN – Special Educational Needs/ SEND – Special Educational Needs and Disability
- SENCO – Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator
- SENDIST – Special Educational Needs and Disability Tribunal
- SLD – Severe Learning Difficulties
- SpLD – Specific Learning Difficulties
- TISM – Transition Inclusion Support Meeting
- TR – Transition Review
- VI – Visual Impairment