School Improvement

Whitchurch Primary School and Nursery is a learning focussed community where happiness is derived from achievement and positive self-esteem. It is a place where individuals develop the confidence in themselves and the understanding of others around them to be active contributors to society.

The innovative and individually targeted curriculum, allows all pupils to succeed in their own areas of strength; the school house system and innovative music department gives everyone the chance to shine outside the classroom; and in all areas individual enterprise and endeavour are both expected and rewarded, so ensuring that pupils and staff at the school fulfil their potential.

Safeguarding Statement
Whitchurch Primary is committed to safeguarding and promoting the well being of children and young people and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment.
Mission Statement

Whitchurch Primary aims to provide quality teaching and learning for all its pupils, delivering a curriculum for the development of the whole child and one that is fitting for the 21st century, in a safe, secure, happy, caring and stimulating environment.

Ethos Statement
Whitchurch Primary serves its community by providing an education of the highest quality within the context and understanding of shared values, consideration and co-operation, honesty, respect and openness. The school promotes an understanding of the meaning and significance of these values through the experience it offers its pupils.
Aims of the School

Whitchurch Primary School aims to:

  • Ensure the ‘Every Child Matters’ agenda is realised;
  • Create an interesting and stimulating environment which reflects our values and promotes a sense of community as well as an individual sense of self-worth;
  • Develop a community of life-long learners where access to knowledge is a right for all and a recognised achievement;
  • Provide learning experiences that will allow all pupils equal opportunities to develop their thinking and creative skills;
  • Promote social, cultural, moral and spiritual development, preparing pupils to be responsible citizens;
  • Encourage the partnership with parents/carers and foster positive links with the community.

We believe the most effective way of achieving these aims is through the promotion of:

  • Inquiry and curiosity; enthusiasm and challenge; sharing and learning together; the acceptance and embracement of differences; openness; self respect and persistence.
Strategic Long-Term View and Commitment: Themes
The strategic plan and direction of the school is regularly monitored, evaluated and reviewed by the staff, Standards and Inclusion committee and the full Governing Body.

Staff and Governors are committed to an ambitious strategy for its long-term development. We want the school to be recognised as a successful school where pupils from all groups fulfil and exceed their potential.

Standards – we want the best educational standards for all of our children and the governors are very determined to see the school deliver this high quality education. We are committed to rigorous self-evaluation systems and procedures to ensure that strengths and weaknesses are identified. We will encourage any changes necessary to raise standards and make available resources to deliver the improvements including any IT systems to aid learning and assessment. We will target teacher expectations as well as pupil under achievement and ensure that standards of teaching and learning are consistently good and outstanding. We believe that standards are affected by the emotional well-being of our pupils and staff. We recognise the need for emotional support systems, a healthy balance between structure and flexibility and work life and home, and will endeavor to implement manageable, sustainable systems to address these issues.

Curriculum – we have always stressed the need for a balanced approach to education. We believe it is very important that children have a wide range of opportunities and that educational experience is not confined to preparing for national tests. We shall continue to support initiatives and projects to encourage creative thinking and activity and allow teachers to foster and develop the natural sense of curiosity and self-expression in children. We are developing our approach to creativity through cross-curricular planning. The outdoor learning environment is an important on-going development area for the school and will be used fully to enhance our curriculum and the pupils’ learning throughout the school day.

Community – Whitchurch Primary School’s work outside the classroom plays a critical part in helping and supporting children’s learning. We want to develop the partnership between home and school and the community, promoting the school as a centre for life-long learning where skills and knowledge can be shared. We are keen to reciprocate the generosity and support of the community by making our resources and facilities available. We recognise the diverse needs of families and will develop facilities to help and support them. Offering children and adults opportunities for out of school care, learning, socialising and meeting spaces will not only benefit everyone but help local people to see the value of our school. We will continue to develop work with other schools e.g. through the Local Partnership initiative; sharing with and learning from each other in the pursuit of excellence, work as a knowledge Centre and a Partner School.

Long-Term Vision, Values and Aims
  • sustaining a successful school
  • continue to promote an inclusive school providing accessibility to all pupils in all aspects of school life
  • through rigorous self-evaluation, raise and maintain high standards in teaching and learning
  • encourage pupil motivation to seek new skills and increasing levels of knowledge and understanding
  • promote creativity
  • promote effective communication and closer partnerships between home and school, teachers and parents and the wider community
  • develop a dynamic and positive ethos and environment which encourages and values the individual within a team framework
  • continue to raise the profile of the school within the local area
  • extend and develop opportunities already available in the school for pupils to take responsibility for their own learning and behaviour
  • encourage community access to the physical resources and professional expertise of the school
  • recognise the contribution that the community makes towards curriculum development and citizenship education by fostering partnerships
  • recognise that the emotional and physical well-being of our pupils and staff can affect teaching and learning and that consideration should be given to the balance between personal needs and school/work demands
Curriculum, Standards and Inclusion
  • continue to review, update and enhance curriculum policies and schemes of work
  • use rigorous assessment data, tracking and target setting to raise standards
  • ensure multi-cultural and ethnic minority issues are addressed through policy and planning
  • continue to offer, through identified needs, teachers and support staff training to extend their knowledge and skills and help them develop professionally (CPD)
  • address continuity and progression through policy, planning, moderating and assessment
  • ensure a rich and varied curriculum beyond the national curriculum, allowing all pupils to grow and develop into well rounded individual who are confident, proud of their achievements and are happy and fulfilled
  • monitor, raise awareness and promote the value of good attendance and punctuality
  • continue to keep abreast of technological change, empowering pupils and staff with learning tools and making sure equipment is maintained and renewed when necessary
  • continue with recommendations from the school’s Nace Report
Leadership and Management
  • continue to develop systems and procedures for the monitoring and evaluation of leadership and management in the school and use these findings effectively to promote improvements throughout all areas of the school so that standards are maintained and improved
  • continue to develop the Governing body through training opportunities and through their monitoring and ‘critical friend’ role
  • maintain and improve (by evaluation and review and use of best value principles) effective and efficient financial systems
  • continue to develop the concept of dispersed leadership through the Leadership and Support Team and the Primary Leadership Strategy
  • continue to provide opportunities to reflect on practice and policy so that staff are effective learners
  • develop the long-term financial plan for the continued growth and development of the school
  • continue to monitor and record all financial systems and procedures
  • apply the principles of best value to financial planning
  • produce an annual financial audit
  • continue to be aware of and apply for government financial grants
  • continue to monitor and develop management of the kitchens and dinner service
  • work towards the financial management in schools standards
  • continue to implement the rolling programme of maintenance, decoration, repair and replacement
  • continue to give the highest priority to security and safety and carry out regular risk assessments
  • review the Health and Safety Policy and Letting Policy annually
  • promote community use of the school’s facilities and resources e.g. computer suite, halls, community room for family learning and adult education
  • build on improvements to the outside environment and embed in planning, looking for further curriculum opportunities
  • build on improvements to the provision of school meals
  • review and update the accessibility and sustainability plan every year
  • continue to develop communications with parent/carers through e.g. consultation, questionnaires, newsletter, information evenings and the internet
  • continue to develop the school’s links with the wider community e.g. through adult training, parent workshops, drop in’s, parent cafe and the knowledge centre
  • continue to share the school resources for community education
  • develop the Exeter University Links through Thinking Maps
  • develop links with the Children’s Centres
Setting Priorities for the Coming Year
It is the school’s responsibility to identify areas for improvement and the means by which these can be achieved. Priorities for the coming year will be based on the following:

  •  a current audit of strengths and weaknesses including an analysis of statutory and non-statutory tests
  • policies and initiatives of central government and those of the LA
  • continuing use of effective assessments
  • external audit of the school by OFSTED, LA and other external credited bodies
  • particular school and local issues
  • HMI recommendations
  • Local Partnership group initiatives
  • Developments in ICT in order to support learning, assessment, administration and parental communication

It is important that priorities should be those which have an impact on raising standards.

Monitoring will involve checking whether the tasks have been undertaken as planned and collecting evidence about the impact the initiatives are having using success criteria as a focus. Day to day monitoring of the SIP is the responsibility of the Head teacher together with members of the Leadership and Support Team. The governing Body will receive regular reports on progress from the Head teacher and the Governors will contribute to the monitoring process through focussed information gathering on school visits, committee meetings, SLT meetings and presentations.
Evaluating will involve the analysis of the evidence collected by monitoring activities and making judgements about whether a target has been achieved, whether further work is needed to consolidate improvement or whether a different set of actions is required. Questions about the impact on standards will be raised.
Annual Cycle
The SIP is a working dynamic document, in constant use by both staff and governors, in order to monitor and evaluate progress. The document reflects the financial year and as such needs to be in place during the summer term. It should therefore appear on the agenda for review by the full Governing Body at the beginning of the Spring term in order that individual priorities can be reviewed by the relevant governor committees and staff updates agreed.
Use of the School Improvement Plan
The SIP is one of the components used to produce the governor grid (including a themed programme for governor school visits). The governor grid is in turn a source used to support production of the individual committee meeting agendas.

The individual priorities, targets and costs within the SIP should be monitored by each relevant committee at the end of every term, with appropriate upward reporting to the next full governor body meeting. A review of the SIP should therefore be a standard agenda item for each committee at the end of the summer, autumn and spring terms.

The SIP is a dynamic document and as such should be used throughout the year to refer to and evaluate effects of decisions on Teaching and Learning.

Whitchurch Primary aims to provide quality teaching and learning for all its pupils