Our weekly message (Friday 21 June 2024)

Posted on Friday 21 June 2024 by Mr Roundtree

First off this week… Don’t forget out Sports Day on Wednesday:

  • Nursery and Reception – 9.15am-11.00am
  • Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 1.30pm – 3.00pm

We’re also excited to be hosting the St James’s Got Talent show on Tuesday evening at 6.00pm. Forget Britain’s Got Talent – St James’ has enough talent to entertain and surprise and intrigue!


Every year, we review our Uniform Policy. We know some parents/carers like to start preparing early for the new school year, so please read the latest version.

Please note what we expect children to wear on PE days – it basically only involves a change for the bottom half:

item description additional notes
t-shirt indoor: plain white t-shirt (long or short sleeved)

outdoor: as above, plus the school uniform top

– for an extra layer, wear school top/fleece

– this can be a t-shirt or polo-shirt (shirts with logos are available, but not essential)

– avoid short tops (eg crop tops)

shorts plain grey/black/navy shorts or PE skirt – avoid very short shorts
tracksuit bottoms plain grey/black/navy tracksuit bottoms/leggings – ideal for outdoor use
footwear indoor: plain pumps/trainers

outdoor: plain trainers

– trainers can be those worn to school

– avoid bright colours

Annual survey

Your views count. Every year, we ask for your views and we follow up on as many as we can. Thank you to the 18 parents/carers who have already completed it. If you’ve not yes, there’s still time: please complete this year’s survey before the 05 July deadline.


It’s not been a great summer yet, has it? With the hope we might enjoy some sunnier days ahead, don’t forget to follow the NHS advice on sun protection for your child.

Summer Fair

Posted on Monday 17 June 2024 by Miss Beatson

We had our annual Summer Fair on Friday and what a great success it was!

Thank you to the  PTA who organised the event and to everybody who came along to support the school.

The total raised was a magnificent £1,645! This is the most we’ve raised at a PTA event.

Thanks again to all involved.


Our weekly message (Friday 14 June 2024)

Posted on Friday 14 June 2024 by Mr Roundtree

Don’t forget the school photographer’s in next Wednesday to take class pics – please make sure your child is in uniform, even if it’s a PE day.

This week’s message comes from out Science and Foundation Subjects Leader. It’s about the final topic of the year…

What is this half-term’s topic?

Design and Technology is the driving subject for this half-term and it’s a great topic to finish the year! The focus for all classes this year is textiles (next year, it’s construction) so children will be busy designing and making products using fabric.

A key aspect of the Design and Technology curriculum is the understanding that products don’t just get made. Instead, they go through a design process that includes three key elements: evaluate, design and make. Think of this process as a cycle. For example, St James Motors want to create a new family car. Before the car is made, they need to evaluate existing products and talk to customers so that they’re clear about what the new car needs to have. They will then design the car and evaluate those designs. They may make a prototype of the car to help them evaluate the designs. Next, they’ll decide on a final design that will go into production and get made. This finished product will be evaluated and the whole process starts again.

Each phase has age-related specific knowledge, skills and vocabulary that they’ll learn, use and apply across the topic – see pages 14 and 15 of our Topic Curriculum Guide.

Years 1 and 2

The product children will be designing, making and evaluating is a hand puppet. They’ll start by learning about the design process before looking at and evaluating existing hand puppet products. They’ll then learn to use an over stitch and practise threading needles and tying knots. Following this, they’ll be introduced to all the materials they can use to create their puppet. Once they’re familiar with the materials, they’ll design their puppet. Next, it’s on to the making stage. They’ve already honed their sewing skills so they should be confident making and then decorating their puppets according to their designs. Finally, it’s evaluation time: children will compare their designs to their finished products. They’ll reflect on successes and things they’d do differently next time.

Years 3 and 4

The product the children will be designing, making and evaluating is a pouch. The function of this pouch is entirely up to them. It could be used to store some pens, trading cards, a shell collection. Children can be as creative as they like – as long as the pouch can be made using a 20cm² piece of felt!

Before they begin to design their pouch, they’ll learn about a famous designer and how they became a designer. They’ll also learn some important skills that a designer needs to have. Children will then evaluate existing pouches, with a focus on fastenings, and will then design their pouch. They’ll practise their sewing skills, becoming proficient using a running stitch. They’ll then begin to make their pouches. First, they’ll create a template which they’ll use to cut out the pieces. Next, they’ll join the pieces using their running stitch and create a fastening for their pouch. Finally, they’ll evaluate their designs by comparing them to their designs, testing whether they’re fit for purpose and reflecting on their successes and areas to improve.

Years 5 and 6

Children will be designing, making and evaluating a cushion. However, before they get stuck into their cushion, they’ll learn about some designers who changed the world: Isambard Kingdom Brunel, George Stephenson, Lewis Latimer and Jony Ive. They’ll learn about their creations and their impact and look for things that link the designers.

Following this, children will learn about the importance of design criteria when designing a product. After this, they’ll practise their sewing skills and learn how to sew using a backstitch. Next, they’ll evaluate existing cushions. They’ll then decide on the specific design criteria for their cushions and create their designs using an annotated sketch, detailing the dimensions of their product. They’ll learn about the importance of using sustainable materials when researching the filling used for their cushion (the plan is to use old, unwanted pieces of fabric to stuff the cushions rather than Polyfill so please have a look through your wardrobe and keep hold of any old t-shirts or other clothes as we’ll need them later in the half-term).

Children will use a template to cut out the shapes, use a backstitch to appliqué decoration to their cushion, before finally sewing the pieces together and stuffing them. The final stage is to evaluate the designs against the design criteria.

How can you help?

Talk to your child about what they have been learning in class. The class news page of the school website is a good place to go to find out more about what the children are doing.

The school library and local libraries will have some books about Design and Technology which your child will be able to borrow and develop both their reading skills and design knowledge.

Finally, there’s a lot of programmes on CBBC and CBeebies with a Design and Technology focus:

  • Bitz and Bob
  • Grace’s Amazing Machines
  • Junk Rescue
  • Maddie’s Do You Know?
  • The Dengineers

Finally, don’t forget to complete our annual survey – it’ll only take a few minutes and we do take on board as many views as we can.


Posted on Monday 10 June 2024 by Miss Beatson

Last half term, we had our second attendance competition of the year. All children who had attendance of 96% or above were entered into a prize draw. Well done to Hope in Year 6 who won the competition and received a £50 voucher!

Last week, most classes had attendance of 96% or above.  This was a great start to the final half term. Thank you to everybody who has been making sure their child arrives to school on time- this makes a big difference to the child’s school day.

Please complete our annual survey

Posted on Monday 10 June 2024 by Mr Roundtree

At St James’ CE Primary, we’re always keen to hear your views. We hope that you let us know any questions, comments and concerns (as well as causes for celebration!) whenever these crop up, but we like to gather the views more generally at the end of the year – we do this via the annual survey.

Please complete the survey – it’ll only take a few minutes or so. You’ve plenty of time to do this – the deadline is 2pm on Friday 05 July 2024.

We can’t guarantee to meet the needs and wants of every parent / carer, but we do assure you that we consider all the points raise and aim to act on specific points that are raised by many, or a useful idea raised by just a few.

We’re looking forward to reading your views.

Our weekly message (Friday 07 June 2024)

Posted on Friday 07 June 2024 by Mr Roundtree

We’re into the final half-term of the school year – it’s always a busy one, so please keep an eye on the school calendar. Coming up soon are a few things you might want to know about…

For children in Year 1 and some children in Year 2: Next week, children in Year 1 (and those who didn’t meet the standard who are in Year 2) will take part in an assessment around their phonics skills. Check out the government’s phonics screening check information for parents.

For children in Year 4: Also next week, Year 4 children will take an online assessment to check their quick recall of times tables and division facts. Check out the guide for parents. Keep practising on Times Tables Rock Stars!

For all children: On Wednesday 19 June, the school photographer is in to take class photos.

Next week, look out for the link to our annual survey of parents and carers. too.

Attendance matters

At the start of every half-term, we review our attendance. For the full school year so far, up to the end of the Summer 1 half-term (Thursday 23 May), the whole school attendance figure was 93.9%. That’s higher than the national figure up to Friday 17 May: 93.0%. However, it’s lower than the national figure for primary schools: 94.7%.

When we look more closely, we know there’s some great attendance in school: well done to Reception (95.2%), Year 3 (96.2%) and Year 4 (96.8%) pupils for their great attendance, all well above the national figures.

Attendance matters:

  • Every day matters: we can see that attendance on Fridays is lower than other days – please avoid unnecessary days off to extend weekend breaks
  • Every minute matters: we can see that pupils arriving late has an impact on attendance, especially for children in Year 5 and Year 6 – please make sure your child sets off for school with plenty of time

Let’s get our whole-school attendance rate closer to the national rate for primary schools by the end of the year!

SEND support

SENDIASS support children and young people with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) and their parents and carers to help with their related concerns or questions. They provide a free, impartial and confidential service through their website and online resources. You can self-refer to this service by contacting them directly. Find out more about SENDIASS in this short clip.

Here are the dates of forthcoming support sessions.

Have a happy and healthy half-term.

Day 2 at Robinwood

Posted on Thursday 06 June 2024 by Miss Beatson

Our Year 6 children have had another busy, fun day at Robinwood.

Year 6 residential

Posted on Wednesday 05 June 2024 by Miss Beatson

The Year 6 children have arrived at Robinwood and having a great first day and night. They’ve been raft building, canoeing and swinging on the trapeze!

Our Christian value this half-term is…

Posted on Monday 03 June 2024 by Mr Roundtree


At St James’ CE Primary School, we learn about Christian values that help us to become well-rounded citizens in society. Each half-term, we have a new Christian value that will be embedded into our collective worship and our reflection areas.

‘Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.’ Joshua 1:9

One of the Hebrew words translated as ‘courage’ means ‘to show oneself strong’.

The Bible abounds with stories of courage. Moses was courageous when he confronted the Pharaoh of Egypt and commanded him to let God’s people go (Exodus 5). Joshua was courageous when he conquered Canaan (Joshua 1). Young David was courageous when he faced and fell the giant Goliath (1 Samuel 17).

The Bible says we can be courageous by having faith and confidence in the fact that God is with us and for us. This value promotes the act of speaking out against an issue of injustice, often on behalf of those whose voice is not heard.

A Junior Leader in school thinks this value is important because, ‘It’s all about being brave and you have to be brave to get through something hard in life’.

Help at home!

Talk together about a time when you have been courageous or you have seen someone being courageous.

Have a think about times that are coming up when you can show courage.

Our weekly message (Friday 24 May 2024)

Posted on Friday 24 May 2024 by Mr Roundtree

Our message this week is a short one…

Positive Home-School Relationships

Governors have asked us to remind you about a recent policy – our Positive Home-School Relationships Policy. Please check it out.

And two things worth knowing about: one for Year 1 and 2 children, and the other for children in Year 4.

Year 1 and 2: Phonics screening check

In the week beginning 10 June, children in Year 1 (and those who didn’t meet the standard who are in Year 2) will take part in an assessment around their phonics skills. Check out the government’s phonics screening check information for parents.

Year 4: Multiplication tables check

In the same week (beginning 10 June), Year 4 children will take an online assessment to check their quick recall of times tables and division facts. Check out the guide for parents. Keep practising on Times Tables Rock Stars!


Have a happy and healthy – and hopefully drier – half-term week!