Latest news from around the school

Happy Easter!

Posted on 19 April 2019 by Miss Beatson

Yesterday, we had a wonderful Easter service at St James’ church. The children spoke confidently and clearly, when telling us all about the Easter journey.

After school, we had lots of fun hunting for coloured eggs all around our school grounds and we had lots of winners on our Easter egg raffle. Thank you to the PTA and everybody who came to support the school.

Have a wonderful Easter weekend!


This half-term's Christian value is...

Posted on 18 April 2019 by Mr Roundtree


Peace is about positive harmony and healthy relationships between people. It involves spiritual as well as material security. Peace is a state of true wholeness, a state of well-being. This value promotes harmony, stability and security within the school and local community.

‘Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you.’ (John 14:27)

Why did the Church Council choose this Christian value? ‘Because when Jesus was sent down there was peace.’ (Y2 Church Council member)

Home challenge:

The dove carrying an olive branch is a symbol of peace in Christianity.

  • Research why this is a symbol of peace.
  • Is Christianity the only religion to have a symbol of peace?

Wonderful writing

Posted on 17 April 2019 by Mr Roundtree

We love this piece of writing by Emily in Year 5. (It’s typed up exactly as it was written; punctuation, spellings etc are all as they were written by Emily.)

I wandered the northern borders of my wonderful kingdom for weeks on end. I wanted to leave my dull village (and family) for an intriguing adventure.

I left the village to start an adventure. I slept and hunted for my own food to eat for days with my sword. It didn’t bother me though, I enjoyed the company of myself.

In the damp evening, I feasted on my latest prey cooked on a roaring fire. I fell asleep in my sheepskin blanket, staring at the dark, gloomy night sky. Next to me, I had my sharp pointy sword shimmering in the moon; I was thinking of when I would have to wipe the blood of some vile creature from the sharp edge.

As my campfire died, I carelessly fell asleep. Images of blood-thirsty trolls flickered through my mind. Suddenly, I heard a loud crack of a twig. I leaped up off the ground and grabbed by sword. Ready to pounce, I heard a groan followed by a thud of a mysterious body falling to the ground. Slowly, I walked over to the bush where the noises came from.

Carefully, I pulled back the branches. I looked down to find an old man with a bushy beard, his face contorted with pain. I nervously took off his iron helmet which covered his bald head.

Bacon Butty Morning

Posted on 29 March 2019 by Miss Beatson

Thank you to everybody who came to our bacon butty morning. Thank you to the PTA, who organised and cooked the sandwiches.

This event was sponsored by ‘Batman and Hoggin’ who provided all the sausages and bacon. Thank you for your support.



St James's Got Talent!

Posted on 22 March 2019 by Miss Beatson

Wow! We have seen some amazing talent at St James’ this afternoon: singing, dancing, gymnastics, comedians, skipping and much more. It was a fantastic way to end a week, where we have been recognising our talents for our Living and Learning theme. Well done to all the children who took part- you were marvellous!



Thinking of a holiday in term time?

Posted on 22 March 2019 by Mr Roundtree

If so, please: think again.

Amongst the continued talk about Brexit (or not to Brexit!), you might have missed this news story from yesterday: The number of fines issued to parents in England for taking children on term time holidays has almost doubled in a year, statistics show.

Penalty notices rose by 93% to almost 223,000 in 2017-18. In Leeds, there were 2620 fines for term-time absence caused by holidays – that’s 25 pupils in every 1,000, which averages out to about two or three pupils at St James’ CE Primary.

“Unauthorised family holiday absence” was the most common reason for attendance fines, the Department for Education (DfE) said.

In our school, governors have agreed an attendance policy that’s clear: we can’t authorise a holiday in term time – we value learning too much to authorise a disruption in children’s education. If you do anticipate your child may have to have a day or more off school (to attend a funeral or a parent’s graduation, for example), please do speak with the Head of School and also ask at the office for a form to complete.

Positive pupils

Posted on 18 March 2019 by Mr Roundtree

Our governors play an active role in our school – find out more about the governing body and what they do. One of our governors is responsible for collecting the views of pupils – an important role because we value the views of pupils so much. As well as staff in school, it’s useful for a governor to do this because children sometimes prefer to talk to an ‘outsider’.

Here’s what our governor found following a recent visit where she spoke with a group of pupils:

All of the children said they enjoyed school.

  • Y1: ‘I like school because it is fun.’
  • Y3: ‘I enjoy school because we get to do fun learning.’
  • Y6: ‘I enjoy school because we get to spend time with our friends and do loads of different things.’

All children were sure that their teachers helps them.

  • Y5: ‘My teacher sits next to me and explains it a little more so that I feel more confident.’
  • Y4: ‘My teacher sometimes gives me a step in my book and that helps me understand things a bit better.’

All children said that their learning is challenging.

  • Y6: ‘Sometimes, my teacher gives me learning that means I have to think about lots of things at once. Like in maths. I have to think about division, money and times tables. It’s hard!’

All children enjoy learning.

  • Y2: ‘School is lots of fun.’
  • Y4: ‘I enjoy doing RIC in reading sessions.’
  • Y5: ‘I enjoy doing art learning with Mrs Bald.’

All children thought that their teacher listened to what they have to say.

  • Y6: ‘My teacher listens to what I have to say in all lessons. When we read our class novel and she asks our opinion, she listens to what I have to say.’
  • Y4: ‘My teacher listens to me in all the lessons. She always makes sure everyone else listens too so that we follow the school rules.’

All children knew to speak to an adult if something was worrying them.

  • Y5: ‘We can find an adult even at lunchtime if we have a worry.’

Linked to this, all the children could tell the governor that they could write a worry down and the teacher ‘would know it was in there’. One comment relating to bullying was interesting: ‘Sometimes people fall out but I don’t think it is bullying.’

Powerful poetry

Posted on 13 March 2019 by Mr Roundtree

Look at this lovely poem written by Olivia in Year 6. Olivia wrote this at home (it wasn’t a homework task). Well done, Olivia!

Nature’s Call

I sit there looking ashore

With the cute little waves I adore

The sails on the boats blow

Thinking nobody ever comes or goes

The howling wind's in my ear

So lonely no one is here

The rain is pouring, wetting me so

The gulls waiting row on row

The sea almost calling for me

As I see a seashell, I cry out with glee

The beach is my home and that's where I'll be.


World Book Day

Posted on 09 March 2019 by Miss Beatson

We had a fantastic World Book Day. Well done to all the children who dressed up as a book character. Thank you to Miss Wood from Wetherby Library who came to judge our classroom doors. Each class transformed their door into a book cover.

First Steps: The Gruffalo’s Child

Y3/4 Charlie and the Chocolate Factory

Y1/2 Man on the Moon

Y5/6 Alex Rider: Crocodile Tears

The winners were foundation with the book Whatever Next?

Our older children spent some of the afternoon reading to our foundation children and sharing some of their favourite stories.



Attendance Matters

Posted on 08 March 2019 by Mr Roundtree

Well done to Y3,4 class who have the highest attendance in school so far this year! Up to the beginning of March, the average attendance for each class is:

  • Foundation 2: 95.1%
  • Y1,2: 94.8%
  • Y3,4: 96.4%
  • Y5,6: 96.0%

The whole school attendance figure is 95.7%, so both Y3,4 and Y5,6 classes are above the school average – great stuff!

Don’t forget that for this half-term and up to the Easter weekend (25 February – 18 April), we’re running our Amazing Attendance competition. All the pupils with attendance during this period that’s 98% or more will be entered into a prize draw. There’ll be a lucky winner from the younger classes (Foundation and Y1,2) and another winner from the older classes (Y3,4 and Y5,6), winning a £20 voucher for Ask restaurant.