Latest news from around the school

Fab feedback

Posted on 06 February 2018 by Mr Roundtree

At St James’ CE Primary, we’re always wanting to keep getting better and better. Because of this, we value the support and advice from the Local Authority. Recently, our School Improvement Advisor visited; he spent a long time examining the learning journeys of children in Year 4 and, as well as providing us with useful recommendations, made lots of positive comments. These include:

In Maths books…

pupil response to feedback… is consistent and impacts on deepening of understanding

incisive and immediate feedback impacts on learning

clear learning journeys that provide appropriate incremental challenge and extended challenge for the more able


In Writing books…

clear evidence of learning sequences whereby elements of composition and grammar or punctuation are taught, rehearsed and applied via frequent (at least weekly) extended writing opportunity

good evidence of how reading is used to support the sentence level and grammar work seen in the children’s writing books

there is evidence that the majority are developing a neat, legible, joined handwriting style


In Reading books…

children have access to a wide range of texts including poetry, fiction, non-fiction and reference

teaching sequences are invariably linked to work seen in writing books

In Topic books…

the application of maths in topic work is some of the strongest the advisor has seen. These activities, which include Venn diagrams, classification tables, Carroll diagrams to categorise, and graph work are all relevant to the topic in hand and effective in helping children understanding the wider use of mathematics

good evidence to demonstrate the children enjoy a skills-based curriculum; for example, using map reading skills, globe use and practical science learning

Our School Improvement Advisor also did a ‘learning walk’ around school, spending some time in each class observing the teaching and learning that’s going on. He concluded:

Without exception across the school, teachers were observed demonstrated good subject knowledge and used this well to structure learning appropriately.  Subsequently, the learning behaviours of the vast majority of children are such that they listened attentively, settled quickly to task and and applied themselves well. For example, in Y5/6 classroom the children were focused on an extended writing task that had been developed from exploring Romeo and Juliet… The teacher’s working knowledge of the children…meant all children, regardless of ability, could access the challenge. Meanwhile, in Early Years, the provision appeared imaginatively organised. Challenge boards evident in each area ensured activities had purpose. In Y1/2, although the children were coming from and going to an additional church-led activity in another part of school, they showed some good resilience in their adventure story writing activity.

Great stuff!

Learning workshops

Posted on 01 February 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Thanks to the parents and carers of Year 2 and Year 6 children who came to school this week for a workshop around supporting their child’s learning at home. We’re really pleased to see people taking the time to learn how you can best support your child at home.

Here are two examples of the great feedback we got:

  • ‘We found it very informative on what [our child] should expect and how we can support her and help learning.’
  • ‘It helped us as we understand the SATs papers more thoroughly. This will enable us to support her better to achieve positive results.’

Watch a short video about the Key Stage 2 assessments (SATs) here.

Some spellings support

Posted on 15 January 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Have you checked out out Learn More pages? They contain lots of tips and ideas to support your child at home.

In particular, look at the Help Your Child page. On here, we’ve just published a new guide to support your child with their spellings – it’s full of ideas to learn spellings in an active way. Encourage your child to try out the ideas. They won’t all suit, but some may end up being their favourite – and most effective – strategy!

Playtimes and peers

Posted on 10 January 2018 by Mr Roundtree

This year at St James’ CE Primary, we’ve introduced peer mediators who help support the other children at playtimes. Here’s what some children have to say about peer mediators at our school:

‘When I was arguing with my friends, the peer mediators helped me sortit out and it came to a happy ending.’

‘When I don’t have anyone to play with, or when my friends are not playing a game properly, they come and sort it out and show us how to play it properly.’

‘Bailey and Alex helped me by telling people to stay away from me when I was upset. I said thank you to them.’

Well done and thank you to our peer mediators for carrying out this role so effectively and conscientiously.


Attendance matters

Posted on 02 January 2018 by Mr Roundtree

Our attendance figures for the Autumn term are really encouraging. The average dropped a little over the course of the term, and we’ll continue to monitor this closely. However, it’s great to compare this year’s figure with last year’s…

  • Autumn last year 96.2%
  • Autumn this year 97.1%

Attending school as much as possible is something which we know makes a difference to your child’s learning. This improvement is great – well done and thank you to pupils and parents/carers. Can we keep it up in 2018??

The year groups averages are:

  • Reception – 96.0%
  • Y1 – 95.0%
  • Y2 – 97.9%
  • Y3 – 97.5%
  • Y4 – 98.8%
  • Y5 – 97.3%
  • Y6 – 97.6%

Well done to the even numbered year groups! Years 2, 4 and 6 all have attendance that’s especially high! (How odd that the odd numbers are lower!)

PTA Events

Posted on 15 December 2017 by Miss Beatson

Thank you to everybody for supporting the PTA events this term. Over £1,000 has been raised over the three events and it will be used to improve the playground. Thank you to the PTA who have organised the events and made them happen!

If you would like to be more involved in the PTA, please come along to the meetings next half term.

St James' School Choir

Posted on 11 December 2017 by Mrs Rowley

The school choir has been busy over the past week. On Friday afternoon, the choir entertained travellers at Moto Wetherby Services. The children sung their hearts out and raised £303.23. Well done, choir!

Further to their success on Friday, choir visited Ashfields nursing home in Wetherby. Their carol singing was appreciated by all of the residents and staff. The children behaved brilliantly and were a credit to our school.

Singing in the community

Posted on 05 December 2017 by Miss Beatson

The choir have been very busy today, singing at The Church on the Corner this morning and Morrisons after school. They will be singing at Moto services on Friday, Ashfield Nursing Home next Tuesday and Morrisons again next Wednesday! Hopefully, they’ll still have a voice left for our Christmas production!


New Football Kit

Posted on 05 December 2017 by Miss Beatson

Thank you to Suttle Transport Services for sponsoring our new football kit. The children were very excited to try it on for the first time yesterday. We look forward to competing in our new kit next term. 

School Charity

Posted on 04 December 2017 by Miss Beatson

After much discussion, the school council have decided that we will support the charity Unicef this year. The children were keen to support a charity which helps children around the world.

Image result for unicef