A happy and healthy - and safe - place to learn
Posted on 31 January 2019 by Mr Roundtree
We hear so many scare stories and myths about health and safety that it’s easy to pour scorn on anything remotely related to the topic. However, as a school, we need to know that our buildings and our practices are safe and secure for your child and his/her teachers.
Just like we’re happy to invite a fresh pair of eyes into school to evaluate the quality of teaching and learning, we do the same – invite an expert from Leeds City Council – to check on health and safety aspects of our school.
We’re delighted that our school was judged to be outstanding in terms of health and safety.
St James’ CE Primary is a happy, healthy and safe place to learn!
Training days 2019-20
Posted on 28 January 2019 by Mr Roundtree
For those already planning their trips away and days out, we’ve now agreed our 2019-2020 training days:
- Monday 02 September 2019
- Tuesday 03 September 2019 (this means children are back on Wednesday 04 September, although there’s a transition period for those starting in Reception)
- Friday 25 October 2019 (this is the day before the October holidays)
- Friday 15 May 2020 (this is the last day of the Key Stage 2 SATS week – a welcome day off for our Year 6 pupils)
- Monday 20 July 2020 (the last day of the school term, meaning children break up on Friday 17 July 2020)
The dates are all published on our school calendar.
(We tell you our training days well in advance, and we’ve tried to schedule many close to existing school holidays. This means you’ve got more chance to plan and book any holidays abroad. We don’t authorise term-time absences for holidays.)
Posted on 24 January 2019 by Miss Beatson
Last week, years 5 and 6 watched a thought-provoking and powerful performance called Real Friends. The drama explored two very serious issues: hate crime and mate crime. It was performed by an organisation called Leeds People First. People First is about putting the individual first rather than the condition, “people with disabilities” rather than disabled people. The class had to think about how they would change a situation through role-play to help stop such crimes.
“My favourite part was at the beginning when the actors were all wearing masks and holding up signs. It caught my attention.”
“I really liked listening to Olivia’s story about the hard times she experienced throughout school because of her autism. It was based on a real-life situation.”
Posted on 21 January 2019 by Mr Roundtree
The latest edition of #DITTO magazine has been published. #DITTO is a free online safety (e-safety) magazine for schools, organisations and parents to keep you up to date with risks, issues, advice and guidance related to keeping children safe online, with a view to enjoying and learning about technology.
This edition includes articles on secrets, passwords and Fortnite.
Supporting parents with anxious children
Posted on 16 January 2019 by Mrs Craggs
EPOSS Cluster are running a group to support parents with anxious children. The group will give advice and strategies to support your child, provide psycho-education on anxiety and give the opportunity for you to meet parents with similar problems and share ideas.
The first session will be held MONDAY 21 JANUARY
Venue: The House
Wetherby High School
No need to book, just turn up on the day.
If there is sufficient uptake the group will then run every Monday until the February half-term holiday.
If you would like any further information please call:
Rachel Midgley, Cluster Therapist – 0752 617 2934
Liz Giles, Targeted Services Officer – 0791 278 4637
Fantastic Foundation Stage!
Posted on 15 January 2019 by Mr Roundtree
We’re always wanting to get better and better. One of the ways we’ve managed to become the most improved school in Leeds (based on progress made by 2018 Year 6 children) is that we work closely with LA advisors so we benefit from ‘an extra pair of eyes’ and their specific skills and expertise.
Just before Christmas, an Early Years expert visited our Foundation Stage classes. Here’s an extract from her report:
Reception children were… all engaged and focussed… Equipment was provided so that all children could be practically involved… Many mathematical opportunities were seen in different areas of provision to promote mathematical learning.
Our Christian value for this half-term is...
Posted on 13 January 2019 by Mr Roundtree
In Mark Chapter 12, Jesus was asked which of the ten commandments was the most important, to which he replied “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength”. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbour as yourself.’ There are no commandments greater than these.”
The challenge for us is how can we show love to each other on a daily basis? How can we encourage each other? How can we make someone smile? How can we show love for our school and our world?
Why did the Church Council choose this Christian value?
‘Love is why Jesus came into the world – to send out love.’ (Year 2 Church Council member)
Which is your favourite film or book? Think about the main characters in it – how do they show love? For example, Aslan in The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe – how does he show love? Or how does Harry Potter show love for those around him, or no longer with him, such as his parents?
Posted on 13 January 2019 by Mr Roundtree
At St James’ CE Primary, our Church Council is a much-valued part of our school. It consists of two representatives from each class, from Year 1 to Year 6. The Church Council meets frequently to express views and make decisions on the church aspects of our school.
Each year, a new Church Council is elected by staff and students. This half term, our Church Council is being elected. Does your child have an interest in being part of this group?
The role of Church Councillor includes attending meetings with visitors, listening to people’s suggestions and representing the Christian distinctiveness in our school.
Current Church Councillors say you must:
- Be ready and wise to make decisions – sometimes not the decision we want to make but it is a fair decision
- Have skills to look after the church side of our school
- Have good listening skills
- Be confident enough to sometimes lead collective worship and to talk to visitors
Does your child want to be part of the Church Council? Tell them to speak to Mrs Rowley or their class teacher to put themselves forward for the role!
Screen time - to limit or not to limit?
Posted on 04 January 2019 by Mr Roundtree
You might have heard about this news story: ‘Worry less about children’s screen use, parents told‘. In it, there is guidance from leading paediatricians who say there is little evidence that screen use for children is harmful in itself.
That’s fine, but it’s important to read beyond the headlines…
While the guidance avoids setting screen time limits, it recommends not using them in the hour before bedtime. We often see children in school who look tired and struggle to concentrate. There’s lots of evidence to show that missing out on sleep can be really bad for your health. Our advice is don’t let your child take an electronic device to bed.
Equally, while the researchers choose not to recommend screen time limits, it does, recommend that families negotiate screen time limits with their children. These should be based on individual needs and how much it impacts on sleep, as well as physical and social activities that your child is involved with. Our advice is that this should involve parents/carers deciding what content they watch and for how long they use the devices. For older children (those at high school, for example), greater freedom over screen use can be introduced, but this should be gradual and under the guidance of an adult.
Experts say it is important that the use of devices does not replace sleep, exercising and time with family. You wouldn’t want your child to exist solely on one type of food at the expense of others – you’d want them to benefit from a balanced diet. Our advice is consider electronic devices as one part of your child’s life, but not the only part – a ‘balanced diet’ of activity.
The review of evidence found associations between higher screen use and obesity and depression. Experts at University College, London, said it was not clear from the evidence if higher screen use was causing these problems or if people with these issues were more likely to spend more time on screens. However, the fact remains there is a strong link that parents and carers should be aware of. Our advice is consider electronic devices as part of a ‘balanced diet’ of activity that is talked about and kept open about the positives and drawbacks of electronic devices – don’t let it become a solitary activity.
Stemming from the research is a series of questions to help families make decisions about their screen time use. Our advice is to be honest when you reflect on these questions, perhaps having an open family discussion (and be ready – your child might talk about the time you’re on-line, too):
- Is your family’s screen time under control?
- Does screen use interfere with what your family want to do?
- Does screen use interfere with sleep?
- Are you able to control snacking during screen time?
Dr Russell Viner, president of the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (RCPCH), has said: “We need to stick to advising parents to do what they do well, which is to balance the risks and benefits.” Parents should consider their own use of screens, if screen time is controlled in their family, and if excessive use is affecting their child’s development and everyday life, he added.
Posted on 21 December 2018 by Miss Beatson
It’s been a very busy week! It started with our visit to the care home on Sandbeck way to bury a time capsule. We then had two wonderful Christmas performances, parties, Santa visit and a Christingle service at church! Congratulations to Bailey in year 6! He designed a card, which was chosen by the Mayor of Wetherby, to be his Christmas card this year.
We have had a very successful term; the children and staff have worked incredibly hard. Thank you to all the parents, who have continued to support the school in a such a positive way. We would like to wish you all a merry Christmas and a happy new year. We look forward to seeing everyone again on Monday 7th December 2019!