Annual Stakeholders and Partnerships Report 2013-2014
Written by Helen Abell
Marish and Willow have built partnerships within the community that provide learning opportunities for pupils, which they would not necessarily have in school. For example, these partnerships allow children to access high quality resources, specialist teachers and participate in special events. This broadens the children’s knowledge and understanding and often provides them with extra challenges. Outlined below are the successful partnerships from the academic year 2013-2014, which in most cases we will continue to build on for this academic year.
Langley Grammar School
Langley Grammar school support Marish and Willow in several areas. Firstly, they provide both school with access to their cinema room which we use as a reward for best class attendance. We have been using this reward system for several years now and have found that it has helped to improve our attendance figures. Langley Grammar are also housing ‘Day a Week School’ for us as Marish is now unable to due to rewiring. Finally we have received maths support from Tracy Baker who is an AST at LGS. She organises best practice observations between the two schools. During the summer term, several members of Marish staff went to observe KS2 maths lessons to help develop their teaching practise particularly for adding challenge to maths lessons. The maths teachers from LGS came to observe top set maths in year 6 at Marish to get a better understanding of KS2 ability and pitch of lessons. This support network between the two schools has been helpful to both staff and pupils and has contributed to improving teaching and learning.
Langley Academy continue to support year 6 at Marish in the transition to year 7, as the majority of our pupils go on to year 7 there. Staff at Langley Academy visited year 6 throughout the year to meet them, observe them and have talks about the move to secondary school. As well as this, they organise a muffin project every year so that our year 6 pupils can visit the school, meet some staff and use their kitchens and D&T studios to make muffins and baskets to hold them in. Langley Academy also allow year 6 to use their science laboratories to carry out science lessons that require more specialised equipment such as microscopes. This partnership has benefitted the pupils immensely as they get the opportunity to use quality resources that they do not have access to at Marish. It also prepares them for secondary school and builds positive relationships with the wider community.
Upton Court Grammar School
Every year at Marish, our talented artists participate in an art project at Upton Court. This art project is led by an art specialist teacher and A Level pupils. The Marish pupils go there once every half term throughout the year and work on an ongoing project. In the summer term their work is displayed in an art gallery at Upton Court and last year also featured in a small gallery at Marish for our open afternoon. The art work that they produced last year was excellent and is largely due to the fact that these gifted and talented pupils were given time, resources and specialist staff to work with which allowed their talents to flourish.
As well as the art project, Upton Court staff also supported Marish and Willow in designing the new 2014 curriculum and helped staff to plan lessons in each subject area. Teachers from Marish and Willow gave positive feedback about this experience and said that it helped develop their subject knowledge and gave them ideas for planning successful lessons. Art CPD was also provided for all Marish and Willow staff during inset; this was delivered by the art department at Upton Court.
Create Development have worked closely with our PE department to launch ‘Real PE’ and the assessment of PE through assessment wheels. This was launched at both Marish and Willow last year and the wheel proved to be very successful, and even generated school reports at the end of the year.
Due to the success of these wheels, Mrs Denham wrote an assessment framework for the new maths curriculum and Create Development built an online assessment wheel for it. This is completely unique to Marish trust and will be used for the academic year 2014-2015. Create Development have referred to Marish as a ‘trusted partner’ and they are using Marish at the piolet school for their assessment wheels and curriculum schemes. This has been a major breakthrough for us as a trust in curriculum and assessment and we consider ourselves lucky to be working alongside such an innovative company as Create Development.
Slough School Sports Network
Marish and Willow both participate in the competitions held by Slough Schools Sports Network, which is nearly 30 competitions a year! This allows our pupils to take part in a range of different sports and games, and the winners of these competitions progress on to the Berkshire School Games. To link further with this, our sports departments timetable extra-curricular spirts clubs to match the Slough Schools Sports Network calendar to ensure that all clubs have a platform in which children can test the skills they have learnt. This programme has proved to be successful and clearly enjoyed by our pupils as sports clubs under CU continue to be amongst the most popularly selected.
Slough Music Service
Slough Music Service provide ‘Wider Opportunities’ lessons at both schools. This is a government initiative that allows pupils to learn an orchestral instrument for an extremely reduced rate. At the moment Marish and Willow receive these lessons at a 75% discount. Marish year 3 learnt to play the violin and at Willow years 5 and 6 learnt to play the flute and clarinet.
All of these pupils performed in a large scale concert at The Centre in Slough as a massed orchestra with other local primary schools. They composed their own music and performed it in front of a large crowd. This is an experience that our pupils wouldn’t have without the tuition and financial support of Slough Music Service.
As well as this Slough Music Service also co-ordinated a gifted and talented music project that our pupils worked in and performed on The West Wing Theatre, and a joint choir of Marish and Willow pupils sang in the annual Slough Singing Festival.
Langley Free Church
Langley Free Church help to enrich our curriculum by co-ordinating visits for Marish pupils to the Church at Christmas and Easter to complete activities and learn about Christianity. Reverend Grayson visits Marish and Willow regularly to deliver assemblies to the whole school on a range of stories with a moral or lesson.
Eton College supported the Children’s University by delivering two clubs at Marish – art and history and for also providing a club called ‘The Eton Experience’ in which our pupils got to visit Eton College once a week and learn about a different aspect of Eton. This was an exciting and special opportunity for our pupils, and one which they will probably never forget. It was incredibly successful and well received by both pupils, parents and staff and shall be organised again but for Willow children in the autumn term.
Eton College also kindly hosted a CU graduation for many of our pupils which helped us to cater for our growing number of graduates.
All of these partnerships will continue for the academic year 2014-2015 as they have all been successful and have allowed our pupils to develop their skills further through the use of quality resources, expert teaching and special events. These partnerships have also taught our pupils about their local community and have showcased some of the opportunities that are on offer for them, and have encouraged them to contribute to their own extended learning.
We hope to continually strengthen our current partnerships and to build new ones throughout the year.