To ask what your favourite thing about your kids’ school is?(25 Posts)
There are so many threads on here complaining about stupid things schools have done, so I thought it might be nice to hear about all the things that schools in this country get right.
I’ll start - my dds attend a very diverse school, with pupils from lots of different ethnic and religious backgrounds. On Thursdays, pupils choose to attend either Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu or Humanist assembly - these assemblies are run by sixth formers from that faith, and pupils are free to attend any one they want.
My dds love attending different assemblies each week and learning about their friends’ faiths and cultures.
What do your children’s schools get right?
It's primary only. They have plenty of time outside to get messy. They go to the school woods once a week.
I love the assembly idea! That's brilliant.
My DC's school is just generally quite nice. There is a good atmosphere and most other parents are friendly and approachable. They do a pretty good job of educating them! The teachers seem interested and like they really have the kids best interests at heart!
My younger two are at primary and I love that they have a brilliant outdoor space with a massive nature garden, a vegetable patch and chickens, a big playing field and two big climbing frames. They've got lots of different clubs and opportunities to try new experiences and the kids from different classes all play together so it's really lovely to see the older kids playing nicely with tiny little 5yos.
My daughters high school is great too.
They really encourage kids to take classes in the arts and practical subjects rather than just purely academic classes. They have a wide range of clubs, sports teams, inter house competitions and educational trips, the vast majority at little or no extra cost. They also have brilliant sports facilities although they are off site.
My favourite thing though is that the headmaster is really hands on and teaches the bottom set maths class himself.
Every teacher knows the name of every dc.
Every teacher knows the name of every dc.
This is something our school tries hard to make a reality. Not only do all teachers know the pupils, so do the support staff. It makes the school very welcoming and friendly, and also helps with transitions into new classes each year. As the pupils are already familiar with their new class teachers and support staff.
DD is happy at school. There is a real sense of community and I really feel that the staff, from teaching to admin, all know and care for my daughter. She is learning too which is a bonus. They also do lots of interesting stuff from French cafes to the daily mile. There is always something going on.
DD1 is G&T and has SEN - right from her first day I've seen both sides of their provision and it's been amazing; support and challenge, always.
My favourite thing? The incredible teachers, LSAs and support staff, who make both kids feel safe, understood, and who foster their love of learning.
The staff, every single last one of them. Led by a fantastic headmistress who is very, very firm but very fair (and hilarious).
The teachers are all brilliant and the school gives them pretty much free rein to do what they like. All their own eccentricities and personal interests are shared with the kids in lessons or clubs, crafting, gardening, snakes, rare books, bagpipes, musical theatre, whatever. All the teachers seem to be really good friends as well and not breaking under the strain of workload. I think if you have well treated happy teachers it all flows down to the kids.
75 children in the school so everyone really does know everyone.
They have their own swimming pool so swim twice a week from Easter until end of September, pool is also open in the summer holidays.
Our PTA is brilliant and they have a huge amount in the account considering how small the school is.
They go on amazing trips.
Pre school, reception and yr1&2 share a lovely outdoor area with all kinds of things in it and it means that reception can go and see the pre school teachers etc if they want to.
They make sure all children are wearing coats when it's cold out, they have spares if children haven't got them (I go to so many schools where it's literally freezing and none of the children are dressed appropriately!).
Pastoral support and communication are great.
The teachers are all really encouraging and have brought DS out of his shell. He's much more confident now.
The headteacher. I have a bit of a crush on her .
When school started she did a welcome evening and stood up at the beginning and told us all about her warts and all. How she’d grown up in a dysfunctional household and hated school herself, how she’d been divorced with young children and how she’d been on the bones of her arse financially. She said there’s nothing you can’t talk to her about and she’ll try and help with cause most likely she’s been there and it’s bloody hard.
She banned homework apart from reading too as they should be going to Brownies or Cubs, helping make tea, running round in the garden or whatever of an evening not slumped at a table over another book.
She knows every child and loves them all dearly. She refers to them as ‘my children’ when she talks about them.
Oh and she sells wine by the glass for a quid at every school event .
That they care about the pupils and encourage them to do their best in a positive way. The teachers have school emails and reply really quickly. They are concerned with developing the whole child not just their grades. The special needs department and senco treat each pupil as if they're their own child. I have also been listened to and supported.
It's a secondary school and when it snowed the pupils were allowed on the field and they let them stay out longer than usual so registration was later. They knew it would have melted by break.
DD’s Primary had a SEN section with three classes, set up by age, Reception and KS1, lower KS2 and upper KS2. Regardless, all children participated in non-lesson activities, be it days out (subject to what each SEN child could do/cope with), sport day, assemblies etc according to their age group with the respective mainstream year groups.
At the leaving assembly, all children had the same time on stage, told exactly the same topics like all others and the mainstream children don’t blink if one can’t do something or helps without anyone asking them. They are their pals. Depending on their academical level some also move between section and mainstream class and they are totally accepted,
In secondary the fact that the school only sets sets for maths and PE. It gives the children time to settle, form friendships and they have a level of security, I was a bit astonished to see a set for PE but it know means DD actually likes PE as she is not the odd one out being picked for a team but for netball suddenly leads them.
I love their school. Loads of green space and they put a lot of emphasis on outside time and allowing children to take (reasonable) risks. So they can play with sticks, climb around, and get muddy.
It has a real family feel; the older kids look out for the younger ones. The kids know all the teachers and vice versa. My DC feel very comfortable and at home. Each child is taken as an individual and recognised for whatever their achievements and interests are. When there are plays and performances everyone gets a chance to shine and they're great about making sure the less confident kids get to go up on stage and you can really see them flourishing. At the same time they let the kids who love acting have their chance to show off their skills.
What a great thread. I work in a school and it’s so good to know the hard work is appreciated. Thank you!
No mobile phones! Not allowed kindles with internet access or smart watches etc. School have a free phone in the office for kids to use. Kids from 5-16.
Head recently thought about allowing it and parents voted against. My eldest DC has a phone but its left at home. Youngest 2 (7 and 13 don't own one)
(school has iPads and comps but they are locked in class)
Another thing (and the thing that attracted me to the school when I first look round) is that the non-teaching staff are also friendly and seem happy. I think it just contributes to the family atmosphere and makes me think staff are treated well and people are generally happy to be there.
Ds school is amazing. He has quite complex special needs and is just about managing in mainstream but his school go above and beyond.
The head teacher really does set up the whole ethos of the school. Happy to have ds sat in his office doing jobs with him or just sharing a drink and biscuit when everything gets too much and he needs a break from class!
DS is in pre school (technically reception but we don't live in the UK so it's called pre school) and the people who run it take in Labrador puppies that they are training to be guide dogs. I know in the UK the schools would have to risk assess and seek permission from parents if they wanted to regularly bring dogs in, but where we live is very lax on health and safety so the dogs are just part of the furniture there really. Sometimes the fact there is little h&s is bad of course, but in this case I think it's great (provided they don't have children with allergies of course). The kids get to play with puppies, the puppies learn how to deal with children and the kids get a better understanding of the challenges blind people face and what guide dogs do. It's lovely too to walk into pre school at the end of the day and get a big hug from my DS as well as from an even more enthusiastic Labrador puppy!
My son is less keen- he says he always climbs onto the climbing frame when they are all in the playground with the puppies, he says they're annoying. Guess he's more of a cat person!
The people at the wrap around care are so lovely at DD's school and so are the office staff. I am often a bit stressed out at drop off and pick up and they're so nice. The teachers are great too but I see more of the wraparound and office staff! I also like that the Head is very visible and almost always there at morning drop off.
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