This is a Catholic School which seeks to live out the value of Jesus Christ. We promote these values by our words and deeds, and Catholic doctrine and practise therefore permeates every aspect of the school’s activity. We provide a Catholic curriculum, which is broad and balanced, recognising that every pupil is unique and is created in the image of God. Our curriculum is designed to enable every pupil to discern their vocation and to be well equipped to follow it as active citizens in service to the world.
Catholic Religious Education is the “core of the core curriculum” (Pope St Paul II*) and the foundation of the entire educational process. We also provide a wide range of extra -curricular activities and strong pastoral support. We incorporate democratic principles, value the rule of law, support individual liberty and foster a community in which different faiths and beliefs are respected.
*in his Holiness address to the bishops of Great Britain 26th of March 1992.
Throughout the school the children are taught in mixed ability classes in the care of their own class teacher with the support of the teaching assistants. The school has a seven class structure. The structure of each class will be reviewed at the end of each year to ensure that the best possible support for pupils is given in line with the National Curriculum.
Our curriculum is at the heartbeat of our school and is carefully designed to support the learning journey of the whole child and enable them to achieve success. It is a narrative for each child which is made meaningful and relevant by harnessing the culturally rich opportunities our locality offers. We recognise that all children deserve the same life chances, particularly those who are disadvantaged and our curriculum is designed with a responsibility to build the cultural and intellectual capital of our children with a particular emphasis on language and vocabulary acquisition for all our children.
We value the importance of providing children with opportunities for enriching learning experiences which are part of their school experience. Our curriculum includes a ‘Pupil Offer – which we call the St Mary’s Experience’ which we believe serves to purposefully close the experience and knowledge gap from home. We want children to be curious and excited by the awe and wonder of the world and we design our curriculum to infuse that excitement.
We support all learners to realise their potential and strive to ensure that our curriculum will ignite their love of learning that will last them for life. We hope that children will have had the opportunity to discover and follow individual passions which they will continue to build on in their future.
We promise that by the time children leave us at the end of KS1, they will have started to acquire strategies which equip them to take ownership of their own learning. Our children will be confident individuals who are actively and enthusiastically engaged on the journey to understanding how to contribute positively to their community and the wider society.
We encourage children to be hopeful and to think positively. We believe that everything is possible and we are relentless in our optimism, ambition, energy and passion.
We understand the importance of powerful, durable knowledge and developing language and vocabulary being key to advancing the cultural capital of our learners. We explicitly define the subject specific knowledge content in a way which makes connections within and across subjects and year groups. This enables skills such as creativity and problem solving to cumulate as outcomes of a rich knowledge curriculum experience.
We are proactive in engaging in research around cognitive science to ensure our curriculum is borne out of proven memory for learning strategies and these are woven into subjects over time.
The Foundation Stage is from birth to 5 years. This includes Nursery and Reception. St Mary’s is a high quality setting for your child and offers a range of different plans to accommodate your needs. Our approach is a combination of child-initiated activities and adult led education, based on active learning and problem solving. Clear routines are in place to support the children as they progress through the Foundation Stage. In Reception, children continue to have many opportunities for child-initiated activities and independent learning as well as a more formal approach to reading, writing and maths.
Key Stage One is from 5 to 7 years. This includes Year 1 and Year 2. In Key Stage One the following subjects are taught:
Art & Design
Design and Technology
At St Mary’s we understand that the society we live in is diverse and through our curriculum, teaching and learning and extra-curricular activities we ensure that British Values are promoted
We will endeavour to ensure that all learners understand the values that have traditionally underpinned British society so that they are ‘Learning Today for the World of Tomorrow’. To this end, our intention is for British Values to be interwoven in the heart of the school and explicit links made through the cross curricular learning, Assemblies, Circle Time and PSHE.
To ensure that all pupils develop an understanding of the values which underpin life in modern day Britain.
To teach all pupils to have mutual respect and tolerance for and an understanding of, the various faiths and beliefs represented in Britain today.
To ensure that all pupils learn to uphold the rule of the law and support justice and equality.
To help all pupils understand and value the rich diversity that other citizens from different cultures, religions and backgrounds bring to our national society.
To value people’s differences and respect them.
To develop pupils’ awareness and tolerance of communities different to their own.
To value democracy and to stand up for right against wrong.
The spine of the Key Stage One reading scheme is made up of books from the Rigby Rockets Reading Scheme and Ginn 360, however these are supplemented and enhanced by books from various other schemes which target specific areas of reading, for example Boy Readers and non-fiction texts. These include books from Spiral Starters (for our younger readers), National Geographic, Big Cat, The Oxford Reading Tree and the Rapid Readers Scheme.