Self Improving School
At Garswood we are always looking for ways to improve. We do this both formally and informally. For instance, if we spot a system or process isn't working or think there may be a better way to do it, we make changes - sometimes following consultation with other stakeholders such as parents, children, staff, Governors.
An example of this from this school year is our change to the collection arrangements for infants at the end of the school day. We believed it could be improved - made some changes and consulted with parents and staff on the successes of these. Everyone who responded to the consultation believes it has been a change for the better.
We also take a more formal approach to planning improvements for the school and formulate a School Improvement Plan each year. This takes into account the outcomes from the previous year and what the data is telling us. It also considers the monitoring that has taken place including observations, surveys, scrutinies of children's work, new research or Government agendas and any external reviews (when we have asked others to evaluate our work at school).
This year some of our school improvement priorities - the things we are working on - are;
- Improving our approach to writing - enabling children to have more opportunities to develop stamina in writing and use their knowledge of grammar and spelling in their sentence contruction in longer writing.
- Embed fluency in multiplication facts. So children can feel secure in these facts to support them in more complex mathematical thinking.
- To increase our reach by opening a two year old provision, redeveloping the EYFS area.
In 2022 - 2023 some of the success we had in improving our school include:
- Improving mathematics - improving teacher knowledge and securing effective implementation of the curriculum to ensure improved outcomes for children. Our outcomes improved with a significant increase in pupils reaching greater depth. All outcomes were above national comparison.
- Continue to embed our curriculum and secure an assessment system across all subjects which measures that children know more and remember more. We now have both formative and summative assessment systems in place for all subjects.
- We have returned to the high levels of additionality offered through and beyond our curriculum - securing cultural capital for all children. There are countless clubs being offered from Reception upwards; trips, visits, and a rich curriculum to embed an extensive vocabulary.
Between 2020 - 2022 some of the success we had in improving our school include:
- Continued use of Microsoft Teams as a form of virtual learning and communication between home and school.
- Accomodating the needs of all children through regular assessments, discussions, and observations to teach the gaps that have been created by school closures during the past academic years, caused by the Covid- 19 pandemic.
- Ensuring all children are given time and teaching around the subject of mindfulness through PATHS and various other resources to ensure chidlren feel comfortable with returning to school and recognise it as the safe place it has always been to them.
- Risk assessments and following government guidelines to make Garswood the safest most welcoming place it can be during these times.
In 2019 - 2020 some of the success we had in improving our school include:
- Established Microsoft Teams as a form of virtual learning while children had to work from home during the Covid 19 Pandemic.
- Gained our very own on site Nurture Hub for children with specific needs.
- Worked with the local authority to create a virtual learning policy and risk assessment that would be used across St. Helens.
- Kept our school open and safe durting the Covid - 19 pandemic and maintained close relation ships with all members of Garswood primary through phonecalls, online learning, emails and doorstop, socially distanced visits.
- Succesfully created our own online phonics video lessons and teacher interactions through Video Conferencing.
In 2018 - 2019 some of the success we had in improving our school include:
- Engaging all children in Recption, Year 1 and some in Year 2 with the Teach Your Monster Phonics programe, haivng a significant impact on phionic skills in the infants.
- Introduced the app 'Marvellous Me' APP to all parents to enusre they are fully updated with their children's achievements at school.
- Created a brilliant GIST Team (Garswood Internet Safety Team) to impact on whole school internet safety and understanding.
- Mrs Meehan became our 4th teacher to be a fully trained Fiorest School Leader.
- Became a Focus Hub for the Educational Focus team to offer training to other schools and share resources.
In 2017 - 2018 some of the success we had in improving our school include:
- improved the teaching of mathematics to impact on improved pupil outcomes through Maths no problem
- improved attendance, especially of those children who are disadvantaged
- sharpened the actions plans of non-core subjects such as history and geography to ensure a clear link between strategies and impact on outcomes
In 2016 - 2017 some of the success we had in improving our school include:
- Deepened children's understanding of their responsibilities as developing citizens in modern Britain through involvement in the 'Real Junk Food' project;
- Secured depth and mastery across all subjects in the curriculum with opportunities to further develop talents whilst ensuring our curriculum has remained exciting and interesting;
- Further developed and deepened our whole school science curriculum approach through embedding a systematic approach to scientific enquiry - investigative and experimental work and linking this closely with a finely tuned assessment system.
In 2015 - 2016 some of the success we had in improving our school include:
- Evaluating and improving the systems in place to support children with additional needs in acquiring and applying phonic (sounds made by letters) knowledge. The introduction of Family Phonics had a positive impact.
- Development of our understanding of maths mastery and embedding this across the school ensuring all pupils, including the most disadvantaged progress well in mathematics.
- Helping our children to develop their resilience through the introduction of Forest Schools across the school.
In 2014 - 2015 some successes we had when improving our school include:
- Providing nursery placements at the school to enable us to have an impact on children's learning and development from an earlier starting point
- Developing an extensive outdoor provision in Early Years Foundation Stage with more opportunities for children to be independent and develop their curiosity in a natural environment
- Helping children to develop a deeper understanding of key mathematical concepts and apply these accurately during contextualised problem solving.
Though we consult formally with our stakeholders through surveys, we are always open to discussion about moving the school forward. Please contact the school if you would like to discuss this further.
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