Head of Academy Termly Review
How time flies! The end of our first year at HPAPW
At the beginning of the year we introduced our school values ‘REACH’ to parents and children. These values have been the bedrock in our approach to everything we do, to ensure our school community is driving forwards together as one to achieve our vision of ‘Excellence for All’.
Resilience - Wow what an incredible first year! Looking back to the beginning of the year and reflecting on when we welcomed new families and watched children full of anticipation, excitement (and a maybe a little concern) enter their classroom for the first time, it is amazing to think how far we have ventured. Friendships have been securely forged and a Harris Primary Academy Purley Way community firmly established, ignited by the evolvement of a passionate and dedicated PTA who strive tirelessly to provide our children with fun end of term events such as the cultural day, the Easter Bonnet parade and the end of year disco. I think we can proudly agree this year may have had a few challenges but we have all shown remarkable resilience to overcome them and children are thriving.
Empathy - It has been hugely heart-warming to witness the altruism of our community. With ‘Empathy’ being one of our school values, we have made it one of our aims to teach children about those less fortunate than ourselves. This year we have collected a staggering amount of money for various charities; over £500 has been divided between Children in Need, Crisis, Save the Children, Readathon and Home Start Croydon. Pupil Parliament played a key role in developing various ways to raise money such as organising ‘Sportathon’, which all children thoroughly enjoyed taking part in.
Achievement – Achievement is measured in various ways depending on needs and abilities, whether it be academic achievement, sporting achievement, social achievement, personal achievement or emotional achievement. At HPAPW we always place the child and their needs at the centre. We have taken pride in getting to know each of your children as individuals to ensure that each child progresses to achieve milestones in their academic, physical, personal, social and emotional development. As one parent reflected on their child’s report, ‘It has been incredible to watch my son develop confidence to move beyond holding a pencil, to writing his name, to writing sentences, to writing stories all by himself; thank you to all the teachers and staff at HPAPW.’
Courage – Like resilience we have observed children demonstrating a great deal of courage throughout the year; from starting school, going on public transport for the first time, performing in a nativity in front of strangers and even when coming to school feeling under the weather because they want to achieve 100% attendance.
As the school is evolving, we think our value of courage should also evolve. We believe children now understand how courage is linked to resilience and its importance. Therefore, from September will be introducing a new value for the letter ‘C’. C will now stand for Communication. From September we will be recognising, reflecting and celebrating how children and adults communicate with one another. For example, establishing reasoning techniques rather than displaying anger in disagreements. We will focus on how we can show kindness, compassion and understanding using body language and facial expressions. We will understand the importance of listening, when communicating, to become informed global citizens and we will master reasoning and debating skills to ensure our voice is heard.
Honesty – As children have been united in a class with twenty-nine other classmates for the first time it has been very important for children to develop a strong sense of honesty in order for them to become valued and trusted friends to others. As a community we have instilled the concept that we are a team and teams need to work together and look after each other. In addition to this we have created a culture whereby children feel safe to be honest if they are struggling or if they feel lonely or worried. We have also placed high expectations on children to be honest when they have made a wrong choice and have asked children to reflect on negative behaviour versus behaviour expectations of our golden rules. Children have been very impressive in creating a sense of right and wrong within their own environment and luckily we have had very few incidents regarding dishonest behaviour throughout the year. I think this is testament to how united we are as a community (children, parents and staff), as one voice working together for the benefit of everyone. I truly believe that our values have stood us in good stead for the future in continuing to create ‘Excellence for All’.
Now it is time that we say goodbye to the basic but loyal porta-cabins as we advance towards a palatial new state of the art building in September and welcome the arrival of a new cohort of excitable children preparing to take on their first year at primary school. Exciting times ahead with lots of new adventures to be had and friends to be made!
We look forward to welcoming you back:
Beegu ( Year 1 class) Thursday 7th September 8.45am – 3.30pm
Gruffalos (Reception class) Monday 11th September 9am – 12pm
Have a fantastic and safe summer, Jane Robinson, Head of Academy