A warm welcome to Forest Row Church of England Primary School
I have now been Head of Forest Row CE Primary for just over a year and what an interesting year it’s been! I certainly didn’t expect I’d be leading a school during a pandemic. However, despite its challenges, the last few months have shown the strength of the school community with the children, parents and staff coming together to make sure that school continues to be an environment where the well-being of the children is paramount and where they can aspire to be the best they can be, both socially and academically.
During the summer term, our school development journey (understandably) slowed but we are now very much back on track. Our school vision drives everything we do and is the foundation on which the children develop as people and on which our new curriculum is built. Our Golden Rule: “treat others just as you want to be treated “ (Luke 6:31) is not just represented in displays and posters but is modelled and practised throughout the school. Of course, there are times when children need to be reminded about making the right choice but our approach to behaviour is to be positive and ‘catch children doing something good’ rather than being overly reliant on sanctions and rewards.
We have started our new curriculum journey where projects have replaced topics. Where big questions, such as: What makes a Community? Is the impossible possible? What makes a superhero? are now the drivers for learning. We want a curriculum that is relevant to our children, many of whom will be beginning adulthood within this decade and is inspiring and engaging. We link different areas of the curriculum by exploring concepts such as: democracy, empathy, happiness and sustainability. It is also important to us that the role models we choose when teaching subjects represent world wide diversity.
High aspiration is crucial for our children to have as many life opportunities as possible and the continual professional development our teachers and teaching assistant have access to is very much focused on raising expectation for all, alongside scaffolding the learning for those children who experience barriers to their learning. It is important to me that both children and adults in our school aim high.
Finally, I would like to say that we welcome visits to our lovely school and although, at present, we cannot invite you in (due to restrictions associated with COVID-19), the site lends itself to external visits, which will still give you a good insight into our school. You will also see how fortunate we are to have extensive fields, our own designated Forest Schools area, a stream and several playgrounds. It is a beautiful place to learn and play and I am fortunate to be the head teacher within such a warm and supportive community.