Friday 26th March 2021
Mr Marks, the Deputy Head Teacher, writes...
Dear Parents and Carers,
Another Spring term like no other! Although we have only had all the children back in school for three weeks, it feels like we are all very ready for the Easter break. It has been lovely seeing the leaves and blossoms appearing on the trees and every day there seems to be more colour spreading through Orton Wistow. The weather has been lovely this week and the children have been allowed to play on the field at break and lunchtimes. This always makes these times of the day more enjoyable and hopefully, we can continue to use the field most days after the Easter holiday.
Over the past couple of weeks, teachers have been busy carrying out assessments (as we usually would at the end of the Spring term) and these will help inform the focus for the Summer term, plugging the gaps and building on the children's current knowledge, skills, and understanding. Although we felt confident that the recent lockdown wouldn't have impacted negatively on the children to the extent the media would have us believe, we were unsure of the picture these assessments would paint for us. Having spent time talking to teachers across the school and seeing some of the results from these assessments, it is clear that the pupils at OWPS have continued to make progress in many areas of the curriculum. Teachers are feeling confident about what can be achieved in the Summer term, before the children transition into the next year group. Some children have fallen behind a little from where they were or where we thought they would be at this point, whilst others have exceeded our expectations. These three weeks have given the teachers enough time to get a more accurate picture of where the children are in relation to expectations for their year group and we will now make the most of the final term of this year. Teachers will speak to you about this during the parents' evening appointments in April.
Over the past week, I have shown three visitors through the school. Every one of them commented on how calm the school felt and what a lovely atmosphere there was. The children have not forgotten the PRIDE code and it has been lovely seeing how happy they are to be back with their friends in school. However, we do feel that there has been a sense of 'giddiness' among the children and some, especially our younger children, have struggled to remain focused on their learning throughout the whole school day. I suppose it is a bit like being 'match fit' for a footballer. Many of our children have been out of school for a long time and for those who remained in class, it wasn't the same as usual school. Now they have had these three weeks to get used to being back, seeing their friends, and get over the excitement of being in a full classroom and school, we will be hitting the ground running on Monday 12th April, making our expectations very clear to all the children. We need to make the most of the final thirteen weeks in school and to do this we need the children to follow the PRIDE code, work hard on the learning tools, stick to the golden rules, and remember our expectations.
I hope you all have a wonderful Easter break and I look forward to seeing you all in April! Don't forget to book your parents' evening appointments.
Deputy Head Teacher