Nurturing Your Child in a Community Centred on Respect and the Love of God - Information Handbook for Parents 2020-21 - Angus Council

 
Nurturing Your Child in a Community Centred on Respect and the Love of God - Information Handbook for Parents 2020-21 - Angus Council
Nurturing Your Child in a
                   Community Centred on
                 Respect and the Love of God

                  Information Handbook for Parents
                               2020-21

This document is available in alternative formats, on request
(Please contact the school office)

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Contents
CONTACT DETAILS .....................................................................................................................................4

EARLY LEARNING AND CHILDCARE ............................................................................................................5

VISITS OF PROSPECTIVE PARENTS .............................................................................................................5

SCHOOL UNIFORM ....................................................................................................................................6

PARENTAL CONCERNS ...............................................................................................................................6

PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT .........................................................................................................................7

   BECOMING INVOLVED IN SCHOOL ................................................................................................................ 7

SCHOOL ETHOS .........................................................................................................................................8

SCHOOL AND COMMUNITY LINKS .............................................................................................................9

POSITIVE BEHAVIOUR MANAGEMENT .......................................................................................................9

CELEBRATING ACHIEVEMENT ....................................................................................................................9

EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES .............................................................................................................. 10

LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES ..................................................................................................................... 10

THE PUPILS AND PARENTS VOICE ............................................................................................................ 10

THE CURRICULUM AT SCHOOL, LOCAL AND NATIONAL LEVEL.................................................................. 11

LIAISON WITH SECONDARY SCHOOL ....................................................................................................... 11

SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT ......................................................................................................................... 11

HEALTH CARE ..........................................................................................................................................13

USEFUL LINKS AND CONTACT DETAILS..................................................................................................... 13

   ANGUS COUNCIL WEBSITE .......................................................................................................................... 13

   OTHER WEBSITES ........................................................................................................................................ 13

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Welcome to St Margaret’s RC Primary School

Dear Parents/Carers

Welcome to St. Margaret’s RC Primary School. We are delighted to have your child and
your family join our school community!

Whether your child is a first-time Primary 1 pupil or an older child changing schools, a new
school can be a daunting experience for both pupils and parents. We will do our very
best at St. Margaret’s to ensure your child settles in as best he/she can.

This handbook has been put together by staff, parents and pupils. We hope this is helpful
to you and it will be useful.

Of course, we are always here to answer any queries or if you have any concerns; please
do not hesitate to contact us.

Kindest regards

Marie Law

Marie Law
Head Teacher

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CONTACT DETAILS
St Margaret’s RC Primary School

Blackfriars Street
Montrose
DD10 8LL

Telephone number: 01674 907527

Email Address: st-margarets@angusschools.org.uk

Head Teacher                      Mrs Law
Teacher P1-4                      Mrs Carter
Teacher P4-7                      Miss McAdam/Mrs Law
Senior Early Years Practitioner   Ms Christie
Early Years Assistant             Miss Newlands
Music Instructor                  Beth Wylie (Alternate Wednesday – pm)
Clerical/Classroom Assistant      Mrs O’Donnell
Catering Staff                    Mrs Flanagan
Cleaners                          Louise & Jean

The school roll at present is 39 which is split as follows:

Preschool            -      8

Primary 1-4          -      11

Primary 4-7          -      20
This school is a denominational school for Roman Catholic pupils and covers all seven
primary stages plus a Nursery class. From August 2020, The Nursery will be operational
Monday to Friday 9am-3pm with the Early Years Expansion Program.

This school does not teach by means of the Gaelic Language

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Parent Council
The Parent Council may be contacted through the school office.

The School Day

Our school day is organised as follows:-

School Hours 9am-3.20pm

Usual School Day

9.00 am                    Morning school begins
10.40 – 11:00 am           Morning Playtime
12.30 pm                   Lunchtime
1.30 pm                    Afternoon school begins
3.20 pm                    School finishes for Primaries 1-7

Pre-School (3 and 4 year olds)

9.00 am – 3 pm             Full Day

EARLY LEARNING AND CHILDCARE

In Scotland all three and four year olds, and some two year olds, are eligible for up to
1,140 hours a year of funded early learning and childcare (ELC). Our ELC class offers
sessions between 9:00am and 3:00pm, 5 days a week, over 40 weeks of the year. Other
attendance patterns are available in other Angus Council settings and in our wide range
of partner nurseries, playgroups and childminders. To find out more about the benefits of
ELC and the options available, visit our dedicated ELC web pages at
www.angus.gov.uk/earlyyears.

VISITS OF PROSPECTIVE PARENTS
see link below:

Choosing a school: a guide for parents (Scottish Government)

Once your child has been allocated a place we will invite you to meet the staff and
children, find out more about the curriculum and share information about your child.

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SCHOOL UNIFORM
School uniform should be worn as follows: -

White shirt/blouse, black skirt/trousers, white polo shirt, blue sweatshirt with St
Margaret’s logo. School ties can be purchased from the school office. There is
also the option of a fleece jacket with school logo. Uniforms can be bought
through myclothing.com.        Sensible shoes should be worn, not trainers.
We have many good-conditioned school uniform items that have been handed
in by parents that their children have outgrown, free to children that can use
them. Please ask at the school office.

All pupils require a PE kit: black shorts, white t-shirt and gym shoes to be brought and kept
in school. An outdoor PE kit is also advisable – jogging trousers and long sleeved top (no
hoodies). NO FOOTBALL KITS. It is advisable not to wear jewellery to school but pupils with
pierced ears may wear stud earrings, except for PE. Children with long hair should wear it
tied back on these days for safety reasons.

All clothing brought to school should be named or marked in some way, as it is difficult for
children to distinguish their own clothing from others.

PARENTAL CONCERNS
Parents should contact the school immediately if they have cause for concern. It is our
wish to deal with all matters as early as possible preventing them from growing into
significant concerns. The staff will listen to your concern and agree a way forward with
you. Please contact your child’s class teacher in the first instance or if you would prefer to
discuss the issue with the Head Teacher, Mrs Law, please call into the school office. All
matters will be treated confidentially.

The staff will listen to your concern and agree a way forward with you. Staff will check that
the concern has been resolved with a follow-up call or conversation

THE COMPLAINTS PROCEDURE

Angus Council complaints procedure

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PARENTAL INVOLVEMENT

BECOMING INVOLVED IN SCHOOL
The school values the important part parents play in their children’s education. We see
partnership with parents as a way to enhance children’s achievements and promote
better school ethos and communication.

Opportunities for Parental Involvement:

During the school day:

   •   Helping in the nursery class
   •   Art/Craft activities
   •   Sharing knowledge and expertise in some aspect of the curriculum, e.g. topic talk,
       history, science, health
   •   Practical activities in science, maths, social subjects, health education (e.g. first aid)
       or technology
   •   Reading stories to groups of children, playing reading/phonics/maths games
   •   Supervising board games
   •   Teaching playground games
   •   Personal learning activities (e.g. “messy” art, football, cooking)
   •   Running or assisting to run a Lunch Club
   •   Supporting educational visits/trips
   •   School concerts – making costumes, props, supervision of children
   •   Road safety – Cycle Training

Out with the school day:

   •   Supporting Parent Council Events
   •   Fundraising events
   •   Trips e.g. sporting events, concerts
   •   Extra-curricular activities e.g. coaching, sports/art clubs/country dancing/school
       grounds – maintenance of garden/allotment areas

If you wish to be a regular parent helper, PVG (Protecting Vulnerable Groups) checks
have to be completed. Please discuss this with staff.

At the beginning of the school year there is a “Meet the teacher evening”. This is an
opportunity for you to meet your child’s teacher and to share any information you want to
make known to them about your child. All parents are invited to attend two Parent
Evenings throughout the year. At these meetings parents will have the opportunity to meet
their child’s class teacher for a 10 minute conversation, reviewing their child’s individual
learning and discussing their child’s progress. This is also an opportunity for parents to hear
how they can best support their child’s learning. Parents are also encouraged to support
their child with the completion of homework tasks as advised by the class teacher.

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SCHOOL ETHOS
St. Margaret’s RC School works as a community with parents, families, community and the
Church with Catholic values underpinning the ethos of the whole school.

Working together we seek to prepare pupils to find happiness and to lead lives of
goodness, built upon Christian values, personal integrity and moral courage.

The faith mission of the Catholic School is explicit not only in its religious education
programmes but in all aspects of the school’s life. A vision of education concerned with
the development of the whole person is the foundation of the Catholic School’s learning
and the hallmark of its ethos.

Catholic schools welcome all their pupils as members of the school community. This is
evident in the way that all are valued, treated with respect and encouraged to
participate fully in the life of the school. This includes appropriate participation in both
religious observance and religious education as well as in other activities which stem from
the faith mission of the school, e.g. charitable fund-raising, service to the community and
other faith witness activities. Teachers are expected to bear witness to this attitude of
respect for, and appreciation of all people including those of those of other
denominations, other faiths and stances for living which may be independent of religious
belief.

In our school we are committed to providing appropriate opportunities for the
development of pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural values through both the ethos
and the curriculum. This will be undertaken in partnership with parents and will take
account of the individual needs of pupils and the views of parents.

Our school welcomes and encourages diversity and individuality, while emphasizing our
common commitment to moral values such as honesty, respect for others, compassion
and justice. It is a fundamental principle of our school that all who are involved in the life
of our school both has the right to be respected as individuals and carry the responsibility
to act in a considerate and respectful manner towards others. We implement the Council
policy for Equal Opportunities and Racial equality and ensure that all pupils have access
to the full range of educational experiences available within the resources of the school.
We are firmly committed to the elimination of any form of discrimination on the grounds of
race, religion, gender or disability.

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SCHOOL AND COMMUNITY LINKS
Our school has established very good communications with parents who receive regular
bulletins and informative newsletters. Parents are warmly welcomed in school and a
number help with cluster community events and school functions. The Parent Council give
excellent support with fund raising and organising social events. We have good links with
the local high school and primaries in the area. We have been involved with various
activities to promote the link between the local community and the school. The school
also has strong Parish links with the parish priest of St Margaret’s & St Ninian’s RC Church.
Father Jim High, the school chaplain, visits the children in the school each week. We
encourage strong school/parish links. We have regular visits to and from the personnel
from the museum, library, local police, school nurses, and various charitable organisations.

POSITIVE BEHAVIOUR MANAGEMENT
Angus Council anti-bullying policy

Good behaviour is essential to good learning. The general aim of the school is to provide
an atmosphere of mutual respect and collective responsibility. Pupils, parents and staff all
have an important part to play in producing and sustaining this positive caring ethos. The
rules of the school are of a common sense nature, bearing in mind the interest and safety
of all concerned. Pupils are encouraged to be respectful and be respected at all times.

At St Margaret’s we have ‘Good to be Green’ reward system. If the child has an episode
of continual negative behaviour, time is deducted from their allocated golden time
period on Friday afternoon. The child discusses their behaviour with the Head Teacher.

CELEBRATING ACHIEVEMENT
Children work hardest when they know their work will be appreciated and praised. Staff
encourage pupils at all times and in all activities to give their best. Their effort may be
rewarded verbally by praise, or non-verbally by a smiley face or sticker. In addition, both
classes use an electronic system, Class Dojo to award children individually or as a class for
success across the curriculum. The whole school celebrates achievement on a weekly
basis by the giving of certificates to award pupils for good work, effort or kindness shown
to others. Star Pupil Awards are given weekly at the school assembly. Children are also
recognised for their successes at local and national competitions, which the pupils are
actively encouraged to take part in throughout the school year.

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EXTRA-CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES

   •   Swimming, when allocated, is for ten weeks for children between P4 - P7. Parents
       are advised in advance regarding dates and times of the sessions.

   •   In 2019/20 we set up both school football and netball extra-curricular clubs for P4-7
       pupils at lunchtime. St Margaret’s played friendly matches with other Montrose
       Primary Teams locally.

   •   Educational visits are arranged throughout the school year. Annual summer outings
       for the whole school also take place. Help and support from parents on these visits
       is always welcome. If you wish to be a parent helper, forms are available from our
       school office.

   •   The school has a strong link with Links Park Community Trust (LPCT). The pupils take
       part in educational trails and are encouraged to participate in other activities
       available at the club.

   •   St Margaret P2-7 pupils take part in the Montrose Cluster Primary Schools Rugby,
       Tennis and Athletics Festivals and a variety of other active festivals.

                     •   Pupils are encouraged to attend community clubs which are held
                         in other local primary schools. This is an excellent way to create
                         new friendships and links within the wider community. Long term,
                         this is of great benefit for the transition process, when pupils move
                         up to Montrose Academy, following on from P7.

   •   To enhance learning we visit local sites, the library & monuments as appropriate.

LEARNING OPPORTUNITIES
Your child will learn in a variety of different contexts and groups including ability, co -
operative and social. Literacy and numeracy lessons are taught daily, with learning and
teaching in additional curriculum subjects including Health & Wellbeing, Topic, Art, ICT,
Religious Education (This is our Faith), Physical Education and French. The Daily Mile is also
actively encouraged to increase physical and mental well-being.

THE PUPILS AND PARENTS VOICE
At the beginning of each term information will be sent home via The Home School Link
Diary. This will inform you of dates and events that will be going on in your child’s
classroom and in the school community e.g. pupil events, homework, parent events,
Montrose cluster events. Parents will be invited to share comments regarding the planned
work for their child at various points throughout the year at Meet the Teacher sessions,
Parent’s Evening, School Open afternoon sessions and are encouraged to give
feedback/comments at any time through their child’s home school link diary.

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THE CURRICULUM AT SCHOOL, LOCAL AND NATIONAL LEVEL
Open Afternoons for parents/carers/family members, are held in the school and led
predominately by the children. During these events the children will describe and share
their first-hand learning experience of the many aspects of curriculum taught at school,
with their parents/carers/family members. All adults are welcome to St Margaret’s to share
your child’s learning. More local information can be found through the link at
www.angus.gov.uk/linksforparents.

LIAISON WITH SECONDARY SCHOOL
The school maintains close links with Montrose Academy, and other Primary Schools within
the Angus area. Our teachers and in some cases our pupils visit other schools and
establishments and other teachers and pupils visit us. This process is necessary for the
professional development of staff, reciprocal understanding and the establishment of
curricular consistency through moderation.

SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT
Staff collaborate to create the School Improvement Plan each year which is available to
all parents and discussed at parent Council Meetings and in written communication to the
parents. Please contact the school office for a current School Improvement Plan.

MAIN ACHIEVEMENTS

   •   Green Flag Status previously achieved and currently practised
   •   Health Accreditation achieved and currently practised
   •   Reading Accreditation achieved and currently practised
   •   Attainment in all areas of the curriculum continue to be raised through:

       Co-operative Learning & Active Learning

   •   Eco awareness driving improvements throughout the school environment.
   •   A positive and very satisfactory report from HMIe (May 2017)

IMPROVING STANDARDS

Our quality assurance processes have shown year on year improvement and raised
attainment in Numeracy & Literacy. As a small school all our pupils have equal access to
all aspects of the curriculum at school. Our School Improvement Plan is all the more
relevant, focused and dynamic meeting the needs of all learners due to staff working
closely together. The effective agreed budget management has supported the
implementation of priorities, enhanced the school environment and learning (dedicated
library area, updated Nursery and P1-3 classrooms, playground and garden improvements
and enhanced teaching materials- particularly for literacy and numeracy development)

Many of our children willingly volunteer to be members of our Pupil Groups which support
the daily life and work of the school; enhancing their confidence and abilities in decision
making. The school’s involvement in Skills for Learning Life & Work has enhanced children’s
awareness of the skills they are using during specific activities and the importance of them
throughout life.

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Our teaching staff fully participate in Cluster Moderation meetings with other Class
Teachers in the Montrose schools. Our Class teachers visit other schools as we warmly
welcome Class Teachers from other local schools to visit our school environment at St
Margaret’s. Our staff are also very committed to keeping up to date with any changes in
Learning and Teaching of the Curriculum, to help raise Attainment Levels and
Achievement for all our pupils at St Margaret’s.

This coming year 2020/2021 we aim to:-

   •   Provide learning and teaching experiences in order to increase Mental Maths
       Strategies in both multi/composite classes in daily Numeracy/Maths Lessons.

   •   Continue Visible Learning Journey and consolidate St Margaret’s own language of
       Learning that will be shared throughout the whole school community.

   •   Encourage the whole school community to increase their learning to promote the
       value of Science, in a curriculum geared towards promoting skills for Learning, Life
       & Work.

   •   Introduce more Outdoor Learning across the Curriculum.

   •   Deliver high quality learning and teaching with effective feedback being an
       integral part of the process.

   •   Continue to develop the ethos of success and Growth Mindset in all pupils to
       encourage positivity for mental agility in numeracy lessons and in any lessons a
       pupil finds particularly challenging.

   •   To promote The Daily Mile to enhance Health & Wellbeing, in addition to teaching 2
       hours of P.E. each week, working closely with PE Specialist and Active School Co-
       ordinator.

   •   Implement and practise The Roman Catholic learning materials ‘This Is Our Faith’
       and ‘God’s Loving Plan,’ in RE lessons, Weekly Assemblies and by our everyday
       actions to each other.

   •   Maintain positive relationships with parents, with encouraging them to work
       alongside the school staff, to continue to improve our learning and teaching at St
       Margaret’s RC School.

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HEALTH CARE
In line with other Montrose Primary Schools, we are able to access the services of Mental
Health support at New Solutions. If you feel this service may benefit your child please
speak to Mrs Law initially for more information. All conversations will be treated in strict
confidence.

USEFUL LINKS & CONTACT DETAILS

You can contact your school health staff at: -

Our School Nurse Alison Dye can be contacted on: 01674 675115, Links Health Centre,
Marine Avenue, Montrose.

USEFUL LINKS AND CONTACT DETAILS
Angus Council
Angus House
Orchardbank Business Park
FORFAR
DD8 1AN
Tel: 03452 777 778
Email: ACCESSSchoolsLearnBSU@angus.gov.uk

ANGUS COUNCIL WEBSITE
Visit angus.gov.uk/schools for information that applies to schools across Angus on topics
including:

   •   holidays
   •   meals
   •   school payments
   •   attendance and absence
   •   assessment and reporting
   •   transport
   •   drugs education
   •   religious and moral education
   •   transitions
   •   …and more

OTHER WEBSITES
Find useful links to other websites at angus.gov.uk/linksforparents

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