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    HANDBOOK 2015 – 16


Dear Parent

I trust that you will enjoy reading our handbook and find it interesting and helpful.
In it, we try to paint a picture of life in Whitehirst Park Primary where your child could spend
seven of the most formative years of his/ her life.

Working in partnership within a caring and stimulating environment, we aim to provide
appropriate learning experiences which will encourage positive attitudes, enabling all pupils
to achieve their full potential as valued members of the community. We strive to cater for the
individual needs of each child and to help each one play an active part in all areas of school
life. As partnership between home and school is a vitally important factor in achieving these
aims, we actively encourage close parent/teacher liaison and co-operation.

Our pupils are involved in so many on-going projects and activities that it is not possible to
mention all of them in this brief message. However, I would like to draw your attention to
two initiatives which have maintained a high profile in the life of our school and which will
continue to do so in years to come.

In our promotion of positive behaviour, we introduced a House System. The children are
allocated a place in one of four houses on entry to school i.e. Dalgarven, Doura, Eglinton or
Montgreenan. Each of these houses has a male and female captain from primary seven and
male and female vice-captains from primary six. Once in post, these children have the
responsibility of offering extra support to their house members and of encouraging them to
earn house points in various ways. Points are totalled each week and the highest scoring
team win the very splendid House Shield at the end of the year.

As we are committed to raising the childrens’ awareness of their environment and taking
more responsibility for it, we continue to promote the Eco Schools Initiative as a vital part of
school life to which we are constantly adding. To date, the school has planted over 3000
daffodil, crocus and snowdrop bulbs, six native hardwood trees, and one flowering cherry
tree, created a memorial garden, and established a vegetable garden as well as seasonal tubs
at the main entrance and in the car park. In recent years the Parent Council instigated a
Playground Makeover which resulted in funding and manpower being provided by IBM to
support the transformation of the outside play area. We now have playground games painted
on the school playground and walls. All of these should continue to provide pleasure for
everyone either attending or visiting the school for years to come.

I look forward to having your family join us at Whitehirst Park and hope that you will soon
feel a welcomed member of our parent population.

Yours faithfully
Elizabeth J Magee

SCHOOL AIMS                                                      5
GENERAL SCHOOL INFORMATION                                       6
SCHOOL SECURITY                                                  6
STAFFING                                                         7
SCHOOL HOURS                                                     8
SCHOOL YEAR                                                      9
REGISTRATION AND ENROLMENT                                       10
THE STRUCTURE OF CLASSES                                         10
PLAYGROUND SUPERVISION                                           11
EQUALITIES                                                       11
CURRICULUM FOR EXCELLENCE                                        11
INCLUSION                                                        14
ASSESSMENT & REPORTING                                           17
HOMEWORK                                                         18
EXTRA CURRICULAR ACTIVITIES                                      19
SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT                                               20
PUPIL COUNCIL / ECO-COMMITTEE                                    21
SCHOOL DISCIPLINE                                                22
HOME, SCHOOL & COMMUNITY LINKS                                   23
LISTENING & LEARNING                                             23
ATTENDANCE / ABSENCE                                             24
MOBILE ‘PHONES / ELECTRONIC DEVICES                              25
GETTING IT RIGHT FOR EVERY CHILD (GIRFEC)                        25
CHILD PROTECTION                                                 25
SCHOOL DRESS                                                     26
SCHOOL MEALS                                                     27
SCHOOL TRANSPORT                                                 28
TRANSFER TO SECONDARY SCHOOL                                     29
PARENT FORUM AND PARENT COUCIL                                   29
MEDICAL & HEALTH CARE                                            30
MEDICAL & DENTAL APPOINTMENTS                                    31
LOST & FOUND                                                     31
CARE OF BOOKS                                                    31
WET WEATHER ARRANGEMENTS                                         31
CAR PARK ARRANGEMENTS                                            31
BICYCLES/ SCOOTERS AT SCHOOL                                     32
INFORMATION IN EMERGENCIES                                       32
USEFUL ADDRESSES                                                 33


Our Overall Aim

To work in a sustainable way with our partners to build a better North
Ayrshire in which all citizens can participate, learn and contribute to
the community.

Our Values

     Excellence
     Openness
     Respect
     Inclusion
     Equity

Our Priorities

   Increasing Educational attainment and achievement.
   Developing confident individuals, responsible citizens, effective
    contributors and successful learners.
   Increasing the number of young people moving to positive post-
    school destinations
   Promoting better health and more physical activity.
   Reducing disadvantage and promoting equality.
   Empowering communities through participation in cultural and
    lifelong learning
   Supporting the professional development of staff.
   Providing high quality facilities making best use of resources.

Working in partnership, within a caring and stimulating environment,
we aim to provide quality learning experiences which will encourage
positive attitudes, enabling all pupils to fully achieve their potential as
valued members of the community.

To achieve this we will endeavour to:

          maintain a school ethos which is happy and well
           disciplined, and develops mutual respect for others, while
           promoting positive attitudes to the local and wider
           environment and fosters good relationships between
           school, home and the community in general

          provide equal opportunities for all children to become
           confident individuals, effective contributors, successful
           learners and responsible citizens

          provide carefully planned programmes of learning in all
           curricular areas in line with Curriculum for Excellence
           using a wide variety of teaching approaches, and
           resources, appropriate to the requirements of all children

          further develop staff professionalism, skills and expertise
           through encouraging self-evaluation, positive teamwork,
           shared leadership and appropriate staff development
KA13 6NQ                Web: www.whitehirstpark.northayrshireschools.co.uk
TEL:- 01294 554538      Email:- whitehirstpark@ea.n-ayrshire.sch.uk

Whitehirst Park Primary is a non-denominational, co-educational (boys and girls) semi-open plan
school set in its own extensive grounds within the Whitehirst Park Estate.

At present, the roll stands at 350, although the school has a total capacity and current planning
capacity of 447.

There are two main teaching wings: one housing children from primary one to primary three, the
other accommodating primaries four to seven. In both departments, classrooms border onto large
open teaching areas.

The current roll for each year group is:-P1       39       P2     47      P3      47      P4        54
P5     47       P6       63      P7      52

The anticipated intake for the next three years is as follows:-
2015 - 50                                 2016 - 50                               2017 - 50

Parents should note that the working capacity of the school may vary dependent upon the number of
pupils at each stage and the way in which the classes are organised.

The two wings are connected by the main corridor from which access can be gained to the
gymnasium, dining hall, general purpose rooms, the medical room and the administration area. The
school is used in the evenings by various community groups and organisations.

Application for use of school facilities can be made at:

                            Community Facilities and Resources
                           Education and Youth Employment
                            4th Floor
                            Cunninghame House
                            IRVINE KA12 8EE
                           Tel: 0845 230 1325


                                   SCHOOL SECURITY
North Ayrshire Council has introduced procedures to ensure the safety and security of
children and staff when attending or working in a school. A number of security measures are
used including the use of a visitor’s log and escorts while visitors are within the school
building. Normally, anyone calling at a school for any reason will be asked to report to the
school office. The school staff will then make any necessary arrangements in connection with
the visit to the school. The school procedures in relation to anyone visiting this school are:-

 Report to the main office.
 Enter the details of your visit in the visitor’s log.


STAFF as of OCTOBER 2014
MISS ELIZABETH J. MAGEE                                         HEAD TEACHER
MRS LYNN ROBERTSON                                              DEPUTE HEAD
MRS JANETTE DICKINSON                                            DEPUTE HEAD
MRS PAULA LACY                                                   Principal Teacher

       CLASS TEACHERS                                NUMBER OF PUPILS
P1A    MISS LAURA MCBRIDE                                  25
P2     MRS LAUREN MCCHLERY                                 24
P2/3   MRS LESLEY SMITH / MRS FIONA GAW                    23
P3/4   MRS JENNIFER ELSTONE                                25
P4     MRS JOYCE ATIKEN                                    33
P4/5   MRS PAULA LACY                                      24
P5     MISS KAREN TAYLOR                                   32
P6A    MRS IRENE CURLEWIS                                  32
P6B    MISS LAURA MACDONALD                                31
P7A    MRS LORRAINE MANNING                                26
P7B    MISS LOUISE JOHNSTONE                               27

MISS JULIE WHITE                                                PUPIL SUPPORT
MRS TRACY MCDOUGALL                                         MUSIC TEACHER
                                TOTAL STAFF – 16.3
MRS CAREN ROBSON BRASS                                      INSTRUCTORS

MRS STACEY DORRANS                                   CLASSROOM ASSISTANTS

MRS MORAG FARRO                                         CLERICAL ASSISTANTS

MR GORDON PHILLIPS                                                     JANITOR
MRS KATHRYN COLTART                                                       COOK

OPEN:                                  9.00 am

INTERVAL:                     10.45 - 11.00 am

LUNCH:                        12.30 - 1.30 pm

CLOSE:                                 3.15pm


Schools have a duty to look after the welfare of their pupils. This means that the staff should
take the same care of pupils as a sensible parent would take, and includes taking reasonable
care of pupils’ safety during intervals and lunch-times.

It is the policy of North Ayrshire Council that pupils should not leave school grounds at
intervals. Primary pupils should only leave school grounds at lunch times when they are
going home for lunch, with their parents’ agreement. Parents should encourage their
children to follow these rules in the interests of safety. The Council meets the terms of the
legal requirements that pupils be supervised in the playground by at least one adult during
the interval or lunchtime if there are fifty or more pupils at the school.

Our policy is:-

                  Children bringing a packed lunch or having a school lunch are not
                  permitted to leave the school grounds at lunch time.

                  On very wet days, supervision of children indoors at interval and lunch time
                  stretches our resources to the limit. Therefore children who go home for
                  lunch should not return before 1.25 pm.

SCHOOL YEAR 2014 - 2015
FIRST TERM       TEACHERS RETURN            FRIDAY      15 AUGUST 2014
                 PUPILS RETURN              MONDAY      18 AUGUST 2014

IN-SERVICE DAY   (Staff only present)       MONDAY     22 SEPTEMBER 2014
                                            TUESDAY    23 SEPTEMBER 2014

                 CLOSES AT 3.15PM           FRIDAY  10 OCTOBER 2014
IN-SERVICE DAY   (Staff only present)       MONDAY 20 OCTOBER 2014
SECOND TERM      RE-OPENS                   TUESDAY 21 OCTOBER 2014

LOCAL HOLIDAY                               FRIDAY 14 NOVEMBER 2014
                                            MONDAY 17 NOVEMBER 2014

CHRISTMAS        CLOSES AT 2.30PM           FRIDAY 19 DECEMBER 2014
THIRD TERM       RE-OPENS                   MONDAY  5 JANUARY 2015

HOLIDAY                                     MONDAY       9 FEBRUARY 2015
IN-SERVICE DAY   (Staff only present)       TUESDAY     10 FEBRUARY 2015

EASTER           CLOSES AT 2.30PM           THURSDAY       2 APRIL 2015
FOURTH TERM      RE-OPENS                   MONDAY        20 APRIL 2015

MAY DAY                                     MONDAY       4 MAY 2015
IN-SERVICE DAY   (Staff only present)       FRIDAY       22 MAY 2015

LOCAL HOLIDAY                               MONDAY      25 MAY 2015

SUMMER HOLIDAY   CLOSES AT 1.00PM           FRIDAY      29 JUNE 2015

                 TEACHERS RETURN            MONDAY       17 AUGUST 2015
                 PUPILS RETURN              TUESDAY      18 AUGUST 2015

The date for registration of school beginners is advertised in the local press and is normally
in January each year. Pupils will be registered in the school for their catchment area and
parents provided with information about the school and procedures for making placing
requests, if required.

Arrangements for meetings with parents and induction days for pupils will be notified during
the spring or summer terms. At Whitehirst Park we host an extensive induction programme
prior to first infants starting school which includes two open afternoons in June. On these
occasions, the children spend time with their class teacher and classmates in what will be
their primary one classroom. This affords parents the opportunity to meet and speak with the
Head Teacher, Depute Head Teacher and other members of the Infant Department on matters
relating directly to early education.

Parents of pupils who have moved to the area or who wish their child to transfer to the
school should contact the school office for information about appropriate procedures and to
arrange a visit to the school.


Primary schools educate pupils at seven broad year stages, Primary 1 to Primary 7. A year
stage is defined as a group of pupils entering primary education at a common date.

Schools are staffed to agreed standards based on the total number of pupils. However, the
number of pupils at each stage will vary. This means that Head Teachers are required to
organise classes to make best use of available staff, resources and space to the benefit of all
children in the school.

Pupils may, therefore, be taught in a single stage class or a composite class where two or
more year stages are grouped together. This may also change as pupils move from one year
to the next.

National guidelines on the curriculum indicate that pupils should progress through learning
experiences tailored to their own needs and abilities. This means that pupils in all classes
follow programmes designed to help them progress at their own level. This applies to all
pupils regardless of whether or not they are in a composite or single year stage class.

Current National Guidelines recommend that the maximum number of pupils in a class is 25
in P1, 30 for P2-P3 classes and 33 for P4-P7 classes. However, in line with the Scottish
Government policy of reducing class sizes further in early years, North Ayrshire Council has
reduced the maximum class size in P2 and P3 to 25. The maximum number of pupils in a
composite class irrespective of the year stage is also 25. Further information may be
obtained in “A Guide for Parents” available in school or on the North Ayrshire Website.

An adult presence is provided in playgrounds at break times in terms of the Schools’ (Safety
and Supervision of Pupils) (Scotland) Regulations 1990.

The purpose of the Equalities Act (2010) is to ensure that no child is disadvantaged in any
way because they happen to belong to a particular group.
Every proportionate and reasonable step will be taken to ensure that each child experiences
the educational benefits available across North Ayrshire.
In line with the requirements of the legislation and North Ayrshire Council policy,
educational provision and opportunity is open to all pupils, including those who belong to
one or more of the listed categories. For schools, these categories are:
      Disability
      Gender reassignment
      Pregnancy and maternity
      Race
      Religion or belief
      Sex
      Sexual orientation
Schools have a duty to eliminate disadvantage and to report on their progress in promoting
equality of experience and opportunity every year. This annual report is submitted to the
North Ayrshire Council Corporate Equalities Group.


Curriculum for Excellence (CfE) has been introduced across Scotland for all 3 – 18 year olds
– wherever they learn. It aims to raise standards, prepare our children for a future they do
not yet know and equip them for the jobs of tomorrow in a fast changing world.

Curriculum for Excellence enables professionals to teach subjects creatively, to work
together across the school and with other schools. Teachers and practitioners will share
information to plan a child’s “learning journey” from 3 – 18, ensuring children continue to
work at a pace they can cope with and with challenge they can thrive on.

Curriculum for Excellence balances the importance of knowledge and skills.

Every child is entitled to a broad and deep general education where every single teacher and
practitioner will be responsible for literacy and numeracy. There is also an emphasis on
health and wellbeing – to ensure that the school is a place where children feel safe and

Curriculum for Excellence develops skills for learning, life and work to help young people go
on to further study, secure work and navigate life. It brings real life into the classroom. It
links knowledge in one subject area to another helping children understand the world and
make connections. It develops skills so that children can think for themselves, make sound
judgements, challenge, enquire and find solutions.

There are new ways of assessing progress and ensuring children achieve their potential.

Ultimately, Curriculum for Excellence aims to improve our children’s life chances, to nurture
successful learners, confident individuals, effective contributors, and responsible citizens,
building on Scotland’s reputation for great education.

At Whitehirst Park Primary School we deliver the Experiences and Outcomes detailed under
the following headings:

Literacy and English
Literacy and English promotes the development of critical and creative thinking as well as
competence in listening and talking, reading, writing and the personal, interpersonal and
team-working skills which are so important in life. Literacy is fundamental to all areas of
learning. Throughout their time at Whitehirst Park Primary, children will experience an
environment which is rich in language and which sets high expectations for literacy and the
use of language. Pupils will spend time with stories and other texts which will enrich their
learning and promote enjoyment of literature. For reading and spelling, a variety of
resources and teaching strategies will be used to ensure that the children are given every
opportunity to achieve their potential.

Modern Languages - French is taught throughout the school from P1 – P7.

Numeracy and Mathematics
Mathematics allows children to make sense of the world around them and to manage their
lives. Using maths enables them to model real life situations and make connections and
informed predictions. It equips them with the skills they need to interpret and analyse
information, simplify and solve problems, assess risk and make informed decisions. Learning
maths develops logical reasoning, analysis, problem solving skills, creativity and the ability
to think in abstract ways. Within mathematics lies numeracy, the core numerical and
analytical skills required by each of us to function effectively and successfully in everyday
life. The three main areas of maths are number, money and measure; shape, position and
movement; information handling.

Health and Wellbeing
The school has an important role to play in promoting the health and wellbeing of children.
Learning in health and wellbeing ensures that children develop the knowledge and
understanding, skills, capabilities and attributes which they need for mental, emotional,
social and physical wellbeing now and in the future. Learning through health and wellbeing
enables children to make informed decisions about their wellbeing, experience positive
aspects of healthy living, apply the skills necessary to pursue a healthy lifestyle and establish
a sustainable pattern of health and wellbeing.

Social Studies
Through Social Studies, children develop their understanding of the world by learning about
other people and their values, in different times, places and circumstances. They also develop
their understanding of the environment and how it has been shaped. The children will learn
about human achievements and about how to make sense of changes in society, of conflicts
and of environmental issues. With greater understanding comes the opportunity and ability to
influence events by exercising informed and responsible citizenship.

Expressive Arts
Expressive Arts enable children to enhance their creative talent and develop their artistic
skills. By engaging in experiences within expressive arts, children will recognise and
represent feelings and emotions, both their own and those of others. Expressive Arts enable
children to be creative and express themselves in different ways, enjoy performance and
presentation, develop an appreciation of aesthetic and cultural values. The expressive arts
comprise art and design, dance, music and drama.

Religious and Moral Education
At all stages, the development of our pupils’ spiritual, social and moral wellbeing and growth
is promoted through our Religious and Moral Education Programme. Through this, we hope
to foster attitudes of open enquiry and awareness of prejudice, helping to promote the
appreciation that religion offers a distinctive interpretation of life. We also wish to encourage
honest thinking about religious beliefs and practices and the implications of moral issues
within religions.

Under the terms of the Education (Scotland) Act 1980, parents have the right to ask for their
child to be withdrawn from religious observance. The school will deal with such requests
with sensitivity and understanding. The headteacher will offer to meet with any parent
wishing to withdraw their child to ensure that they are clear about the school policy on
religious observance.

In particular, parents should be reassured that the religious observance planned by the
school adopts an open and respectful approach and does not seek to compromise the belief of
any pupils or their families.

Where a child is withdrawn from religious observance, suitable arrangements will be made
for the pupil to participate in a worthwhile alternative activity.

Parents from ethnic minority religious communities may request that their children be
permitted to be absent from school in order to celebrate recognised religious events. Only
written requests detailing the proposed arrangements will be considered. Appropriate
requests will be granted on not more than three occasions in any one school session and the
pupil noted as an authorised absentee in the register.

Through learning in the sciences, children develop an interest in, and an understanding of,
the living, material and physical world. In the sciences, children will get the opportunity to
develop a curiosity and understanding of their environment, develop skills of scientific
enquiry and investigation, recognise the impact science has on their lives and on the
environment, develop an understanding of the Earth's resources and responsible use of them.

The technologies provide frequent opportunities for active learning in creative and work-
related contexts. Children will be able to develop a number of skills, including skills in using
equipment, software, materials; searching and retrieving information and making

Personalisation and Choice
Inter-disciplinary/ Cross Curricular working also enhances our pupils Learning and
Teaching experiences providing them with opportunities for personalisation and choice.
At all stages, the children participate in educational outings which are directly concerned
with some facet of their class work.

Our aim is to recognise and value all pupils’ individuality through the development of
Personal Learning Plans where they set and evaluate their own targets on a termly basis in
consultation with their parents and teachers.

This Personal Learning Plan will encourage pupils to recognise their own strengths and
areas for development, promote dialogue between home and school and give recognition to
their wider achievement in and out of school.

Further information on how the curriculum is structured can be found at

Sensitive aspects of the curriculum
During their time at Primary School children will learn about – Personal Safety, Safe Use of
the Internet, How to get help in an Emergency, Safe use of Medicines, Good Hygiene and
Diet, Head Lice, How to cope with Worries/ Feelings, Substance Misuse.

Each year our school nurse delivers talks on some elements of Sexual Health Education to
senior pupils: Primary 6 Puberty and Primary 7 Conception, Birth and Healthy
Relationships. Parents/ Carers should be advised of this important health input prior to the
lessons taking place and have the right to request to view the materials that will be used and
withdraw their children from these lessons if they wish. All issues, however, are approached
very sensitively ensuring pupil welfare throughout.

If a parent has concerns about any aspect of the curriculum please contact the school office
to arrange an appointment to discuss the matter with a member of the Senior Management
Team or for matters relating to Health and Wellbeing please contact the school Nurse
directly (01294 551316)

North Ayrshire Council is committed to the well-being and educational development of all
learners. The process of inclusion requires all involved in the business of learning and
teaching to demonstrate commitment, innovation and flexibility in order to ensure that all
children and young people have access to quality learning opportunities and experiences.

Additional Support Needs
Any child who needs more or different support to what is normally provided in schools or
pre-schools is said to have ‘additional support needs’. This includes children who may need
extra help with their education as a result of issues arising from social and emotional
difficulties, bullying, physical disability, having English as an additional language, a sensory
impairment or communication difficulty.

The Additional Support for Learning Act
The Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) Act 2004 came into force in
November 2005. In June 2009, the Act was amended. These amendments form the Education

(Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) Act 2009 and came into force on November

Summary of the main provisions of the Act
The Act provides the legal framework underpinning the system for supporting children and
young people in their school education, and their families.
This framework is based on the idea of additional support needs. This broad and inclusive
term applies to children or young people who, for whatever reason, require additional
support, long or short term, in order to help them make the most of their school education
and to be included fully in their learning.
The 2009 Act automatically deems that all looked after children and young people have
additional support needs unless the education authority determine that they do not require
additional support in order to benefit from school education.
In addition, education authorities must consider whether each looked after child or young
person for whose school education they are responsible requires a co-ordinated support plan.

What North Ayrshire Council does to meet its duties under the ‘Additional Support for
Learning’ legislation
North Ayrshire must assess any pupil with additional support needs and provide with any
support necessary for them to benefit fully from their education. All the evidence says that it
is best to intervene early to prevent any difficulties developing and taking root. For example
by making sure reading is very well taught and that all pupil gets encouragement and support
at home we can hopefully reduce later difficulties. Whatever the type of challenge that arises,
it is important to detect it early, develop a shared understanding of what is needed (the
school may request extra specialised help to do this) and take action to help the pupil

Whenever we start this process for any child or young person, we will always explain to them
and to their parents/carers what our concerns are and what we will do to help

The school can get support from a range of visiting professionals including Educational
Psychologists. These professionals are regularly in all schools and teachers and others will
ask for informal advice on supporting pupils for example on the best way to support a pupil
who is having difficulties with reading. If the school wants more detailed individual help then
they would talk to you about formally involving the educational psychologist. The
educational psychologist can only be involved in seeing your child after seeking your
agreement to this.

For a few children and young people their needs are so complex that professionals from two
or more agencies need to work together over a significant length of time to enable the child to
benefit from school education. Where this is needed, the child or young person will have a
plan to co-ordinate the various actions of these professionals: for this reason it is called a
Co-ordinated Support Plan.

Where a child or young person has additional support needs, extra planning is required every
time there is a move to a new class, new school or college. How far ahead this transition
planning needs to start depends on the particular type of needs but for most children and
young people with Additional Support Needs transition planning should start at least one
year before the date of the planned move.

School Additional Support Needs Contact
The Head Teacher is the Additional Support Needs Co-ordinator at Whitehirst Park Primary
School and should be contacted in the first instance if a parent thinks that their child has
additional support needs.

Dispute Resolution Procedures
You may feel that things are not being done properly to support your child. If you feel like
this then the Council has a range of ways to work with you to resolve any issues. You can ask
at any time for a copy of the booklet called ‘Resolving Disagreements’. This booklet will give
you ways to make sure your concerns are listened to and addressed.

Data Protection
The school and the educational psychology service are required to keep records which are, of
course, available to you. These records are strictly confidential however both schools and
educational psychology are subject to inspection by Her Majesties Inspectors of Education
who may look at confidential files in order to make sure children and families are getting the
best possible service.

Further Support
The following organisations are able to provide advice, further information and support to
parents of children and young people with ASN.

Enquire: Scottish Advice and Information Service for Additional Support for Learning
Website: http://enquire.org.uk/
Helpline: 0845 123 2303
Email: info@enquire.org.uk

Scottish Independent Advocacy Alliance
Website: http://www.siaa.org.uk/
Telephone: 0131 260 5380
Email: enquiry@siaa.org.uk

Scottish Child Law Centre
Website: http://www.sclc.org.uk/
Telephone: 0131 667 6333
Email: enquiries@sclc.org.uk

The “Standards in Scotland’s Schools etc. Act 2000” (Section 15) gives every child and
young person in Scotland the right to have their educational needs met within their local
mainstream school. This right is seen as part of the individual rights enshrined within
Scottish educational law.

There are three “exceptional” circumstances where alternative educational settings can be

      Where mainstream education in the local school is not in the best interests of the child
       or young person
      Where the sound and efficient education of other children in the school would be
       compromised by the child’s presence in the class/school
      Where to educate the child in the local mainstream school would require
       unreasonable public expenditure

Alternative educational planning for a child or young person is required to demonstrate the
influence of one or more of these exceptional circumstances before it would be deemed lawful
to proceed to consider this.

The Education (Disability Strategies and Pupils’ Educational Records)
(Scotland) Act, October 2002, requires local education authorities to prepare and implement
accessibility strategies to improve, over time, access to education for young people with
disabilities. Access covers:

      The physical building and grounds
      The curriculum (both formal and informal)
      Information on any educational planning that might affect the child’s/young person’s

The Disability Discrimination Act (1995 and as amended 2005) and the Disability Equality
Duties (2006) require all public bodies to ensure that no child or young person within an
educational establishment is put at a significant disadvantage or treated less fairly than their
peers because of any reason relating to their disability.

The Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) (2004, 2009) Act sets out certain
duties on local education authorities and confers certain rights on children and their parents.
These duties include the need to:

      Identify, assess and address the need for additional support for any child or young
       person failing to benefit from school education, for whatever reason
      Seek and take account of the views of the child or young person on issues relating to
       their education
      Engage in helpful partnership working with parents/carers and staff from other

These are the various pieces of legislation that support the right to inclusion and that define
the main features of that right.

In North Ayrshire educational establishments, Staged Intervention supports early
identification of need and earliest possible building of positive partnerships.


                      ASSESSMENT & REPORTING
Assessment and Moderation of pupils work continues to be a priority in our School
Improvement Plan. We are currently working to further develop procedures across the
Kilwinning Academy Cluster and the Authority. School Staff are working with colleagues in
our associated cluster primary schools and Kilwinning Academy to moderate work
particularly in Literacy and Numeracy. This will ensure consistency of standards across the

Pupils are under continual assessment by their class teachers to ascertain progress, uncover
any difficulties and to discover capabilities, so that appropriate programmes of work can be

Good Assessment…
    helps children to know how well they have learned
    supports children while they are learning
    builds their self-motivation and self-confidence

At Whitehirst Park Primary we promote good assessment by…
    sharing learning intentions and success criteria with your child
    tuning into what your child is thinking
    giving your child feedback
    marking less to achieve more
    encouraging children to assess their own and each other’s work
    involving parents and carers
Progress checks are made when pupils have completed certain units of work - again to assess
satisfactory progress, but also to indicate to the teacher the effectiveness of his / her teaching
Assessment results should confirm to both teachers and parents that pupils are progressing in
an appropriate manner.
Parents are invited by appointment to discuss their children’s progress with class teachers
twice a year (usually in October and February) and receive one written report annually in
June. The report provides a written record of each child’s progress over each session.

Throughout the session parents are welcome to request an appointment to discuss their
child’s progress with the class teacher or a member of the Senior Management Team.
Information about Curriculum for Excellence levels and how progress is assessed can be
found at www.educationscotland.go.uk


Homework may be given for the revision of known processes and skills and the reinforcement
of new learning where no difficulties are envisaged. It should provide opportunities to
consolidate work done in class and should therefore reinforce skills and concepts which have
been taught in school.

Home, the community and the media can all extend work introduced in school in a variety of
interesting and stimulating ways. In this sense learning experiences in and out of school
should be complementary. Independent home reading, listening, questioning and note-taking
in relation to topical themes, are good examples of enriching homework tasks.

Homework is one means of keeping parents in touch with what is happening in school and
parental involvement and collaboration are of vital importance. Good examples of parental
involvement include the provision of enriching experiences at home which relate to work
being done in school e.g. family viewing of relevant television programmes, discussion of
current affairs, family visits to the local library or places of topical interest.

When homework is set the following approximate timings seem appropriate:

       P1             no more than 10 - 15 minute per evening
       P2 – 3         up to 15 – 20 minutes per evening
       P4 - 5         up to 30 minutes per evening
       P6 - 7         up to 45 minutes per evening.

Homework should be an integral part of the whole learning experience and must be related to
work done in school. Like classwork, it should be suited to the age, aptitude and ability of
the child.

Annually the school endeavours to provide a wide range of extra curricular activities for
pupils. In the past these have included football, netball, country dancing, basketball,
athletics, choir, science, and badminton. They are organised and run by dedicated
individuals and teachers.
Information on current extra curricular activities (lunch time and after school) is available
on the school website, www.whitehirstpark.northayrshireschools.co.uk .

Over recent years pupils from the school have been successfully involved in the North
Ayrshire Primary Cross Country League.

Cycling proficiency lessons have generally been available to all pupils in primary six or

Various charities, local and national, are given support from the school each year. We have
an on-going commitment to Action Aid, through which we sponsor the education of children
in the Third World. Our pupils are asked to donate their “play piece” money one day per
month and, in making this small sacrifice, ensure an improved quality of life for much less
fortunate youngsters.

Annually the school produces a Standards and Quality Report which outlines the work of the
school, how the school has improved standards in relation to literacy, numeracy and health
and well being and includes the main achievements over the last 12 months. A copy of the
latest report can be found on the school website.

Plans for the improvement of the school’s performance over the next three years, including
how the school will involve parents are outlined in the School Improvement Plan.

The priorities for Session 2014 – 15 are as follows:

Priority 1. Curriculum for Excellence – Learning and Teaching
   1. To join with cluster schools to inform and deliver the recommendations set out in the
        Scottish Government’s 1 + 2 agenda in Modern Languages.
   2. To work collaboratively as a cluster to ensure consistency across Assessment and

Priority 2. Curriculum for Excellence – Learning and Teaching
   1. To review, evaluate and develop the learning and teaching of Health and Wellbeing.
   2. To review and develop the learning and teaching of Science, Technology and
        Engineering (STEM)

Additional Priorities for Session 2014-15 include
 To continue to embed procedures for self-evaluation – partnership with learners, parents
   and the wider community
 To continue to embed a culture of Equality and Rights Respecting Schools across the
   To continue to develop the Learning and Teaching of Reading and Writing
   To continue to develop the Learning and Teaching of Mathematics
   To maintain the Green Flag in the Eco Schools Initiative
   To continue to improve learning and teaching by sharing good practice
   To continue to develop a culture of shared leadership across the school
   To continue to develop aspects of Expressive Arts – Dance and Drama

Priorities for Session 2015-16
 To review, evaluate and develop the Learning and Teaching of aspects of Social Subjects
   To develop the Learning and Teaching of Listening and Talking
   To continue to develop aspects of CfE and AifL
   To maintain the Green Flag in the Eco Schools Initiative
   To continue to review procedures for self-evaluation
   To take forward National/ Local priorities

The latest Education Scotland (HMIE) report for the school is available on the Education
Scotland website www.educationscotland.gov.uk/inspectionandreview


Pupils are actively involved in the Pupil Council and Eco Committee. All classes annually
select their representatives at the start of the session. The Pupil Council has regular
meetings where items of concern/ suggestions can be made. The Eco Committee meets
weekly to discuss various issues and ensure that effective strategies are in place to maintain
and develop our Green Flag status.


The Scottish Government and its partners collect and use information about pupils through
the Pupil Census to help to improve education across Scotland. This note explains why we
need this information, how we use it and what we do to protect the information supplied to

Why do we need your data?
In order to make the best decisions about how to improve our education service, Scottish
Government, education authorities and other partners such as the SQA and Skills
Development Scotland need accurate, up-to-date data about our pupils. We are keen to help
all our pupils do well in all aspects of school life and achieve better examination results.
Accurate and up-to-date data allows us to:

    o plan and deliver better policies for the benefit of all pupils
    o plan and deliver better policies for the benefit of specific groups of pupils
    o better understand some of the factors which influence pupil attainment and
    o share good practice
    o target resources better
    o enhance the quality of research to improve the lives of young people in Scotland

Data policy
Information about pupils’ education is collected through our statistical surveys in
partnership between the Scottish Government and Local Authorities through the ScotXed
Programme which aims to help schools and Local Authorities by supporting efficient
collection, processing and dissemination of statistical information. The Scottish Government
then provides analysis of the data to support research, planning, management and
monitoring of education services as well as to produce National Statistics publications.

Education data within Scottish Government is managed effectively by secure systems and is
exploited as a valuable corporate resource, subject to confidentiality restraints. As part of its
data policy, Scottish Government will not publish or make publicly available any information
that allows individual pupils to be identified, nor will data be used by Scottish Government to
take any actions in respect of individuals. Data is held securely and no information on
individual pupils can or would be made publicly available by Scottish Government.

The individual data collected by Scottish Government through the Pupil Census is used for
statistical and research purposes only.

Your data protection rights
The collection, transfer, processing and sharing of ScotXed data is done in accordance with
the Data Protection Act (1998). We also comply with the National Statistics Code of Practice
requirements and other legislation related to safeguarding the confidentiality of data. The
Data Protection Act gives you the right to know how we will use your data. This note can
give only a brief description of how we use data. Fuller details of each individual ScotXed
survey, including the purpose of each and the published data, can be found on the ScotXed
website (www.scotxed.net).

Scottish Government works with a range of partners including Education Scotland, Skills
Development Scotland and the SQA. On occasion, in order to help meet our aim of improving
the life of young people in Scotland, we may make individual data available to partners such
as the National Registers of Scotland to carry out research relating to the national
population census and also academic institutions and organisations to carry out additional
research and statistical analysis to meet their own official responsibilities. Any sharing of
data will be done under the strict control of Scottish Government, and will be consistent with
our data policy. This will ensure that no individual level data will be made public as a result
of the data sharing and that these data will not be used to take any actions in respect of an
individual. Decisions on the sharing of data will be taken in consultation with relevant
colleagues and individuals within and outwith Scottish Government. At all times pupils’
rights under the Data Protection Act and other relevant legislation will be ensured.

If you have any concerns about the ScotXed data collections you can email the Head of
Schools Analysis, Mick Wilson, at mick.wilson@scotland.gsi.gov.uk or write to The ScotXed
Support Office, Area 2D, Victoria Quay, Leith, EH6 6QQ. Alternative versions of this page
are available, on request from the ScotXed Support Office, in other languages, audio tape,
Braille and large print.


Most breaches of discipline are of a fairly minor nature and are dealt with effectively in
school. Repeated indiscipline or incidents of serious misconduct would, however, be brought
to the attention of parents. A good home/ school partnership has been found to be vital in
maintaining a good standard of discipline amongst our pupils and the school is grateful to
parents for their support and co-operation in this matter.

The relationship between pupils and teachers is similar to that between children and their
own parents, requiring mutual consideration on both sides.

Within the school context we hope to:

       (a)     develop in pupils a sense of self discipline and an acceptance of responsibility
               for their own actions.

       (b)     create the conditions for an orderly school community in which effective
               learning can take place.

       (c)     encourage our children to be confident individuals, responsible citizens and
               effective contributors to society.

As previously mentioned, parents’ evenings are held in Term 1 and Term 3 of each school
year at which times parents and teachers have the opportunity to discuss progress and
development. However, parents are encouraged to contact the school at any time to discuss
their childrens’ progress and welfare, if there is cause for concern.

Regular newsletters are sent home to inform parents of general issues and activities of
specific interest. This information is also placed on the school website. Every encouragement
is given to parents to take part in fund raising and social events within the school and we are
most grateful for the assistance allowed us by volunteer helpers in all areas of school life.

The school forms an important part of the Whitehirst Park Estate and we try to involve the
wider community in events whenever possible. We have forged very valuable links with the
local senior citizens, ranging from the distribution of Harvest gifts to their involvement in our
musical showcases and open afternoons at various times of the year.


It is the policy of North Ayrshire Council to try to encourage feedback on the education
service from parents and pupils. This is part of our overall commitment to giving the best
possible service and to working in partnership.

We are therefore, interested in feedback of all kinds, whether it be compliments, suggestions
or complaints. If you wish to register a comment of any type about the school you can do this
by writing, telephoning or making an appointment to see someone. All feedback is welcome
and helps us keep in touch.

If, in particular, you have a complaint about the school, please let us know. It is better that
these things are shared openly and resolved fairly, rather than being allowed to damage the
home/school relationship. There will be no negative consequences arising from making a
complaint and we will deal with the issue as confidentially as possible. If we have made a
mistake we will apologise quickly and clearly and try to put things right.

There are some things you should take note of in relation to making a complaint:

   It is helpful if complaints are made initially to the Head Teacher. This makes sure that
    the school knows what is going on and has an opportunity to respond and resolve the

 We will try to respond as quickly as possible, but often issues are complex and need time
  to investigate. It is therefore helpful if you can give some details of the issue and ask for
  an early appointment to discuss it.

 If you are not satisfied with our response then you will have the right to take up the matter
  further with the Corporate Director of Education and Youth Employment at Cunninghame
  House, Irvine, KA12 8EE. (01294 324400).

 You should also note that you have the right to raise unresolved concerns with your local
  councillor or MSP / MP.

 Parent Councils have an important role in developing links between the school and the
  wider parent body and can often be helpful in helping to deal with issues of general
  concern. However, parents are advised that individual, more personal complaints are not
  appropriate for raising via parent councils due to the need for appropriate confidentiality.


                         ATTENDANCE / ABSENCE
It is the responsibility of parents of children of school age to educate their child(ren). Most
do this by ensuring that their child(ren) attend(s) school regularly.

Attendance is recorded twice a day, morning and afternoon.

Absence from school is recorded as authorised, unauthorised or temporarily excluded.

Parents are asked to telephone the school no later than 9.30am on the first day of each
absence. They are also asked to inform the school by letter or by telephone if their child is
likely to be absent for some time, and should give the child a note on his or her return to
school, confirming the reason for absence.

If there is no explanation from the child’s parents, the absence will be regarded as

Every effort should be made to avoid family holidays during term time as this both disrupts
the child's education and reduces learning time. Parents should inform the school by letter,
before going on holiday, of the dates. Such absence will be authorised only where certain
and very specific family circumstances exist. The majority of family holidays taken during
term time will be categorised as unauthorised absence.

Parents may request that their children be permitted to be absent from school to make an
extended visit to relatives. Only written requests detailing the destination, the duration and
the provision that will be made for their continuing education will be granted. Such extended
absences will be recorded separately from the normal attendance and absence information.

The school attendance officer will investigate unexplained absence, and the authority has the
power to write to, interview or prosecute parents, or refer pupils to the Reporter to the
Childrens’ Panel, if necessary.


While the benefits of mobile phones are recognised, there is no necessity for pupils to have
access to them during the school day. Pupils who use their phones within the school without
permission from a member of the Senior Management Team will have them confiscated until
the end of the school day or until uplifted by the parent.

Inappropriate use of text messages and/ or photographs whilst in school may be treated as a
breach of school discipline or a serious incident which could be referred to the police.

All of the above also applies to all electronic devices – DS devices, iPad, Tablets, etc.

As with all valuable items of equipment parents should note that no liability can be accepted
by the authority/ school for the loss of/ or damage to any of the above equipment.

              Getting it Right for Every Child (GIRFEC)
Getting it right for every child (GIRFEC) is an approach from the Scottish Government that
sets out how schools and other services should work with children and their families.
GIRFEC is all about ensuring that children get the help they need when they need it – the
right help at the right time. For you and your child, GIRFEC means that you are the expert
on your child and what you think matters. Getting it right for every child means that the
School will always seek to involve you, to listen to your opinions and take them seriously.

Taking a ‘Getting it Right for Every Child’ approach to supporting every child is a priority
within our school and we aim to assist every child in our school to reach their potential in
each of the areas listed below;

   Healthy - Experiencing the highest standards of physical and mental health, and
    supported to make healthy safe choices.
   Achieving - Receiving support and guidance in their learning
   Nurtured – Having a nurturing and stimulating place to learn
   Active – Offering opportunities to take part in a wide range of activities
   Respected – To be given a voice and involved in the decisions that affect their well-being
   Responsible – Taking an active role within the school
   Included – Receiving help and guidance to overcome social, educational, physical and
    economic inequalities; accepted as full members of the communities in which they live
    and learn
   And above all, to be safe … protected from abuse, neglect or harm

For more information on Getting it Right for every Child in North Ayrshire go to


                             CHILD PROTECTION
Educational Services has a fundamental duty to contribute to the care and safety of all
children and young people in North Ayrshire. In fulfilling this duty, the service must engage
in close partnership with parents/ carers and relevant agencies, primarily Social Services
and Health and where appropriate the Scottish Children’s Reporter’s Administration.
Service will work in partnerships with a number of levels within the establishment or school,
within the cluster or local area and through Integrated Children’s Services and Community
Health Partnership.

The Standard Circular entitled “Protecting North Ayrshire Children” provides guidance for
policy and practice within educational establishments. The Council is one of the key partners
in North Ayrshire. The Child Protection Committee is a multi-agency group which takes the
lead role in ensuring that our children and young people are cared for, protected from harm
and grow up in a safe environment.

Each school has a named Child Protection Co-ordinator who is the main point of contact for
school staff and for external agencies seeking contact with the school on child protection
matters. There is an extensive staff training programme available to staff and, in addition, at
the beginning of each school session all staff receive an update on child protection policies
and procedures.

It is the policy of North Ayrshire Council to support the introduction of a reasonable and
flexible dress code in each school in its area. The council encourages each school to adopt
its own code, after discussion with parents, pupils and the Parent Council.

The Council believes that establishing a school dress code has many benefits. These include
improvements in safety, security, discipline and community spirit and a decrease in bullying,
and, expense for parents.

The Council will support schools in encouraging and helping pupils to conform to the chosen
dress code. Some types of clothing will not be allowed at school in any circumstances, for
reasons of safety, decency or discipline.

Types of clothing which will not be allowed include:-
 Clothes which are a health and safety risk.
 Clothes which may damage the school building.
 Clothes which may provoke other pupils.
 Clothes which are offensive or indecent (too revealing, tight or short).
 Clothes which encourage the use of alcohol or tobacco.

The Council will support schools taking disciplinary procedures against pupils in serious or
persistent cases.
All items of clothing should be clearly labelled with the child’s name in case of loss.
It is appreciated that parents and pupils are distressed over the loss of pupils’ clothing and /
or personal belongings. Parents are asked to assist in this area by ensuring that valuable
items of clothing or personal belongings are not brought to school. Parents should note that
the authority does not carry insurance to cover the loss of such items.

Parents receiving job seeker’s allowance, income support, family credit, housing benefit or
council tax rebate will normally be entitled to grants for footwear and clothing for their

Applying could not be easier! Call 0845 603 0596 and a Customer Services Advisor will
process your application over the telephone. Further information can be found on the North
Ayrshire Website -

It is gratifying to note that most of our parents already favour the wearing of school uniform
as it encourages the children to develop a pride in their school and its achievements.
Our school uniform consists of the following:

        FOR GIRLS                                                 FOR BOYS
        White blouse                                              White shirt
        School Tie                                                School Tie
        Gold or white polo shirt                                  Gold or white polo shirt
        Grey pinafore or skirt                                    Grey or Black trousers
        Black or grey plain trousers                              Maroon sweatshirt or fleece
        Maroon sweatshirt, cardigan or fleece

Twice a year the school takes orders for sweatshirts and polo shirts which are in appropriate
colours and feature the school badge. (Additional orders may be placed to address any
exceptional demand outwith these times.)

We ask your help in providing suitable kit for Physical Education i.e. T-shirts, shorts, gym
shoes all of which allow easy movement. (It should be noted however that football strips are
not permitted.) Please also note that gym shoes with black soles should be avoided as they
can leave ugly scuff marks on the gym floor.

Casual dress i.e. the wearing of jeans or track bottoms by boys or girls is not considered
appropriate at school and parents are asked to give their support in this matter.


Midday meals are available from the school cafeteria from 12.30 pm until 1.30 pm. The
children can choose from a selection of hot cooked meals, filled rolls, sandwiches, home
baking and fresh fruit. Milk and fruit juice are also on sale.

The school operates a cash-less catering system. Thus parents can send either a cheque or
cash to school using the wallets provided to pay for their child’s meals or pay on-line. This
eliminates the need for children to carry cash daily, and ensures that dinner money is used
for the correct purpose. Parents are asked to ensure that all school meals are paid for in
advance and can check their child’s School Meals Account balance by telephoning the
school kitchen on 01294 554537. Details of menus and prices may be obtained from the
North Ayrshire Website www.north-ayrshire.gov.uk or the school on request.
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