Phoenix Primary School achieves the Inclusive School Award for the second time.
Warm and Welcoming Ethos
Phoenix Primary is part of the Mayflower Federation. It is a large school with over 600 pupils and it continues to grow. The Mayflower Federation is a small group of schools who share practice with each other. Inclusion at Phoenix Primary remains a priority and is at the forefront of school’s work with its pupils. From the minute you arrive at Phoenix Primary, you can feel the warm and welcoming ethos that is permeated through the school and this warm welcome was extended through the whole visit. Both staff and children were welcoming and all said hello as you passed them.
Inclusion is Key
Inclusion is key in this school as there is a varied intake of students including those with English as an Additional Language, settled travellers and a variety of additional needs. These are all taken into consideration when the school plans interventions to support the learning and as you walk around the school, you can see the inclusive approaches in each year group that is personalised and specific to each child’s needs. The leadership team know the children well which has strengthened the identification and implementation of the interventions.
Early Identification of Needs
The school has their own speech and language therapist who focuses on key children. Alongside this, they have an additional therapist who focuses on early intervention. This ensures that by early identification the children’s needs are met from the beginning of their education.
Working with Families
Working with families is a strength in this school, their Family Support Officer ensures that support is available in a variety of areas (academic or holistic). She has worked closely with Southwark Adult Learning, who provide courses for parents on how to support their children (in areas such as Math and English). This has contributed to the progress that children have made in school. The school also offers Parent Gym, which focuses on different areas to further support parents around including routines at home and behaviour management. Parents had the opportunity to sign up for ESOL lessons via Southwark Adult Learning, which further supports families with their children’s learning.
Opportunities for Parents to Get Involved
The school has a range of opportunities for parents to get involved during learning time. There is also a range of drop-in mornings for parents. The sessions offer a variety of support including the topics of ASD and SALT. The school has started an afterschool parents’ art and craft club to encourage families to spend time together.
Both the PSHE (Personal, Social and Health Education and SRE (Sexual Relationship Coordinator) have supported parents around sensitive issues such as relationships and school life. The Reading Recovery team also work with parents to help them understand the process of learning to read and how to support their children. The school has worked with an outreach worker in Southwark, who supports families with accessing appropriate services and financial support. The school has also participated in a Borough wide walking initiative called “Beat the Street”. This is a Borough wide walking initiative to encourage parents to get out and about with their children. The families have all engaged and participated in this positively.
Attendance and Keeping Children Safe
The Child Protection Officer, who is an active member of the community, works closely with families around keeping children safe and attendance. She also supports families where there are mental health needs that can impact home and children’s day to day lives. The school has put a lot of support into supporting the well-being of the wider community. She has delivered training on FGM and how to be sensitive about families/ children that may struggle to get into school on time. The “Late Gate” approach ensures that any vulnerable children are spotted. The Child Protection Officer has also accessed grants to further enhance the learning opportunities for the children.
Supporting Emotional Literacy
Two members of staff are ELSA trained, which supports children’s emotional literacy. They also have a lunchtime craft group which includes an older member of the community who teaches the children to knit etc. The community links continue through the Beanstalk Charity, which provides volunteers to read with children on a one to one basis. Again, this has proved to be a massive hit with staff and children alike.
All Children have Positive Interventions
Lunch time groups ensure that all children have positive interventions in school eg ELSA, gardening club as well as a craft club. This has contributed to safe and happy lunch times especially for children that can struggle to play for extended amounts of time in unstructured environments. The playground is organised to ensure the children are always engaged in activities such as sports. This has reduced confrontations and challenging behaviour in the playground. Staff have been trained to ensure that the modelling is in place and that the children have positive experiences in the playground.
Staff Development is Encouraged
Staff development is encouraged in Phoenix Primary School, including a number of support staff getting their Masters in a variety of subjects including psychology. The support staff are very skilled at transferring their knowledge into interventions for children. The Educational Psychologist has worked with staff to make them attachment aware and how to support these children when their needs may become more apparent. There is a small cohort of support staff who have moved into teaching. Staff are offered development including the NPQ. Training is specific and forward thinking. It is interest-led and specific to the children that the school have. The inclusion team has discussions with support staff and ensures it is informative and easy to implement.
Clearly Planned Interventions
The interventions in the school are clearly planned and show clear impact. The Reading Recovery team is well trained and ensure that their professional development is up to date via Southwark Reading Recover Network. They also implement Destination Reader and are currently developing a programme to implement in the school to ensure that no child is left behind. Destination reader has been introduced to KS2, and the impact is shown in Key stage and Reading SATS’ results which reflect the success of the programme by being above borough and additional reading results. The school has started using White Rose Maths since Sept 2019, before that it was used in the younger years but was not the go-to guidance for the subject. This has had a positive impact on the teaching of Maths through the school.
Find out more about the IQM Inclusive School Award
If your school is interested in obtaining the IQM Inclusive School Award or you wish to talk to a member of the IQM team please telephone:
028 7127 7857 (9.00 am to 5.00 pm)
or email: firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.
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