We are

Welcome to Whiteshill...

Hello, I’m Miss Francis, the Headteacher at Whiteshill Primary School.

Thank you so much for showing an interest in our school.  I hope that the photographs, information and video below will give you a bit of a sneak peak behind the scenes and allow you to find out what is important to us here at Whiteshill.

I know it is a really big step to choose the right primary school for your child and I am really sorry that this year we are not able to show you around in person.  It is usually a real highlight of the year for me when families come to visit as I love meeting and getting to know the children and parents before you start as a family on your journey here with us.   Unfortunately, this year that is just not possible.

If you would like to get in touch however, I would love to hear from you, so contact the office via email on admin@whiteshill.gloucs.sch.uk or give us a call on 01453 762 949 and we can arrange a telephone appointment for you with myself so that you can ask any questions you may have.

In the meantime, please do look through the photographs below and watch the video which takes you on a tour of Willow class, our reception classroom where your children would start their journey with Mrs Cripps and Mrs Clarke in their first year at Whiteshill.   Please also visit the Willow class page on the website under ‘classes’ in the menu to find out a lot more about your children’s first year here.

At Whiteshill, our goal is to ensure that all of our pupils become passionate, successful, lifelong learners. We want them to know that learning doesn't stop at the school gates but continues well beyond this - even when they are fully grown and have flown far beyond Whiteshill!
We want them to feel self-confident and be ambitious - knowing that their choices and opinions are valued and important.
We hope that we will give them the tools they need to create their own unique future, impacting positively on the wider world.
'We are curious, we are unique, we are together, we are Whiteshill.'
Our curriculum is designed to offer real-life experiences, ensuring that the learning is placed in context for the children and they understand how it relates to life beyond the school gate.
Our curriculum is linked to our vision for the school and therefore when we teach each subject, we introduce them to the children using our key phrase, We are...
When learning art, 'We are artists', during science weeks, 'We are scientists'. This gives the children a real feeling of ownership of the curriculum. They are learning to develop themselves, not just because we tell them to!
The children visit our forest school regularly throughout their time at Whiteshill. It is located up in Ruscombe Woods so they get the real experience of being in a forest and among nature. Sessions are taught by our experienced forest school teacher, Mr Pritchard.
Willow class visit every Friday morning throughout the year, in all weathers. Our other three classes, Elm, Maple and Oak, visit every Friday afternoon for a term each year so that all the children, no matter their age, benefit from this wonderful learning resource in our local area.
During our annual Anti-bullying week, the children engage with the local community, spreading kindness by helping out where we can. Last year, Willow class helped out in the local community shop and year 5 did a litter pick of the recreation ground.
Year 6 delivered poems they had written to local homes. We also invited the community in to watch our presentation to finish the week.
During this week, the children also learn about e-safety with a visit from Stay Safe Workshops and support from the local PCSO.
We also remind them of our STOP approach to bullying: Bullying is 'Several Times On Purpose' and when you see it or experience it, you should 'Start Telling Other People'. This common approach to bullying empowers the children and ensures that any rare instances of bullying are dealt with immediately and consistently.
From year 1 upwards, all the children at Whiteshill receive 10 weeks of specialist whole class instrument tuition through our partnership with Gloucestershire Music.
Last year, the children learnt brass, violins and ukelele! Each year is different and over their time at Whiteshill, the children become confident in reading musical notation, following rhythms and performing in front of an audience.
At Christmas, Willow and Elm classes perform our nativity play, with Maple and Oak class accompanying them through song. In the summer term, our year 5 and 6 children put on an end of term play which involves drama, singing and dancing and is a wonderful way to build their confidence and celebrate what makes them unique as they head off to secondary school.
Our ambition is to ensure that every child from year 1 upwards has chance to represent the school in a sporting event at least once each year. Last year the children competed in a range of events including badminton, swimming gala, indoor rowing, handball and kurling - a real range of activities which help to involve as many children as possible.
The children have weekly PE lessons where they are introduced to the skills and knowledge they need in order to play a range of sports as they grow. We also offer sporting after school clubs each year to the older children, giving a range of opportunities which have included indoor rowing, handball, netball, cross country running, football and yoga.
A further part of our health and wellbeing approach is to encourage the children to take part in gardening in the school grounds, linked to our science curriculum. Each class goes out on a rota basis, having a session once a half term where they look after plants and grow vegetables, through the different seasons.
It is vitally important to us that all the children who leave Whiteshill Primary School are ready for the next step in their education. A focus on reading, writing and maths skills is important so that children can access the whole curriculum confidently and independently as they move on to secondary school.
A big part of this focus on key skills is how we encourage a love of reading in school - reading is the key to all other learning and as such it is so important that the children love books and have the skills they need to access all the exciting books out there as soon as possible!
Last year we opened our school library which is a wonderful space for the children to get excited about books. We also invested in new books as well, allowing the children to tell us what they wanted to see on the shelves and help us unpack them too so that they were as excited as we were!
To encourage a love of reading, we also look for opportunities throughout the year to engage the children with books and authors. Last year, Maple and Oak class took part in events at the Stroud Book Festival and we always celebrate World Book Day with a host of fun activities and dressing up! Unfortunately, our plans in this area are on hold at the moment due to the COVID-19 lockdown, but in the future we hope to take advantage of both the Stroud and Cheltenham Literature Festivals as well as theatre trips for all the children.

A tour around Willow class...

Mrs Clarke has narrated a tour around our reception classroom so that you can see where your children would be spending their first year at Whiteshill.  We also have a large, covered outdoor area at the back of class which the children use daily to free-flow outside and extend their learning through play in an outdoor environment.  This area includes a mud kitchen, a performance stage, water and sand areas, den building and much more.

I hope that this has given you a glimpse in to life at Whiteshill.  Please do get in contact with the school office if you would like to speak to me further at all.  We look forward to welcoming you to our Whiteshill family in 2021!

 

Miss Francis

Headteacher

Admissions

New entrants to the school can be admitted in the September before their fifth birthday.  Please see the admissions policy below for details on our admissions criteria and the process to follow.

We currently have 99 children on roll at Whiteshill and we have spaces in some year groups, if your child is already enrolled at a different school please contact our school office to find out whether we have space in the year group they will be moving in to.  If your child is entering reception next year, we have up to 15 spaces available in this year group each year.

If you would like to come and look around our school, we would absolutely love to have you.  It is always a good idea to see the school for yourself, hear about our vision for the children at Whiteshill and ask any questions you may have.  Please contact Mrs Angove in our school office to arrange a personal visit whenever is most convenient to you during the school day.  You can phone (01453 762 949) or email (admin@whiteshill.gloucs.sch.uk) to arrange an appointment with Miss Francis.

Once your child has been successful in gaining a place at Whiteshill, a series of transition sessions are planned during the summer term so that as a family you can begin to feel part of the school and to ensure the children feel comfortable and happy in the school surroundings ready for a smooth start in September.

We also run a buddy system where each new Reception child is paired up with a child in year 6 who they will have met during the summer term transition.  The year 6 buddies will accompany the children to lunch and spend time with them out in the playground as well so that they have a familiar face to talk to during the initial weeks.

All reception children start school on a part-time basis, enabling them to gradually come to terms with school routine and not get too tired.  For the first week, children are in until lunchtime followed by a second week where they stay for lunch and go home at 1.15pm.   After these initial two weeks, the children are then in full-time.

Sometimes, you as parents may prefer a longer period of part-time attendance. This can be arranged on an individual basis when necessary.

We look forward to welcoming you to Whiteshill.