Holy Family R.C. Primary School
' Working together to give our best '
Holy Family School is a Voluntary Aided Catholic Primary school , administered jointly by the Archdiocese of Cardiff and Cardiff County Council LEA. The school character, daily life and religious teaching is founded in the Catholic Faith. Holy Family is a co-educational day school and is a designated Primary School.
Our school is situated in a pleasant open setting, with large grounds in Fairwater, Cardiff. It is a modern building with a private playgroup attached. The school was opened in September 1966 under the trusteeship of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Cardiff. The school is maintained by the LEA.
Parents who are considering sending their children to the school should contact the headteacher in the first instance. A mutually convenient time will be arranged to visit the school.
Children's names may be put on the waiting list at any time. Parents will be advised by the school during the Summer Term prior to Reception class admission, of the times and details of their child's admission arrangements in the forthcoming year. During this term, parents and children are invited to visit the school to help make admission a smooth and happy experience.
Secondary Education and Links with Further Education
Children from Holy Family transfer to Corpus Christi High School . Very good links exist between us for example, all children in Year 5 are given the opportunity to visit the secondary school and work in their I.T. suite. This is followed up by a second visit in Year 6 where the children visit a variety of classes and experience some “taster” lessons, as well as taking part in sports activities, tournaments and musical performances.
Holy Family welcomes former pupils who have transferred to Corpus Christi through a variety of work experience opportunities. Such opportunities are also extended to students from St. David's Sixth Form College, and other High Schools. The school also has very good links with Cardiff University and University of Wales Institute (UWIC). Such links involve the school taking students for teaching practice placements, either on B Ed or P.G.C.E. courses.
The Board of Governors
Foundation Governors appointed by the Archdiocese of Cardiff.
1 Elected Parent Governor.
1 Elected Teacher Governor.
1 Elected Non-Teacher Governor.
1 Governor appointed by Cardiff County Council Local Education Authority.
As a Catholic family we welcome all and value Christ in everyone, whilst seeking the highest possible achievements.
To achieve this the school will:-
Recognise that Christ is in and around us and to celebrate His love through prayer and worship.
Promote strong links between home, school, parish and community.
Value and respect the uniqueness of each individual.
Ensure that Holy Family will be a place where everyone has a right to be heard and where we listen to each other with respect.
Develop our talents and our learning skills in all our activities and to recognise and rejoice in the talents of others.
The Staff and governors of Holy Family School aim to provide for the religious and educational needs of children of Primary School age. Their aim is to provide a broad relevant curriculum, which centres on the teaching and practices of the Catholic Church. The school will ensure that the religious dimension of the school permeates all aspects of the curriculum and that this will be fundamental to the delivery of all areas including the National Curriculum and Desirable Outcomes.
The school community will respect each other's individuality and ensure the development of their skills and talents accordingly to their age and ability.
To instil a sound knowledge of the Catholic Faith by helping to produce responsible individuals able to care for themselves and get on with others different from themselves, recognising that each has different needs.
To work with the parish community of Holy Family and others, as well as each child's parents in leading that child along his/her personal journey of faith.
To instil religious and moral values, a respect for oneself and others, which informs everyday life and relationships, promoting tolerance of other races, friendliness, politeness, as well as respect for ones own property and the property of others and the school environment.
To help pupils to develop lively, enquiring minds, the ability to question and argue rationally, to apply themselves to tasks, and physical skills.
To provide opportunities for pupils to acquire skills which enable them to reach their maximum potential.
To help pupils to appreciate human achievements and aspirations in order to inspire their lives and encourage high aspirations in themselves.
To develop each child's creativity and to help pupils to use language and number effectively.
To evaluate our work and aims at regular intervals, adapting them as necessary.
To help pupils to understand the world in which they live, and their interdependence of individuals, groups and nations.
To foster mutual respect and understanding between all members of the school community and to develop positive relationships.
To strengthen links with other feeder schools and with Corpus Christi High School .
To communicate the Christian message in a manner appropriate to the age and life experience of the children.
To provide opportunities for experiencing prayer, to pray spontaneously, to teach the formal prayers of the church and to encourage children to pray liturgically.
To introduce and prepare the children for the celebration of the Mass.
To encourage home, school and parish links through involvement in the Mass, Feasts, festivals and assemblies.
To introduce the children each year to different aspects of the Liturgical Year.
To develop pupils' ability to form relationships and be part of a living and loving community.
To promote and encourage among pupils active, committed participation of the life of the church and community of Holy Family parish.
To follow the Here I Am Religious Education programme.
To use assessment effectively through the delivery of Religious Education.
To recognise Religious Education as a vehicle for promoting the Key Skills.
To develop cross-phase links through visits and the transfer of information with our feeder school, Corpus Christi .
As with all other areas of the curriculum, it is important that these aims and objectives are realised in ways, which are suited to the ages, experiences and needs of the children of Holy Family. Care also needs to be taken to ensure that there is continuity and progression in the children's learning and acquisition of knowledge, skills and concepts.
Teaching Arrangements Within The Classroom
Pupils are organised into classes based on age. Teaching and learning take place in the following contexts as appropriate to the subject content:
Whole Class Teaching
Group Teaching - based on ability, mixed ability, friendship groups.
Ability groups are determined by Teacher Assessment and reviewed in the light of pupil performance. Where appropriate, standardised tests inform and validate the teacher's assessment.
Groups are organised with flexibility and will alter from activity and subject, i.e. your child may be in one ability group for English and another for Mathematics.
Composition of Classes
Children are divided into 6 classes at Holy Family by age from Yr R to Yr 6 and mixed age classes are sometimes necessary. We provide a curriculum that is broad, balanced, relevant and differentiated for each child – whether in mixed age or straight age classes.
The National Curriculum
All pupils in maintained schools in Wales are required to follow the National Curriculum consisting of 3 core subjects and 9 foundation subjects . All of which are taught from Yr1 to Yr6.
The core subjects are English, Mathematics and Science.
The foundation subjects are I.T., History, Geography, Design & Technology, Music, Art, R.E. Welsh and P.E.
Schemes of Work and Assessment procedures are in place and available for viewing the school foyer.
The principal method of assessment at Holy Family School is that of continuous Teacher Assessment, over the whole year as part of the child's daily classroom experience. Teacher Assessment will form the bulk of that reported to parents.
Some formal testing of reading, spelling and mathematical ability takes place during the year.
School Policies and Schemes of Work
All documentation on Governor agreed School Policies and Schemes of Work are available in the foyer and school office.
It is the policy of the school to give homework to pupils in the following circumstances:
1) Where parent or teacher considers that the child would benefit from additional work or practice.
2) When the child has not completed a satisfactory level of work during the school day, work will be sent home for completion.
3) Children will be asked to learn spelling or mathematical tables/facts at home.
4) Reading practice partnered by a parent is positively encouraged as 'homework' from Reception Class onward. Reception parents are encouraged to visit the school in the Spring term to become involved in our Home School Reading Programme.
Where homework is given please ensure that your child completes tasks as set and return it promptly.
While recognising the central role of the family in the Religious Education of their children, Holy Family School aims to fulfil its role of educating children in the Catholic Faith in order that each child will grow to know and love Jesus Christ and follow the teaching contained in the Gospels.
Catholic children receive their initial knowledge of the Faith from their parents who are their first and most important teachers. But as the children grow older, the parish community and later the school, support the parents in partnership and share in that process by which children are brought to a greater understanding of the meaning of their Baptism and the mission of the Church.
The Catholic character of the school permeates all of the schools curriculum. In line with the synod of the Bishops Conference and CES, the “Here I Am” religious Scheme of Work is used in the school. The topics which are covered each term are shared with parents through a termly Religious Education newsletter. In line with the Here I Am programme children also look at other Faiths in the Autumn and Spring terms.
In school, religious education is taught through regular lessons, the seasons of the Church's year, various liturgies, assemblies, and not least, by the attempt to create a school ethos which reflects the values of the Gospel.
It is the policy of the school to celebrate together through collective worship our shared collective faith as a community of believers. It is viewed as part of the whole school curriculum and reflects, expresses and affirms Christian personal and social values.
The following assemblies take place on a regular basis:
Infant and Junior assembly.
Whole School assembly.
Class Masses are also planned and celebrated in school, and Feast days are celebrated as a whole-school Mass. Parishioners are made welcome at these Masses.
Some time ago, the responsibility for the immediate preparation of children for the sacraments of Reconciliation and Holy Communion was taken out of the schools and placed in the parish. This is in keeping with the mind of the Church which sees the parish as the basic Christian community in which renewal and growth primarily take place. However, we do work with catechists to prepare the children in school and in the parish for these sacraments.
Special Educational Needs
We identify, monitor and support those children who have special educational needs. Mrs Stauber is our Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator (SENCO) who works with the child's classteacher to provide appropriate support. These pupils receive tuition based on an individualised programme devised by both teachers. They may be taught in small groups or supported individually depending on their needs. Indivdual Education Plans are implemented as appropriate.
Special Educational Needs pupils are identified by an internal referral system. The SENCO liaises with all teaching staff and where necessary with outside agencies to ensure that resources are used efficiently to meet the identified needs of the child.
The Local Authority Support Services are available to offer further advice and guidance when necessary.
Children who have special educational needs are identified as soon as possible so that, with the co-operation of the parents, help can be given. Parental help and co-operation is seen as an essential aspect of Holy Family's approach. Parents will be fully informed and consulted at all stages regarding their childs' needs and strategies employed by the school to address those needs.
The Whole School Approach to Discipline
At Holy Family an attempt is made to promote good behaviour through a positive approach to discipline. The aim is that the children at Holy Family choose good behaviour because they can see the reasons why one form of behaviour is preferable to another and can experience positive consequences for good behaviour.
At Holy Family it is the policy to reward desirable behaviour whenever possible. Rewards can take many forms. One of the most effective and easily given form of reward is teacher attention and approval. Teachers may reward with a smile, words of praise, or by drawing the whole class' attention to the desirable behaviour.
Whilst at Holy Family the use of reward to encourage desirable behaviour is far more effective than punishment, it is recognised that there are times when the use of effective punishment is necessary.
In order to reduce the adverse effects of punishment, guide-lines are given for its use. To summarise, they suggest that punishment should be administered sparingly on children who understand why they are being punished, at the time the misbehaviour occurs and by a calm, unemotional teacher.
If a school requires children to behave in a certain way, it is clearly important that the school lets the children know that the behaviour it considers desirable and that it considers undesirable, together with the reasons for the differentiation. This is usually done through rules. Rules give children a frame of reference, they help children to remember how to behave.
At Holy Family there are 5 school rules which have been devised through discussion with the junior children.
At Holy Family we always try to:
1) Treat others as we would like them to treat us.
2) Work well and do our best.
3) Let others get on with their work.
4) Walk sensibly around the school building.
5) Respect other people in our school.
Rewards are given regularly to children who are seen following the rules.
We have a House points system where children are given points which are totalled at the end of a half term and during a whole school merit assembly, children with the most house points in their class are awarded a certificate. Children are allocated to a House on their entry to school and the Houses are Winifred, Illtyd and Teilo.
Parental Visits to the School
Parents are welcome to visit the school at any time, to discuss any matters with the Head Teacher or any member of staff. However, parents are asked to telephone in advance and make an appointment to ensure that someone is available to see them.
Parent - Teacher Meetings
Normally two formal Parent-Teacher meetings are held each year. They are held in the Autumn and Summer Terms. Every parent is urged to attend these meetings, when they may discuss privately their child's progress.
While parents will have an opportunity to look at exercise books and topic work, they should remember that these indicate only a part of a child's learning activities. A full discussion with the teacher of your child's overall performance is beneficial to all concerned.
Reports are given annually to the parents of every child in the school. These are normally distributed at the end of the Summer Term.
Parents are asked to note the comments carefully and to praise, particularly where a child's endeavours may be greater than his/her level of achievement.
Verbal reports and samples of pupils' work will be made available during the year if there is any cause for concern.
Procedure for the Administration of Medicine to Pupils
The following procedures for the administration of medicine in Holy Family Primary School are made in the light of consultation with the Health Authority's guidelines on “Health Issues in School”, produced by the child and adolescent Health Directorate and the Welsh Office Guide, “Supporting Pupils With Medical Needs: A Good Practice Guide”.
It is acknowledged that from time to time children in school will not benefit from full health. In such circumstances, the opportunity to receive medicine in school is preferable to excessive school absence. This principle applies to certain conditions which children may experience in Holy Family School , such as those children who are asthmatic. In administering medicine to children within the school day, the following legal points are recognised:
The giving of medication to a child is the responsibility of the parent/carer.
School staff cannot be directed to undertake this role.
Bearing in mind the points made earlier, the school does agree to administer medication as and when necessary. In the first instance, the Headteacher (or a named replacement) shall administer all medication to children (except for those children who are asthmatic, who will administer their own relievers).
In administering medicine, the following points will be brought to the attention of parents upon the child's entry to the school and through reminders in the school newsletter.
Medication should normally be administered outside of school hours. e.g. asthma maintenance drugs, anti-convulsants, antibiotics, and anti-rheumatic drugs. Parents are encouraged to request the child's doctor to prescribe in this way.
If you wish the school to administer medication then a request form must be completed in the school office by the parent/guardian of the child concerned.
A record of all medication administered in school will be kept in the office.
If a pupil is to carry out their own medication then a request form must be completed by their parents/guardians.
Medicines brought to school must be accompanied with clear instructions.
Medication and instruction may be handed in the first instance to the child's class teacher, these should then be forwarded to the school office immediately.
Medicines should be in their original containers and not repacked to another container.
Containers must be clearly labelled with:
the child's name
the name of the drug
the dosage and method of administration.
Liquid medication should be accompanied with a calibrated spoon i.e. 5 ml intervals.
The school will not normally accept responsibility for giving medication which requires intimate/very personal contact with the child e.g. the application of cream which is required to be rubbed in . In such individual cases the matter should be discussed with the Headteacher.
All medication will be kept in a prescribed box within the school office with the exception of “asthmatic relievers” (see over). Medication needing to be kept at a controlled temperature will be stored in the refrigerator in the staffroom inside a labelled container.
Following guidelines on the management of asthma given by the Principal School Medical Officers, the general principle in Holy Family School is that children will not bring maintenance drugs to school but the use of “relievers” is encouraged so that children with asthma can carry on as normally as possible during the school day. It should be noted that parents/guardians need to comply with “General Principle (iv)”. Such children will need to have ease of access to their relievers which should therefore be kept in a prescribed box within each classroom (each reliever being clearly named). Children are encouraged to be responsible for ensuring that their relievers are with them whilst off visits. Discretion needs to be used by the class teachers according to the age of the individual child. Teachers need not but may be willing to take care of the reliever on behalf of a child. Boxes with relievers together with large volumatics will be kept in a designated area in each classroom.
Educational Visits Off Site Including Residential Visits
Points 1 and 2 of the initial general statement still apply. However, it is acknowledged that the teacher in charge of a party of children involved in such activities, will accept responsibility for the administration of medicine in the absence of the child's parent/carer. Teachers with responsibility for each party will request the assistance of parent helpers who will be asked to administer medication should the need arise. Teachers should take a first aid kit on each out-of-school visit.
Cleansing of Wounds
Wounds should be cleansed with clean water only. Antiseptic liquid or ointment should not be applied to any wound. A simple adhesive dressing can be applied if necessary. Accidents which involve a child being cut during the school teaching day, should be sent directly to the school office where they will be attended to by a qualified first aider. Cuts taking place at lunchtime should be cleaned in the first instance by the staff who have responsibility for the supervising of the children. All cuts should be reported to the child's respective class teacher and logged on the appropriate record sheet and photocopied to be brought to the attention of the child's parent/guardian at the end of each day by the class teacher, or earlier to the Headteacher should there be concern.
It is advisable to wear gloves when dealing with blood spillage and surfaces should be washed down using a hypochlorite solution ( Milton ) whilst also wearing gloves.
There will be children for whom special circumstances exist in relation to their medication and how it is taken. Whilst the above procedures will generally apply, every child's needs will be considered independently in their best interests.
Holy Family School has a school uniform, the provision of which is voluntary. However, it is strongly recommended that the children wear school uniform for the following reasons:
1) Financially it excels in wear and durability and solves the problem of "What can I wear".
2) It encourages good discipline inside and outside school premises.
3) It presents a good image of the school - the children look smart and are easily identified.
Other types of clothing should be a reasonable standard at all times. It should not be of the type that would restrict movement during work or play. Special attention should be made to the wearing of suitable footwear. Fashion shoes should not be worn in school in the interest of children's safety.
White Shirt/polo shirt
Purple Sweat Shirt
White polo shirt with school logo
Grey Trousers (long/shirt)
White blouse/polo shirt
Purple Sweat Shirt/Purple Cardigan
White polo shirt with school logo
Grey skirt/Pinafore Dress
Grey or white socks
Purple Gingham Check or Striped Dress
White polo shirt with school logo
Most of these items are available at J M Textiles, 5d Stanwell Road , Penarth.
For Health and safety reasons children must wear suitable clothing for physical education lessons.
T-shirts for lessons that take place in the school hall.
For games lessons outside: t-shirts, shorts, daps/trainers, and jogging trousers with sweatshirts in colder weather.
Everyone will be notified of the days P.E. kit will be needed. If preferred kit can be left in school, in the child's cloakroom in a clearly labe lled bag.
Please ensure all items of clothing and property are clearly labe lled with your child's name.
Pupils must not wear facial or body jewellery at any time; small stud earings are permitted, but must be removed and preferably left at home, together with all items of neck, wrist or hand jewellery on days when P.E./Games activities take place. This will avoid them having to be removed or covered, for health and safety reasons.
The Local Education Authority has prepared a document setting out arrangements which define five levels at which a complaint could be considered.
1. The Informal Level.
2. Headteacher's investigation.
3. Governing Body Review.
4. County Council Review.
5. National Assembly Review.
The full document is available at the school.
The L.E.A. believes that most complaints can best be resolved locally in discussion with the head or other staff of the school.
Parents with complaints are advised to seek to resolve them through informal discussion before embarking on the formal stage.
Normally, therefore, any complaint about the actions of the school should be brought to the attention of the Headteacher in the first instance.
School Activities and Clubs
Class teachers take after school clubs from 3:30 – 4:15 during the week, which include football, netball, rugby, cricket, athletics.
Spanish lessons are offered during lunchtimes by an outside agency.
Particulars are all of the above are given in our weekly newsletter.
Each year swimming instruction is given over a two week period to the children in Year 6.
Children in Year 5 and Year 6 have the opportunity to take part in Road Safety training in the summer term, led by the County Road Safety Officer.
Outward Bound Course
Year 6 have the opportunity to benefit from an annual outward bound PGL course at Tregoyd House, Brecon. This usually incorporates a weekend stay from Friday to Monday morning.
Brass and Stringed Instrument Tuition
This is provided for Junior children and is dependent upon the interest shown and availability of peripatetic teachers to the school. Interested parents should consult with the musi co-ordinator.
From time to time, as part of project work taking place in classes, school visits are arranged to places of interest. When these occur parents may be asked to make a voluntary contribution towards the cost, and consent forms will need to be completed and returned to the school in plenty of time for the visit which is taking place.
We wish to make it clear that no pupils will be denied participation in the visit on the grounds that no contribution has been made on his/her behalf. However, if sufficient contributions are not received then the visit may have to be cancelled.
On occasions, children involved in school visits may also need a packed lunch, suitable clothing and a small amount of pocket money.
Detailed arrangements of school visits are always forwarded to parents before they occur.
Arrangements for the General Welfare of Children
Each child has a class teacher who has responsibility, in the first instance for pupils. Class teachers oversee the general progress and welfare of the children. Should any significant problems or changes occur, these are reported to the Deputy Headteacher or Headteacher who will assume the responsibility. Overall responsibility lies with the Headteacher.
Health Welfare of Children at School
We have no facilities or medical staff at the school for the care of children who are ill, and in their best interests and those of the other children and staff of the school they should be kept at home until they have recovered completely from any illness.
Serious illness/accidents occurring during school hours:
It is essential that the school has a home/works telephone number so that contact can be made immediately. Care and attention will always be given to children in these circumstances until the parent or medical assistance arrives.
Minor accidents occurring during school hours:
Treatment for minor cuts and bruises will be given and parents will be notified as soon as possible. There are two qualified First Aiders in School. Presently these are Mr P Holland and Mrs M Conway.
Free School Milk
This is available for all pupils in the Infant classes i.e. Yr R, 1, 2.
Friends of Holy Family School
This is an association of parents, teachers and friends of Holy Family School , who wish to support the school.
The Friends aim to support the school by developing more extended relationships between the staff, parents and others associated with the school, and also to assist in the provision of the facilities for education at the school which are not normally provided by the L.E.A.
The Friends General Meeting is held in September.
The objectives of this handbook have been:
a) To provide parents with basic information regarding the day to day running of the school.
b) To provide some insight into the sort of educational opportunities your child will receive as a pupil.
Parents play an important role in the partnership between home, school and parish, providing each child with the best possible education, in a caring environment.
Please remember, HOLY FAMILY is an open school where everyone is welcome and valued.