LocatED run exciting clubs at Kilburn Grange School

Pupils at Kilburn Grange School have had the opportunity to attend clubs run by staff from education property firm, LocatED.

Run over the second half of the Autumn Term, two clubs ‘Latin and Ballroom’ and ‘Board Games’ clubs provide pupils with an opportunity to mix with professionals from the property world and develop new skills. As you can see from the pictures, our children are really enjoying the chance to play chess and develop their strategic skills!

Sonia Mallick, Headteacher at Kilburn Grange School stated that “We are very fortunate that a specialist company have offered their time to visit the school, engage with our children and share their experiences of the working world while having fun and teaching valuable skills at the same time! The pupils have absolutely loved the experience”

Staff at LocatED were invited to deliver a club for one hour a week at Kilburn, generously suggested by the Chief Executive of LocatED, Lara Newman.

LocatED are a government-owned property company creating much-needed school places for thousands of children. For more information on LocatED, please visit www.located.co.uk.

Lara commented that “our team were very enthusiastic to work with pupils in schools that we have supported to develop and see that thrive when developing new skills. Understanding what we have helped develop is very exciting!”.

Kilburn Grange School would like to thank Lauren, Nadia, Maya, Ravinder, Matthew, Sam, Michael, Alrick and Emma, who have all helped with the two clubs.

Below are some pictures of the clubs in action, with the pupils who have benefited:

Amir thinking hard and learning the skills required to play draughts!

Fariss, Aiden and Elijah learning to take turns and think through their next move.

King and Samuele challenge our visiting club leader to a game of ‘Crafty Chefs’. Who’ll make the best lasagne?

Pupils Plant over 100 new Trees at Watling Park

Pupils at Watling Park School planted nearly 100 trees around the school’s green space, so that  in the future they can enjoy their own green space.

As part of UK National Tree Week, the tree planting is part of a wider scheme to plant more trees across London.  In what was a former football pitch space in Burnt Oak, pupils are learning about how looking after the environment is very important and have started with their school.

Led by the Deputy Headteacher, Laura Collinson, who commented that “Pupils were really excited about planting these new trees that will be around for many years to come.  They look forward to seeing them grow and talking about coming back to nurture their very own trees!”

This project is also part of a wider investment into the new school site, that was completed in September 2018, with the 3G astro pitch and changing few being completed a few months later.  Watling Park School, which was rated as a Good School by OfSTED in May 2018, welcome pupils from reception and currently goes up to Year 3, growing every year.

As part of the original commitment, the school is open for evening and weekend lettings of the 3G astro pitch, along with meeting space available within the school during and outside school hours.  For enquires, please contact office@watlingparkschool.org.uk.

Below are pictures of pupils engaged in planting the new trees!

OfSTED judges Halley House as a ‘Good’ School

Halley House School has received its first ever OfSTED report, where inspectors found the school to be “Good” in all areas. The report praises the “rich curriculum”, which is “enhanced by specialist teachers and educational visits”, citing it as a strength of the school. Effective leadership at all levels, including governance, and parental engagement are also highlighted as key strengths of the school: “the highly effective headteacher has a clear vision for the future of this growing school [and] leads a strong team” and “parents are overwhelmingly positive about the school… [and] value the emphasis on outdoor learning.”

Halley House School is situated on the corner of Arcola Street and Shacklewell Lane in Dalston and has been recognised as a valuable primary choice for parents and carers in the Dalston/Stoke Newington area. Opened by Bellevue Place Education Trust in September 2015, the school offers high educational standards, exemplified by positive outcomes at the end of Reception and Key Stage 1, and in the Phonics Screening Check.

The report also highlights “the proportions of pupils achieving the expected standard in reading and mathematics are well above national averages.” Ofsted commented how “all groups of pupils make consistently strong progress in mathematics… and are challenged to extend their understanding.” The inspection identified that “the quality of presentation of pupils’ work is high in English and mathematics” and often “work produced across the wider curriculum is of a high standard.” Children in the Early Years achieve well and as a result of a “variety of learning experiences [that] engage children”, make strong progress.

OfSTED repeatedly draws attention to the school’s commitment to offer a personalised approach in a nurturing and productive environment, commenting on the positive relationships in the school community, notably: “all staff know the pupils and their families well”; “working relationships between staff and children are warm and positive” and “pupils show respect for each other and their teachers.”

As a result, “many pupils are keen to succeed, and they demonstrate positive attitudes to learning”. Pupils’ ability to “respect and celebrate their diversity and understand the importance of treating others equally” was also noted during the inspection. The report praises the school’s emphasis on effective questioning “based on good subject knowledge and the thoughtful use of resources” that “encourages pupils to think about their learning and supports their good progress.” Teachers’ capacity to “make the most of learning opportunities” is recognised, alongside accurate assessments and effective teaching of vocabulary.

The Headteacher, Claire Syms commented on the inspection result:

“I am delighted with our first OfSTED inspection report, which recognises many of our strengths as a school serving a community of which we feel incredibly proud and privileged to be a part. We have been offering a high-quality, personalised education to the young people of Dalston since we first opened our doors in September 2015 and OfSTED’s conclusions vindicate the tireless work, enthusiasm and commitment of staff, parents, governors and pupils who have invested so much in founding our wonderful school community. Our broad and balanced curriculum – delivered by the strong team at Halley House – encourages a culture of creativity, enquiry, confidence and expression, nurturing a population of lifelong thinkers. I am assured that we will build on our early successes and continue to go from strength to strength – we can’t wait for all our adventures that lie ahead!”

Halley House School now welcomes applications for pupils up to Year 3. Prospective families interested in applying for a place for September 2019 can visit the school throughout the Autumn term, with tours held every Wednesday morning at 9.15am. If you are unable to make a scheduled tour, enquiries and requests are welcome, so please do contact our school office to make alternative arrangements.

You can read the full report by following the link: Click here.

OfSTED judges Deer Park School ‘Outstanding’!

Deer Park School has received its first report from OfSTED, where inspectors found the school to be Outstanding in all assessed areas. Opened in 2015 by Bellevue Place Education Trust and still operating out of a temporary site, the report acknowledged an “ethos focused on enabling every child to succeed”, noting that “inclusion lies at the heart of this outstanding school”. Deer Park epitomises the BPET vision of extending opportunities for enrichment well beyond the classroom, with “pupils’ high levels of participation in the school’s very rich and extensive extra-curricular programme [demonstrating] the success of this strategy”.

Academic excellence is central, with “strong progress across the curriculum” and “above-average standards” repeatedly remarked upon. The report credits “pupils’ outstanding progress” to “consistently effective teaching which engages and challenges”, with teachers “[encouraging] pupils to make links between subjects”. An emphasis on creativity is evident with pupils supported to “develop their appreciation of the arts and music”. Comprehensive progress is made across a “wide range of highly stimulating learning activities”. This extensive approach to education fosters a genuine enjoyment of learning as pupils “take pride in their work and persevere”, motivated by a “thirst for knowledge and deeper understanding”. The expansive benefits of Deer Park’s educational offer are clear, with OfSTED again describing “the school’s work to promote pupils’ personal development and welfare” to be “outstanding”.

Engagement from parents surrounding the inspection was overwhelmingly positive, with 100% considering their child to be happy and safe; that the school is well led and managed; as well as claiming to recommend the school to other parents. The report quotes their appreciation of “the ‘strong bond’ between home and school”, citing that “they could not think of a better place to educate their child”. The broad sense of school community extends to the school’s governance and BPET, who the report credits as providing “excellent challenge and support”.

The Chief Executive of Bellevue Place Education Trust, Mark Greatrex commented on the inspection result:

“I have watched Deer Park grow from just 13 pupils and four members of staff to become a thriving, vibrant school. The work that has gone into establishing this school, and ensuring it is located in the area we intended, has been absolutely phenomenal. Deer Park’s success has come from a joint effort with the Local Authority, Department of Education, parents and an ‘exceptional’ Headteacher. It is fantastic to have OfSTED recognise the hard work and successes, celebrating a high quality education offer that nurtures our pupils into lifelong learners”.

Alison Colenso, the Headteacher at Deer Park, also spoke about the report:

“I am beyond proud of everything the Deer Park community has achieved since opening three years ago. We are absolutely delighted that the passion, belief and unstoppable drive to be excellent in everything we do has been recognised. Our little school – in a grey portacabin in the middle of a carpark – has always been outstanding and we intend to build on this validation; continue to serve the community; and provide an exceptional education for local children for decades to come.”

The school is currently accepting applications for Reception to Year 3, and will begin Year 4 from September 2019.

Below are a selection of our favourite quotes from the report:

“Children behave very well and develop a good degree of independence. They become confident, creative and persevering learners.”

“Pupils make exceptional progress across the curriculum due to consistently effective teaching.”

“Outstanding learning is the norm for every child […] No stone is left unturned in providing pupils with an outstanding education.”

You can read the full report by following the link – click here.

BPET Exciting Mixed-Use Development with Lidl

Bellevue Place Education Trust opened a Free School in September 2015 which became Richmond’s Deer Park School, with the express purpose of meeting the primary place needs for the East Twickenham/ St. Margaret’s area of the borough.

Finding a permanent location for the school has been challenging: like for many new schools in London, space is at a premium.  With the support and drive of the Local Authority, working closely with the Department for Education and BPET, an option was found in the right area, with an innovative proposal to develop space owned by Lidl, at a site called new Ryde House.

The planning permission application received unanimous approval from Richmond’s planning committee in April 2016 and building work began in July 2018, aiming for a 2019 opening for the school.

The success of the project has led to further confidence in mixed-use schemes.  Lidl has announced a series of developments set to benefit the local communities in which they open stores, leading with our partnership on the new Ryde House site for Deer Park School. The story has been picked up nationally by both The Guardian and Sky News, as well as a number of local and industry publications. It is great to see Deer Park’s new home named as the feature example for this innovative new model of ‘mixed development’. The same site that was formerly used as an office block will now meet the infrastructure needs of the community, providing a supermarket and a school that are both vitally required in the area.

This only occurs with the support of a wide range of groups – parents, local council, the Department for Education and commercial partners. This innovative model of development demonstrates mixed-use schemes with schools can be highly effective in meeting the needs of the local community.

Both national articles can be read by following the links below.

Guardian article – ‘Discount Grocer Lidl Plans to Build 3000 Homes and a School’

Sky News article – ‘Lidl Plans to Build More Than 3000 Homes to Cement Planning Permission for Stores’

Parental Survey Results 2018

Bellevue Place Education Trust places a huge emphasis on regular review and improvement, with input considered carefully from all of our key stakeholders – this is factored into the planning for the following academic year. The annual BPET Parental Surveys was sent out in May 2018 and yet again, there were very positive results received.

We are delighted to say that 93% of respondents would recommend a BPET school to their friends – a 1% increase on last year – this is worth celebrating.

Below are the Trust-wide totals of the parental responses to some key questions from the surveys across the seven schools:

  • 97% of parents and carers strongly agree or agree that their child enjoys coming to school
  • 93% ranked their response as highly likely or likely to recommend a Bellevue Place Education Trust School to their friends
  • 95% of parents and carers strongly agree or agree that their school’s values and attitudes have a positive effect on their child
  • 94% of parents and carers strongly agree or agree that their school develops their child’s independence and responsibility
  • 91% of parents and carers are satisfied with the leadership and management of their school

We also asked parents for testimonials that we could publically share. Quoted below are a selected favourite for each of our seven schools:

Braywick Court School is a fantastic school where we have seen our child grow so much in so many different ways. It is a wonderful environment for the children to learn, inside & out, giving them lots of opportunities. All of the staff are very warm and welcoming, making the children feel secure and extremely happy.

The school is magnificent, with a commitment to not only a fantastic education but that the children ENJOY and are able to flourish in the areas that work for them. From welly walks to singing concerts to comic club, every child has the opportunity to find something they love and I have never known kids more proud of their own school. The teachers and families of Deer Park have created something very special and we are so proud of everyone involved.

We have been excited to join a growing school with so much energy and talent around; Halley House is a vibrant community developing each year.

My child is extremely happy at Kilburn Grange and looks forward to going to school and learning every day. She has excelled in her reading and writing, and I am extremely proud of her progress. More people in Camden and Brent need to know about Kilburn Grange!

My children are thriving, confident little people who are being well-prepared for their future lives, to be ambitious, respectful and kind humans connected to the world and wanting to make a difference. One couldn’t really ask for more from Rutherford House.

Watling Park is a great school with a community environment and family feel. Children are happy, make great progress in their education and also as little people.

Whitehall Park School has a great mixture of high academic expectations, fun activities, core values and critical thinking.

Heather McKissack MBE Tribute

It is with huge sadness that we let you know of the passing of one of our truly wonderful Governors.

Heather McKissack MBE served as a Governor at Deer Park School from December 2016, with her main focus being on our Pupil Premium children. Heather’s appointment to the Governing Body truly embodied our mission to blend the best of the public education system with that of the state system having spent her career working towards bettering children’s outcomes in both sectors. We were so privileged to have had someone of Heather’s gravitas on our governing body.  Her outreach work stretched far and wide and she was awarded an MBE in 2016 for her dedication to building strong partnerships between schools from state and independent sectors. Heather will be very fondly remembered for her challenge (which was very fierce!), her humour and her wealth of knowledge and experience. She lived life to the very end and we are truly grateful for her contribution. We wouldn’t be where we are without her and will be creating a new ‘Heather garden’ in the permanent home of Deer Park School in her honour.

Whitehall Park teachers publish article in TES

Two teachers from Whitehall Park School have written an article on the necessity of teaching personal finance at KS1 in the digital age. The following article comes courtesy of  Jo Fynaut and Sarah Nash, and can be found on the Times Educational Supplement website by following the link at the bottom of this page.

‘Why we teach personal finance at KS1’

Teaching young children about money is crucial, say these primary teachers – but our curriculum needs an update

How to manage your finances is something that every one of our pupils will have to understand once they leave school. Yet this is a topic that is rarely properly tackled in schools, if it is tackled at all – particularly at primary level.

At our school, we place a particular focus on it, trying to help children to learn about money through play and tangible experiences. For our youngest pupils, we set up shops in class and encourage them to “buy and sell” classroom items. We expand this idea for Year 2, by giving them a £20 budget to design a stall at the summer fair.

Bringing a subject to life like this and making it tangible is a really effective pedagogical technique for key stage 1. However, the way that people use money is changing, and this is having an impact not just on how pupils understand it, but how we teach about it, too.

The national curriculum requires our pupils to understand two financial concepts: to “recognise and know the value of different denominations of coins and notes” and to “find different combinations of coins that equal the same amounts of money”. Currently, we are meeting these requirements with our KS1 teaching, but with the advent of contactless card payments and digital spending through iPads and smartphones, we are concerned that the curriculum is not going to be fit for purpose for much longer.

So, what are we doing to bridge the gap?

‘Digital money’

We have changed the way that we teach about money to make the focus much more digital and are incorporating apps and devices as much as we can into these lessons.

There are now a number of games that are based around teaching personal finance, which use the technology that children are already familiar with to educate them about digital currency. For example, Pigzbe uses cryptocurrency to introduce children to the concepts of digital money through saving, spending and playing with tokens.

Our “digital-native” pupils are adept at navigating apps and games, but this is also where the issue of digital money is often most problematic. We’ve heard many stories of parents checking their bank statements only to discover that their child has been spending money on games, unaware that pressing a button on an iPad is the same as handing over coins in a shop.

So, we discuss these issues with the children and use devices to replicate the physical play techniques that we have previously relied upon to engage pupils in the past.

Ultimately, the life skills that today’s primary school children will need are intrinsically linked to technology, and personal finance is no exception. The national curriculum might not have moved on yet, but that doesn’t mean that our teaching can’t. It is our job to provide children with the skills they will need to succeed in life and that means showing them that managing your money in the digital age takes more than just knowing how to count coins.

Jo Fynaut is a core leader and Sarah Nash is a Year 2 teacher at Whitehall Park School in Highgate, London.

You can read the original article by following the link: https://www.tes.com/news/why-we-teach-personal-finance-ks1 

Watling Park School judged as Good School

Watling Park School has been successful in its first ever OfSTED inspection, where inspectors found the school to be “Good” in all areas, with “strong leadership” and “a deep curriculum” enabling pupils to “develop their knowledge and understanding”.

The school was established by Bellevue Place Education Trust in September 2015 and moved into their new building in September 2017. Inspectors celebrated the school’s extensive educational offer, stating “The school’s rich curriculum successfully develops pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.” Furthermore, pupils “benefit from a culture of collaboration”, where teachers regularly develop opportunities to learn through cross-curricular work. On more than one occasion, the report praises the “well-planned” class trips and workshops that comprise the school’s “approach to widen pupils’ experiences”, benefitting students by “broadening their life experiences”. Acting Headteacher, who has let the school since September, Sonia Mallick, commented on the positive report:

“This OfSTED report reflects the dedication and commitment of all of the staff, from teachers and assistants who work in the classrooms to all of my other colleagues who provide fantastic support in so many different ways before, during and after school.  The excellent outcome caps off the hard work and dedication by all involved.”

The enjoyment of staff working at the school is evident in the report, with colleagues quoted as describing the school to be “one big happy family”. The school’s governance structure is also praised for its collaborative ethos, with “strong strategic direction” being provided by the multi-academy trust in order to “improve the school further”.

The Chief Executive from Bellevue Place Education Trust, Mark Greatrex also commented on the inspection result:

“This is a very well deserved inspection report and testament to the hard work everyone has put in to opening this new school.  Watling Park School provides a high quality education to the young people we serve, thanks to current and previous staff who have supported Watling Park on the journey to become an OfSTED-rated Good school.  The school is very well led and its pupils, our excellent staff and parents are increasingly working closely together in partnership, which helps children learn.  It was most pleasing when the inspector credited the school on driving up standards while staying firm to our philosophy of providing a broad and balanced education offer for all pupils – a principle from our vision.”

Engagement from parents surrounding the inspection was overwhelmingly positive, with 88% claiming to recommend the school to another parent. All schools operated by Bellevue Place Education Trust seek to establish an environment for pupils to “learn, enjoy and succeed”. Inspectors commented on the regular use of “strong questioning to develop pupils’ thinking further”, acknowledging an atmosphere of regular enquiry that reflects the school’s ‘Thinking Schools’ approach. Crucial to this is the drive for a varied programme of enrichment that extends beyond the classroom, evident in the school’s “well resourced” outdoor learning environment and “broad range” of after-school clubs.

With a new Headteacher appointed and set to start next academic year, the positive OfSTED result is an acknowledgement of the fantastic work done this far in the school’s journey.

A link to the OfSTED report can be found by following the link: Click here

Appointment of a Chief Operating Officer

We are delighted to announce the appointment of Stuart Dixon to the role of Chief Operating Officer for Bellevue Place Education Trust.

Stuart is brings a wealth of experience in buildings and procurement and most recently as a Capital Project Manager for Lambeth Borough Council.  Within his current role, Stuart works in the Major Capital Projects on a range of projects and also acting as client of a large school PFI contract which included construction and subsequent FM service delivery. Stuart has also had in-depth involvement with schools that have converted to Academy status both at Lambeth and in another Borough.

He has held a number of strategic leadership roles within the local authority housing; a central government funding and regulatory organisation; the voluntary housing sector where he was Director of Housing and Company Secretary, and also within the private sector as a management consultant. In addition, Stuart is also the sponsor-appointed Chair of Governors for Harris Primary Academy Beckenham Green and a publicly-elected Governor for an NHS Mental Health and Community Foundation Trust.

Stuart brings to the Trust a breadth of experience that will enable him to support the Trust’s work through providing strategic leadership and direction to the operation functions across BPET.  As Chief Operating Officer, Stuart will lead on health and safety, risk management, procurement, IT and Board administration functions.  This strong appointment mean the Trust will be in an excellent position to deliver key operational support to the schools and on aspects of the BPET 3 Year Strategic Plan.”

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