All education during school hours is free. We do not charge for any activity undertaken as part of the National Curriculum with the exception of individual or group music tuition.
When organising school trips or visits which enrich the curriculum and educational experience of the children, the school invites parents to contribute to the cost of the trip. All contributions are voluntary. If we do not receive sufficient voluntary contributions, we may cancel a trip. If a trip goes ahead, it may include children whose parents have not paid any contribution. We do not treat these children differently from any others.
If a parent wishes their child to take part in a school trip or event, but is unwilling or unable to make a voluntary contribution, we do allow the child to participate fully in the trip or activity. Sometimes the school pays additional costs in order to support the visit. Parents who do not pay or only partly pay for a trip/visit is kept confidential between the School and parent.
The following is a list of possible additional activities that may be organised by the school, which require voluntary contributions from parents. These activities are known as ‘optional extras’. This list is not exhaustive:
- visits to museums;
- sporting activities which require transport expenses;
- outdoor adventure activities;
- visits to the theatre;
- musical events.
If the school organises a residential visit in school time or mainly school time, which is to provide education directly related to the National Curriculum, we will charge travel expenses and the cost of board and lodging. Parents who receive Income Support are exempt from payment.
All children study music as part of the normal school curriculum. We do not charge for this. There is a charge for individual or group music tuition if this is not part of the National Curriculum. The peripatetic music teachers teach individual or small group lessons. They make a charge for these lessons. Parents in receipt of Income Support are exempt from payment. We give parents information about additional music tuition at the start of each academic year.
The school organises swimming lessons for children throughout the school. These take place in school time and are part of the National Curriculum. The majority of the cost of this activity is subsidised by the school. We inform parents when these lessons are to take place.
Homework is anything that children do outside the normal school day that contributes to their learning, in response to guidance from the school. Homework encompasses a whole variety of activities instigated by teachers and parents to support children’s learning. For example, a parent who spends time reading a story to their child before bedtime is helping with homework.
Rationale for Homework
Homework is a very important part of a child’s education and can add much to a child’s development. We recognise that the time and resources available limit the educational experience that any school by itself can provide; children benefit greatly therefore from the mutual support of parents and teachers in encouraging them to learn both at home and at school.
One of the aims of our school is for children to develop as independent learners. We believe that homework is one of the main ways in which children can acquire the skill of independent learning. This aids a child’s preparation for moving on to secondary school and helps to develop skills of independence which are needed throughout life.
Homework plays a positive role in developing both independence and responsibility in children. However it should not prevent children from taking part in the wide range of out-of-school clubs and organisations that play an important part in the lives of many children. Playing board games, cooking, going on trips and talking about items in the news are equally as important to a child’s development.
Aims and Objectives
The aims and objectives of homework are:
- to help pupils develop the skills of an independent learner;
- to promote a partnership between home and school in supporting each child’s learning;
- to consolidate and reinforce learning done in school and to allow children to practise skills taught in lessons;
- to ensure that prior learning has been understood;
- to help children develop good work habits for the future.
Types of Homework
At Key Stage 2 we expect the children to do more tasks independently. We set literacy and numeracy homework routinely each week and we expect the children to consolidate and reinforce learning done in school through practice at home.
Home Learning Projects
As part of our inclusive curriculum, all classes will be asked to complete a home learning project once per half term. These projects are linked to the class learning theme and children have a choice of which tasks they wish to complete at home. We believe the projects are a great opportunity for parents and carers to work alongside their child, enhancing their learning. These projects will be shared with their own and other classes in the year group.
Amount of Homework
National guidelines for homework were removed in March 2012 but, as previously stated, we set homework to consolidate learning, develop independence and aid in preparation for the next phase of a child’s educational life.
Children in Years 3-6 will have spelling and maths homework set each week. At times additional homework may be set in English. All spelling and maths homework will be set on a Monday and due in on the Friday of the same week.
At the beginning of each half term children will be given a range of creative projects linked to their topic to complete at home. Children will have a choice of which of these activities to choose from. A completion date for this project will be given when the homework is set.
For all year groups, we follow government advice and ask children to read at home every day. They can read the book they have brought home from school, one of their own or one from the local library. More reluctant readers can be encouraged to develop their skills by reading magazines or newspapers.
More able readers do not need to read out loud to someone but it is important for someone to ask them about the text they are reading, so that they can show what they have understood from it.
All homework will be differentiated to match the needs of the children.
This may be done in a variety of ways, including setting different tasks or expecting different outcomes from the work set.
The Role of Parents
Parents have a vital role to play in their child’s education, and homework is an important part of this process, therefore all homework will specify the focus and expected outcome to aid parents in supporting their child. We ask parents to encourage their child to complete the homework tasks that are set. We invite them to help their children as they feel necessary and provide them with the sort of environment that allows children to do their best. Parents can support their child by providing a good working space at home, by enabling their child to visit the library regularly, and by discussing the work that their child is doing.
If a child has struggled or found the homework easy to complete, it is useful for teachers to know this. Parents are encouraged to write a note to the teacher regarding any issues.
A “Homework Guidance” sheet is provided for parents, giving an overview of the homework that is set as the Key Stage progresses and providing a list of websites which can be accessed to provide challenge and/or support for their child.
If parents have any problems or questions about homework, they should, in the first instance, contact the child’s class teacher. If their questions are of a more general nature, they should contact the Headteacher.
Monitoring and Review
It is the responsibility of our governing body to agree and then monitor the school homework policy. This is done by the committee of the governing body that deals with curriculum issues. Parents complete a questionnaire during the school’s OFSTED inspection, and our governing body pays careful consideration to any concern that is raised at that time, or in between OFSTED inspections, by any parent. Our governing body may, at any time, request from our Headteacher a report on the way homework is organised in our school. If children consistently fail to complete their homework then the school will contact parents to discuss the matter.
Policy agreed: September 2016
Due for update: September 2017
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