We know that moving between classes can be a very stressful time for pupils. The relationships they have established with the teacher, their location in school and the classmates they have are three things that can change when pupils move up a year group. With our whole school transition, we aim to reduce this anxiety by moving classes before the end of the school year, allowing pupils to work with their new teacher, find out where they are in school and make friends with new classmates.
The final weeks of June will be your child’s last days with their current teacher. Transition last year was incredibly successful with all pupils benefiting from moving classes before the summer holiday, rather than after it. As a school we felt that this transition period reduced the anxiety about coming back to school after a long summer break, with pupils treating the first day of the autumn term as a chance to continue work they have started rather than thinking about what will happen all through the summer holiday.
All classes will work with their new teacher from Monday the 4th of July, which means that Friday the 1st of July will be the last opportunity to work with their existing teacher. Parents have been informed about their child’s teacher for the next year in an email send on the 10th of July. Our larger classes will continue to be split which means that we will have two year 1, year 2, year 3 and year 4 classes. Due to the reduced numbers in Reception, there will be one reception class.
Within split classes, there has been a movement of pupils between classes. I am often asked by parents why we do this, as these changes to class groups often affect the friendships that their child has. One of the main reasons is because over the course of a year classes and children change. Often new classmates join or leave the class affecting how the class work. As a school we base our judgements of class formation on the learning needs of the pupils coupled with the teacher who can best help these pupils. For pupils in our split classes there will be a chance every year to look at the class and see if any changes can be made to best support the future learning of pupils. In my experience, the concerns children or parents have about a new class are often short lived, mainly because our larger classes do tend to work together so all of the pupils know each other.
During the transition period, each class will follow the school curriculum, with learning taking place as normal within classes. There will be opportunities for pupils to work on class rules and other tasks to become aware of the standard of work in the new year group. This early start will be a great way to ensure that pupils remain focused until the end of the school year, learning the new systems for their class and preparing them for their new stage of learning.
For our year 6 pupils the transition is a more significant event. Rather than moving to another part of the school, they are moving to another school. From the 4th of July all of our year 6 pupils will start their time in secondary school at Outwood Academy Bydales. We are fortunate that all of our pupils have chosen to go to Outwood Academy Bydales as this allows us to move our classes up a year group. While at Bydales, our pupils will get used to the new way of working in a secondary school – more children, different teachers and a different way to get to school. Their two week transition will help them adjust to their new school and prepare them well when they continue their learning in September. As a head teacher I am delighted that Outwood Academy Bydales have continued with the two week programme of transition as this allows us as a school to share the benefits of an early start to the next year with all of our pupils.