First Federation Trust
If you would like your child to attend our school, please see full details of our admission arrangements below.
Admissions and starting school
Choosing the right school for your child is a big decision for any family. Whether you are about to send your child to school for the first time, or moving into the area with older children, you are always welcome to come and have a look around our school. Every day is open day – just phone the school office to make an appointment.
Transition to school in the Reception year
It is very important that your child feels happy and confident when they start school. In order to provide a smooth transition we offer:
- Stay and play sessions in the Summer Term
- Teddy Bear Picnic Summer Term
- Weekly Story Time every Tuesday afternoon (check with the school office for start times)
- A parents’ meetings to get to know you and your child
- A phased induction in September
- Visits from EYFS staff to pre-school settings
- Home visits in the Summer and Autumn Term
The key to successful induction is good communication between home and school and this ensures we are able to be flexible in our approach and respond to individual needs. Children generally join us at the beginning of the Reception year but we have new starters at any time too.
Can my child start part-time?
You are welcome to start your Reception child at school part time, if you feel they are not yet ready for full-time attendance. However, we will expect attendance for a minimum of 5 mornings a week: 9.00 – 12.00. This arrangement can continue until your child is 5 years old, when full-time attendance would be expected. In practice, we find nearly all of our children have insisted on full-time before that as they don’t want to miss out on the fun at school.
If you have been offered a place for your child to start school in September we will assume that they will be starting full time unless you have contacted the Head of School to discuss other arrangements. Please contact the school office on 01297 552231to arrange an appointment with Mrs Mills (Head of School) you wish to discuss any aspect of admissions.
How to apply for a place:
Applying for a place at our school is straightforward. If there are enough places then everyone who applies will be offered a place. We have arrangements in place though in case we are over-subscribed with criteria to prioritise applications if necessary.
All schools have a limited number of places they can offer in Reception for new children joining the school – this is called the Published Admission Number (or PAN). For us, this has been set at 25. If we receive fewer applications than the number of places available, then places can be offered to everyone who wants one. Only where we are over-subscribed with more applications for places than we have available, do we work with Devon using the over-subscription criteria in the admissions policy for the academic year. They are part of our admission arrangements which will be determined annually after a public consultation and hosted at https://new.devon.gov.uk/educationandfamilies/school-information/apply-for-a-school-place
Further information regarding the over-subscription criteria can be found using the links shown below. There are no selection tests and students of all talents and abilities are welcome, providing we can accommodate their needs.
‘The Step by Step Guide’ booklet explains the admission arrangements for infant and primary schools and is published by Devon County Council. It is available online and in paper format from The School Admissions Team, County Hall, Topsham Road, Exeter, EX4 2QG. Devon’s education helpline is 0345 155 1019. Further information and information leaflets are available online fromwww.devon.gov.uk/admissions
School Admissions Online:
You can apply from home 24 hours a day, seven days a week for a place in our new Reception intake – it’s quick and easy to use and there is no risk that your application will be lost in the post. You can apply for an Infant or Primary School place by clicking here.
A number of our children join the school after the beginning of the Reception year as a result of transferring schools or moving into the area. Parents of such children are encouraged to make an appointment in advance if possible to visit the school. Parents must then apply via Devon admissions online or phone Devon to ask for a paper form.
The same criteria will be used if we need to prioritise applications for a place at the school outside of the normal Reception admissions round.
The designated area or catchment area map for our school can be found by following:www.devon.gov.uk/schoolareamaps
The Admissions policies for pupils' admissions during the academic years 2020-21 and 2021-22 can be found below. They include a timetable for appeals. However, new regulations apply to appeals at the moment because of Covid-19.
The government has issued new regulations about holding admission appeals over the coming eight months or so. Due to covid-19 restrictions, there is no requirement for appeals to be heard in person at a face to face hearing. For appeals lodged until the end of January 2021, the default position will be appeals by video call or by telephone conference. Those parents unable to take part can have their appeals heard in absence on the papers that are submitted. The strict timetable for appeals to be heard within a set number of days has been abandoned during this period too: they must be heard as soon as is reasonably possible, particularly over the summer holidays. The appeals timetable referred to in the above policies no longer applies for this summer.
Starting at school
“The teachers are skilled in setting out equipment which encourages the children to choose for themselves productive tasks that promote learning.”
Children are admitted to school at the beginning of the Autumn Term (September).
Once your child is at school, we aim to maintain strong links with home. As a new parent, you will be invited to a number of informal Coffee Mornings with the class teacher. At these meetings we will explain how we approach the teaching of reading and writing in the Foundation Stage and give you the opportunity to chat about the type of activities your child is doing in class.
Should you have a concern, please raise it with your child’s class teacher or the headteacher.
Whether you are able to visit school or not, do continue to encourage your child’s development by showing an interest in their school life. Try to find unpressurised times to share books with them. In this way you will be fostering a love of books whilst helping your child to gain confidence as a reader.
Sometimes when staff attend in-service training or they are ill, classes have a supply teacher. We endeavour to employ teachers with whom the children are familiar and who become part of the school staff. Whenever there are any staff changes the best interest of the children are always our first priority.
In addition, the following points should help to keep school life running smoothly for your child and you:
- Do make sure your child and their teacher know the arrangements for their collection at the end of the day. Our Road Safety Officer recommends that no child under seven should cross roads alone and that the infant years ought to be the time to encourage road safety awareness. (See Road Safety Policy.)
- Do inform the school of any change of address or telephone number. We may need to contact you should your child become ill or have an accident.
- Do ask for a holiday form if you intend to remove your child from school during the school term time.
- Do let us know the reason for your child being absent from school as early as possible and by telephone.
- We have induction opportunities for groups of children who are going to join our reception class which are offered before they start school full time. Parents and carers will be informed of dates and times and the groups are designed to provide an introduction to school for both children and parents, making the transition from home to school a smooth and happy one.
- Under normal circumstances the school undertakes to fulfil its responsibilities to care for the children in its charge from 8.45 am until 3.15 pm. (Children who spend dinner-time at home become the responsibility of parents during that period.)
- Please do not send children to school before 8.40 am as teachers are busy preparing for the work of the day. Do, however, encourage children to acquire the habit of punctuality by being ready to start school promptly at 8.50 am.
- Please inform your child’s teacher of any medical conditions from which your child suffers.