Windrush Valley Private School Oxfordshire – Essential Information For Parents
This information explains how Windrush Valley private school Oxfordshire works. It also tells you what is going on and when, and where to go if you need more information.
Windrush Valley private school Oxfordshire is organised in three distinct units:
Foundation Unit (Nursey and Reception)
The Foundation Unit (FU) comprises Nursery for 3 to 4-year olds and Reception for 4 to 5-year olds. Pupils in Nursery attend for a minimum of 50% of the week (5 sessions); children in Reception attend full time.
Children new to the school and who perhaps have not been to another Early Years setting prior to admission, may attend less in the first instance, in order to slowly build up to the minimum amount. Please note however that the school will invoice for the minimum number of sessions from the outset. A session is either a morning (09:00 to 12:00) or an afternoon (13:00 to 15:30). Parents are asked to complete a form to indicate their preferred attendance programme prior to the start of each new term.
Year 1 and 2 (Key Stage 1 or Pre-preparatory)
Each day starts with the register being formally called at 09:00 hours followed by a structured timetable of lessons. Parents are politely requested to try and complete discussions with the teacher before 09:00 and to not linger beyond this time as it tends to delay the start of the day. The Phonics programme started as far back as Nursery, strengthened through Reception, continues strongly through these two years. Jolly Grammar is now integral and important. The numeracy programme is similarly developed through the Target your Maths programme.
Year 3 to 6 (Key Stage 2 or Preparatory)
Registration begins each morning at 08.50, and lessons begin promptly at 09.00.
Collection after school
Pupils will be brought out to the playground for collection by a known adult at 15:30, unless they are staying for either Extended Day (Year 1 to 6) or After School Care. Please note, children will only be given into the care of an adult we know. Therefore, please tell the school of any changes to your collection routine.
- Before School Care (BSC) is available from 08:00 to 08:30
- After School Care (ASC) is available from the end of the school day until 18.00
- Both can be accessed by booking in advance
- After school care is NOT available on a Friday to facilitate Staff Meetings.
- Children who come to school before 08:30 must go into Before School Care
Drop off and Collection Points
Please take great care when parking; avoiding potentially dangerous areas such as junctions and corners and with due consideration for our neighbours. Be aware, there may be young children around and between parked cars.
Parking is also available up the High Street and along Shipton Road. Additional parking is available in the car park over the railway crossing. To encourage independence, older children should be dropped off outside school in the morning to come in on their own.
- The wearing of the full correct school uniform is a condition of admission and continued attendance at the school. Full details of the correct school uniform can be found on the Uniform Webpage. All items of school uniform must be clearly labelled with the child’s name.
- Summer uniform is worn from the start of the summer term until the last Friday before the start of October. Winter uniform is worn from the first Monday in October to the end of the spring term. Sun hats, winter fleece hats, gloves and scarf (for playground and games use only) may be kept in the classroom.
- Watches may be worn as soon as parents believe their children are ready and/or can tell the time. Smart watches with internet connection are not allowed – nor are mobile telephones or electronic games.
- Boys’ hair length should be between grades 2 and 4. Girls with long hair should have it tied back with a blue coloured scrunchy. Ear studs must be removed when in school.
- Please do not provide items not on the accepted list or push the boundaries of what is acceptable. Children must wear the correct school uniform at all times, with clean shoes, the correct hair length (boys) and have the correct school equipment to be eligible for the weekly ‘clean and tidy award’.
- Second hand uniform can be listed and purchased via a website called ‘Uniformerly’. You can simply register for free, find Windrush Valley School in Oxfordshire and see what is listed. If there is something you need simply click on the item and send us a message, then we can set it aside for you. Visit www.uniformerly.co.uk
- School book bag for Nursery, Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 (First bag provided by Windrush Valley Private School Oxfordshire on joining the school. Any subsequent replacements can be purchased via Wreal Sports).
- Wellingtons for all children when out on field trips
- Blue Sports ‘cylinder’ bag* for Year 3 and upwards
- Swimming bag* for Year 1 and upwards
- School rucksack* for Year 3 and upwards
- Pencil cases from Year 3 upwards
(*Available from Wreal Sports)
- The school will provide all essential equipment for pupils in Year 1 and Year 2.
- For pupils in Year 3 and above, the required contents are: HB pencil and a 2H pencil, set of coloured pencils, rubber and pencil sharpener that collects the shavings, a Mathematical set, 30 cm/12inch clear plastic ruler and fountain pen.
- The school discourages children from using felt pens for colouring as they tend to leech through the re-cycled paper used in many areas of the school.
- The school will provide all items listed as essential for examination purposes.
What to do if your child is ill
- Please telephone the school before 09.00.
- Children with a tummy bug must not return to school until a full 48 hours has elapsed since the last bout of vomiting or diarrhoea.
- Children with a positive COVID test must isolate and can return to normal routine, including school, on Day 6 providing that they have a negative Lateral Flow Device (LFD) test on Day 5 and Day 6.
- Children who become ill in school are referred to the Headteacher and parents are contacted immediately when necessary.
Medical Conditions and Medication
It is important that you keep the school fully informed of any condition, serious or otherwise that your child may be experiencing so that appropriate care can be provided when necessary. The School will administer medication on your behalf, on receipt of a ‘Permission to Administer Medicine’ form which can be obtained from the school office. Medication will only be administered as stated on the medication label. Children may not routinely carry over-the-counter medication for self-administration. However, children requiring medication for long term conditions such as diabetes or asthma are encouraged to keep their medication either with them or in the designated medical cabinet or fridge. Children with asthma should be able to manage their condition and carry their inhaler with them at all times. All staff are provided with guidance by appropriate medical personnel on how to manage children with long term medical conditions. All pupil-facing staff hold a relevant first-aid certificate. The school will assist children in the Foundation Unit with applying sun protection cream provided by parents. Older children are encouraged to apply their own cream. Please note, School does not provide the sun cream and children are not allowed to share due to potential allergies.
- All pupils must wear the prescribed games kit on Wednesdays and/or Thursdays, and bring football boots, shin pads, full tracksuit, fleece hat and gloves in the regulation blue barrel bag (suitably named) and stored in the bag sheds.
- All Games/PE are at the Ascott-under-Wychwood playing fields unless otherwise noted in advance to parents.
- Football boots are required for field games and trainers with non-marking soles for indoor games.
- Games kit for Years 3, 4, 5 and 6 must be carried in the regulation blue cylinder bag (suitably named) and stored in the bag sheds.
As a condition of selection, children chosen to represent the school at all sporting venues and events must wear the full Games/PE uniform and wear uniform outdoor clothing (waterproof jacket, fleece hat, gloves and scarf) when necessary. They must also have the regulation sports bag.
- Children in Years 1 to Year 6 swim each week. ( Years 1, 2 and 3 on a Monday and Years 4, 5 and 6 on a Tuesday)
- Uniform swimming shorts/costume and blue cap must be worn.
- Goggles are advised for children who may be susceptible to chlorine.
- Children swim in class groups, not in groups based on swimming ability.
- Swimming kit must be brought into school in the prescribed blue swimming bag.
- Children in Year 3 should wear normal school uniform on Mondays.
Lunch and Snacks
- A daily, hot school meal is available. Meals are prepared on-site using fresh, locally-sourced ingredients by the School Lunch Company.
- Meals must be ordered before the deadline (the Tuesday of the week before meals are required).
- Parents may elect to provide their child with a packed lunch each day.
- Please inform the school office and your child’s class teacher if they have any food allergies.
- All children require a snack for early morning break.
- All children require a ‘drinks bottle’ every day.
- School trips for each form are held throughout the year.
- Parents provide a single signed permission form covering all trips and activities.
- Booking and payment are made on-line using ParentMail.
- Please provide a disposable lunch box on trips for those pupils selecting a packed lunch. Pupils who have booked a hot school lunch and have selected an alternative will be provided with a packed lunch by The School Lunch Company.
- Pupils to wear the school uniform clothing suitable for the prevailing weather conditions; this includes school baseball caps in summer.
- All trips have enhanced adult/child ratios.
- Please ensure that, where needed, your child takes a travel sickness tablet before coming into school and that a similar tablet is provided for the return journey.
All drivers for the school minibus have passed a supervised driving course organised by an approved training centre. All vehicles, including additional cars, are fully covered by the school’s insurance policy. Coaches, occasionally hired for larger groups, are always from a reputable, fully regulated and licensed coach company and whose coaches meet all statutory requirements.
How we send information to you
- Via your child’s class teacher
- By letter, via your child’s book bag
- By ParentMail directly to your computer and smartphone.
- By weekly emailed ‘Friday’ bulletin
- For younger children, specific comments included in home-school diaries
- Via posters outside each class
- Via telephone
- Text messages
- By email
- On the Windrush Valley Private School Oxfordshire website
- By drop-in to the school office
- By talking to other parents
- Parents Consultative Group (PCG)
General information is provided in a wide range of formats, starting with this Essential Information for Parents and the Calendar of Events for the forthcoming year. Please note that some of these dates will change due to circumstances beyond our control. We provide them in an easy to use, term-by-term format for you to stick to your fridge door or place in your handbag.
Additional information about each individual item on this Calendar of Events is reinforced with a specific letter and/or organisation sheets (including where necessary face-to-face meetings) providing all essential details immediately prior to the event. Details of events that occur more spontaneously (therefore not included in this calendar) will be circulated by letter with all relevant information.
Electronic Recording of Pupil Data
Windrush Valley Private School Oxfordshire has a statutory duty to notify the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) quickly and effectively if a child goes missing. All pupil data is recorded electronically in order to facilitate this. All such records are subject to the provisions of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR); that they are secure and only accessible to those with a genuine right of access. Please see our website for a copy of our privacy statement or alternatively contact the school office. As with our current paper-based records, parents have a right of access to their records and can always ask for printed copies of the relevant electronic pupil file.
The primary information for this database is taken from information provided by you using our existing Offer Acceptance Form, the Pupil Contact Information Form and the school’s Registration Book.
Please update these forms annually; do not rely on the accuracy of past forms
Curriculum related meetings
From time-to-time the Headteacher meets with parents from various sections of the school in order to disseminate, discuss and explore matters of interest, particularly in relation to the curriculum. Class teachers are not routinely invited to these meetings so that they do not have an additional burden to an already heavy work load.
School Events and Celebrations
Event specific letters are sent via Parentmail nearer to the time and also published on the Windrush Valley Private School Oxfordshire website. Please note, these dates are subject to change for reasons beyond our control, particularly when other establishments and venues are involved.
If you have any concerns about any matter or issue, particularly of a personal or individual nature, that cannot be resolved with your child’s class teacher, then please request a meeting with the Headteacher.
Curriculum Enrichment Week
Each year we organise a Curriculum Enrichment Week during the latter half of the summer term to encourage children to “think out-of-the-box”. A fun week packed with activities and events delivered more often than not outside the usual classroom environment and with different teachers and groups. Full details and arrangements are published well in advance.
Windrush Valley Private School Oxfordshire arranges two residential weeks per year. An activity week in England for Year 6 during their last term at school, and a week abroad for Years 4, 5 and 6 early in the new academic year. Full details and arrangements are published well in advance.
Instrumental Tuition, Music and School Band
Instrumental tuition is available to children from Year 2 upwards, by withdrawal from lessons according to a published timetable. This timetable is routinely changed so that children can avoid missing the same lesson every week. If you want your child to receive tuition please see your class teacher or contact the school office in the first instance. Children who receive instrumental tuition must also be prepared play in the school band.
Windrush Valley Private School Oxfordshire policy documents are available either by download from the school website or as hard copy from the school office.
Please ensure that the school is kept up-to-date with changes of address (home and email) and telephone numbers so that we can contact you quickly in the event of an emergency.
The school office is the hub of the school’s organisational and information dissemination service. Parents are welcome to drop in at any time. The school secretary is available between the hours of 09:00 and 15.00.
Reporting to Parents and Parents’ Evenings
We report formally to parents on four occasions:
Parent/Teacher Meetings – Week preceding the Autumn half term break.
End of Term written report – Published on the last day of the Autumn term.
Parent/Teacher Meetings – Week preceding the Spring half term break.
End of Year written report – Published on the last day of Summer term.
With your co-operation, we endeavour to keep appointments to 15-minute intervals. Pupils’ books are available for scrutiny prior to each meeting. Extended day activities are not available during the week of Parent/Teacher Meetings. Parents wanting more time to discuss their child’s progress should arrange a separate meeting with their class teacher.
An activity week is organised for the first week of each major school holiday (Christmas, Easter and Summer). Numbers are strictly limited and offered in the first instance to parents needing childcare. Each week offers a wide range of age-appropriate activities organised to suit the time of the year and prevailing weather conditions. Children are not required to wear school uniform during this week and may attend on a part or full-time basis. Before and after school care remains available during this week, but after-school activities will not run. Children attending activity week will be required to bring their own snack, lunch and drink.
This begins in Nursery and Reception (EYFS) with songs and jingles to learn and books to look at and talk about. When Jolly Phonics is introduced it quickly moves to words and books to read to mummy and daddy. Throughout this time, it is also important for mummy and daddy to read stories to, sing songs with and learn nursery rhymes together.
It formalises in Years 1 and 2 with reading books, times-tables to memorise and spellings to learn. It is more important to develop a positive approach to homework at this stage than worry about the amount of time spent on homework or indeed the actual task to complete.
In Years 3 to 6 it formalises into specific tasks of English (including reading and spellings), maths (including times-tables) and other subject specific tasks. Children have a week to complete all work set before end-of-week tests in spellings and times-tables. All homework is recorded in a Homework Diary and parents should check that these are completed fully. Children should routinely read to an adult for approximately 15 minutes every day [parents should enter and sign this in the appropriate ‘Reading Diary’].
Homework should be in a “supervised” location; for example, kitchen table, bedroom, home office, which is free from distractions and disturbances such as a television, i-pad or computer. The desk/table should be clutter free with all essential ‘tools’ (pencil case, dictionary and thesaurus) immediately to hand. Homework should not be left until the end of the week but completed gradually through the week. Parents should not help with homework beyond ensuring that it is completed.
Please do not be tempted to complete the work for your child as this simply serves to confuse and mislead the teacher, leading to an inaccurate assessment of progress and ability. It also denies your child the opportunity to develop that all-important self-reliance in learning activities.
Click on the following links to show a calendar of term dates and school holidays.