The Headteacher's Blog


Welcome to Lydgate Junior School.

We aim to ensure that all children receive a high quality, enjoyable and exciting education.

We feel that our school is a true reflection of the community we serve. Lydgate children are well motivated and come from a range of social and cultural backgrounds. Within the school community we appreciate the richness of experience that the children bring to school. This enhances the learning experiences of everyone and it also gives all pupils the opportunity to develop respect and tolerance for each other by working and playing together. We want your child's time at Lydgate to be memorable for the right reasons - that is, a happy, fulfilling and successful period of his/her childhood.

Yours sincerely,
Stuart Jones

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Welcome to Year 3!

The Y3 teachers are Mrs Dutton & Mrs de Brouwer (3D/deB), Mrs Holden (3SH), Mrs Noble & Miss Roberts (3N/R) and Miss Wall (3AW). We have three Teaching Assistants who work within the team: Mrs Allen, Mrs Dawes and Mrs Proctor.

We will use this blog to keep you up-to-date with all the exciting things that we do in Year 3, share some of the things that the children learn and show you some of their fantastic work. We hope you enjoy reading it!

The Y3 team.

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Welcome to the Y4 blog. 

The Y4 team consists of the following teachers: Mrs Purdom in Y4JP, Mrs Smith and Mrs Smith (yes, that's right) in Y4SS, Mrs Wymer in Y4CW and Ms Reasbeck and Mrs Drury in Y4RD. The children are also supported by our teaching assistants: Mrs Proctor, Mrs Cooper, Mrs Hornsey, Mr Jenkinson and Mrs Wolff. We have help from Mrs Farrell, Miss Lee and Mrs Grimsley too and some of the children are lucky enough to spend time in The Hub with Mrs Allen. What a team!

We know that the question children are mostly asked when they arrive home is 'What did you do today?' The response is often 'nothing'! Well, here is where you can find out what 'nothing' looks like. In our weekly blogs your children will share with you what they have been getting up to and show some of the wonderful work they have been doing. Check in each weekend for our latest news.

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Welcome to the Year 5 Blog page.

The Year 5 teaching team includes our class teachers, Mrs Loosley (5NL), Mrs Rougvie and Mrs Jones (5RJ), Mrs Webb and Mrs Ridsdale (5WR) and Miss Cunningham (5EC).  Many children are supported by Mrs Hill, Mr Swain and Ms Kania (the Year 5 Teaching Assistants) who work with children across the 4 classes. Our Year 5 teaching team aims to create a stimulating learning environment that is safe, happy, exciting and challenging, where each pupil is encouraged to achieve their full potential.

As a parent or carer, you play a massively important role in your child's development and we'd love to work closely with you. Please feel free to make an appointment to see us if you want to discuss your child's attitude to learning, their progress, attainment or anything else that might be on your mind. We'd also love to hear from you if you have any skills that we could use to make our Year 5 curriculum even more exciting. Are you an avid reader, a talented sportsman, a budding artist, a mad scientist or a natural mathematician? Would you be willing to listen to children read on a regular basis? If so, please contact your child’s class teacher. Similarly, if you have a good idea, a resource, a 'contact' or any other way of supporting our learning in year 5, please let us know.

We are working very hard to ensure your child has a successful year 5, please help us with this by ensuring your child completes and returns any homework they are given each week. If there are any issues regarding homework or your child finds a particular piece of homework challenging, then please do not hesitate to come and speak to us. In order to help improve your child’s reading skills, increase their vocabulary and develop their comprehension skills, we also ask that you listen to your child read and ask them questions to ensure they have understood what they have read.

We look forward to keeping you up to date on the exciting things that we do in year 5 through our year group blog.

The Year 5 Team

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We are the children in Y6 at Lydgate Junior School. There are 120 of us and our teachers are: Mrs Shaw and Mrs Watkinson (Y6S/W), Mr Bradshaw (until Mrs Parker returns) in Y6AP), Mrs Phillips (Y6CP) and Miss Norris (Y6HN). Also teaching in Year 6 is Miss Lee (Monday - Y6AP, Tuesday - Y6HN and Wednesday - Y6S/W) and Mrs Grimsley (Tuesday -Y6CP).We are also very lucky to be helped by Mrs Ainsworth and Mrs Biggs. We use this space to share all of the great things that are happening in our classrooms. Join us each week on our learning journey....

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07 Feb 2020

The School Fruit and Veg Scheme

pka (or ‘properly known as’) School financial value standards

Following on from last week’s Blog, we are about to present the annual SFVS self-evaluation to Governors. Nothing stays the same for long as it is in a new format this year. Front section is all Yes / No / In part answers to question. These are all worded slightly differently to previous versions and so a simple ‘copy and paste’ will not do.

The back provides (another) set of comparative data fields. These will allow or encourage Governors to discuss their aims in setting and targeting a budget. It will allow us to consider if we spend our income where we want to in order to achieve what we are after.

However …

The problem is that anomalies are not easily removed, income cannot be easily or significantly raised and some data is simply contradictory. It is all true, no doubt, but not at all simple.

That we spend 55% of income on teacher costs puts us in the top 10% of ‘similar’ schools. Two points here – who says that that’s a bad thing, seeing as we get results in the top 20% of schools? And how are we to reduce teacher costs by 5% to get to average; by losing two teachers?

The number of senior leaders (two) for a school of our size (480 plus pupils) puts us in the very low end of things. But to increase the team would certainly increase that percentage spent on teachers!

There is a novel calculation, an expression of pupil contact for each teacher, made by dividing the number of classes by the full-time equivalent number of teachers. Our figure is so high it is flagged as a risk, and requires investigation and action. So we either need fewer classes (bigger classes if we have the same number of pupils) or more teachers, and we know what that would do to the percentage spend on teacher costs!

Our average class size puts us in the top 20% as well (which is not where you want to be, in fact, but it does suggest financial efficiency) but with the ludicrous figure of 30.2 pupils per class. 0.2 indeed! To reduce the class size to the average for ‘similar’ schools we would need to have 4 fewer pupils or 0.13 classes more. Both of these are impossible – I try my best to avoid the admission of any extra pupils over admission number but Appeal Panels sometimes place children with us. How would we run a class for just 4 hours a week?

This odd state of affairs comes about really from two factors: we are currently the lowest funded (per pupil) school in Sheffield, and we have a very, very stable staff who are, me included, at the top of the pay range. Recognising the issues does not make a solution any easier – it is no simple thing to increase our income by £100,000 per year, nor to suddenly employ eight newly qualified teachers when we have none currently.

It’ll make for an interesting discussion when presented, but won’t lead to any significant changes: we have no vacancies to fill cheaply, and we have no room for extra pupils.