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/dB), Miss Hayden (3RH), Mrs Holden (3SH) and Miss Wall (3AW). We have several Teaching Assistants who work with Y3 children at different times through the week: Miss Mahon, Mr Bartholomew, Mrs Dawes and Miss Kania.

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 Mrs Drury in Y4JD. The children are also supported by our teaching assistants: Mrs Proctor, Mrs Cooper, Mrs Mulqueen, Mrs Allen, Mrs Hill and Mr Gartrell. We have help from Ms Reasbeck, Miss Lee and Mrs Grimsley too. 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 consists of: Mrs Loosley (5NL), Miss Cunningham (5EC),  Mrs Ridsdale and Mrs Webb (5W/R) and Mr Bradshaw (5BB).  The children are also supported by our teaching assistants: Mr Swain, Mr Jenkinson, Mrs Hornsey and Mrs Allen. We have help from Mr Jones, Miss Lee, Ms Grimsley and Ms Reasbeck too. What a fantastic team!

Our PE days are Tuesday (indoor) and Wednesday (outdoor): the children need to wear their PE kits for school on those days. 

Spellings are sent home every Monday, to learn ready for a spelling dictation each Friday. 

Homework books (maths and SPaG) will be sent home once a week - the days will be decided by the class teachers who will let their classes know. They will have a whole week to complete the homework tasks. 

In our weekly blogs, the children will share some of the things they have been doing at school. Check in each weekend for the latest Y5 news!

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); Mrs Rougvie and Mrs Jones (Y6R/J); Mrs Phillips (Y6CP); and Miss Norris (Y6HN). Also teaching in Year 6 are: Miss Lee (Thursday in Y6R/J); Mrs Farrell (Thursday  in Y6HN); Mrs Grimsley (Thursday in Y6CP); and Mr Jones (Thursday inY6S/W).We are also very lucky to be helped by Mrs Hill, Mrs Mulqueen and Mr Gartrell. 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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03 Sep 2016

Going on the 'B' of the 'BANG!'

Linford Christie said that some of the secret of his 100m success (Olympic gold medallist in Barcelona) was down to a very good start - going on the 'B' of the 'BANG!'

I try hard to avoid leaning into my personal activities on this blog, but this morning's achievement lends itself well to a lesson. I Parkrun - I am on 133 of the little beauties. This morning I blew away my previous best time for the 5 km run, beating my previous record at Hillsborough Park by over a minute, and going under 22 minutes for the first time ever. At the start I had edged forward toward the front, but only to say hello to a friend. I then saw someone else, a member of my running club, nearer the front than me that I decided to chase - I had narrowly beaten him at a race earlier this year and knew he would set a good, but not reckless, pace. The run started and my 'hare' set off much quicker than I expected - he went on the 'B'. I went hard, too, much harder than I would normally run the first 200 metres. The first lap was up on my usual time, and so was the second, but I did not consider a PB possibility until the final 100 metres, when I had actually overhauled my 'hare' and pushed on. I was faster overall because I was faster at the start and in the first part of the run.

I achieved my highest ever age-grading (over 70% of the world best for my age), my course PB, my all-time Parkrun PB, and, says the email, my year's best time. My 'splits' showed a slight negative trend (I got marginally faster, not slower, as I went on, and not much-faster-at-the-end-having-held-back-earlier.) Was it solely because I went on the 'B'?

Because if so, and I am in Headteacher-mode now, we need to get all the teachers and all the children to go on the 'B' on Monday morning if they are to achieve at their greatest ever rate of learning this year. None of that 'get to know each other' stuff. None of that 'settling in', setting the scene, building up the pace slowly, getting to know each other first, setting out the expectations, spending time on the rules, finding out whether the children had a nice break.

There is, of course, much more to the story of my PB than the fast start. I've done a lot of miles this summer, on road, hill, fell, field and trail. I ran at home and I ran when away. I started regularly running on Wednesday evenings with my Club. I have had great variety, from 5 km runs to 10 km trail races and to city centre orienteering events. On holiday we walked up and down hill despite the warmth of the evenings and the angle of the slope. I'd had a rest day before today, and unusually I'd had breakfast before running. I've run by myself, in pairs and in groups. I've chatted with people I did not know before but who were there this morning. And I brought cake for someone's 100 Parkrun milestone.

I suspect that the children who will make the new 'personal best' in learning achievements will be ready to go on the 'B' on Monday morning, but they'll be ready because they have:

read all summer long, (and talked and listened and counted and sung and swum and run and drawn ...)

read from a wide variety of things,

read new things and done new things,

shared what they have done with others, and talked about their experiences,

done things at home and when away,

kept it regular,

kept it in perspective,

and had some cake or shared some cake with other people.  

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12 Mar 2016

Is next Friday the end of term?

Simple enough question, but the answer, of course, is, ‘It depends’.

Okay, but what does it depend upon, exactly?

Well, for one thing it depends which school you attend. Lydgate Junior School breaks up this coming Friday, 18th March. Two weeks off and back on Monday 4th April, ready for a long summer term of fun and learning. But St. Wilfred’s Primary and St. Marie’s Primary, just 3.1 and 0.7 miles from LJS, both break up the week after, on Thursday 24th March (or Maundy Thursday). They are both Catholic Primary Schools, and the Catholic Schools tend to be open in Holy Week leading up to Easter.

Then it also depends on what sort of school – the private / public school, Westminster School, ends its Lent Term on Wednesday 23rd March, and starts back for Election Term on Thursday 14th April. Sheffield High School (also a private / public school) breaks up on the same date at LJS, but takes three weeks off, returning on Monday 11th April.

And it’s also geographical. Schools in Hull break up on the 24th March, as do schools in Derbyshire, Nottingham and Coventry.

A couple of weeks ago the Secretary of State decided not to enact a power given her in legislation that would have allowed every single school in England to set its own term dates. As a maintained school the council coordinates for all its schools, having consulted with neighbouring authorities and schools. How sensible.

But if you are a teacher and thinking of resigning to take a job at another school it’s different again. The end of the Spring Term is actually fixed by law as the 30th April each and every year. The summer term ends, officially, on 31st August, and the autumn term on the 31st December. Teachers have to give at least two months notice of their intention to leave (but three months in summer!) and so have to resign by the end of February (not the start of the half term holiday as many think), the end of May (not the start of May half term holiday) or the end of October (not the start of the October half term holiday). Headteachers have to give an extra month’s notice, by the way.

Why does any of this matter?

Because until the day after each of these resignation dates no Headteacher and no Governing Body can be certain which staff it will have for the next term. Plans cannot be published with total confidence until after that resignation date has past. It is one of the little reasons why plans do not get published earlier. Who knew?

... (Read More)