What do I do if I want a place at Acomb Primary School for my child?

In the Autumn term (September to December) of the year before your child is due to start, telephone the school on 01904 806799 to make an appointment to look round. You will be shown round the school by the head or deputy head during the school day and have a chance to ask questions about the school as well as seeing us in action on a normal day.

After that, you need to apply through City of York council admissions, which can be done online.

What times does school start?

8.45am

What time dose school end?

3.00pm

When will my child start in Reception?

We have a staggered intake into reception for the first two to three weeks of the autumn term.

Where do I drop my child off/collect them from?

Each classroom has a door that leads directly to the playground. You should bring your child there in the morning and collect from there at the end of the school day. Outside normal hours, including for late arrivals you should come to the front entrance.

What if my child is late getting into school?

If the classroom door has been locked you will need to come to the main entrance and sign your child into school in the late book.

What if I’m late picking up?

Phone the school office as soon as you can. Your child will usually wait at reception, or with their class teacher. You would need to collect them from the office when you do arrive at school.

What if my child is going home with someone else?

For arrangements known in advance, inform your child’s class teacher when you drop them off. For last minute arrangements, please phone the school office who will make sure your child and their class teacher are made aware.

Can I park at the school?

There is limited parking at the bottom of West Bank, outside school. We encourage all parents to use the car park at the church of Latter Day Saints at the top of West Bank and walk down to school.

Parents must not use the staff car park and must always park considerately outside our neighbours houses, not blocking any driveways, including not parking opposite them.

Can my child cycle to school?

Yes. We have cycle and scooter racks at the front and back of school.

All cyclists should dismount on entering the school grounds. Children below Y5 should be accompanied.

Can my child walk to school alone?

Children younger than Y5 should be accompanied to school however they are travelling.

What should my child bring to school each day?

Their reading book, planner and a water bottle.

Older children may bring a pencil case and may have homework to bring between home and school. PE Kits can be left at school and will be sent home to wash periodically.

What time do children have their lunch?

Children in reception classes go for lunch at 11.40, lunchtime ends for them at 12.40

How much does a school diner cost?

School dinners are free for children in Reception, Year One and Year Two (a government initiative).

For children in Years 3-6, dinners are charged at £12.50 per week. This is payable via ParentPay – an online payment system, details of which will be provided by the school office.

Do you allow nuts at school?

No. We are a nut free school, as we have children with severe nut allergies in school and even contact with someone who has handled a nut product could be potentially life threatening.

How long do the children get to eat lunch?

Once in the hall, children are encouraged to eat at a good pace, but are not rushed to finish. Usually children new to school take a little longer, which is why they go in first and have some time on their own in the hall before the rest of the school come for lunch.

What do they get in their cooked meal?

We have a 3-week menu cycle. The menu is published on the school website.

What happens if my child does not like their lunch?

They will always be encouraged to try their food, but never forced to eat it. We will try to communicate this to you if it becomes a regular occurrence.

What do I do if my child has a food allergy or intolerance?

Let us know as soon as possible. Speak to Mrs Forrest in the school office who will put you in touch with Mrs Harrison in the kitchen about this.

Why is my child being offered milk and fruit or vegetables?

There is a government scheme for children in reception, year one and year two – a piece of free fruit or vegetable is offered each day. This is usually something like: apples, bananas, pears, tomatoes, carrots, raisins.

We offer milk to all children each day. This is free for children under the age of 5 and for those whose parents are in receipt of certain benefits. A small charge is made for all other children. This drink is made available at morning breaktime.

Can my child have a drink in the classroom?

Yes. Your child will be given a water bottle when starting school. Replacements can be bought from the school office (replacement lids can be bought separately for times when they have been chewed!). Your child can fill the bottle during the day as needed and should take it home each day to be washed. Only regular water is allowed in these bottles.

Is there before and after school provision?

Yes. We have our own club, called ‘Acorns’. It runs from 7.30am until 8.45am and from 3.00pm until 5:30pm. Bookings can be made via the school website here, via email at oosc@acomb.pmat.academy or on 07821 639665. Registration forms and price lists can be seen on the website.

Where can I buy uniform?

Our uniform is sold online, through our supplier APC Clothing of Tadcaster. http://www.apc-clothing.co.uk/

Click on ‘School Uniform Online Store’, then on ‘Find Your School’.

For free delivery to school, use the code ‘acombfreepost’ at the checkout.

What do I do if my child has lost a piece of clothing?

The first place to check is your child’s classroom and cloakroom as that is often where lost items are found. We do have a lost property box outside the school office. You are welcome to check this too.

Named items will be returned to children, so please ensure that everything is labelled.

Is PE kit compulsory?

Yes. Our PE kit consists of a coloured T-shirt (in your child’s team colour), blue or black shorts (or track-suit bottoms for outside) and black gym shoes. For PE in the hall when children are using the apparatus, shorts must be worn. For outdoor PE, the children can choose if they wear shorts or track-suit bottoms. Sweat shirts can be worn for outdoor PE. No jewellery or watches can be worn and long hair needs to be tied back.

Where is the lost property kept?

Lost property can be found in box outside the school office. All lost property is taken to a charity shop at the end of each term. Please put your child’s name in their clothing.

Can I receive the newsletter by email?

We issue a weekly newsletter by email and also place it on the school website. Class newsletters are written half termly and put on the school website.

What is the best time to talk to the teacher if I have a question?

You can usually catch the teacher at the classroom door at the start or end of the day. If this isn’t possible, or for longer queries contact the school office and the teacher will get back to you with a convenient time to meet.

How can parents get involved with school?

We always welcome volunteers to come into school. We have a range of activities that you can help with – such as:

general classroom help with craft activities, listening to readers, etc. You can either speak to your child’s teacher or to the school office about this.

How do I contact the Headteacher?

You can do one of a number of things:

Call in to the school office and make an appointment

Email school FAO Mr Haynes on: office@acomb.pmat.academy

Can my child bring toys into school?

No, unless their class teacher asks them to as part of their topic work or on special occasions.

How do I find out if school is closed during severe weather conditions?

In this rare instance, we would use Twitter, update the school website, send out a text message and announce it on BBC Radio York.

It’s my child’s birthday, can I send sweets into school?

No. We stopped this recently for a number of reasons. It is an added pressure and expense that parents do not need, some children can’t have the sweets because of dietary or religious reasons and it can be upsetting to those children who can’t take part.

Your child may wear non-uniform clothes to school on his/her birthday. If their birthday falls on a weekend or in a school holiday, they may wear non-uniform on the preceding Friday or the following Monday.

Where will my child go when they finish Acomb Primary in Year 6?

This depends where you live.

Our children go to various secondary schools – Millthorpe and York High are the most common, with some going to Manor or All Saints depending on faith requirements.

What after school clubs can my child go to?

We send out a list of clubs running each term. Most clubs are offered to children in Year 1 and above. Some clubs are free, and others have a cost to them, depending on the activity and if it is being run by school staff or outside organisations.

What are parent consultation evenings?

These are evenings in the autumn and spring terms when you can meet your child’s teacher for a 10 minute appointment to discuss your child’s progress.

What does SEN / SENCo stand for?

SEN stands for Special Educational Needs.

The SENCo is the SEN Co-ordinator. This is Miss Johnson, one of our class teachers. If your child has additional needs, then you will be made aware and may have meetings with Miss Johnson to discuss a plan for support.

What are INSET days?

INSET days are also called teacher training days. These are five days in the school year when the school is closed to children. It is not 5 additional days of holiday, as the children are required to attend for 190 days in a school year; training days are in addition to this and not taken off this total. They are an important part of staff training and development, ensuring that staff stay up to date with latest developments.

What is the Foundation Stage?

The Foundation Stage is Reception (age 4-5)

What are Key Stage 2 and 2 (KS1 and KS2)

Key Stage 1 is Years 1 and 2 (age 5-7). Key Stage 2 is Years 3, 4, 5 and 6 (age 7-11).

What is the national curriculum?

The national curriculum outlines what all children should be taught in each Key Stage. To find out more go to https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/national-curriculum

What are SATs?

SATs is the common term used for national curriculum tests. These are statutory tests taken by children at the end of Key Stage 1 (Year 2) and the end of Key Stage 2 (Year 6). The results give a ‘snapshot’ of children’s attainment; in other words how they achieved in particular tasks or tests taken on as specific day / week. They are part of the system of assessment that we use in school.

What is teacher assessment?

This is the teachers’ judgement about the progress and attainment of a child. This judgement will be made based on evidence gathered over a period of time and from a range of pieces of work, together with test results. It is a more reliable judgement of a child’s attainment than a test result alone.

What is PPA time?

Planning, Preparation and Assessment time; all teachers are entitled to PPA time. At Acomb Primary, we employ specialist teachers for PE and music to cover this time.

What happens if my child has an accident (wets him/herself)?

We will deal with the situation sensitively and provide spare underwear and clothing. You will be given the wet clothes wrapped for you to wash and ask that you return the borrowed clothing washed as well. If the accident is of a more unpleasant nature, we may well contact you during the day.

What do I do if my child needs to be given medicine during the day?

Speak to Mrs Forrest in the school office. We can administer medicines, but only those prescribed by a doctor. They must be in the original, labelled bottle/packet and clear instructions left for administering – a form is available at the school office for this. Medicines MUST be handed in to the school office – NOT THE CLASS TEACHER – by an adult and collected again at the end of each day.

What do I do if my child has headlice?

If you do notice headlice on your child, don’t worry. There are plenty of treatments available – just ask at your local pharmacy. It is important to treat all members of the household to make sure the lice are eradicated. If you let us know, we can pass a message on to other members of the class to check their child’s hair too. Your child does not have to stay off school if they have headlice.

What do I do if I have to collect my child during the school day for an appointment?

Come to the main school office and speak to Mrs Forrest. Please note you will need to come via West Bank, as the back gate is locked from around 9.15am.

What happens if my child injures themselves at school?

Most of the time, we can deal with this in school and will let you know when you collect your child at the end of the day. For head bumps, we will contact you by telephone. If your child needs medical attention then we will contact you by telephone and ask you to come to school to check on them or to take them to see a doctor. In the case of emergency we would of course dial 999 first.

Can I keep my child off for a non-medical reason? What constitutes authorised or unauthorised absence?

Requests for absence can be made – a form can be downloaded from the school website or collected from the school office. Absence can only be granted in exceptional circumstances – a decision made by the Headteacher.

Can my child attend a medical appointment in school hours?

We always encourage you to make routine appointments, such as dental check-ups in school holidays or out of hours. We recognise that this is more difficult for non-routine appointments. In this case, a medical appointment form can be downloaded from our website or a form can be collected from the main entrance.

At what time can I phone to tell the office my child is unwell?

We have a dedicated answer phone for this, so you can call at any time of day or night. Call the main school number (01904 806799) and listen to the options given to record an absence.

Will I know if my child has done something against the rules?

It depends what it is. For minor incidents, the teacher will deal with it in the class in the normal run of the day.

For more serious incidents, or repeat incidents you will be informed, usually by the class teacher. For more serious infringements of rules, the Head of School (Mr White) or Executive Headteacher (Mr Haynes) will contact you by telephone, by letter or email or in person.

What are teams and to which one does my child belong?

We have four teams, each assigned a colour – Walmgate (red), Bootham (blue), Monk (yellow) and Micklegate (green) Each child is allocated to a team and can earn team points in school for good manners, hard work, politeness, etc.

Each classroom has a set of four tubes for collecting team point tokens, which are emptied into larger versions in the school hall each week. At the end of each half term, the team with the most tokens wins a non-uniform day.

Teams are used on sports day and for other school events – children’s PE t-shirts are the colour of their team.

Your child’s class teacher will be able to tell you which team they are in until children can remember for themselves.

What are buddies and mentors?

Year Six children act as mentors to their buddies in reception. They have lunch with them, play outside with them and do other activities during the school day from time to time. It is a system that allows the youngest and oldest children to mix in school, giving the older ones a sense of responsibility.

Do you have assemblies?

We have different types of assembly during the week. Some are whole school, others are separate for different Key Stages.  Sometimes we have special events where we invite parents and carers into school to see the children’s work.  This is sometimes in the hall as an assembly.

Can I bring siblings into assemblies?

We would prefer you not to if at all possible, as it can be very distracting when children are sharing their work. If you do bring pre-schoolers, we ask that they be kept quiet. If they do become restless, we would ask you to take them out of the room. The same applies to performances and plays that we put on.

Will my child go on school trips?

Yes. Each class go on at least one trip a year, depending on their topics. We will give you as much notice as we can of these – we usually ask for a donation towards the cost, as transport if often very expensive – although older children can sometimes walk to local destinations (such as The Castle Museum). We also invite specialists into school from time to time to keep costs down.

Do you have dressing up days?

We sometimes ask children (and adults) to dress up for special occasions but try to keep this as simple as possible. Most of our non-uniform days are not themed, meaning your child can just come in their own clothes. Examples of past days we have had are:

  • Wear red day (for the Children’s Heart Surgery Fund)
  • Bad hair day (for comic relief)
  • Dressing up as Victorians (for a topic)

When will my child be taught swimming?

Swimming is a compulsory part of the national curriculum at KS2 (Y3-Y6). Details will be issued each year about swimming lessons.

What is Sports Day?

This is a day when we have a series of sporting events running, to which parents are invited.

Can my child learn a musical instrument at school?

Yes. We have various peripatetic teachers that come into school. They offer one to one or group tuition. Details will be sent out about this periodically. It is usually best suited for children in Y3 and above.

When do we get a school report for our children?

School reports are issued to all the children at the end of the school year, in July. Our reports are a combination of

  • Learning mentoring records (these are individual meetings between the child and the class teacher held termly to discuss progress and targets for improvement both in respect of academic performance and behaviour)
  • General comments about your child’s learning and progress and contribution to the class Assessment data
  • Attendance data for the year
  • Information about what the children have been doing that year.