Y5 Arrangements - Summer 2020
Thursday 12th March 2020
Dear Parents and Carers of Children in Y5
I am writing to you today to outline some plans that we have for Y5. We have been developing them for some time and decided to to share them with you after the Parent Carer Consultations so that those meetings could focus on individual children’s strengths and areas for development.
Our current Y5 cohort has always had a larger proportion of children with complex additional needs than other year groups in school. Considerable support has been given to individual children and groups as appropriate. Some of these needs have become more significant as children have become older and the year group has also been joined by children, during the last few years, with further additional needs. We are in a position to create three classes in the Y5 year group and believe that this will enable more support to be targeted at those needs and also ensure that all children are able to benefit from being taught in smaller classes as learning has sometimes been interrupted.
Three mixed ability classes will be formed for the summer term and children will remain in these new class groups until they leave at the end of Y6. We have employed an additional teacher, John Hymus who has already worked in the school, for the Summer Term. A new class room will be created during the Easter Holidays in what is now the Study Centre with new additional access from the middle of Unit 3. Library furniture from there will be relocated in the music room and some instruments and instrumental lessons will be accommodated in the Community Room.
Some children in Y5 experience challenges with their interactions with others in the year group. To alleviate this we will be providing different structures at lunchtimes and a greater range of activities. There will be continued one-to-one provision for individual children and small group work when this is seen as most appropriate. Our new counselling service, Anxious Minds, will also be running groups for some children to help them develop their social skills. Children working at greater depth will benefit from smaller numbers and enhanced opportunities for further academic challenge.
We have started to allocate children to the three classes. We are taking into account all that we know about the children, their specific needs, and their friendships. Each new class will have a mixture of children from the current 5Y and 5B classes. We will let you and your children know the final groupings next week. There will also be a 5G after Easter (Green being the other colour in our school logo with Blue and Yellow). John Hymus will be in school for the week before Easter getting to know his class and we will plan the transition very carefully to support children through the change. Outdoor Week, which starts on 11th May, will a great time for the new class groupings to bond learning outside.
We have given a lot of thought to these plans and believe that they will make a significant difference to all children in Y5. We are seeing the change to three classes as a positive and proactive development. For some children it will be an opportunity to have a fresh start and provide a chance to refocus on their learning. We want every child in Y5 to fully benefit from all the wonderful opportunities that are coming up – such as Scottish Opera, the Ouseburn Project and all that is planned in Y6. We are proud of the quirkiness and uniqueness of each member of Y5 and are keen that they will continue to develop as individuals alongside their peers.
I hope that you understand why we are making these changes and that you will be able to support your children during the transition. All change can be unnerving for children – and those who look after them! However we believe that the benefits, for everyone, far outweigh the short term uncertainty.