FAQ Parents

Frequently Asked Questions

At Windsor Park we use vertical forms.  This means your child will be in a form with a range of children from yrs 5, 6, 7 & 8.  Pupils stay in their form group and keep the same form tutor until the end of year 8.  This system allows all students to build strong relationships across the age groups and allows the older children to mentor and encourage the younger ones.  Form tutors are all experienced pastoral leads and specialist teachers, acting as a role model and supporting pupils across all aspects of school life.  Having a dedicated point of contact in school helps families build relationships, ensuring home and school can work in partnership.   Your form tutor will always be the first point of contact for students, parents/carers and teachers.

At the start of Year 5, pupils are placed in mixed-ability house groups for all subjects.  These groups are decided only after in-depth consultations with their previous school teacher and take account of friendships, favourite subjects, interests and pastoral needs, as well academic abilities.   During pupils’ first term, teachers use a range of information to group children for Maths and English; for all other subjects they remain in their mixed-ability house groups throughout year 5 for specialist subject lessons.

Our before-school service opens at 7:30am where pupils are cared for and can have breakfast.  The wider school opens at 8:30am where staff are happy to meet and greet pupils as they arrive and students may socialise on the playground until it is time for morning registration in form at 8:55am.  The canteen is also open at this time for students who want to buy food and healthy snacks.  Morning break is at 10:45am when pupils get the opportunity to meet up with friends, play outside and buy healthy snacks.  Lunchtime is from 12:40pm to 1:40pm; pupils eat their meals in the canteen and are then encouraged to choose from a wide range of exciting clubs and activities which cater for all interests.  Many of these clubs are run by professional coaches, staff and student subject ambassadors.  Lessons end at 3:40pm, when children are escorted onto the busses or may make their way home, however, many children choose to attend sporting fixtures or clubs.  We also offer an after-school care service until 6pm for busy households.

Most student choose to eat meals prepared in school.  These are freshly prepared every day by our experienced catering team working in award winning kitchens and using locally sourced ingredients.  All tastes and dietary requirements are catered for.  Alternatively, students may bring their own lunch to eat it in the canteen with the opportunity buy additional items.  We run a cashless system in school using using thumb print recognition to allow children to access their ParentPay account.

We operate a cashless system called ParentPay where parents/carers can top up an on-line account which is used to pay for everything for their child in school.  As well as payment for meals, ParentPay is used for trips, activities, music tuition, before and after-school provision, uniform, charitable events and any other purchases.   On their first day we will register your child’s thumb print to their account and they can scan at the till when they want to buy something.

We encourage all children to thrive and shine in areas beyond the curriculum, developing them as well-rounded individuals.  There are many different clubs run by all the departments. Some are run at lunchtime and some after the school day.  For example, we have a Chess Club, Art Club and DT Club.  We have clubs for Science, sports and games, music, drama, juggling, squash, yoga, table tennis – the list goes on.   If preferred, our well-stocked library is open at lunchtime for quiet reading.

Additionally, we believe in the benefits of friendly competition and run a busy schedule of inter-house competitions and sporting opportunities with other schools.  We value supporting pupils in their endeavors outside school and are happy to discuss how the school can facilitate these opportunities.   We offer and organize private tuition for music and drama, through a bank of affordable peripatetic tutors.

Extra Curricular activities are promoted to parents via SchoolComms and form tutor and teachers can also provide a lot of information to pupils about the opportunities that are on offer.

Our pupils are proud to wear the smart uniform and we believe it promotes a sense of school spirit and cohesion.  For many it marks their transition from first to middle school and their growing independence.  You will find a full list of the uniform on the school website, where you will also find information about the PE and any specialist kit required.

We have a seamless transition for pupils coming in to and leaving Windsor Park.  Through a robust programme of transition activities and information we work closely with all schools to ensure pupils are reassured and well prepared for their new environment.   Many pupils will have already met our staff (in particular Miss Baily and Miss Morris) through transition activities in school and exciting presentations throughout the year.  A bespoke transition programme can be accommodated for children who need extra support.

Our incoming students are well supported in school. In addition to having the care of their form tutor and subject teachers, new students are buddied up with existing pupils and we have a pastoral team for anyone feeling anxious or nervous.  Mrs Wilson-Harris runs our Student Success Centre; a space dedicated to helping students to settle and get the best out of their time at Windsor Park.  We also have a team of amazing peer mentors who are well trained to support, help and encourage new students during their first weeks and beyond.

As they approach and enter year 8 we facilitate opportunities for our outgoing students spend time at their chosen high school, have taster lessons and attend introductory talks from the key staff.  Our staff work collaboratively to ensure all students are fully prepared for transition and their new schools are well informed.

Before new pupils even arrive, our SENDCo, Mrs Howells, contacts the first schools to establish what individual student needs are.  Our aim is to provide continuity of pupils’ on-going support in school, involving families and outside agencies as appropriate. Children with additional needs will be offered an enhanced transition, where they will get to know our team of specialist teaching assistants, who are dedicated to providing quality academic interventions, either in groups or one-to-one.   As an accessible school, we can ensure dignified access to all areas of the school curriculum to children of all levels of physical ability.

Additionally, all students complete a set of assessments in the autumn term and if, at this point, it is felt that a student requires additional support, adjustments can be made and a Personal Learning Passport may be prepared.  If your child has a special educational need or disability and you would like to discuss how they can be supported at Windsor Park, please email our SENDCo at sendco@windsorpark.staffs.sch.uk

It bridges the gap between primary and secondary education.  The three tier system allows children to flourish academically and develop in an environment that naturally prepares them for the next stage of their education.  Children are gently introduced to specialist subject teaching in appropriately designed environments.   This fosters their independence in readiness for GCSEs, A levels and life beyond the classroom.

We have busy calendar of events in school.  Regular activities include drama productions at Christmas and during the summer term, a careers weeks, music concerts, a public speaking competition, a whole school sports day, family Christmas lunch, the Ryman business challenge, Remembrance Sunday, a community Daffodil Tea in Spring, a fashion show with the DT Department and a well supported Summer Fayre.  Naturally we also support many national charity events such as Red Nose Day, Sports Relief, Children in Need, Christmas Jumper Day and MacMillan Coffee Mornings.