Weston Green School: Preparing Pupils for Their Next Steps
Mrs Sarah Evans, Headteacher at Weston Green School, talks about preparing pupils for the rigors of 11+ and beyond
How is the school environment at Weston Green different from other schools?
A true focus on each individual pupil is what makes Weston Green unique. Parents often describe our schools’ strengths as being the friendly and nurturing environment and focus on pastoral care, as well as its size: our small class sizes enable teachers to spend quality time with every pupil and each individual is a known and valued member of the school community. Our range of specialist teaching staff enable us to gain a broad and in depth understanding of each pupil’s interests and skills, providing excellent preparation for their transition to senior school.
What extra-curricular activities do pupils benefit from to develop their interests and nurture their talents?
At Weston Green we take pride in offering an extensive extra-curricular programme to develop each pupil’s talents and interests. On Monday afternoons, pupils in Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2 can enjoy a wide variety of activities from dance and sports, to calligraphy and coding during ‘Genius Time’, whilst our range of After School Clubs and care, which from September will be offered to all families until 6.00pm, provide further opportunities for pupils to develop their potential in areas beyond the academic curriculum. Art, chess, cooking, drama and yoga are just some of the clubs offered to our pupils.
How are pupils supported to develop key life skills to ensure a successful future after their time at Weston Green?
Our ambitious curriculum and a learning environment which is inspiring, stimulating and purposeful, actively nurtures pupils’ independent thinking and equips them for the future. Our Learner Profiles promote and develop a number of key life skills such as resilience, self-expression, curiosity and the confidence to take on challenges, and are incorporated into all areas of school life. These skills not only support pupils in their learning whilst at Weston Green, but also ensure that they excel after their time with us.
Our Forest School programme, led by our fully qualified Forest School Leader, also provides invaluable opportunities for pupils to build their self-esteem and develop key life skills such as problem-solving, critical thinking and teamwork.
How are parents and pupils supported through the 11+ process to gain entry to their secondary school of choice?
Our pupils achieve exceptionally well at 11+. In 2019, every pupil gained entry to their school of choice, with many receiving offers from all of their senior school applications.
We tailor our support to each pupil, ensuring that they are prepared for 11+ both academically and personally, through an individualised programme based on their chosen schools’ requirements. Our 11+ support is a progressive and continuous process, building knowledge, understanding and skills from Year 3 onwards, giving pupils the precise skills, as well as the wider aptitudes and confidence to secure places at a broad range of senior schools. As they progress through the school, opportunities to take on leadership roles and responsibilities also enable pupils to flourish and succeed.
In Year 6, our pupils benefit from specific training in English, Maths and verbal and non-verbal reasoning, as well as interview practice, to ensure they are fully prepared for the application process.
We provide all parents with an information booklet to guide them through each step of the 11+ process, which includes details of a wide range of local senior schools and their entrance requirements. We hold a Future Schools Fair every two years to which all Weston Green parents are warmly invited, enabling them to meet representatives from a wide range of senior schools. Parents of children in Year 3 upwards also benefit from a series of 11+ information sessions and regular dialogue with their child’s class teachers, to support their decision making. Our open door policy allows parents to ask any questions they may have along the way and by working in partnership with parents, we ensure that each pupil gains a place at the senior school which is right for them.
Weston Green School,
Weston Green Road, Thames Ditton, Surrey, KT7 0JN
020 8398 2778