29.7.21 Sue Blakeway, Vice Chair of Governors

During the week commencing 5th July I met with Subject Leads to discuss the progress made in five subject areas. Each meeting took place on Teams, the discussions were positive and productive and staff were able to share the children’s work. In all subjects, staff and children have worked exceptionally hard during challenging times. Children and their families responded well to the on-line provision and good progress has been made throughout the year.

In Art the children have completed a project on portraits; a display in school shows the progression of skills from foundation through to Year 6. As expected, visits have not taken place this year, but the children have been inspired by local artists who have been able to come into school and share resources. Miss Bird is working with the other staff from NST to establish a more robust assessment framework for art which should be in place by the end of next year. Monitoring indicates that the children enjoy their art lessons and teacher subject knowledge is good.

The teaching of mathematics at Mellers remains consistently strong and the children continue to make good progress in all year groups. As always, Miss Dermody and Miss Dickens were reflective, keen to learn from recent experiences and committed to making the teaching and learning even better. The quality of on-line learning was very good throughout lock down and the children have accessed the full curriculum. They have retained their knowledge, but it is apparent that problem solving skills are not as strong as expected. Working independently at home, the children have not had the opportunity to discuss their mathematics with other pupils, to share their thoughts and reason together. Since returning to school full time, teachers have been focusing on problem solving, giving the pupils the opportunity to apply their knowledge and deduce solutions. The whole school focus on oracy has really supported this work.

DT has continued to develop throughout the year, and children are achieving well. The children are enthused by the opportunity to design and make things, and there have been some excellent work completed. The long term plan, written by Ms Bryan, is in place and all children are accessing the entire DT curriculum. The teachers have embraced the challenge of delivering the subject. During lockdown, children accessed DT as part of their on-line learning. They mainly focused on research and design and since returning to school they have been able to actually make their products.

The teaching of MfL has been different this year, with class teachers delivering revision content on-line during lock down. Miss Guinard has been teaching the children who are new to English and they have responded really well, making excellent progress. Since the school reopening, Miss Guinard has been delivering French to children in Key Stage 2. Her monitoring and research confirms that the pupils at Mellers are well placed to learn languages in the future. The diversity of the cohort is an exceptional asset, with so many languages being spoken.

The curriculum in RE has been developed this year and all staff are following the guidance document from Nottingham City Council. Mrs Gillen has created a long term plan and provided resources for teachers to use in class. Mellers is rich in diversity and there are many religions represented in the school community. This is a rich resource in the teaching of RE. Mrs Gillen’s monitoring has found that the children have valued learning about each other’s beliefs and staff have witnessed rich discussions. Stories from different religions have been shared and this has informed some excellent, meaningful discussions. The children appreciate and are tolerant of each other, which is in line with the Mellers’ mission statement. Learning in RE is an excellent vehicle to learn about moral standing, tolerance and acceptance and in these areas the children excel.

It was a pleasure to work with the subject leaders who all displayed passion for their subjects and a commitment to ensure that all children in Mellers have the opportunity to fulfil their potential both academically and in the broader sense.

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