Our School Ethos
Godinton is a very special school, with a strongly held ethos. The fundamental principle of this ethos is a belief that children must receive a fully rounded education, which provides them with the opportunity to succeed wherever their strengths and skills may lie, and which ultimately develops happy and confident children, who possess the attributes they will require to succeed in adult life. We are not simply preparing children for SATs assessments – we are preparing them for their life ahead.
Mastering the core curriculum subjects of literacy and mathematics is fundamentally important to a child’s future success and we work extremely hard to maximise children’s progress in these two areas. We pay great attention to ensuring that all of our pupils achieve the level of success of which they are capable in literacy and mathematics. We have rigorous systems to ensure that every aspect of teaching and learning in these areas is as effective as it can be and allows the greatest possible academic progress for our pupils. Literacy and numeracy are key fundamental skills which all pupils must master if they are to succeed in life. However, we are also firmly of the opinion that a primary school must provide children with the opportunity to experience as wide a range of activities as possible and consequently we will not sacrifice art, music, PE, modern foreign languages or the development of a moral and social conscience in our children in order to concentrate just on the core subjects and exam results.
We place great value on the importance of a broad curriculum, which we take every possible opportunity to enrich with visits, visitors and cultural experiences. We see the very wide range of enrichment activities which we offer at Godinton as a fundamental aspect of the fully rounded education we strive to deliver for our pupils. We believe that if children are exposed to as wide a range of educational experiences as possible, they will all have a greater opportunity to succeed. Not all children are gifted with regard to literacy and mathematics. By valuing a broad curriculum, we provide children with many different avenues by which to succeed. Success in music, PE, art, or success on an adventure activity, should be celebrated in their own right because they are extremely important in themselves. But experiences such as performing in a music recital in front of parents, playing a part in a class assembly in front of their peers, or overcoming tears and real fear to abseil a tower during an adventure holiday may also transpire into greater self-confidence. We take every opportunity to celebrate a child’ success, whenever and wherever it takes place – and we desperately try to provide as many possible means for children to achieve success. Success brings confidence, and confidence brings success. An achievement in one area of the curriculum will permeate into every area of learning.
Similarly, we hold social, moral and cultural development of the child as an absolute priority. Education should not be a narrow focus. We wish to play our part in developing children who have a strong sense of right and wrong. Success in adult life, be that professional or social, will only occur if our children learn the ability to communicate, to act in a correct manner, to tolerate when necessary and to play their part in supporting their families and communities. Manners and kindness are the building blocks on which character is built. We teach our children to be supportive. Godinton Primary is a large school, with 420 children, but we work hard to foster a family spirit here. We are a community. Our cooks, cleaners, administrators, supervisors, teaching staff, governors, pupils and parents are all important to the success of the school. We respect each other and we believe everyone is important. We are developing our children into the type of adults we would wish to have as our friends – the type of adults of whom we can all be proud.
Our fundamental educational aim is to provide a rich, exciting education for our pupils, not weakened by an overt focus on extended periods of exam preparation, with lessons delivered by good or outstanding teachers, in an environment which our pupils and parents find safe and welcoming, and which will provide them with the academic and personal skills they require for secondary school and, ultimately, allow their development into confident, rounded adults.
Jim Holditch – Headteacher