Frequently Asked Questions
How many pupils are there at Grove Wood Primary School?
Grove Wood is a large primary school with approximately 630 pupils on Roll. In each year group there are three classes of thirty pupils.
What is the Grove Wood’s Priority Admission / Catchment Area?
The map below provides an indication of the priority admission (catchment area) for Grove Wood Primary School. Whilst pupils within this area take precedence under the school’s admission criteria which is listed below, we usually take quite a large number of pupils from out of ‘catchment’. The number of pupils from out of ‘catchment’ is dependent on the birth rate in any given year and in recent years we have accepted pupils living up to two miles from the school.
Where applications for admission exceed the number of places available, the following criteria will be applied, in the order set out below, to determine which children to admit: 1. Looked after children and previously looked after children (as defined in the Primary Education in Essex 2020/21 booklet).
2. Children resident within the priority admissions area. (Please see below)
3. Children with a brother or sister (in accordance with the Local Authorities definition of siblings as shown in admission booklet) who will still be attending the school when they themselves start in September.
4. Where there are exceptional medical grounds for admitting the child (providing that the child’s needs can be met by existing provision). Exceptional medical reasons require a letter from a health authority representative or a hospital. The information will need to explain specifically the medical reasons why the child will need to attend Grove Wood Primary School.
5. Children of members of staff:
a) where the member of staff has been employed at the school for two or more years at the time at which the application for admission to the school is made; and/or
b) the member of staff is recruited to fill a vacant post for which there is a demonstrable skill shortage.
6. Proximity of the child’s home to the school. Distances are calculated by the Local Authority using a geographical information system which accurately measures the distance from home to school. Those living nearer the school being afforded higher priority.
The roads that fall within out catchment are listed below
ALBANY RISE, ALBANY ROAD, ASHCOMBE WAY, AVONDALE CLOSE, AVONDALE ROAD, BARRYMORE WALK, BLACKMORE WALK, BRAMFIELD ROAD EAST, BRAMFIELD ROAD WEST,BROCKSFORD AVENUE, CECIL WAY, CEDAR CLOSE, CHASE END, CHURCH ROAD, CLARENCE ROAD 31 & ABOVE, 48 & ABOVE
COPFORD AVENUE, DOROTHY FARM ROAD,ESSEX CLOSE, GILBERT CLOSE, GROVE CLOSE, GROVE COURT, GROVE ROAD, HAWTHORN WAY, HOLTON ROAD, KATHERINE CLOSE, KEATS WALK, KNIVET CLOSE, LANCASTER ROAD 31 & ABOVE, 40 & ABOVE, LESLIE GARDENS, LESLIE ROAD, LILYVILLE WALK, LINDEN CLOSE, LODGE CLOSE, LODGELANDS CLOSE, MEAD WAY, MILTON CLOSE, MINSTER CLOSE, OAKHURST, POPES WALK, SCOTTS WALK, SHAKESPEARE AVENUE, SHERIDAN CLOSE, THE CHASE
THE LIMES, THE RAMPARTS, THE SPINNEYS, THORINGTON ROAD, TRINITY ROAD, TUDOR CLOSE, WALPOLE WALK, WARWICK CLOSE, WARWICK GARDENS, WARWICK GREEN, WARWICK ROAD 1-199, 2-186, WINDSOR WAY, WORCESTER DRIVE, YORK ROAD 55 & ABOVE, 44 & ABOVE
When was Grove Wood Primary School last inspected by Ofsted and what judgement did the school receive?
Grove Wood was last inspected in June 2017. Over the course of this inspection the school was found to be Outstanding in all areas. The report can be read by clicking here.
Do you provide Breakfast and After School Clubs?
At Grove Wood we provide both breakfast and afterschool clubs. These clubs are run by the school (not external providers) and as a result members of staff who work in the clubs are often staff members that the children are familiar with from working within the school as Learning Support Assistants or Midday Assistants.
Breakfast Club runs from 7.15 – 8.45am £4.50 per session. Breakfast included.
Afterschool Club runs from 3.05/3.15 – 6.15pm £4.75 short session (to 4.15pm), £9.50 medium session (to 5.15pm), £12.50 long session (to 6.15pm). Snacks included.
What are the arrangements for provision of school dinners?
Hot school dinners are prepared on site in our kitchen by our highly skilled cooks. The lunches are well balanced and provide the children with nutritious and tasty ‘home cooked’ meals. Children in Reception, Year 1 and Year 2 are all eligible for free school meals under their entitlement to Universal Free School Meals. In the upper school, free school meals are provided to pupils whose parents are in receipt of one of the following benefits and have applied to receive free school meals.
· Income Support
· income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance
· income-related Employment and Support Allowance
· support under Part VI of the Immigration and Asylum Act 1999
· the guaranteed element of Pension Credit
· Child Tax Credit (provided you’re not also entitled to Working Tax Credit and have an annual gross income of no more than £16,190)
· Working Tax Credit run-on - paid for 4 weeks after you stop qualifying for Working Tax Credit
· Universal Credit - if you apply on or after 1 April 2018 your household income must be less than £7,400 a year (after tax and not including any benefits you get)
Hot school meals can also be purchased for the cost of £2.30 per day for pupils in Years 3-6.
What Clubs and Extra Curricular Opportunities are offered to the children?
We are very proud to be able to offer a huge number of extra curricular clubs and activities. Many of these are provided by school staff and these are complemented by additional clubs run by external providers. The range of clubs on offer continues to develop and we are always thinking of new and exciting opportunities which the children would enjoy.
We offer an extensive range of sports clubs and in addition we offer choirs, rock band, art, guitar, scenes of crime (an introduction to forensics), sewing, puzzle club, construction, drama, birds of prey, and Greenpower (building and racing kit cars) to name just a selection.
The range of clubs increase as the children move further through the school and it is our aim to encourage the children to try different clubs at different times in order to extend their range of interests.
How is the curriculum organised?
The curriculum at Grove Wood is rich, vibrant and exciting. The learning is organised into half termly themes which link the learning from the core and foundation subjects in a way which makes it memorable, enjoyable and fun. We make the most of school visits and visitors to bring the learning to life and there are lots of opportunities for the children to share and develop their knowledge in a cross curricular way.
Does Grove Wood Primary have an ‘Open Door’ Policy?
The link between home and school is an incredibly important one at Grove Wood and from the moment your child starts at our school we provide opportunities for you to get involved in your child’s learning. Teachers are available at the door at the end of every afternoon and once a week we hold an ‘Open Door’ session where parents and carers are invited into the classroom to look at books and see the work that the children have been doing.
In addition, the Senior Leadership Team are present on the gates at the beginning and end of every day to greet the children and answer any questions you may have.
Does Grove Wood have a swimming pool? Do the children get the opportunity to go swimming?
At Grove Wood, we do not a swimming pool on site. The children do, however, still get the opportunity to swim in years 4-6 and we are fortunate to be able to make use of the swimming pools in local schools.
Grove Wood Primary School is an Academy, what does that mean?
Grove Wood Primary School converted to Academy Status in July 2014 and formed Grove Wood Academy Trust. We are not part of a large Multi Academy Trust and at the current time we are the sole member of our Trust. Being an academy simply means that schools are funded directly by the Department for Education (DfE) rather than funding going through Essex Local Authority. This has a range of advantages and freedoms but the main one that influenced our decision was that Academies are free to develop and design their own curriculum. We took the opportunity to fully review our school curriculum and make it bespoke to our pupils, school and community. In doing so this has allowed us to meet our aims for providing the children with rich learning opportunities delivered through a vibrant, engaging curriculum.
How is transition organised and does the school liaise with the Preschools and nurseries?
Transition begins early in the summer term when the Reception team arrange a meeting with all of the local preschools and nurseries to talk about the children who will be joining us. We hold the first of our parents’ meetings in early June to allow new parents to meet the leadership team, welcome them to the school and share the arrangements. Following that, over the course of the summer term, we hold a number of stay and play sessions, some of which parents attend with their children and others that the children attend on their own to become familiar with the setting.
From early September we begin by carrying out home visits. On these, the class teachers and Learning Support Assistants come out to your houses to meet the children and parents. This gives parents the opportunity to ask any questions and for the staff to really get to know your children.
Following the home visits the children then start on a phased basis for two weeks doing half days in school in groups of 15. This, once again, allows us to get to know the children really well in smaller groups before we move to full classes.
How do I apply for my child’s primary school?
The best place to find information about completing applications for primary school places is the Essex Local Authority website. There is a huge amount of information on this site and it can be accessed using this link. https://www.essex.gov.uk/topic/admissions
On this page, you will find a really useful animated video. This is also available on YouTube and can be found here. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3V8Sa3hlTu4
When completing your application form, you are invited to select four schools. We would always recommend that you do select four schools and these should be listed in your order of preference. In the past we have known parents who have been under the misunderstanding that they needed to put their catchment school first even if it wasn’t their first choice. We would however always recommend that you include your catchment school as one of your four choices. A question we have often been asked is do schools know whether a child had selected the school as a 1st, 2nd, 3rd or 4th choice? The answer is that we don’t. All admissions into Reception are centralised and managed by Local Authorities who then provide us with a list of children to whom we should offer places.
If you have any questions about applications, please feel free to contact the school office and Mrs Hammond would be happy to answer any questions you may have.
What is parking like at drop off and collection times?
Like any school, traffic at the beginning and the end of the school day can be heavy. Wherever possible we would encourage parents to walk with their children to school. We appreciate however that this is not always possible. For those parents needing to drive we encourage you to park in the free car park in Grove Woods or park in one of the local roads and walk the remaining distance; this certainly helps to keep congestion down in Grove Road outside the school.