The School Day
Our school day is divided into 6 teaching periods; four in the morning and two in the afternoon. The day begins with registration in pastoral groups. Monday morning starts with assembly either led by the leadership team or year groups. There is a mid-morning break and lunch break. In the afternoon we meet again for registration and a pastoral session followed by the afternoon teaching sessions. On Friday we have a celebration assembly at the end of the afternoon.
Each school day begins at 9:00am and finishes at 3.45pm
Monday – Thursday
|8.40-9.00||Transport arrives pupils are met and escorted to the playground|
|9:00-9:30||Registration and Pastoral time|
Friday have a different timetable to enable us to hold a Celebration assembly. Times are as follows:
|8.40-9.00||Transport arrives pupils are met and escorted to the playground|
|9:00-9:15||Registration and Pastoral time|
|3:15-3:45||Celebration Assembly followed by Transport|
The curriculum for Years 7, 8, and 9 (Key Stage 3) includes English, Maths, Science, Environmental Studies, Religion and Ethics, PSHE, Social skills, PE, Forest School, Art, Music, Drama, Dance, Design Craft, Home Economics.
Within Years 10 & 11 (Key Stage 4) and Post-16, the focus changes in preparation for on leaving Alfriston. The curriculum includes enrichment and BTEC options which are taken across a block of lessons. Pupils also start work related learning lessons from Year 10.
For more curriculum information please see here.
Healthy snacks and drinks are available to buy from the school kiosk at morning break. This includes fruit, rolls, juice and bottles of water.
Our kitchen provides a healthy, nutritious (and delicious) 2 course meal at lunchtimes. Menus may be viewed on the portal, and students may order this in advance or each morning during pastoral time.
Lunchtimes are busy with a range of clubs and activities being offered around the two lunch sittings. Meetings of the Student Council, Sports Council and Eco Council are regularly held as working lunches. After school there are further clubs and activities offered and pupils are encouraged to join as many as they are able.
The rewards and recognition system at Alfriston focusses on house points and green cards for working towards our ‘learning for living’ values in lessons and around school. Each week in assembly we celebrate those pupils who have consistently achieved the most house points and green cards. House point totals are also shared weekly.
Girls are allocated to one of 4 Houses when they enter Alfriston. The House names have been voted for by the pupils and are named after inspirational women. These are Thunberg, Frank, Watson and Malala.
At the end of each term, the House Cup is presented to the winning House Captain.
Exceptional work or conduct is recognised through the Head Teacher Award and good work is often displayed on boards around the school, the school portal, social media channels or our Twitter feed.
A pupil who shows a good attitude over a period of time can be nominated to receive a Headteacher postcard which is sent home by post to celebrate with parents.
All of our pupils have moderate learning difficulties, most pupils also have additional speech, language and communication needs. Some pupils also have physical or emotional needs.
Pupils join the school in year 7 from a range of settings, including mainstream schools, special schools or specialist units. Occasionally pupils transfer to older year groups from different secondary schools.
Once at Alfriston all pupils are encouraged to participate fully in school life and make the most of the wide range of opportunities on offer. This may be through their learning, creative, sporting or other extracurricular activities. Our focus on developing ‘Learning for Living’ skills through the curriculum, and wider curriculum, helps pupils to aspire to strive for their personal best in every aspect of school life.
Pupils are also encouraged to take on other responsibilities in the school through roles such as prefects, House captains, peer mentors and sports leaders.
In return for doing prefect duties, year 11 students enjoy the use of the log cabin when they are not on duty, to make refreshments, socialise and listen to music.
We are very fortunate here at Alfriston to be able to offer referred pupils the opportunity to board at school for 3 nights each week. (Monday to Wednesday) Every boarding pupil works towards achieving termly targets in line with their EHCP goals or wider developmental goals such as independence, organisation or social interaction
Our excellent residential team, led by Head of Care Mrs Johnson, work tirelessly to support the emotional, physical and medical needs of all the girls during their stay.
Homework club – As soon as school finishes, boarders attend homework club each day after school and are supported in completing tasks by both residential and school staff.
Boarders Meeting – Every week boarders attend a meeting to give feedback on activities and menus, as well as planning of future events /evening activities.
Evening activities – These include independent travel training, shopping, cooking sporting activities, arts and crafts and attending the local SEN youth club.
These activities are fun and also help the children develop their social skills and self-confidence and to build their self-esteemOfsted March 2019
Independent Flat – Senior boarders have the opportunity to experience greater independence living in a spacious, comfortable self-contained flat where they are able to shop, cook and clean for themselves whilst being supported and guided by residential staff.
The girls living in the flat love this opportunity. They are proud of their achievements. This work is invaluable in preparing the girls for the next stage of their lives.Ofsted March 2019
Ofsted states that:
“Pupils receive high quality, individualised care from dedicated team of staff, who are very child centred. The girls said that they feel listened to, that their ideas are valued and where possible implemented.”
Staff have built strong relationships with the pupils whom they care for and their families and have high aspirations for the girls whom they care for“Ofsted March 2019
Within each year, pupils are placed in mixed ability pastoral groups led by a pastoral tutor and support tutor. The pastoral programme helps pupils to prepare for the day ahead where they are encouraged to build relationships and have more informal conversations within their pastoral group. These twice daily touch-points also allow pupils to regulate and discuss any issues /concerns with a trusted adult.
|Monday||Catch up from the weekend|
Value of the week
Year 11 buddies
|Friday||Round up of the week|
Pastoral meetings for teaching and support staff are held weekly to discus any issues concerning pupils and identify how these can be addressed.
The school has a strong commitment to the added value of learning beyond the statutory school day and beyond the school premises.
The Governing Body has given its approval to the following types of activities being arranged in support of the educational aims of the school:
- Lunchtime and After School Clubs (Choir, Drama, Art, Lego, Sport, Homework)
- Representative School Teams: We have an extensive programme of sporting opportunities through our links with the South Bucks Special Schools Sports Association and School Games Programme which is hosted by Alfriston School.
- Regular nearby visits (libraries, shops, woodlands, place of worship, farms)
- Day visits for particular year groups
- Residential Visits
- College / School Placements and Visits – BCA & Stony Dean School.
Residentials are overnight trips that take place throughout the school year. Alfriston encourages pupils to participate in residential activities each year so that pupils become more independent, experience new activities, socially interact with others and become confident in new situations. The trips include a range of adventurous and cultural experiences.
Year 7: Two Days / One Night – Summer Term stay in boarding with activities at local national trust venue and outdoor activity centre.
Year 8: Three days / Two nights – Spring Term at local outdoor activity centre.
Year 9: Five Days / Four Nights – Autumn Term at outdoor activity centre in New Forest.
Year 10/11: Cultural Visit – Summer Term visit to British or European city / town.
Post 16: National Citizenship Service -Two week volunteering and activity programme including adventurous / challenge / team-building activities and supporting local community social action projects.