On this page you will find information about our school.
If your answers that you are looking for are not here please do not hesitate to come into school and ask.
Absences – if your child is ill or unable to come to school for another reason (e.g. dental appointment etc.) please let us know as soon as possible. You can do this by telephone, by sending a written message with another child or by email to firstname.lastname@example.org. If possible, please try to let us know before 9.30 as this helps with arrangements for the day.
When we know why your child is absent we mark this in the register and the absence is authorized. At the end of the month any unauthorized absences are followed up by the school and then, if still unauthorized, are reported to the Department of Education and may be followed up by them.
Obviously, it is best if your child attends school as regularly as possible. However, we recognize that there may be times when you need to take your child out of school for certain events. The headteacher has the authority to authorise an absence of up to 10 working days in any academic year to cover these situations. Requests for leave of absence should be made using the form at the back of this booklet. (Extra forms are available from the office, if required.) In very exceptional circumstances the headteacher may extend this leave of absence and parents should speak to her if they feel they have a particular case which may fall into this category.
Access - once the school is in session all adult access should be by the main doors by the offices.
Accidents - unfortunately from time to time incidents occur in school which necessitate first aid treatment being given to your child. We try to ensure that all of our staff have up to date first aid qualifications. In most cases gentle cleaning and a plaster are sufficient. If we feel that it is necessary we will contact you using one of the emergency contact numbers we have on record. Please ensure that all your emergency contact numbers are kept up to date with the school office.
It is our policy to inform parents of any bump to the head by putting a sticky label on your child’s sweatshirt.
Admissions policy - all children who live within the catchment area are entitled to attend Bunscoill Rhumsaa. For further information please contact the school.
Behaviour – the standards of behaviour at Bunscoill Rhumsaa are high and we often receive positive feedback from members of the community about our children’s behaviour. You can see our behaviour strategy here --> Policies
Clubs - we are lucky at school to have a large number of staff, parents and other volunteers who willingly give up their time to run lunchtime and after school clubs. The clubs offered vary from term to term and are usually a mixture of sporting, musical and craft activities.
Complaints – if you have a problem please don’t hesitate to speak to your child’s teacher and get it sorted out as soon as possible. If this does not resolve it please come and speak to one of the deputy headteachers or headteacher. In the unlikely event that we cannot sort out the issue, the Department of Education and Children does have a formal complaints procedure, details of which can be obtained from the School Office or the Department of Education and Children.
Contact details – please ensure that we always have your latest contact details. This includes updating us when you (or any of your designated contacts) change your mobile ‘phone number, as well as if you move house or change jobs. I am sure you will appreciate how important it is that we can contact you quickly, if necessary.
Curriculum – in providing for your children we are guided by the Isle of Man Department of Education and Children's curriculum document “Essentials for Learning”.
We work with an ASK Curriculum, where we value and teach Attitudes, Skills and Knowledge.
Our curriculum helps children to develop positive attitudes; we use the PATHS program (Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies) as foundation for this, and this is supplemented in lots of other ways including circle-time, Philosophy For Children, SEAL (Social & Emotional Aspects of Learning). Additionally, we have a firm behaviour strategy and a caring, kind and welcoming to all ethos.
Our curriculum is skills-based; we use Chris Quigley's Skills Curriculum, which means that we believe the principle that there are, for each area of learning, an essential set of skills as well as knowledge that children should develop in a wide range of contexts. For example, a Key Skill of Geography (Level 3) is ‘I can explain how physical & human events in places can change the lives of people who live there’. That skill can be applied in all sorts of different ways & lessons, from learning about Nepal to studying the Aztecs to investigating the invention of steam railways! It means we can offer a wide, varied set of topics in school!
Our curriculum allows children to build their knowledge; our teachers carefully monitor and evaluate each child's progress, so that they have a thorough understanding of the pupils' individual needs. That means that we know just what each child is capable of, and what they need to do next to continue to improve their knowledge and understanding.
In reception the children follow The Early Years Foundation Stage Curriculum. This covers the following areas:
The children also have lessons in Sex and Relationship Education. Our aims when teaching SRE (Sex and Relationship Education) are to enable children to develop an increased understanding of their and other people’s physical development and mental well-being. It is taught to help the children to develop good moral values and judgements and to help them to respect differences between people. The children learn about themselves and their body parts, friendships, body awareness and hygiene. As they move up the school they look at differences between male and female and about caring for people and learn more about caring for their bodies. They talk about self esteem, decision making and safety and they are encouraged to challenge gender stereotypes. As they near their final years in school we discuss puberty and changes in their bodies, personal hygiene, changing relationships and building good relationships. Most of this is covered through science and PSHE and is part of the education of every child. However, the part of SRE which deals specifically with reproduction, menstruation etc. needs parental permission, which we will request nearer to the time when these lessons will take place (in years 5 and 6).
In addition, all pupils in Years 4, 5 and 6 may choose to study Manx.
Educational visits – we try to include visits to places of interest during the year and we often need to ask for help from parents to accompany the children. (See Parent helpers). Children in Year 6 are usually offered the opportunity to go on a residential off-island visit.
Food and drink - children may bring a packed lunch, go home or have a school dinner. Children staying for school dinners will be offered a choice from a hot meal or the salad bar.
Children may also bring a snack which is eaten during morning break. These snacks should be of a healthy nature (for example fruit(fresh or dried) nut-free trail mix, celery sticks, fruit smoothies etc. Items such as crisps, chocolate bars, fizzy drinks are not allowed.
Please read our policy for Food in School here --> Policies
You can find out more information about healthy snacks for children here --> Advice from SuperNanny!
In KS 1 and 2 milk, for a mid-morning drink, may be ordered and paid for termly, in advance. We provide semi-skimmed milk. Water is always available and children should bring a water bottle into school to use.
In Reception the school will provide the children with a snack each day for which we make a charge. This cost includes a drink.
We will let you know the costs of dinners, milk and snack in our newsletters.
Head lice - unfortunately from time to time we get reports of children catching head lice. We ask for all parents to regularly check their child’s hair thus helping us to reduce the likelihood of passing them on to others. Please read the Isle of Man Dept of Health's Policy on Head Lice here --> DHSC Head Lice Policy
Homework - You can see our current Homework Policy here --> Policies
Illness - if children are ill we ask that they are kept at home until they recover. Some illnesses have a minimum time for which the child should remain at home e.g. if suffering norovirus your child should stay off for another 48 hours after the last symptoms. If you are unsure please consult your doctor.
If your child is taken ill in school we will contact you to ask you to come and collect them.
Jewellery - the wearing of jewellery is not permitted in school. The only exception is if a child has had their ears pierced. Hoops and large earrings are not permitted. Children must be able to remove their earrings for swimming and PE/Games lessons. If they are unable to remove their earrings, because they have been pierced recently, they must have them covered. For PE/Games lessons plasters or micropore tape are suitable and should be brought from home. For swimming, a band that covers the ears must be worn. Children are allowed to wear a watch but need to be able to take care of it themselves.
Money - money for the office (i.e to pay for dinners, milk etc.) should be in a named sealed envelope or money bag and then placed in the money wallet which will be provided by the school.
Mobile phones - we would prefer it if mobile phones were not brought to school, the office telephone would be used in an emergency. However, if any mobile phones are brought into school by KS2 children they should be clearly named and handed into the school office where they are kept for the duration of the school day.
Medicines - we cannot give medicine to children without the proper procedures being followed. If it is necessary for children to take medicine in school time, parents should request a copy of the appropriate form to complete and arrange to deliver and collect the medicine from the school office. These procedures are necessary to ensure all medicines are handled appropriately. If your child has asthma and needs inhalers please fill in an asthma card and we will make the appropriate arrangements for them to have access to them as necessary
Musical instruments - we are lucky to have a number of peripatetic music teachers who teach a variety of string, wind and brass instruments to the juniors, there is a charge for this. Parental permission is required before any child can receive instrumental tuition. Children may be auditioned by the music teachers to assess their suitability for a particular instrument. Instruments are usually available to hire from the Department’s music service for a small termly fee.
Newsletter - newsletters are sent home regularly with the children. Some parents choose to receive them by e-mail. If you would like to receive your newsletter by e-mail please contact the school office. You can also find the newsletters here --> Newsletters
Open – door policy – this means you are very welcome to come in before or after school to discuss any issues with your child’s class teacher. All teachers are in their classrooms 10 minutes before the start of school for this purpose and are usually available at the end of school too. (Sometimes they may be running an after school club so their time may be limited.) If you think you will need more than a few minutes of the teacher’s time please make an appointment.
You are also very welcome to speak, at any time, to the deputy headteachers or headteacher about any matters of concern. You can either call in to see them or make an appointment if you prefer and want to be certain that they will be available.
Parent helpers - we actively encourage, and rely on, parent help in school to enable us to offer all the things we do. We hope that, if possible, you will be willing to help in some way. At the moment we have parents who assist with swimming, run clubs, hear readers and accompany us on trips and to sporting fixtures.
On offering help in school, on a regular basis, we do ask you to read our guidelines and fill in a form consenting to a police check. If you are kind enough to offer transport to other children we also ask you to read and adhere to our guidelines regarding this.
We hope these restrictions won’t discourage anyone from offering help and that you will realise they are measures we have put into place to ensure the safety of your child.
Playtimes - we have a morning playtime, a lunch break and an afternoon playtime. During periods of fine weather the children are able to enjoy the use of our playing field. We ask that all children have coats in school in case of poor weather. In hot weather you may wish to send in a hat and/or apply sun protection cream.
Questions - if you have any questions please contact the school office.
Reports - you will receive an annual written report on your child’s progress each summer. We also hold two Parents’ Evenings, usually in the weeks before the October and February half term holiday when the teachers will hope to meet you and discuss your child’s progress.
School hours – the children are supervised in the main yard from 8.45 a.m. If they arrive before that time they will not be supervised. On wet days they may come straight into school from that time onwards.
School opens: 8.55 a.m.
Lunch: 12.00 noon - 1.00 p.m.(juniors) noon - 1.15 (infants)
School closes: 3.20p.m. (infants ) 3.25 p.m. (juniors)
We ask that all infant children are brought to and collected from school by an adult.
Special Educational Needs - the school offers a broad and balanced curriculum for all the children in school. This includes children with special educational needs. If a child is identified with special educational needs, a programme can be arranged to help them access the curriculum.
Special Educational Needs Unit – the Special Needs Unit (SEN) is a provision for pupils identified as having additional learning needs (Higher Level Needs +). We have two SEN unit classes - one on each site.
The classes have small numbers of pupils and are staffed by a teacher with additional support provided by a number of Education Support Officers. The provision is managed overall by our SEN unit manager, Mrs Royle.
In the Infants, the unit is known as the STAR Centre, and “STAR” is an abbreviation of Special Teaching and Resources centre. In the Juniors, the unit is known as “Discovery”.
Pupils in the unit generally require a teaching and learning approach which is different or extra to mainstream because of the degree of learning difficulties which the pupils experience. This may include, for example, a higher ratio of pupil to adult support, a smaller group size, special strategies and approaches, with an adapted timetable. In the SEN unit classrooms, the curriculum is delivered using this individualized approach. Pupils who attend the SEN unit are very much part of the wider school community and join their peers for some lessons, playtimes, lunches and assemblies. Many pupils also spend time in mainstream classes at times during the week, with staff working closely together to ensure this is successful. Likewise, staff in the SEN units enjoy working with parents and a wide range of outside agencies in order to support and further pupil learning.
Staff and Governors - an up to date list of staff and Governors will be circulated to parents in September and any changes to this will be communicated through our regular newsletter.
Uniform - our uniform consists of:
black or grey trousers or skirt,
a white polo shirt,
red sweatshirt*, jumper or cardigan*.
sensible black shoes.
During the summer months smart black or grey shorts (of a suitable length) or red checked summer dresses may be worn.
If tights are worn they should be black, grey or red
PE/Games uniform: Shorts and T-shirt*, trainers or pumps. ( If possible we like children to wear a T-shirt in their House colour.)
Swimming: Girls - a one piece swimming costume and towel. Boys - swimming trunks (not baggy shorts) and towel. Goggles may be worn but must be adjusted at home or by the child.
Anyone with long hair must wear a swimming hat.
All reception children will be given a book bag to take books to and from school. If another one is required, for any reason, they may be purchased from the office.