Frequently Asked Questions
As the children move from year group to year group their experiences change as we pack more into the school day. Please do not hesitate to contact us directly if you need any further information about any aspect of the education we provide. We are always on hand to support parents as their child progresses through each stage of his/her education with us.
How many pupils do you have per class?
Our uniqueness is the fact we have small numbers per year group. It varies per year group and tends to be around 12 in the juniors and an average of 16 in the seniors. We believe that small class sizes contribute to the happiness and success of every pupil.
Can parents become involved in the life of the school?
We have an excellent Parents’ Association with a large committee of supportive parents that organise regular events for both pupils and parents. You can find out more about the Braeside Parents’ Association HERE.
Parents are invited into school for events, and sometimes to accompany trips and outings.
Parents are invited in to talk to the whole school during National Careers Week about their experience of the world of work. This is immensely valuable for pupils as they consider their career choices and where they want to study next.
What learning support do you offer to support my child?
We are fortunate to have a well-resourced Learning Support team. Many of our Learning Support Assistants work in a variety of classes to help the pupils with their work. All work is routinely differentiated to meet the range of abilities of our children so that they are all able to access the curriculum. Our specialist staff give one-to-one targeted support to pupils to help them make progress.
How do you do PE when you do not have any sports facilities?
We use a number of purpose built sports facilities in the area that offer both outdoor and indoor sports facilities of a professional standard. The PE department provides a wide-ranging and challenging curriculum that includes swimming, tennis, gym, rounders, hockey, netball and athletics.
We make use of the large open-spaced sports ground adjacent to the Senior site for many of our PE and Games lessons. We have a well-resourced stock of equipment that our staff set up.
Sports Day is held at the Lea Valley Indoor Track in the Summer Term and parents are very welcome to join us for what is always an excellent event.
Where do pupils go when they have to leave Braeside at 16?
We prepare all of our pupils to go on to further education and the majority study for A levels. Most move to schools in the area to selective independent schools (sometimes with scholarships), to grammar schools or to local state schools and colleges. Over the last three years our pupils have received offers from independent schools including Chigwell, Forest and Bancroft’s. Others apply for grammar schools such as Woodford County High.
Some of our pupils choose a vocational route after successfully completing their GCSEs, including courses specialising in areas such as Interior Design, Media Studies and ICT.
Our pupils are well-prepared for the transition after GCSE. We hold a parents’ evening for parents and pupils in Years 10 and 11 in which we provide advice and information about the application process for different schools and colleges. Mock interviews are held so that pupils can practise their techniques. Scholarship candidates have support for their applications.
You can see the full list of leavers destinations HERE.
What links are there between school and home?
Parents of pupils in our Early Years, Infants and Juniors have the opportunity each day to talk to the class teacher either in the morning or in the afternoon. We are very happy for parents to contact us to make a longer appointment if they need a more detailed conversation with the form teacher or a member of the senior team. The Headmistress is readily available to see parents about a variety of matters.
We have at least one formal communication with home each term, which takes the form of a short report, full report or parent’s meeting. ‘Settling in’ reports are sent home after the first few weeks in school. There are regular newsletters and the website is always updated with information and news. We have a text messaging service and we email letters and news home. We also tweet our news and put it on our Facebook page!
There are termly drop-in mornings for Early Years, Infant and Junior parents to visit the classrooms and annual coffee mornings for all parents to chat with the Group Managing Principal and Headmistress about school.
What are the benefits of a school taking children from 2½ – 16?
We understand the educational needs of children all the way through their education and we ensure that the progression from one stage to the next is smooth and supported. Teachers share their knowledge and understanding of the children and progress is maintained.
The school is a strong community where the clear sense of caring and togetherness permeates from the oldest pupils down to the youngest. This is unique. We are one school, on two sites, and pupils share school events together such as Speech Day, celebrations, concerts, and sponsored walks.
Pupils gain from the expertise of specialist teachers who are graduates in a wide range of subjects and who work hard to make the curriculum relevant, exciting and challenging.