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WE LOOK FORWARD

TO MEETING YOU

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As you start to think about leaving Primary school and the move to Secondary school, you should remember why you chose Barr Beacon. 

Proud to Succeed

Our school community is proudly diverse and we do not tolerate bias, prejudice or discrimination of any kind – whether conscious or unconscious – and we instil in our pupils nothing less than the urge to go out into the world and make it a better place.

Beacon Values

At Barr Beacon School we are proud that our pupils embrace the BEACON values in everything they do. Our Beacon Values Representatives help to promote our core values; each value is linked to the British values. Read More HERE.

Uniform Expectations

Dress for Success

Who Will Look After Me?

Should you have any worries or issues, you should report them to your Form Tutor, class teachers or Head of House who will help you with any problems you may have. All staff in school are there to look after you and guide you through your transition to secondary school as we know this can be a daunting time.

Barr Beacon School has a group of Prefects in Year 11. These are senior pupils who will be able to help you out if you have a problem. You can recognise them all because they wear a black tie without the usual House-coloured stripes. Instead of the stripes, it has the school badge on it.

You will have two Prefects attached to your tutor group and they will act as your guides during Induction Day and on your first day at Barr Beacon in September.

During the Autumn term your form Prefects will help you to settle in and remind you of where you need to go for your lessons. If you see any Prefects around school, they will be able to offer you support, should you ever need help with anything.

Can I Ride My Bike

Yes - you can come to school on your bike. As soon as you enter the school premises you must get off and push your bike to the bike sheds where you can lock it away safely until the end of the day. We advise that you regularly get your bike breaks checked and that you wear a helmet when you are riding your bike for safety.

Bus Routes

If you are going to be travelling by bus to school, you can find the bus timetables on the school website under ‘Contact’. Pupils should not arrive on site before 8.30am

National Express offer a £10 discount to new intake for you first month of the bus pass.  You can apply for this on the following link - https://nxbus.co.uk/west-midlands/intake-2022

 

Using the Toilet

You can normally only go to the toilet at break and lunch. However, if you have a toilet pass for medical reasons you will be allowed to go during lesson time.

What Will I Learn?

You will study a varied and exciting curriculum. Click the button below to see what you will be learning about in each subject. In addition to your subjects, some pupils will have extra literacy, numeracy and spelling support.

House System

When you start at Barr Beacon School you will be placed into a ‘House’. This will be like your family at school and your Head of House will monitor all of your successes and any areas you might struggle with.

They will contact home to discuss ways in which we can work together to ensure that you achieve your best.

If you have any worries on a day to day basis, you’ll be able to talk to your Form Tutor who will work with your Head of House to help you resolve them.

Breaktime

At school you will have a 20 minute break in the morning. You can socialise with friends in the amphitheatre. If you want to buy food, you can purchase and eat refreshments in the school hall.

You can read in the iCentre or play table tennis with friends.

Lunchtime

All of Year 7 have lunch at the same time so you will be able to see your friends. You can buy a meal deal which includes a drink for £2.00. You will need money on your Wisepay account to buy refreshments.

You can bring a packed lunch or buy a sandwich or sub roll at lunch time. Members of Leadership will be on duty during break and lunch time. You can view the school’s menu at HERE.

Where to Go?

Click HERE for an overview of the school site so you can see where some of our departments are located.

Many new pupils worry that they will get lost at secondary school. However, it is very easy to find your way around Barr Beacon, as each block is recognisable by a letter.

The different blocks are; A block, B block, C block, D block, E block, Success Centre and the Sports Centre. Every room has a room number on and your Form Tutor will take you on a tour of the school before your timetable begins when you start school. You can ask any me

Contact Home

Our school must be seen as part of a wider community which includes parents, carers, friends and neighbours, upon whose cooperation we depend.

We feel that home-school contact is important if pupils are to obtain the full benefit from their education. If you wish to contact the school on any matter, please write to or phone your child’s Head of House or email: postbox@barrbeaconschool.co.uk.

If you wish to see the Headteacher about a most serious matter, please write to, email the school postbox or telephone and make an appointment for a mutually convenient time. Relatively routine matters should always be referred to the Head of House in the first instance. Conversely, if serious problems present themselves at school, the Head of House or a senior member of staff will ask to see you. If this happens, the problem is serious and we ask for your full support in the interests of your child.

The school Newsletter and school letters are published electronically on our website to keep you informed about all school matters. We use a text messaging service to share updates with parents and carers. It is pivotal that you ensure the school has your most up to date contact details at all times to enable us to communicate and update you via our text message service.

Progress Evenings

Parents are expected to attend all Progress Evenings which are held virtually for each year group. Details will be sent out in advance and these meetings are seen as a vital part of the communication process between home and school. Other information evenings are also held for parents and details are published separately for these events on our school website.

At your child’s virtual Progress Evening you will have the opportunity to meet your child’s teachers and discuss their progress. If for any reason you are unable to attend your child’s Progress Evening, please inform the school. However, research has shown that children of parents who attend benefit greatly and we would urge you to support your child in this way.

Dates and times for virtual Progress Evenings are published on the school’s website. All appointments are booked and take place using an online platform, meaning that you will attend meetings online from anywhere that is convenient to you.

Year 7 Progress Evening will be held in the Spring Term Thursday 23rd March 2023 
 
Year 7 Settling-In Evening will be held on Wednesday 21st September 2022. 

Homework

All pupils are required to do homework and it is expected that parents will ensure that an area at home is identified as suitable for completing homework.

Years 7 & 8: At least 20 mins per subject

Year 9: At least 30 mins per subject

Years 10 & 11: At least 45 mins per subject

A homework timetable is given to each pupil at the start of the school year, as well as a pupil planner where pupils record their homework and which parents / carers are asked to sign each week. Pupil planners are monitored on a regular basis by Form Tutors, Heads of House and Leadership.

Find out if you are eligible for Free School Meals

The School Day

Extra-Curricular

Careers

Using Your Planner

On your first day you will be issued with a planner. 

You will use this to: 

  • Record a copy of your personal timetable.
  • Make of note of homework that is set and when it is due.
  • Show your parents/carers what work is being set and pass messages to your Form Tutor.
  • Record any detentions that might be set.
  • Record any Catch Ups or Redo sessions with your teachers.

Your parents/carers will sign your planner every week to show that they have seen all of your homework and to confirm that you have passed on any messages.

You will be able to collect praise points from your teachers and staff for your effort, behaviour and work as well as your contributions to school life.

Praise will be recognised by your Form Tutor, Head of House and Leadership.

Frequently Asked Questions

Year 7 must arrive in school each day by 8.30am via the top gate.  
 
All school gates close at 8.30am so if you are late, you will need to enter via ‘late gate’ just below the main school gate off Old Hall Lane.  If you are late, you will receive a break time detention. 
Once you are on the school site, you can go to the top playground, the bistro or the icentre. 
 
You could arrange to meet a friend but if you don’t know anyone else, don’t worry. There will be lots of staff about who are really keen to meet you. They will welcome you to reassure you and guide you, especially in the first few days as you get to know new faces. 

It’s best practice to catch the bus that will get you into school with plenty of time to spare. Don’t risk being late by catching a bus that just gets you in before 8.30am.

But, if you do miss your bus, don't worry - get the next bus. If you arrive to school after the gates have closed, go straight to the top gate and then to reception where a member of staff will be able to help you.
It is important to check how much money you have on your Wisepay account every day. But, if you forget, you can go to your House Office, where your Head of House will be able to help you. Remember we are a cashless school so reminding your parents to check your account is vital so that you can make any purchases on site.
Making a checklist of things you'll need each day when you start will help you to be organised. It's useful to check your bag each day before you leave too but some times we forget things. If you leave your packed lunch at home, you should go to your House Office where someone will be able to help you.
If you don't bring your kit, you will be given kit from the PE department to wear. This isn’t optional. Your PE kit should be one of the things on your checklist for the evening before PE lessons.
It's normal to feel worried about making big changes like starting a new school or meeting new friends but don't worry. Everyone in year 7 is in the same situation. If you do feel nervous, you should talk to your Form Tutor who you will see every day during registration. They will be able to give you some strategies to cope with the nerves that we get when we start something new.

You can also talk to the Prefects who are year 11 pupils. They wear special ties so you can identify who they are. Their ties are plain black with a Barr Beacon emblem in the centre. A Prefect will always be willing to listen and help you.
You should make sure that you pay attention when your teacher is setting your homework so that you get all of the details you need recorded in your planner.

Sometimes, even though we try, we don't always understand our homework when we get home. If this happens, you should go and see your teacher as soon as you can but definitely before the work is due to be handed in.

You can also go to homework club which runs each evening. At homework club you will find help and encouragement too. We'll let you know which room homework club will be in when you start in September.

Avoid leaving homework until the last minute. That's often when problems occur.
The best way to avoid this is to pack your bag each evening before school so that you are ready for the day ahead and you don't have any distractions before you leave the house.

If you do forget to bring your homework, you need to go and speak to your teacher before the lesson. Don't wait until it's time to hand it in.

Teachers may set a detention if homework is not handed in on time.

You will have a timetable that you will write into your planner which will include 5 lessons each day. Every day you will need your stationery (see equipment here) and you will need the books and homework for the lessons of the day. Your bag should be packed and checked against your planner each evening.

Don’t bring every book you have every day because that is a lot of books to carry. It’s a good idea to keep a box at home where you store your books so that they don’t get lost when you take them out of your bag.

You will have PE each week. You must remember to wash your kit ready for the next week so that it is clean and fresh. When you are deciding on which school bag to buy ready for September make sure you consider being able to fit your PE kit, your books and even your lunch in at the same time.

You can wear a coat to school but you are not allowed to wear coats in school. You will be directed to remove it as soon as you enter a building. Make sure that all of your possessions are labelled with your name.
When a member of staff raises their hand straight up in the air, this indicates that you need to be silent.

You should raise your hand immediately, stop doing whatever you are doing and be silent.

Leadership will raise their hand at the end of every lunch sitting for an orderly dismissal.
As silly as it sounds, start practising now. You could ask for some help at home or you could watch a ‘how to’ video on Youtube. We will tell you as soon as we can which House you are in so don’t buy a Barr Beacon Tie until your House and Form has been confirmed.

Each lesson lasts from 60 minutes. We don’t have bells here so your teacher will tell you when a lesson is drawing to a close and its time to move to your next lesson. You will be expected to walk into your classrooms sensibly and quietly, take out your equipment and wait to be invited to be seated. All of your teachers will have allocated you a seat when you first begin so you will know where you are to be seated.

Each lesson will be different. You will usually have a book for a lesson where you will capture all of your learning. Teachers will give you feedback in your books too so it’s essential that you keep them safe and take them to each lesson.

Lessons are chunked into sections by the teacher so that your learning is being built upon over the hour. Some of the ways that we help you to learn and recall knowledge are: quizzing, using knowledge organisers, experiments and practicals, reading, discussing ideas and topics and recording or reporting through writing.

We will check your progress through regular assessments and give you feedback on how to improve or develop your ideas.

We use Red, Amber, Green and Purple so that you can see how you have achieved against your targets. If you are Red, you have underachieved against your baseline but if you are Amber you are on target. You will be given targets and actions to take to make progress for each assessment that you complete. Your baseline is the minimum level you should be aiming for.

Any lost property is handed in to reception. It’s always worth retracing your steps so that you visit the rooms that you have been in before you realised that your item was not with you. Make sure that you label everything with your name.
If you don’t feel very well, you should go to your House Office who will be able to help you.

You can buy refreshments at break and lunch time. You will be informed where you will dine when you start in September. Leadership will supervise you during break and lunch. We do not go ‘out to play’ at lunch time as we only have 30 minutes to dine. At the end of each break and lunch session, you will be dismissed straight back to lessons.

Barr Beacon is a Telling School and we encourage you to tell us if something or someone is bothering you. You can tell your Form Tutor who you will see every morning or you can report issues to your Head of House too. Don’t keep things bottled up; share them and we can help to sort problems out.
Yes. We encourage pupils to bring their bikes to school to help them to keep healthy. We have a bike shelter where you can lock up your bike. You must provide your own lock. We expect you to wear a helmet when you are riding your bike and that you use cycle paths when riding to and from school if they are available. You must only push your bike when you are on school site.
We are a ‘Drink to Think’ school and we encourage you to drink water in lessons, but this can only be water. We have water filters around school, in the hall and the bistro, where you can fill up your bottles. We do not provide plastic cups and you cannot leave lessons to fill up your bottles so you need to plan the times when you want to fill up. Energy drinks and glass bottles are not allowed on school site. They will be confiscated. No eating is permitted in lessons.
Don’t panic. You can ask any pupil in year 8-13 or a member of staff and they will be able to help you. All sixth form students wear a blue lanyard and staff wear a red lanyard so you will be able to see who they are.

When you first start with us, we know that you will be finding your way around and getting used to where your classrooms are so we do make allowances for some delayed arrivals in the first week. But, we will expect pupils to be punctual to all lessons and ready to learn when they arrive when you have found your way around.

The school website shows you a list of equipment, uniform and kit that you will need. It is expected that in every classroom based lesson you get your planner and equipment out on the desk ready to learn at the start of each lesson.

Your timetable will have a staff code and your Form Tutor will tell the names of your teachers. You will then write these into your planner. All of your teachers will introduce themselves to you but if you forget, all you need to do is ask them to remind you of their name. Remember, they will be learning everyone’s names too.

Parental Information

Important Procedures

If a pupil has a special educational need or disability and have received additional support at their Primary school for this need, they will be supported by the SEND Coordinator (SENDCo) and the Learning Support team. The support offered to pupils will be decided in communication with parents, and staff will be provided with a pupil profile which details the best way to support pupils in lessons.

The pupil profile is the child’s voice in the classroom and will be written with the support of parents and the SENDCo.Pupils will be assigned a key worker that will be involved in the process of reviewing the provision for the pupil and they will decide, with the agreement of the SENDCo, whether the pupil needs additional support from specialist staff to develop skills in the classroom by providing additional scaffolding so that pupils can access the topic in lessons. Some pupils will need special provision in addition to lessons to develop literacy and numeracy skills which could mean the pupil attends spelling bee or sum buddies after school for a 6 week intensive programme.

Pupils could also be invited to a range of programmes that would develop their confidence and social skills such as TEAM club where pupils work on their self-esteem and leadership skills through physical activity. Some pupils might be invited to attend our Lego club where they can develop friendship and communication skills. These interventions are by invitation only to ensure the groups are small allowing for us maximise the impact for pupils.

Where special educational needs of a registered disability are identified, every effort is made to make special provision for pupils within the resources available.Please note that Barr Beacon School is a multi-level site with six separate buildings. Wheelchair access is currently only available on the ground floor, except in the B block, C block and E block where lifts are available.

At Barr Beacon School we recognise the importance of supporting the mental health and wellbeing of our pupils. Our whole school approach includes an extensive PSHE programme, assemblies, form time activities, pupil voice through the Well Being Team, a school counsellor and pastoral support as well as working with external agencies. These include CAMHS (Child and Adolescent, Mental Health Service) and the School Nursing Team. We complete weekly activities to allow pupils to reflect and build a toolkit of support strategies through Thoughtful Thursday. Along with our ‘Action for Happiness Calendar’ which helps people take action for a happier and more caring world.

Barr Beacon is a Telling School and we encourage all pupils to talk about their experiences, thoughts and feelings. Bullying has no place in our school and it will not be tolerated. There are well-developed procedures for staff and pupils to follow if incidents do occur. The topic of bullying is explored in assemblies and during tutor time so that pupils are reminded they should tell someone if they do not feel happy about a matter. Our pupils know that there is no need to “suffer in silence”. Our Anti Bullying Mentors are also available and they are trained to support pupils too.If you believe that your child is being bullied please contact their Head of House immediately.

Pupils take responsibility for their own personal property and should never bring expensive items into school. The school cannot accept responsibility for valuables. Mobile phones, electronic tablets, computer games, electronic mobile devices such as kindles and other expensive items MUST NOT be brought into school.

As pupils must carry books around the school and between the school and home, it would be appreciated if parents/ carers would ensure that a suitable school bag is provided. Books represent a very significant element of the school’s expenditure and it is essential that they are properly looked after.

Pupils are expected to pay for a new book where one is lost or defaced. Each pupil is issued with a planner at the start of the academic year and we expect them to remain in an excellent condition. If a planner is lost, a new planner can be purchased via the House Office. The cost to replace a planner is £5.00.

Pupils must cross the Beacon Road at the crossing. Parents are asked not to park near the school gates or on the school site as this makes it dangerous for pupils crossing the roads and accessing the bus bay. 

Any pupil riding a bike to school MUST wear a helmet. If a pupil does not bring and wear a helmet they will not be allowed to bring their bike to school. 

In order to safeguard pupils, staff and visitors, all external gates will be locked during the school day. The gates will be locked at 8.30 am and re-opened for pupils exiting school at 3.00pm. At 3.30pm the pedestrian gate near the pelican crossing and the field gates will be locked for the evening; pupils leaving school after this time will need to use the main school reception gates. 

The school has qualified first aiders to deal with on site emergencies. Where there is a more serious accident and it is necessary for a pupil to be transported to hospital, parents/carers are contacted as soon as possible.

Where both parents are absent from home, the mother, father or carer is contacted at their place of employment. If a child is unwell, parents/carers will be expected to collect their child.

It is vital that the school has up-to-date information to enable us to contact you in cases of accident or illness. An essential information and medical form is issued to parents, on which you should indicate clearly the telephone numbers by which quick contact can be made, and any other emergency contact details. You must provide the school with at least two emergency contact numbers.

ANY CHANGES TO THIS INFORMATION MUST BE MADE ON AN ESSENTIAL INFORMATION AMENDMENT FORM AND GIVEN TO THE HEAD OF HOUSE AS A MATTER OF URGENCY.

Whilst accidents and serious illnesses that occur in school will be dealt with by school staff, incidents that happen out of school hours or at the weekend should be dealt with by parents.

If your child has a medical condition, please ensure that the school is aware in the first instance by entering it on the essential information form before your child begins at Barr Beacon School.

If your child has a condition that requires a Care Plan such as epilepsy, diabetes or asthma for example, or a potentially life threatening severe allergy that requires them to carry an EpiPen, it is vital that you provide Barr Beacon School with the care plan and medication prior to them starting in September. This is to ensure the school is fully equipped to support your child when they are in school.

Barr Beacon School is a cashless school. We use a web payment provider for the payment of all trips, visits, peripatetic lessons, dinner money for our cashless catering system and any other services the school offers.

Parents will be provided with login details to get into their child’s wisepay accounts. Parents are requested not to send large sums of money into school with pupils.

MOBILE PHONES AND OTHER MOBILE DEVICES ARE BANNED FOR YEARS 7-11.

If your child brings a mobile phone into school, the phone will be confiscated immediately and you will be contacted so that a time can be arranged for you to meet with a member of Leadership. This meeting will enable us to ensure that the phone is checked, in your company, for any inappropriate content. We will endeavour to meet you within two weeks of confiscation. Following this meeting with you, if your child brings their phone into school again, the phone will be checked again for inappropriate content by a member of Leadership and will remain locked in a school safe for six weeks.

Parents  are  expected  to  attend  all  Progress  Evenings  which  are  held  virtually  for  each  year  group.  Details will be sent out in advance and these meetings are seen as a vital part of the communication process between home and school. Other information evenings are also held for parents and details are published separately for these events on our school website.

At  your  child’s  virtual  Progress  Evening  you  will  have  the  opportunity  to  meet  your  child’s  teachers  and  discuss  their  progress.  If  for  any  reason  you  are  unable  to  attend  your  child’s  Progress  Evening,  please inform the school. However, research has shown that children of parents who attend benefit greatly and we would urge you to support your child in this way. Dates and times for virtual Progress Evenings are published on the school’s website.  All appointments are booked and take place using an online platform, meaning that you will attend meetings online from anywhere that is convenient to you.

 

If a child is absent, parents/carers should contact the school before 9.30am on each day of absence.  However, only the school can authorise non-attendance. All pupils should be waiting outside their form rooms by 8.35am each morning for registration. If pupils arrive onto school site after 8.40am they will be issued with a break time detention on the same day.

If pupils arrive after 9:30am they will be marked in the register as an unauthorised absence and coded as ‘U’ and they will be set a detention after school for the length of time they were late. Your child should be on school site no later than 8:30am. Afternoon registration takes place at 2:00pm during period 5.

Any requests for absence from school must be made eight weeks in advance using an absence request form available from reception. Parents/carers are asked not to take holidays during term time and, if taken, the school will not authorise the absence. You will also make yourself liable for a Fixed Penalty Notice, where each parent/carer will have to pay £60 for each child removed from school.

This will need to be paid within 21 days and if it is not paid within this time, the charge will rise to £120 per parent for each child and must be paid within 28 days in order to avoid prosecution by the Local Authority. 

You will be given 24 hours notice of the school’s intention to keep your child after school. Please check your child’s planner regularly to see if a detention has been issued. It is the pupil’s responsibility to show their planner to parents/carers if a detention has been issued.

Pupils should expect to stay behind after 3.10pm for various reasons. In addition to detentions, which are only ever used as a sanction, pupils can may be required to stay for a catch-up, revision sessions or redo.

These are never used as a punishment but are intended to help all pupils make progress. A catch-up is issued if pupils have gaps in their learning, either due to absence or because they did not completely understand something beforehand. A redo is issued if pupils produce work which is not of the required standard and they need to have another attempt.

We passionately believe that moving on to a new topic before pupils have secured their understanding of what has come before is setting them up to fail; redos and catch-up help us to ensure that all pupils achieve. 

Pupils must not bring any illegal substances, knives or any other weapon onto the school site. Drugs, tobacco, cigarettes, e-cigarettes, vapour pens, matches and lighters are not permitted. Any such items found will be confiscated and will be destroyed. The matter will be treated as a serious breach of school rules and parents  will  be  contacted.  The Headteacher will  recommend  permanent  exclusion  to  the  Governance  Advisory  Board  for  any  pupil  who  brings  drugs,  knives  or  weapons  onto  the  school  site  and the Police will be informed. Please refer to our Behaviour Policy on the school website.