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Parent Support Page

                                            Welcome to St Mary’s Parent Support and Advice forum page.

Are you worried about the progress your child is making?

Would you like to do more at home to help them?

Are you stuck for activities or strategies to support learning at home?

Would you like to know more about particular difficulties that your child may be facing?


This page aims to provide parents with information relating to children who may require additional support with a range of difficulties.  It is a place for you to source information, strategies and advice on how best to support your child in overcoming barriers to their learning.

Contact information:

If you have any queries regarding additional support you or your child may need, you can contact the SEN team via email:        or through the school office on 01702 354012


What should I do if I am worried about the progress my child is making?

Discuss your concerns with your child’s class teacher. They are your first port of call. They will be able to talk to you about how they are getting on in school and what additional support/ activities you could try with them at home. Your concerns are always taken seriously and your views may provide us with the extra information that we require in order to best meet your child’s needs.

SEN Team

Ms Brewer – Deputy Head Teacher / Inclusion Manager

Miss Jones – Special Educational Needs Coordinator

Mrs Roberts-Smith – HLTA/ SEN Support

Ms Miller – Nurture/ learning mentor and Attendance Officer

Miss Evans – Nurture mentor




How to support children starting school, moving into a new year group or moving on to secondary school. 

The transition into school, moving up to the next year group or on to secondary school is an exciting time for children and their families. With this however, can come some concerns or anxiety that both children and parents/ carers need support through. 

Here are some tips for making the transition process a happy time for all:


Take the time to discuss the upcoming changes with your child. Encourage them to share with you how they are feeling, what they are worried about or what they feel they need help with. Reassure them that everyone has worries about changes and focus on how exciting their new class/ school will be. Make them feel that they are being listened to and that their worries are valid. Talk about positive changes they have experienced before and how well they coped with it previously. Praise challenges they have overcome in the past and relate it to how they are currently feeling. 


Wherever possible attend visits to the school/ open days to see their new classroom and teacher. The earlier children get to see unfamiliar environments, the sooner they will begin to feel comfortable in them. Be sure to point out interesting things in their new school/ classroom and remind them of them when they are at home. 

Prepare/ routine

Make sure your child has enough information about the changes that are happening so that they feel as prepared as possible. Find out about any changes to their normal routine and talk them through this. Make sure they have the correct uniform/ equipment and that where possible they are involved in choosing new items e.g pencil cases/ new shoes. This will help them to become more excited about their new class/ school. 

Basic skills

Support your child to develop the age appropriate basic skills they will need to ensure their time in school is as stress free as possible. 

For children starting school, using the toilet independently, using a knife and fork, putting on their own coat/ shoes, getting dressed by themselves. 

For older children, organising the equipment they need for the day ahead, telling the time, tying shoe laces and reading a school timetable. If you are unsure about the basic skills that your child may need, just ask their teacher.

02/05/2017          10 Tips on Hearing Your Child Read

As parents you are your child's most influential teacher with an important part to play in helping your child to learn to read.

Here are some suggestions on how you can help to make this a positive experience.

1. Choose a quiet time

Set aside a quiet time with no distractions. Ten to fifteen minutes is usually long enough.

2. Make reading enjoyable

Make reading an enjoyable experience. Sit with your child. Try not to pressurise if he or she is reluctant. Try a range of books according to your child’s interests (e.g. comic books).

3. Maintain the flow

If your child mispronounces a word do not interrupt immediately. Instead allow opportunity for self-correction. It is better to tell a child some unknown words to maintain the flow rather than insisting on trying to build them all up from the sounds of the letters. If your child does try to 'sound out' words, encourage the use of letter sounds rather than 'alphabet names'.

4. Be positive

If your child says something nearly right to start with that is fine. Don't say 'No. That's wrong,' but 'Let's read it together' and point to the words as you say them. Boost your child's confidence with constant praise for even the smallest achievement.

5. Success is the key

Parents anxious for a child to progress can mistakenly give a child a book that is too difficult. This can have the opposite effect to the one they are wanting. Remember 'Nothing succeeds like success'. Until your child has built up his or her confidence, it is better to keep to easier books. Struggling with a book with many unknown words is pointless. Flow is lost, text cannot be understood and children can easily become reluctant readers.

6. Visit the Library

Encourage your child to use the public library regularly.

7. Regular practice

Try to read with your child on most school days. 'Little and often' is best.

8. Communicate

Try to communicate regularly with positive comments and any concerns in your child’s reading record book. Your child will then know that you are interested in their progress and that you value reading.

9. Talk about the books

There is more to being a good reader than just being able to read the words accurately. Just as important is being able to understand what has been read. Always talk to your child about the book; about the pictures, the characters, how they think the story will end, and their favourite part. You will then be able to see how well they have understood and you will help them to develop good comprehension skills.

10. Variety is important

Remember children need to experience a variety of reading materials eg. picture books, hard backs, comics, magazines, poems, and information books.