Home School Communication

Working in partnership with our families is crucial to ensuring that we meet our children’s needs and progress to the best of their abilities. We place a high value on parental engagement and there are a number of ways we do this in school.

The EHCP, (Educational and Health Care Plan) and the annual review of it, forms the bedrock of your child’s school experience. It feeds into every aspect of their education. Parental contribution to the annual review meetings is essential and we urge all families to prepare for them carefully and thoughtfully. The leaflets below explain how the process works and what actually happens in an annual review meeting.

Annual Review Information Leaflet for Parents and Carers

What actually happens in an annual review? – a guide for parents and carers

EHCP Assessment of Need – Process and Timeframes for Parents and Carers

At the annual review meeting we will update the EHCP.  The outcomes of the EHCP are broken down into smaller learning goals which are recorded on your child’s Learning Map.  A new Learning Map is written twice a year – the first covers the Autumn/Winter semester, the second the Spring/Summer semester. The Learning Maps also contain strategies for how to carry out a particular short-term learning goal. Copies are sent home so learning goals can be practiced at home to help embed them.

Earwig is an online platform where teachers share what your child has been learning about at school. Our expectation is for a minimum of one post a day. The posts should cover the full range of your child’s school experience and may report on progress they have made towards their Learning Map targets, an enrichment experience they’ve taken part in or something they have achieved in a particular area of the curriculum.

All families are given information about Earwig and asked to sign a consent when they start school. A copy of this is included here. If you cannot remember how to access your child’s Earwig timeline or would like another family member to have access, please send an email to [email protected].

Earwig Consent

You can also post on your child’s time-line and many of our families do. It is lovely to see what your child has been up to over the weekend or during the holidays. Pastoral teachers use these posts to encourage communication and pupils love sharing their life outside of school with their peers.

These ‘time-lines’ are also used by school staff as an assessment tool to track a child’s progress. We love it when families post progress against their Learning Map targets or see things they have achieved at home that we don’t always see at school.

All pupils must have an annual school report. At Thomas Wolsey Ormiston Academy, we use Earwig to generate these reports. You will receive a PDF version at the annual review but a copy is also loaded onto your child’s time-line.

We celebrate good news stories on our Facebook page. To access, please follow this link (20+) Facebook. We also use this site to share information about up-coming events or share specialist items such as wheelchairs, buggies etc. that families would like to sell or pass on. Please email [email protected] if there is anything you would like to post on our site.

ParentMail is used to communicate messages quickly and efficiently in a secure way. In order to use ParentMail, we need up-to-date email addresses and mobile numbers. Please ensure you update this information with the school office if your details change. Please request a copy of the parentmail form to be sent home via your child’s pastoral teacher by emailing the school office [email protected].

ParentMail is registered with the Data Protection Registrar and guarantees that all information you provide will be kept private and will not be passed on to any other organisation.  

Please note ParentMail email messages will be sent from [email protected]. Please add this address to your email address books (or approved sender list) to prevent messages from being blocked by your spam/junk filters.

We work hard to ensure that all families receive the information they need. Bespoke arrangements can be made to ensure this happens, e.g. translated messaging, text messaging. We will probably pick up on families who are not accessing key communications but do let us know if there is anything else that we can do to support with this.

Email correspondence between the class teacher and home is for most families our main form of communication regarding day to day matters of a more practical nature. Your child’s pastoral teacher will be in touch at the beginning of every school year to introduce themselves and pass on their address.

Please email the school office at [email protected] to report a child’s absence. We ask that you copy in your child’s pastoral teacher to this email. For further information around reporting absence please see the ‘Attendance and Absence’ page on this website.

We have written some home-school communication guidelines which we ask all staff and families to adhere to in order to manage the flow of communication. Please read these.

Home-School Communication Guidelines

We encourage our pupils to use their preferred method of communication to share news between home and school. This may be through the use of a switch, an iPad app or on their Talkpad. Please arrange with your child’s pastoral teacher if you would like to share communication in this way and if you need support in programming their device.

In addition to the EHCP Annual Review meeting, there are other formal and informal opportunities throughout the year to meet your child’s pastoral teacher and class team and find out how they are progressing at school. These include parents’ evenings, open days, transition events, share days and celebratory events such as Christmas concerts, the MacMillan Coffee Morning and Sports Day.