Jump to content


Photo

Cypress School


  • Please log in to reply
12 replies to this topic

#1 joleapman

joleapman

    Member

  • Members 2
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 44 posts

Posted 01 October 2008 - 05:55 PM

Cypress Infant School has now been given the go-ahead to become a children's centre as of Sept 2009. It's been in the pipeline for a while but the council have now agreed for it to be included in their budget and so by this time next year, there will be a new centre there with parents' rooms, space for toddler groups, baby rooms etc. The architects - Erect Architecture - are very innovative and the building promises to be sustainable and eco-friendly.

It's a really exciting time for the school and there will be Open Days on Weds October 15 and Sat November 15 for any parent who is looking at the school for their child - for either nursery or reception for next year. (Applications need to be in by beginning of December - and this year the school is heavily over-subscribed!) It will be a chance to find out more and have a look around and meet staff and other parents.

It recently got a great Ofsted report and I've got 3 kids there (oldest now in the Juniors) and I can't be happier with the school. There's good after-school clubs and activities, plus a really popular breakfast club. The Key Stage 1 results are also excellent.

The other big news is that Cypress Junior School - which is federated to the infants - has just got a new headteacher and has been chosen by the Government to become one of the first specialist science primary schools in the country as part of a pilot project - which of course comes with a lot of extra funding! A brand new science lab is being built specially and they've now got a specialist science teacher and there's plans for school sheep! Check out the school website - Cypress Junior School Website - there's even a bunnycam on there linking you to live footage of the school rabbit! The head, who recently turned round a school in Elephant + Castle, has vowed to make it an outstanding school within 2 years and I'm sure he will.

If you want to find out more, come along to the open days:

October 15 at 9.30am and 1.45pm

November 15 at 9.30am


or contact Cypress Infant School on 020 8653 4203 - or log on to Cypress Infant School Website

Also - feel free to post back if you've got any questions - I'm a school governor and can certainly tell you my experiences of the school. I know what a minefield it is looking round schools!

#2 joleapman

joleapman

    Member

  • Members 2
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 44 posts

Posted 01 October 2008 - 10:24 PM

As I say, brand new headteacher, brand new deputy, brand new ethos ... it's only been 4 or 5 weeks, but the change already is phenomenal ...

#3 matt

matt

    Member

  • Members 3
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 725 posts

Posted 10 November 2008 - 05:36 PM

I'll be there Sat - can't believe I'm doing this already. Where did the last 3 1/2 yrs go?

#4 vangough

vangough

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 21 posts

Posted 20 April 2009 - 02:18 PM

I'm looking at local schools for my daugher and obviously Cypress sounds encouraging from the information you have posted (I also saw their Ofsted report). My only concern is that both the schools closest to us (Cypress and All Saints) seem to be fantastic schools for non-English speakers or children with learning difficulties, but what about the kids that already speak English and who are bright for their age? I worry that my child will not be encouraged to do better if she starts out with a natural advantage to her classmates. Would love to hear from other parents !

#5 matt

matt

    Member

  • Members 3
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 725 posts

Posted 21 April 2009 - 12:42 PM

My eldest has got into Cypress for next year, so I'll find out then! It was our #1 choice so feeling v lucky.
But from what I've heard (or more what my wife has heard really, around the (not-Cypress) pre-school gates etc)), Cypress is great at that. All Saints... not so much apparently.

#6 joleapman

joleapman

    Member

  • Members 2
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 44 posts

Posted 21 April 2009 - 05:53 PM

Hi. Sorry only just seen this post but hopefully I can answer it.

I think that it's more the fault of Ofsted reports - and probably also central government - than anything else. They can tend to focus on schools addressing the needs of those with high needs and not spend a lot of time assessing how the school deals with those of high ability, which is a shame.

But yes, Cypress does invest a lot in its children of high ability. From pretty early on, the children are grouped into small groups of 5 or 6, within their classes and given different work depending on their ability, so children who are zooming ahead will be given maybe extended writing exercises and longer chapter books to read, whereas those at different levels will be given different work to challenge them at the stage they're at. The teachers and teaching assistants will spend time with each group, in turn, so they all get a lot of focused attention. It's constantly being re-assessed and because it's done within class, children can be easily be moved around, because obviously at such a young age some children can be streaks ahead or behind, simply because of when their birthday falls, and things can turn around in a term.

There's also a good Gifted and Talented scheme working within the school. Children identified to be particularly gifted academically are taken out in small groups once a week for some good challenging work with a member of staff to really stretch them. In Year 2, in the run-up to the Key Stage 1 SATs, the headteacher herself takes the children who are expected to get a level 3 in maths (ie the children who will be a whole level above what is expected) every afternoon and gives them lots of fun and exciting extra maths to keep them motivated and stay on track. It also gives the class teacher more time to spend with the children that need the extra help to get them to the expected level 2.

A couple of years ago I did some work with the brighter children on newspapers and one thing I noticed was the amount of children who are given extra attention and who are being taken out by specialist staff, not just those with high needs but children of all abilities. It struck me how personalised the learning is within Cypress and how every child's needs seem to be being met and addressed.

As far as results go, I don't have the exact Key Stage 1 figures to hand - these are the ones they take at the end of the infants and aren't published - but I do know that a significant proportion of children are gaining a level 3 at the end of the infants. So, yes, if your child's bright, he/she will be catered for.

That's information about the infant school mainly because I know that's your immediate interest, but just for interest, the Junior School's new headteacher is certainly investing a lot of time in assessing every child's needs and targets with an incredibly detailed target-setting system, so that nobody slips through the net. It also has its own Gifted and Talented scheme, which supplements a lot of the really good stuff that's been going on at the school recently, namely getting a new dedicated science lab and running inventors clubs etc to really keep children motivated and challenged. Have a look at the Cypress Juniors website to get a feel for the school - it's a good site with videos and lots of photos -Cypress Juniors If you've seen the results on the league tables for Key Stage 2 (end of Juniors), the results last year were not brilliant but the impact of the new head and deputy - who started after those SATs tests were taken - has been significant already and all the signs of internal assessment that I've seen are that the results this June will be VASTLY improved.

I'm a parent of 3 children in the school as well as being a governor and all my children are very different in terms of their needs and ability. I would say they're all being really well challenged and the teachers know them all very well. My eldest daughter scored good level 3s at the end of the infants and is now extremely motivated and doing well in the Juniors. Meanwhile my youngest son has quite bad speech problems and the school has been fantastic in helping him to progress, doing lots of work with him.

Hope this helps, please post any questions back if you want.

#7 vangough

vangough

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 21 posts

Posted 12 May 2009 - 01:51 PM

Thanks so much for your reply, sorry I haven't seen it until now. I've done alot of research now on this subject (I'm a bit ahead of the game as my daughter is only 20 months) but sometimes I feel I know less now than I did when I started out !

However I'm very reasurred that Cypress accomodates all levels and standards, and given its the closest school to us that encourages me we'd hopefully get in...I do plan to apply for a nursery place, which I think I can do next year.

My other question is about intake - hope you don't mind me asking you this as I keep being told different things. As my daughter was born in October I understand she can't join a state reception class until she is nearly 5. Or does Cypress do a January intake as some schools seem to? And do children tend to go straight on from the Infant school to the Junior school?

Thanks so much for your help

#8 matt

matt

    Member

  • Members 3
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 725 posts

Posted 13 May 2009 - 07:16 AM

vangough - I realise your questions weren't addressed to me, but from my info - I think the only intake is in September (mine starts there this September). I've never heard of another intake being mentioned thoughout the application process.
I also know that we are on the boundary of getting-in (at least this year), as our daughter got in, but someone else very near us didn't. (We are in one of the housing estates imediately off the west side of Church Road).

#9 Miss Chips

Miss Chips

    Member

  • Members 3
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 163 posts

Posted 14 May 2009 - 01:40 PM

This topic is something that really concerns me too, as unfortunately my son didn't get into Cypress this year (our first choice) and did get into All Saints - NOT our first choice! I don't think I've heard one positive thing about All Saints, although I did really like the Headmistress, and the feel of the school on the open day, so I'm hoping we will have a good experience there.

Can anyone help give All Saints a more positive spin? And does anyone else have a child starting in reception in September, who perhaps might like to meet up for a 'playdate' this summer so the kids can know at least one person in their class when they start 'big' school?! PM me if so!
:D

#10 vangough

vangough

    Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 21 posts

Posted 20 May 2009 - 09:00 AM

So Matt if you daughter has got into the nursery school does that mean she will be streamed to go into Cypress junior school at 7yrs then? It does seem a lottery with places ! We're on Auckland Rd about 0.4miles away from both schools.........It worries me that both All Saints and Cypress have infant, then Junior schools so not only do you have the stress at 4yrs getting a place there is also the stress at age 7 moving to the Junior school ! If they don't get into All Saints or Cypress juniors where do they go !?

#11 matt

matt

    Member

  • Members 3
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 725 posts

Posted 20 May 2009 - 12:53 PM

I don't know to be honest. I haven't thought that far ahead!

(actually, the plan isn't to be in London by then, though who knows....)

If you are on Auckland Road, you are way closer than we are so you should be fine based on this year.

(I reckon, as long as you are closer than the little green at the bottom of Fox Hill - if that is still Auckland Road)

#12 Miss Chips

Miss Chips

    Member

  • Members 3
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 163 posts

Posted 21 May 2009 - 10:37 AM

As far as I know - once your child is in the infants they automatically move into the junior school when the time comes. The only time you have to re-apply is to move from the nursery to reception (ie infants)... then you're in the school until secondary school time comes along - a whole new ball-game!

#13 Nick

Nick

    Wondering.... always wondering

  • Members
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 1,118 posts

Posted 21 May 2009 - 08:46 PM

Moderators Note: I have moved this into the Family Room as it has become a general discussion on the school. Hopefully this will be easier to find.
Nick, Forum Moderator