Miss Sara Allen, Headteacher, welcomes you to Portway Infant School.
I am delighted to introduce you to our school, sadly I am unable to do that in person this year.
We are a popular town school and in a typical year we would welcome in excess of 300 prospective families. We recognise how important visiting different local schools has been when parents are choosing which school suits their child best. Making such an important decision virtually this year is not ideal but we hope we can give you a flavour of our school in the video we have commissioned and by sharing as much information as possible based on the questions we are usually asked on open days.
We are an Ofsted rated ‘Outstanding’ school.
“Portway Infant School is Outstanding. It is a happy, caring environment in which to work and learn, where pupils thrive both in their academic progress and personal development.”
In 2018 the Department for Education designated us a National Support School in recognition of our consistently high standards and the work we do in supporting schools and colleagues across Hampshire and our neighbouring counties. Year on year our data at the end of Year 2 shows our children’s outcomes to be significantly above other schools nationally in every subject.
How do we achieve our high standards? We believe happy children learn best. Each September every cohort brings new challenges, no two children are alike and we seek to identify and address anything that could be a barrier to learning for each and every child. We know our children well. To ensure our children are not reliant on the waiting lists often associated with public services we fund our own team of professionals to work with our children, parents and staff as appropriate. For example we have our own Occupational Therapist to assess and plan programmes of therapy for children exhibiting physical or sensory needs, for children who find it difficult to self-regulate and for children with delayed fine or gross motor skills. We have our own weekly Play Therapist for children who may have experienced trauma or who need to process a potentially negative experience through play. We have our own weekly Speech & Language Therapist to work with children already on a programme or to diagnose and plan for those with delayed speech not yet identified. Our own full-time support staff have various skills and training expertise, for example Level 4 Makaton, Lego Therapy, Canine Assisted Learning Dog Handlers, Licensed Thrive Practitioners and Forest School Practitioners. We will do our utmost to ensure children are supported with therapies, or strategies or programmes or resources to overcome or limit the impact of any potential barrier that may prevent them fully accessing the curriculum. We want every child to enjoy their learning unhindered.
We are proud of our rich, broad curriculum that has the interests of the children at its heart. As a school our love of books is prevalent in every aspect of our provision. We invest heavily in reading materials ensuring children have access to high quality books, new titles and the best reading schemes available. Children learn to read in order that they can read to learn.
I was due to introduce myself on our welcome video but unfortunately I was self-isolating following a Covid-19 NHS Test and Trace alert on the day of filming! A true reflection of the impact this pandemic is having across our practice.
We hope you enjoy the Portway Infant School video and it gives you a picture of our happy, thriving children enjoying their learning in and around our large, well-resourced site.