Category Archives: Research

Community Award for Shirley Manor

Pupils at Shirley Manor Primary Academy were rewarded for their Community Project following the support they provided to people in a local care home suffering with Dementia. 

They won the Young Active Citizen Award in the Telegraph & Argus’ Community Stars Award at the end of last term. 

The school’s Year 4 pupils (now in Year 5) had been taking part in the Archbishop of York scheme which required them to do a Community Project.  This coincided with a visit to the school from Dementia Friends who taught the children about the effects of the condition and how to help sufferers. 

Following the visit one of the pupils, Jake Lee, discussed this with his mum who works in a Dementia Care Home.  Mrs Lee asked school if they would assist Rastrick Care Home with its Doll Therapy Scheme for Dementia sufferers – a non-pharmacological intervention aimed at reducing behavioural and psychological disorders in patients who are institutionalised.  

The children originally chose to collect dolls and donations of money in order to buy some dolls for the home’s Doll Therapy scheme.   

The School’s Learning Mentor nominated the class for the award which was presented to them by the Lord Mayor of Bradford, Coun Geoff Reid and Lady Mayoress, Chris Reid. 

Follow us on Twitter:  @Sh1rleyManor

Working together to improve education

Headteachers, businesses and community leaders from across the district met at a special breakfast conference this week to look at practical ways of working to together to raise education attainment.

The conference focused on Bradford’s Education Covenant, which looks at how everyone in our community can work together to help drive up education standards across the District.

The covenant sets out what the Council needs to do to raise education achievement, and where the community can help. The covenant’s education ‘ask’ wants schools, pupils, parents, governors and businesses to see how they can help in supporting children and young people’s education.

The conference looked at practical steps that businesses, schools and the community can take to make a difference, whether it’s providing work placements or helping with volunteering.

Coun Imran Khan, Portfolio Holder for education, employment and skills, said: “We’ve made good progress on many areas of our education covenant and the Government has recently recognised Bradford as a place of educational opportunity. We need to live up to this expectation and this conference is about bringing together sectors of our community to look at practical steps we can all take to help raise education standards. We have a young and vibrant district with huge potential and whole of Bradford needs to come together to realise that potential and play a part in the districts education success.”

Michael Jameson, Strategic Director of Children’s Services, said: “Learning starts at birth and continues for life, both inside and outside the classroom. The covenant is a way in which we can make sure we have a joined up approach to the whole range of education our children receive.  It takes a community to raise a child and everyone has a role to play.”

First Bus puts poetry in motion with the National Literacy Trust Hub in Bradford

Winner of the Love Bradford poetry competition Caiomhe Richards, 11, with her winning entry which is framed inside a Bradford bus!
Winner of the Love Bradford poetry competition Caiomhe Richards, 11, with her winning entry which is framed inside a Bradford bus!

The winners of a poetry competition who penned verse about life in Bradford now have their entries on display inside 100 local First West Yorkshire buses.

More than 100 budding bards across Bradford entered the ‘Love Bradford’ poetry competition run by the National Literacy Trust Hub in Bradford in partnership with First West Yorkshire, the Telegraph & Argus and the Kirkgate Shopping Centre. The competition aimed to inspire and motivate reluctant writers, especially boys, to do more creative writing.

The winning poems were judged by local poet, Joolz Denby and National Literacy Trust Hub in Bradford Manager, Imran Hafeez and are now on display as posters inside 100 First Buses, across Bradford. There were two categories, one for entrants in Year 3 to Year 5 and the other for pupils in Year 6 to Year 8.

The winners are Caiomhe Richards, aged 11, for her poem ‘Memories’, and Suma Abdulla, aged 10, for her poem ‘Big Beautiful Bradford.’ They also won vouchers to spend at Kirkgate Shopping Centre and had their poems published in the Telegraph & Argus.

Colin Brushwood, Operations Manager at First Bradford, comments: “At First Bus we strive to support our local community, and we were inspired to get behind the competition by the National Literacy Trust Hub in Bradford to celebrate the talents of young poets across the region. It’s a privilege to have Caiomhe and Suma’s work on display on 100 of our buses, and we’re sure they’ll bring a smile to our passengers in Bradford.”

Imran Hafeez, Manager of the National Literacy Trust Hub in Bradford said: “The National Literacy Trust Hub in Bradford is all about providing fun ways to improve literacy skills across the area. Poetry is a powerful way for young people to express themselves which is why we are working with children and families through events, programmes and campaigns to inspire them to give creative writing a go. We hope that seeing their poems published for passengers to read on their journeys will encourage Caiomhe and Suma to continue writing for enjoyment.”

The National Literacy Trust Hub in Bradford is a local solution to intergenerational low literacy in the district, working with Bradford Council to forge innovative partnerships with a range of sectors including business, sport, culture and health as well as voluntary and faith groups. The long-term initiative harnesses community assets to address poverty and unemployment through campaigning and targeted interventions to address priority areas. For more information, see here.

Educate Positive – Edition 7

Educate Plus News Header

Welcome to the seventh edition of Educate Positive, a fortnightly publication which highlights the positivity and effective practice which is taking place in education and across the district’s schools.  In this edition we bring you news of peer educators at the recent SUSOMAD Exhibition, a college leading the way on community engagement, “expert” readers sharing their skills with their families and budding scientists learning in their own laboratory with their resident scientist.

Bradford’s students lead on Peer Education Project

Stand up, Speak out, Make a Difference (SUSOMAD) is an established peer education programme that has engaged schools across the district for over six years.  During the recent annual Exhibition 42 school groups (in total 1260 students) from across the district, were guided by our SUSOMAD ambassadors during a five week period. The exhibition was a great success and the impact of having young people leading on discussions around identity, racism, extremism and human rights has been incredibly effective, and has highlighted once again the power of student voice.

Carlton Bolling leads the way on community engagement

Carlton Bolling College has won acclaim for its charity work and for reaching out not only to the local community but across the world. While teaching students about the importance of good citizenship, the school has helped to raise significant funds and a staff member was delighted to win an award.

Some of the students’ many achievements of the past 12 months were celebrated at this year’s Community Late Lunch event, where headteacher Adrian Kneeshaw welcomed guests and introduced a short video of student Charity Ambassadors; teacher Chris Calveley, who was shortlisted as Volunteer of the Year in the T&A’s Schools Awards and runs the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award and Prince’s Trust with some of his students; and PE teacher Zaheer Jaffary who has been nominated for Inspirational Teacher Award at the BBC later this month. Representatives from the Anne Frank project also appeared at the event, as did Commonwealth Gold and Olympic gymnast Craig Heap who gave an inspirational speech.

Osman Gondal from Intouch Foundation presented a cheque for £502.68 to Yeasin, Ismail and Jasmin, a family who experienced a tragic year with their mother being very ill following a car crash. Janet Dunn, PA to the headteacher, was presented with a Community Champion Award for her sterling work with the family.

Carlton Bolling College was also delighted to share an event with the new Lord Mayor, Councillor Joanne Dodds, on her first official engagement. This was the culmination of a series of events arranged by teachers Miss Stone and Miss Cochrane as part of the British Council Comenius Project, which saw the school welcome almost 40 visitors from across Europe. Visiting students presented traditions from their home countries, including Polish dancing, games, circus skills and Shakespeare performances. Carlton Bolling students entertained the audience with a performance that included Roma dance and a musical session from the school choir.

Children become a “mine” of information

Pupils across the district are benefiting from using an educational resource which allows them to be more motivated and learn new skills including team work, resilience, language development and extended writing and mathematical tasks.  Minecraft is a game about creating and placing blocks, similar to playing with Lego bricks.  It can be used by the whole class and is capturing the imagination and creativity of pupils. An educational version of Minecraft is being used with primary pupils here in Bradford to teach them about the Tudors, Ancient Egypt and Rome and much more. The Specialist Inclusion Project Team has a portable version of the software and is working with autistic young people in libraries and community centres in the district. The anecdotal evidence is that pupils enjoy using this virtual world as it fosters creativity, team working, problem solving and resilience and brings learning alive.  Two schools where this is working well are St Anne’s Catholic Primary in Keighley and Myrtle Park Primary in Bingley.

Pupils at Horton Park sharing their skills

Ed Positive Cursed Ruby

Horton Park Primary pupils have improved their standards in reading, due in part to the children becoming “expert” readers and sharing their skills with their families.  Standards rose and the school was in the top 100 schools for progress in 2014.

The “reading scheme” came about because many parents were concerned they could not support their child’s reading.  School acted promptly and bought in the Project X reading scheme along with two copies of every book.  The new system saw children reading in groups in class with an adult where they would discuss and learn new vocabulary and concepts.  Children “as the experts” would then take their reading book home to share with their families – the benefits being that the child reinforces their own learning and the parents and families are involved in that process.  There is evidence of more confidence in both parents and pupils.

Workshops for parents have also proved beneficial; these were held in schools to demonstrate how Phonics is taught as well as reading comprehension.  Parents who were not confident readers also benefitted from the support of trained parents.  The school also gives parents access to the school library.  Pictured above is Jozef Mate.

To Infinity and Beyond for Bowling Park

Bowling Park Science

Pupils at Bowling Park Primary School are benefitting in their science knowledge and improved non-fiction writing skills due to the opening of the school’s own science laboratory, aptly named “To Infinity and Beyond”.  The project was a winner in the Telegraph & Argus School Awards 2015.

The specially designed learning space on the Usher Street site contains state of the art ICT resources as well as hands-on investigating equipment which enable the pupils to take part in investigations, linked to the national curriculum, alongside the Scientist in Residence, Sheila Thomas.  Activities which the pupils have been involved in include, designing spacecraft, creation of fossils and lava, CSI investigations and exploration of the solar system in 3D.

There has also been an improvement in the quality of teaching in science related lessons.  The school is looking forward to developing partnership projects with the STEM (Science, Technology, English & Maths) Centre at Bradford University.  The school is hoping to pursue the ASE science award in 2015/16 and is also keen to share its facility with other schools in the district. Pictured right is Year 3 pupil, Martine Jones.

For further information please contact Matthew Langley, T 01274 770270.


We hope you have found this bulletin useful and we will provide further updates on a regular basis.  If you would like to submit an item for publication please contact the Education Communications Team T 01274 385615. 

Children competing to grow the tallest sunflower!

A gardening challenge will see school children and staff at Thackley Primary School compete to grow the tallest sunflower!

Seeds have been planted and later in the summer, pupils will be asked to measure their sunflowers and those with the tallest will win a prize!

thackley sunflower 2 thackley sunflower 1

Bob Smallwood, Year 6 teacher at Thackley, said: “It all started out as a small project in my class but the kids decided they had so much fun doing it they wanted the whole school to experience it.

“We’re asking green-fingered children to get involved and grow the tallest sunflower. We do lots of gardening in my class but now every child within the school has planted a sunflower and taken it home to grow where they have to look after it, feed it and make sure it gets enough sunlight.”

Palmer Plants of Calverley very kindly donated the compost and pots for every child. Mr Smallwood and the children would like to say a very big thank you to them.”