At Smithdon High School we do not underestimate the importance of a smooth transition from
Year 6 to Year 7 – for parents as well as the students!
Our aim is for every student to have a positive and easy transition from their primary school to Smithdon, so that, when they arrive in September, they feel comfortable, confident and ready to make progress.
We start the process of getting to know students, and giving them opportunities to get to know the school, as early as we can to give them plenty of time to prepare.
We begin by sending our students and teachers out to the primary schools to run events such as Reading Rangers and the British Science Festival.
Students will then start taking part in events at Smithdon from Year 4. Some of these early events include a sports festival and a musical celebration, to which parents are also invited.
In Year 5 we invite all students to come to Smithdon for “taster days”, where they get to experience lessons at Smithdon in a variety of subjects as well as meeting some of the staff and students.
By the end of March in Year 6, we know the names of all the students who are lucky enough to be joining Smithdon High School in September. Each student receives a letter from our Headteacher, personally inviting them to the school for a face-to-face meeting in the Summer term. This is essential for us to ensure a smooth transition, as we get to learn about each student’s academic progress as well as their interests outside of school and make a personal connection with every new student. It is also a great opportunity for prospective students and their parents to clear up any concerns they may have before starting at the school.
As part of our transition programme, Year 6 students spend two days with us towards the end of the Summer term, when they get to meet their tutor and new peers, leaving them set up and raring to go for September. Students also bring along their best written work from their primary school, so that we can plan to build on what students can already do and ensure that working to make progress begins from Day 1 in September. The last of these transition days is followed by a parents’ assembly, for your children to showcase what they have achieved in their time with us and also so that parents can meet key staff members and other new parents.
For some students, we recognise that additional support is needed for a successful transition and our SENDCo organises extra activities to ensure all pupils’ needs are supported in making the move to Smithdon High School.
We also realise that the transition process doesn’t end in September, so we hold a ‘Settling In Evening’ with all parents early in the new academic year to ensure our new Year 7s are making the best start possible. We also run a fantastic residential teambuilding trip in the first term for the new cohort to spend quality time together, learning new skills and making new friends.
If you would like to know more about your child joining Smithdon High School, please come along to our Open Evening in September or contact the school office for a place on one of our daytime school tours to see Smithdon in action.
Dates for all the events mentioned above will be published on the school calendar.