Joining a new school or moving from primary to secondary school is an exciting and significant event in the life of a child. It is something that many of us still remember. It is an important milestone which, for many parents and teachers, marks a change in expectations regarding crucial life-skills such as independent working and self-organisation.
When students start at Westbourne Academy, they are expected to cope with a whole variety of new experiences and changes, many of which demand skills and abilities that they have not had to use before. The problem is that these skills will not develop overnight, like reading and writing they have to be taught and our children need support in developing them.
Virtual Guide & Prospectus
If you are currently in Year 6 and you are applying for high school for September 2021, then we recommend that you take a look at our Virtual Guide to Westbourne for Year 6 which below.
Sadly, due to the restrictions of the pandemic, we were unable to hold our traditional open evening in the autumn term, when our amazing students show Year 6 pupils and their families around the various subject areas and facilities that we have available. Instead we created a virtual video guide, a quiz, a list of FAQs and a questionnaire. You can view all of this information by clicking on the link here:
We invite you to take a look at our 2020 Fast Guide and 360 Google Tour, which were both created for Year 6 pupils who started at the academy in Year 7 in September 2020. Due to the pandemic, they were unable to spend their two taster days with us in July 2020. This digital guide is packed with everything we would like pupils to know before they start at Westbourne. There are videos by subject teams and also about our House system and Stop & Read literacy initiative. The contents will also be relevant to students transferring from other high schools in other year groups.
Support for New Students
Most parents would like to help reassure their children, prepare them for these changes and support them in developing the skills they need, but sometimes feel they lack the information and expertise to do so. For many of us our own experience of secondary schools is all we have to go on. At Westbourne Academy, we work closely with parents to help provide the support needed for their children.
Amongst the top concerns that Year 6 students express are social concerns. Although common, most children report that they are no longer worried about these after just one or two weeks at school. The remaining worries are nearly all to do with the new organisational demands that they know will be placed upon them.
You can view a short video created by Miss Chetty which will help young people who may be feeling anxious about going back to school or starting a new school:
If your child expresses these worries it is useful to tell them this and to emphasis that everyone else will also be feeling anxious. As there will be many more children in Year 7 than in Year 6 everyone has a good choice of friends and even children who move up with several children from their class tend to make new friends at secondary school. Talk to your child’s Year 6 teacher if these worries become great – they will be able to arrange for your child to meet some other students who will be starting and perhaps a ‘buddy’ for the first two or three weeks.
How to Apply for a School Place
To apply for a place at our academy your parent/carer will need to complete an ADM1 Admissions Form – you can find this on our Admissions page.
To apply for a place at Westbourne Academy for transfer to high school in September 2021, please contact Suffolk County Council Admissions Office (Telephone 0345 600 0981).