About Our School
At Bernards Heath we share our days with children who are just starting to find their place in the world. We provide a safe, secure environment where we encourage all our children to develop the skills they need for a happy, healthy and successful life.
We place great importance on delivering education of the highest quality, which follows the best principles of the Early Years Foundation Stage and Key Stage 1 curriculum. We teach a creative and challenging curriculum, with a strong emphasis on independent learning. When planning our curriculum each child is valued as an individual within the school community and their views, interests, different learning styles and progress are always taken into consideration.
A strong focus on personal and social development enables our children to become positive and confident. Through high expectations of behaviour and achievement, we encourage the children to develop a love of learning and a sense of awe and wonder as they grow up in a very diverse world.
We aim to:
•Maintain a happy, safe and caring environment where children feel secure to grow and develop
•Ensure equality of opportunity where everyone is valued and respected
•Enable our children to develop their confidence, self- esteem and self-discipline
•Encourage our children to develop lively, imaginative, enquiring and independent minds which will support them as lifelong learners
•Provide high quality teaching and learning through an exciting curriculum which stimulates and challenges all children
•Ensure children make as much progress as possible through the setting and monitoring of individual targets
•Teach our children excellent core skills as a foundation for further learning
•Recognise and celebrate children’s success and foster a sense of pride
•Model excellent behaviour through positive role models, clear expectations and guidelines to develop the skills of good citizenship
•Encourage our children to develop a sense of health, safety and general wellbeing
•Work in partnership with families and the wider community, building positive unity and effective relationships
•Work in partnership with our linked Junior School, early years settings and other schools to ensure a smooth transition for our children across Key Stages
The History of Bernards Heath Infant School
Bernards Heath Infant School was opened in 1906 on Sandridge Road, St Albans with 150 children on roll. The Head Teacher was Miss A Mitchell and she remained at the school for 25 years, upon her retirement Miss R Joyner became the Head Teacher.
In the 1940s the numbers increased at the school so much that two classes had to move to Culver Road Hall to have their lessons. In 1953 the school kitchen was upgraded so that school meals could be prepared and cooked on the premises. The ‘waste’ land at the back of the school was made into a school playing field and during this year a school uniform was introduced.
Later in the 1960s the main school building that we know today was developed to allow for an increase in pupil numbers. The Head Teacher at this time was Miss Clements and she led the school from 1961 until 1988. When Miss Clements retired, Mrs Scruton was appointed Head Teacher in September 1988 and she spent 19 years at the school introducing the National Curriculum to the school and managing some quite major changes to the way the children were taught. Mrs Scruton retired in July 2007 and Mrs Thomas-Burton was appointed as the new Head Teacher.
During 2008, much work was undertaken throughout the school to decorate, modernise and extend the facilities of the school. Perhaps one of the facilities we are most proud of is the modernisation of the original school building which is now home to our three Foundation Stage 2 (Reception) classes – these classrooms were officially opened in November 2008.
Since this time, we have continued to improve the teaching spaces in the main school building and we are very proud of the standard of facilities that we offer to children and parents. Each class has its own dedicated classroom with ICT equipment and outside gardens.
Our School Community
We are often seen in and around St Albans and we use many of the town’s resources to support our learning. We regularly visit historic buildings, climb the Clock Tower and ask questions of the townspeople and market traders!
In Year 2 the children follow a ‘To Market, To Market’ learning theme and they learn about the market traders, the range of items on sale and often have opportunities to taste some unusual fruits and vegetables when they return to school.
In Year 1 the children follow a ‘North, South, East, West’ learning theme and are joined by some of the Town Guides as they learn more about St Albans, visiting the tourist information office and climbing to the top of the Clock Tower to discover another dimension to the town.
Foundation Stage 2 (Reception) visit St Saviours Church to learn about and make comparisons between special places.
Foundation Stage 1 the children and staff picnic on the heath having made their own sandwiches and explore the changes in the natural world.
We have a wide variety of visitors who enhance our learning during the year some of whom are:
Our School Nurse and other health professionals
St Albans Museum staff
Musical instrument workshops
Drama, story and theatre productions
The Friends of Bernards Heath
Parents and friends whose support is invaluable!
Our Junior School
We have very effective links with Bernards Heath Juniors and the Head Teachers from both schools work together regularly, reviewing policy and sharing information. We are committed to a smooth transition and in Year 2 links become stronger and more frequent in preparation for the move to Year 3. To find out more about the Junior School follow the link.