CHILDREN at Oakhurst Community Primary School are encouraged to feel part of a ‘school family’ in which everyone is important, special and valued. Staff at the school, which was built to serve the Oakhurst housing development in North Swindon, believe that education is a team effort and they feel that parents’ involvement in this process is essential. Parents are always welcome into school to share all aspects of their children’s development.

Headteacher Dale Burr said: “Childhood is a very special time. Our children are at the centre of everything we do, they are our best advertisement.”

The school’s mission statement is ‘Motivate, create, celebrate’ and its vision is for all children to be happy and secure, high-achieving learners and enthusiastic and highly motivated to learn.

It also wants pupils to demonstrate positive attitudes and behaviour and be independent, responsible and develop key skills to become well-rounded citizens of the 21st century.

“Oakhurst is a school where there is a culture of inclusion, an environment of opportuity engendering a sense of pride, ownership, responsibility and identity.

“There are caring relationships where children and adults are valued as individuals and diversity is celebrated and respected.”

Staff believe practice can always be improved and maintain an open dialogue about how children learn best. The new school building has been open since September 2010, as a 16-class nursery and primary school, catering for 472 children when full.

Mr Burr said: “We have a tremendously friendly, energetic and professional staff who have, in a short space of time, worked together to establish a happy, popular school.

“We take pride in offering a rich and vibrant curriculum as well as early language learning for all years.”