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School News


Chatburn School was founded over 180 years ago and so has a long standing and high record of achievement.  It is, above all, a village school serving the people of Chatburn and  surrounding communities.

The school has accommodation for up to approximately 100 pupils, making it small enough to be friendly but large enough to offer a varied and full education from our highly experienced staff.

The school moved to its present site in 1965 and has four classrooms, cloakrooms, toilets etc.  The surrounds include an extensive tarmac playground and a grassed area.  The school also has use of the adjoining playing field.  There is a large, well equipped hall which is used for P.E. lessons, assemblies, musical activities and school meals.


The school aims to further the work you have already started in the development of your child mentally, spiritually and physically and to foster a love of life and truth, high standards of consideration for others, good manners, personal excellence and self discipline.  The basic skills of reading, writing and mathematics are given a high priority and we strive to have a proper balance between traditional and modern methods.  We feel it is important to maintain traditional activities such as spelling tests, multiplication table tests, handwriting practice and silent reading.  We aim for purposeful teaching not hidebound by fashionable ideas.  We strive for a shared sense of purpose amongst everyone connected with the school.

The five `R's lie at the heart of the school's approach to education.


We aim to develop skills in the first three and an appreciation of the difference between the last two.


The children follow the programme of study laid down in the National Curriculum.  The core subjects are English, Mathematics and Science and the foundation subjects are History, Geography, Technology, Music, Art and Physical Education.  They also receive Religious Education.  The curriculum aims to be, in the words of the 1988 Education Reform Act, “balanced and broadly based, promoting spiritual, moral, cultural, mental and physical development and preparing pupils for the opportunities, responsibilities and experiences of adult life”.

The National Numeracy Strategy has become an integral part of the school's mathematics teaching.
Mathematics is dealt with under several broad headings: number, algebra, measurement, shape and space, data handling and use and application of mathematics.  The mathematical work of our children is structured by using a variety of schemes.  The schemes incorporate correct mathematical language, practical investigation, estimation and the recording of results.  We encourage the use of calculators where appropriate and the school's computers are used for data handling and spatial development.

All children have a daily Literacy Hour involving

               speaking & listening

Children are given frequent opportunities to develop their use of language in all of these three categories, making use of a variety of teaching approaches and aids.  The school aims that all the children should learn to read fluently, with confidence, with understanding and with pleasure.  Books from a number of reading schemes, along with suitable books which are not part of the reading scheme have been linked together to provide a reading programme which we believe enables children to benefit from a varied and flexible approach.

Fictional writing, factual writing, drafting and editing of work, punctuation, spelling and handwriting are all facets of written language work that we believe are important, and which we aim to encourage and develop in the school.

In Science the school aims to develop the children's knowledge, understanding, skills and attitudes through appropriate scientific investigations.  The school has a good range of resources and wherever possible children are involved in practical activities enabling them to develop their understanding by relating science to their own experiences.  A wide variety of topics are covered often related to other curriculum areas.

History is taught throughout the school.  In the Infant years History is included as part of topic work.  Children are able to look at books and pictures, to examine artefacts, to listen to stories and discuss what they have seen in order that they may develop an awareness of the past.  During their Junior years the children examine specific periods of history and historical topics in more detail enabling them, not only to find out about the past, but also to ask questions and develop enquiring minds.

The teaching of Geography forms part of the topic programme where the development of geographical skills is encouraged through direct experience and the use of appropriate resources.  In addition to a study of the immediate environment children are encouraged to develop increasing awareness of the wider world including other parts of the UK, Europe and more distant countries.

Design and Technology
All children undertake Design and Technology throughout their time at the school.  It is planned to provide a structured and coherent experience which will build a foundation for further work.  Pupils will develop skills and knowledge, imagination and judgement, in order to carry out specific tasks.  They will work with a variety of materials.  Children will work individually, but where appropriate in groups to encourage cooperation.

Information Technology
At Chatburn we have access to four computers.  In order to fulfill the demand of the national curriculum we have a wide variety of programmes for word processing, graphics, data handling, problem solving and logo and control.
All classes have computer access together with an ISDN line that allows internet access.

Physical Education
P.E. includes athletics, dance, gymnastics, games, swimming and outdoor and adventurous activities.  The development of personal confidence and skill is important.  We aim to provide the opportunity to develop many games skills.  The school is a member of the Ribble Valley School Sports Association and regularly competes in fixtures including football, netball, rounders, cross country running, swimming and cricket.

The teaching of Art includes design and craft work, frequently as an integral part of topic work.  Children are encouraged to investigate and to make, through development of observational and practical skills, and by using a wide variety of materials.  Knowledge and understanding of art leads to an appreciation of styles and techniques, these aspects of the subject being emphasised at all stages.  Seasonal art work, e.g. Autumn, Christmas, Easter, features in individual and group work.  The staff believe that it is important to value children's art, displaying it attractively, in a manner which emphasises its uniqueness.

Music is taught throughout the school.  Aspects of performing and composing help to develop individual skills and a spirit of  togetherness.  Singing and instrumental work, including creative music making complement each other and provide opportunities for the children to develop musically.  Junior children are encouraged to take part in recorder, guitar and choir activities.

Religious Education
Our aim is to nurture in each child an appreciation of the Christian faith, so affording a basis upon which he/she will be able to make an informed decision later in life.  All children are expected to take part in school assemblies, on special occasions these are held in the Parish Church.  Our Rector joins us once a week for morning assembly.

We endeavour to base our teaching on:-

Life themes - e.g. joy, love, forgiveness, associating these with Bible stories and seeing their
relevance to today's world.

Material from everyday experience and topical events.

Accounts of people and their achievements.

The Christian festivals and other celebrations.

It is unlikely that you will find our teaching of Religious Education to be incompatible with your beliefs, however, you have the right to seek your child's exclusion from either religious worship and/or religious lessons.


The law  requires pupils to be assessed formally at or near the end of each Kay Stage.  For our school this means at seven and eleven.  However the school carries out a good deal of testing and assessment in addition to legal requirements.  The purpose of this formal assessment is to ascertain what the children have achieved in relation to the attainment targets for that Key Stage.  Apart from formal assessment arrangements the children are continually monitored and assessed informally by the teachers.  Children entering the school are assessed by their teacher using Baseline Assessment criteria.  Throughout their time in school children are given regular reading tests so that a “reading age” can be calculated.  Spelling and table tests are also given as appropriate.  At Key Stage Two (7 to 11 years) the children take standardised tests in Maths, English, Verbal and Non-verbal Reasoning.  These tests provide a useful guide to a child's ability, particularly for those parents considering applying for a place at the local Grammar School.