Sacred Heart Primary in Swaffham celebrates first year

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Sacred Heart Primary in Swaffham celebrates first year

Beginning life in the grounds of an existing school gave the new Sacred Heart VA Primary School fantastic facilities with which to launch on September 1, 2019. Executive Head Aidan McGovern reports on a year of growth.

The launch of the new Sacred Heart Voluntary Aided Primary School, and Little Pedlars Nursery, marked the start of an exciting time of growth and opportunity for the children and families of Swaffham and surrounding areas.

The school is funded by the Government and supported by the Catholic Diocese of East Anglia. We began life in the grounds of the existing all-through school, which has meant we have been able to take over facilities that many primary schools would be envious of.

We have a dedicated computer room, a science lab, a home economics room, a library, a gymnasium and a huge sports barn with additional tennis courts, as well as a large field and outdoor learning areas.

We are a growing school with dedicated staff and offer classes from Reception through to Year 6 with places available in each year group. We have capacity to be a one-form entry primary school of 210 children.

The Catholic nature of our school means that we are universal in our approach to those who attend the school. The fundamental Christian values and ethos permeate the way in which we deliver the curriculum and support our families in their children’s learning journey and their faith. We have fun, enjoy our learning and are excited about the future.

As with all schools across the country, our first year has been interrupted by Covid-19. Our staff have been on hand to support the children as they continue their learning, both at home and, for those able to attend, at school.

This has taken different forms. Here are the thoughts of some of our children about the time during lockdown:

“I felt like a new girl again because I hadn’t been in for such a long time.

“I was excited because I could see my friends and teachers, but nervous because I wasn’t sure how school would be and I couldn’t get too close to my friends in the playground. 

“There were some changes in the school. We all have our own desks and stationery so no sharing and no quarrels, brilliant! 

“We have to sit in lines to keep 2 metres apart, but we get to eat our lunch at our desks every day. 

“We have to move around the school in one direction and there is a lot of lining up, 2 metres apart, to wash our hands as only one person can be in the toilets at one time. 

“We are all enjoying being back because we get more teacher time and also more downtime stuff like art, colouring and puzzles. 

“As there are only a few of us we get to do different things that we don’t usually have room for – like learning to do the Cha Cha Slide to help us with our maths position and direction vocabulary – we are all cool movers!”

During ‘Lockdown’ the children were very keen to do some art and decided to make an Underwater Sea Display to brighten up the gym/assembly hall, hoping it will cheer everyone up when all pupils return to school.

“I really enjoyed making it all, especially the squids and all the different techniques I had to use. I hope the display brings a smile to people’s faces.”

“I liked being in the art/science room, the older children use it normally. We made a penguin for Miss Lewis as they are her favourite animal.”

Year 6 voted to explore how rockets are made, and they designed and made their own.

We are gaining new pupils all the time and are looking forward to the new normal in September 2020. We are keen to attract even more pupils and encourage parents to contact us and come and see what our wonderful school can offer you.

You can learn more about the school on its website here.

Pictured above are children from Sacred Heart with their rockets (top), doing the Cha Cha Slide (centre) and with their Underwater Sea Display.