A growing local church school has opened a new purpose-designed and built outdoor play space, specifically for early years children to support their education and learning.
Shoscombe School has been focussing on the development of its Early Years Curriculum over the past year, ensuring it can provide the highest quality learning environment for its youngest children.
Last week, the Chairwoman of Bath and North East Somerset Council, Cllr Karen Walker (Independent, Peasedown St John), was officially invited to visit and open the new play space.
Cllr Walker said: “Well done to all the staff and governors at Shoscombe Church School that have worked so hard to create this new outdoor place space.
“Providing an enhanced and fulfilling education is the best start in life that every child needs!
“Bath & North East Somerset Council was keen to support this project from the outset, as the school has been continually improving its outcomes for younger children. Council officers helped design the plans so all aspects of learning through play would be catered for.
“It was an honour to visit the school and see how well this £25,000 pot of money has been spent.”
The new outside area is part of a whole school development plan which includes employing an Early Years Leader and putting plans together for the opening of a nursery on the school site.
Headteacher Ruth Noall commented: “The governors and the Trustees are currently consulting on opening a nursery at Shoscombe so we can run an Early Years unit within the school.
“We are hoping that we will be able to take nursery aged children (3 years plus) from September 2019. This will enable us to deliver an excellent early years education to pupils from an earlier age, benefiting the pupils and the local area as Shoscombe village currently does not have a nursery.
“Shoscombe School’s Early Year’s results, along with our phonic targets have continued to go up. We’re proud of all our children, and staff, who have worked so hard over the past year.
“Developing a holistic early year’s experience for all young children that come to Shoscombe School is important to us.”
The EYFS results have risen significantly from 56% of children reaching a Good Level of Development in 2016, 64% in 2017 and then 79% in 2018.
Phonics, an area of learning that starts in the early years, has risen from 60% in 2016, to 63% in 2017 and then 85% in 2018.
Ruth added: “We want to continue to develop this outside area with more vegetable planting in the spring and then an extension of our forest school area into the early years area.”
St Julian’s School in Wellow has also had a £25,000 sum of money invested on a similar project.