We are a very happy village school and preschool, with a team of kind, hard-working and loyal staff (many wearing several ‘hats’), a supportive parent body and dedicated governing body.
We are blessed with the full support of our Church and community. As a Church of England school, our Christian Foundation is the base on which we build our whole school community life. We expect everyone to love their neighbour as Jesus loves us.
We are very fortunate to have an excellent team of people working at Charlton Mackrell School and Preschool, who each bring a wealth of different experiences from a wide range of backgrounds. This means that the children benefit from a lovely balance of interests and expertise. Our teachers bring passion and enthusiasm to their teaching and always endeavour to bring out the best in their class, carefully tailoring their teaching to the needs and learning styles of each child.
As we are small, we know the children well and share pastoral care. However, to support those children experiencing difficulties emotionally and socially, we have employed Mrs Kyla Smith, on a part-time basis, as our ELSA (emotional learning support assistant). Mrs Smith attends regular training sessions to ensure she is well-equipped to help those children who need a little more support from time-to-time.
Our Mission is to ensure that every child will love and embrace life and learning.
These are the aims for our school:
- Through our Christian values, our goal is to develop children spiritually, physically, emotionally and morally. We expect everyone to love their neighbour as Jesus loves us.
- We aim to develop a strong sense of family, trust and friendship, whilst promoting British values and encouraging respect and responsibility for self, others and the environment.
- We strive to provide interesting and exciting opportunities which inspire all to achieve their full potential.
- Our intent is to stimulate a fun-loving, imaginative, adventurous attitude, with the ability to gain wisdom from failures and to celebrate successes.
- To enable all children to develop their potential in all aspects of the curriculum.
The school aims to serve its community by providing an education of the highest possible quality within the context of Christian belief and practice. Recognising its historic foundation, the school will preserve and develop its religious character in accordance with the principles of the Church of England and in partnership with the Church at parish and diocese level. It therefore encourages an understanding of the meaning and significance of faith, and promotes Christian values through the experience it offers to all its pupils.
Charlton Mackrell School and Preschool take children from age two to eleven years with around 20 children on roll in the Preschool and 80 children on roll in the School. The small size of our School means that children quickly get to know all the members of staff and the other children. It also means that the staff get to know each and every child individually.
Charlton Mackrell Church of England Primary is a voluntary controlled school, funded by central government through Somerset County Council. Our dedicated team of Governors is responsible for the overall running of the school. The Headteacher has this responsibility on a daily basis. Class teachers look after the welfare of your child and they should be the first point of contact at the school on a day-to-day basis.
On 1 January 2018, the management of Charltons’ Preschool was transferred from a committee of parents to the governors of Charlton Mackrell School.
Both the School and Preschool admit children from a wide area, so as well as the Charltons and Kingsdon, we welcome families from other localities, including Compton Dundon, Ilchester, Keinton Mandeville and Somerton.
The village school at Charlton Mackrell stands on a hill on the road to West Charlton. It was originally built in 1853, of local stone, and has many interesting Victorian features. The former schoolhouse now provides a library, staffroom and offices. Rainbow Class is based in the garden Elliott classroom, with direct access to their outdoor learning area. Hurricane Class is in the classroom in the main building, which was enlarged to incorporate an old craft room, and Wildfire Class is in a classroom in the main building, erected in 2005. There is a hall with a kitchen for food technology. A number of rooms are used for music lessons. The Pre-school has its own building, with an outdoor decked area, sited next to the garden and the field.
The building is in good repair and has a restored bell, which is rung every morning by Year 6 children. Two of the rooms have unusual Victorian wall tiles, which we believe to be unique amongst Somerset schools. Proverbs carved around the walls include inscriptions such as “Hear Instruction and Be Wise” which are still appropriate today! (To find out more, visit the school’s history page.)
The school is surrounded by beautiful countryside, with a spacious playground, a full size playing field and a delightful garden with fruit trees and log play equipment. The village car park is situated next to the school, with its entrance opposite the church.
Here is a selection of some of the enrichment activities that the school offers:
To extend the curriculum, we organise local visits, day visits to places of interest, as well as visits from theatre groups, individuals from different organisations and educational companies. In Wildfire Class, children have the opportunity to go on a bi-annual residential trip. A favourite destination has been The Beacon Centre, Exmoor, where children have experienced archery, orienteering and rock climbing. More recently, we experienced a fantastic week of water sports at Hengistbury Head in Dorset.
Extra curricular activities
During the course of the year we offer a range of different activities during the lunch hour and after school. Most activities are organised by staff at the school, with the support of other expert and enthusiastic adults. These activities may include a range of sports, choir, art, football, gardening, netball, drama, athletics, reading and crafts. This year, we have committed to funding a professional sports coach, who teaches Wildfire and Hurricane classes on Friday afternoons and also runs an after school club. In Autumn term ii, as part of our aim to introduce unusual and non-traditional sporting experiences for the children, we have taken on an expert martial arts coach, who is running an after school club.
Musical instrument tuition
Music lessons in guitar, drums, piano, flute, violin, cello, double bass, clarinet and singing are taught by different peripatetic teachers. Most of the lessons take part during the school day and there is a charge. Recorder playing is taught within our music lessons in some year groups. The school funds strings tuition for Year 3 and Year 4 children in Hurricane Class, which is led by Somerset Music. Please see further information under the Music section of this website.
Through our membership of the Huish Community Learning Partnership (CLP) and links with Millfield School, Somerton Rugby and Cricket Clubs and Bruton School for Girls, we are able to participate fully in an exciting range of sporting competitions and festivals. Children have had access to some wonderful activities in addition to the more traditional activities offered in the past. These have included dance workshops, gymnastics, racquets, basketball, tag rugby, triathlon, cycling, swimming and hockey festivals. We have also participated in fixtures where pupils have been selected to represent the school in cross country, football, athletics and netball.Following the Olympcs 2012 and our own celebrations of the event, a fantastic trophy – the INSPIRE cup – was generously presented to us by a departing family. Since then, the children, in their Inspire teams, take part in intra-school sporting events, earning points for their team and culminating in Sports day at the end of the year.’
We aim to provide a variety of activities which enable children to be active citizens whilst also learning about British values. Through these activities we wish children to learn to voice their opinions clearly, listen and consider the opinions of others and be able to plan and take action to improve their community. Tolerance and respect are promoted.
Two members of each class are represented on the School Council, who meet regularly to discuss ways to improve their school. The children many things, including fund-raising efforts for charity, including Red Nose Day and Sports Relief.
Year 6 Friends
Year 6 Friends have a number of responsibilities from organising and presenting Collective Worship, organising the play equipment and acting as lunchtime monitors. Together with other members of Wildfire, the Year 6s act as buddies to the younger children. Children work hard to be awarded their Truly Trusted status, which means that certain privileges can be enjoyed. Rainbow Class children are rewarded for their kindness and generosity by earning ‘Rainbow Warriors’ status and in Hurricane Class, the children earn points for demonstrating citizenship, which build up to whole class treats.
Community Learning Partnership (CLP)
Through our membership of the Community Learning Partnership, which is a federation of 12 primary schools, together with Huish Episcopi Academy, we are able to offer many pupils exciting enrichment activities and school to school support for staff and headteachers.
We are very fortunate to have support from our Charltons and Kingsdon village communties and consequently get involved with all sorts of activities, including taking part in CHADS’ performances (our local Charltons Amateur Dramatic club), the CLP Advent Service in Somerton, Somerset Music Spectacular in Street and Yeovil and many other events.
The majority of our pupils transfer to Huish Episcopi Academy in Langport. However, some choose Crispin School in Street, Ansford Academy in Castle Cary or one of the many local independent schools, with whom we enjoy good relationships. For those living in the catchment, school transport is provided.
Application forms for choice of secondary schools are given to all pupils at the beginning of Year 6. Parents are informed of the deadline for all applications and will have the opportunity to attend open evenings organised by the secondary schools. Parents are informed of the outcome of the application process during the second half of the Spring Term.
Transition for children in the move to Huish Academy is well planned and organised and parents tell us that their child’s start at the senior school runs smoothly. Several activities are organised throughout the school year to help the children become accustomed to the Academy and Year 6 teachers have an opportunity to see the children in their Year 7 classes. Joint training for all CLP schools provides opportunities to share good practice.
Pre-school parents with children who are due to start school in September should apply for a place at their chosen Primary School in January. Generally, for those families living in the Charltons catchment, a place is guaranteed at Charlton Mackrell School. For parents who wish their child to start at this school and who do not live in the catchment, the Local Authority will make decisions based on the number of applications received. Please see admissions information.