Reception September 2021 Intake 

Welcome to St Mary's Catholic Primary School                               Welcome to St Mary's Catholic Primary School           Welcome to St Mary's Catholic Primary School

We are sorry we are unable to hold an open day this year for potential parents to look around. We always enjoy giving people the opportunity to see the school in action and the Year 6 pupils love to show off their school and share what they like about St Mary's. After advice from the Government and Local Authority we feel it is not in the best interest of the health and safety of our pupils, staff and yourselves to let visitors into school due to Covid pandemic.

However, we are hoping that the information on this page will showcase everything we can offer families wishing to join St Mary's.

Who are we?

We are a Catholic Primary School that has been an integral part of Bradley Stoke for 21 years.  As a Catholic school we are part of Holy Family Parish and the Clifton Diocese. We were established to provide a Catholic education to local children  and we also welcome children and families of all faiths or no faith. Our Mission Statement - ‘Celebrating Excellence through our Faith and Learning’, together with our School Values, underpin the way we teach and learn and the way we treat one another.

We have one class of 30 per year group and have a wonderful variety of children from different ethnicities; there are currently 19 different home languages in our school. We are an inclusive school that also supports children with additional needs. All work hard together and, with the support of our staff, children excel in their learning as evident from our assessment data in the key information tab. This data is based on 2018/2019 results as there were no formal assessments in the summer due to the pandemic. We have had 100% of children pass their Y1 phonics assessment for three years in a row!

So many visitors to our school complement us on the behaviour and manners of the children - they really are a shining example of our mission and our values. This was also seen in our OFSTED and Diocesan inspections.

What normally happens on an Open Day?

On a normal open afternoon, Mrs Burden and the Reception teachers would have shown you a Powerpoint of our school and then taken questions. The Powerpoint is below and will give you some insight into St Mary's.

What does St Mary's look like?

Then our Year 6 would have taken you on tour.  As this can't happen, they have created their own video instead.

What is the induction process for Reception children?

Normally our summer induction programme allows the new children to spend four sessions in school in June and July.  They have stories, activities and enjoy a lunch with their parents in the school hall.  Parents also have an open evening where they come into school to learn about our induction process, along with an individual parent/teacher meeting in July.

In September, the children  have a phased start to school, which lasts three to four weeks before the children are in full-time. This starts with a home visit, so your child can meet their teacher again after the long summer break.

Due to the pandemic it was slightly different this year and the children had an online induction process in the summer, which worked very well. There were lots of stories and activities for them to take part in and our open evening was online. We added an additional week into the induction process to ensure the children were ready for school.

We also provide lots of other information, including an 'All about Me' booklet for children to complete and a 'New Starter Booklet' for parents. This helps us  get to know your child before they start. They also have the following:-


We are hoping that by next summer we will be able to carry out our normal programme. 

What is a School Buddy?

One of the most  valuable relationships in the school is that of the Reception and Year 6 Buddies (even when socially distanced!). All Reception children are given a Year 6 Buddy who will help them settle in, get to know the school and act as a role model. They make them feel safe in their new environment and set a good example to them in terms of behaviour and attitude.

These are the pupils from Year 5 class during the fundraising 'Break the Rules' Non-Uniform Day. They will be the Buddies that will welcome the Reception children in September 2021. 

What additional support do we have for pupils and parents?

At St Mary's, children's wellbeing is at the core of everything we do. We are lucky enough to have Jo Creese as our Parent Link and Child mentor to ensure there is support for all children when needed. Her role plays an important part in the relationship between home and school in supporting families on a wide variety of issues, working with all class teachers, colleagues and outside agencies to help others to understand children’s needs as well as those of parents/carers.

Her aims as Parent Link Worker are:-

  • To engage and build good working relationships with parents, children and colleagues working in school and other agencies;
  • To work holistically and effectively with parents in ways that will improve their children's well-being;
  • To provide relevant information about, and access to appropriate support services and opportunities that enable parents to improve their skills;
  • To plan, deliver and offer parenting support courses for groups and one-to-one support.

We also know that from time to time everyone can feel as if they need some extra help, support or advice. We offer a confidential Drop-in Parent Link Service where we aim to help you to help your child feel happy and secure. This is currently being offered through a virtual meeting or telephone conversation.

The second element of Mrs Creese's  role is that of Learning Mentor.  This could be providing a little extra support to children when something gets in the way of their learning, and most importantly being happy and enjoying their childhood, or  simply just devoting a little ‘special time’ when a child is feeling fragile, confused or insecure.  Mrs Creese is here to support your child, develop their well-being, whether that means help with self-esteem issues, friendships, bereavement, family break-ups or emotional/difficult behaviour  — basically anything that is causing them to worry. 

We have a wonderful team of Teaching Assistants who are trained and experienced in many different areas including Dyslexia and Speech and Language.

They offer different therapies to support these, including Lego and sand tray therapy.

What are our links to the Church?

Fr Eugene, the Parish Priest of Holy Family Church, is a Governor and regular visitor to St Mary’s. He celebrates both whole school and individual Class Masses at regular points throughout the year. As well as these, a weekly Parish Mass is held in St Joseph’s Centre which is joined to the School. Classes attend these Masses on a rota. During the seasons of Advent and Lent, Fr Eugene conducts Sacrament of Reconciliation services for Key Stage 2 children; all year groups also visit Holy Family Church during these times.

What are our School Values and Vision?

Celebrating Excellence through our Faith and Learning

Our aims are that:-

  • Every individual will be supported to achieve their potential through excellent standards of teaching and learning.
  • Our spirituality and Catholic Faith will be nurtured in a reflective and inclusive community.
  • We will all work to achieve strong, positive relationships with each other showing respect and understanding for all.
  • Our creativity will be developed through stimulating teaching and learning experiences.
  • We will all become confident and positive learners

Image result for jesuit tree values

At St Mary's we follow the Jesuit Values. The Jesuit Pupil Profile was set up in 2013 in response to the question: What kind of people do we hope our pupils are growing to be? These values are not random but are a vision of what a good and virtuous person should be, rooted in the gospel of Jesus Christ.

The values are listed in the tree image and are arranged in pairs (colour coded). The concept is that the tree symbolises the growth of our young people and that we are all responsible for helping their formation in these respects. The pairs of values will form part of our Collective Worship timetable but more importantly will be modelled and encouraged through our daily lives at St Mary’s. 

What is it like at St Mary's?

Who better to tell you about being at St Mary's than our pupils!

What is our curriculum like?

In Reception, the curriculum is based around the Early Learning Goals and the topics are often led by the cohort of the children and their interests.

The curriculum at St Mary's is broad and balanced and covers all of the National Curriculum areas including English, maths, RE, science history, geography, ICT, modern foreign language (French) PE, art, design and technology. More information can be found on our Curriculum tab. These are often taught as cross-curricular subjects and are complimented with school trips or visitors to the school. Across the school these include trips to a local castle, Bristol Aquarium, the Concorde Museum, Mojo, Wild Place, Swindon Steam Museum and LifeSkills Centre.

How do we keep the children safe?

At St Mary’s Catholic Primary School we are committed to creating and maintaining a safe and secure environment for pupils, staff, volunteers and visitors. We promote a climate where children and adults will feel confident about sharing any concerns which they may have about their own safety or the wellbeing of others.

We believe that our school provides a safe, positive and caring environment in which children can grow in their social, physical and moral development. We recognise the vital contribution our school can make in safeguarding children from harm and we carry out our responsibilities actively and enthusiastically in liaison with all other concerned parties.

Further information can be found on our Safeguarding page.

Why choose St Mary's?

Let's ask some of our current parents.....

What clubs and extra-curricular activities do we offer?

We have a very popular Breakfast Club at St Mary's. It is open from 8am and is run by a wonderful team of Teaching Assistants. Children are able to eat breakfast with their friends and after, take part in  activities and games.

There is also a successful after-school club which is run by OOSC. This club was judged outstanding by OFSTED and is held in St Joseph's Centre, attached to the school, until 6pm every evening during term-time. More details can be found by clicking on the OOSC link.

Pupil voice is a very important part of school life. In order to facilitate this we have a School Council, and an Eco-Council. Both have representatives from Year 1 to Year 6. During these meetings the children have the opportunity to share their ideas and be involved in different decisions made within the school. We also have a Chaplaincy Team made up of members from the Year 6 class. The Chaplaincy Team support with the spiritual life of the school by  helping to plan and take part in assemblies, reflections and Masses. They also help coordinate a number of fundraising events for various charities.

Normally after school we offer a range of clubs and activities, including multi-sports, netball, cooking, sewing, choir and tennis. These are available to different year groups throughout the school year. There are also a variety of sporting tournaments that take place during  the school day and after. 

Music is an important part of St Mary's curriculum; there are opportunities to learn a variety of different instruments. Some of these lessons are part of the curriculum and others are fee-paying, taking place in small groups or on a one to one basis.

What is happening at St Mary's?

We pride ourselves in the communication we have with parents of our pupils. During this pandemic we have ensured that parents are still able to see what their children are learning and doing in school via our School Website and blog, our learning platform Dojo, the fortnightly school newsletter and email updates. There are class pages on the School website which show the learning for each term along with photos and a class video. We also have a school news page with the information we send home through our online communication package ParentMail. This year we have held individual online parent/teacher meetings, which were a great success and an excellent way of updating parents. The links below will take you to these pages.

How do you apply?

All applications need to go through South Gloucestershire Council or your own local authority if you do not live in South Gloucestershire. If you are Catholic, then you will need to send a copy of your child's baptism certificate either through the post, email ( or dropped off in person.

All information is available on our admissions page.

schooladmissions hashtag on Twitter

Who can parents contact?

If you have any questions please contact on 01454 866390 or by email - or by phone 01454 866390. We will be happy to help.

Our Current Reception Class Survey 2020/2021

Every year we ask our Reception parents what they thought of our induction process had been for their child. Last year was a challenge for children starting school, as they had been unable to visit prior to starting in September. We created an online induction page which you can access here and we had telephone calls with parents to answer any questions. It was a great success and the children started happily in September. The survey results can be accessed here or seen on the presentation below:-

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