Personal Development

What is Personal Development?

  • the school’s curriculum extends beyond the academic, technical or vocational. It provides for learners’ broader development, enabling them to develop and discover their interests and talents
  • the curriculum and the school’s wider work support learners to develop their character– including their resilience, confidence and independence – and help them know how to keep physically and mentally healthy
  • at each stage of education, the school prepares learners for future success in their next steps
  • the school prepares learners for life in modern Britain by:
  • equipping them to be responsible, respectful, active citizens who contribute positively to society
  • developing their understanding of fundamental British values and appreciation of diversity
  • celebrating what we have in common and promoting respect for the different protected characteristics as defined in law.
  • At Holly Park we have an Assistant Headteacher who is responsible for Personal Development. This is Mrs Mehtar.

Personal Development at Holly Park

‘The school’s work to promote pupils’ personal development and welfare is outstanding.’ (Holly Park Ofsted 2018) 

‘The school is an exceptionally caring, safe and nurturing environment where every pupil is known very well.’ (Holly Park Ofsted 2018)

‘The school has a warm, inclusive and caring ethos.’  (Barnet LNI PHSE Deep Dive April 2022)

‘The promotion of well­being and the human rights is woven through all aspects of school life: e.g. the use of the learning mentor and her ‘child­friendly’ space, the playground charter, the well­being garden and the school dog.‘ (Barnet LNI PHSE Deep Dive April 2022)

We work hard to provide a good all round education and to promote talents and interests of individual children. All pupils are known well at the school by our staff. The school has a warm, friendly, inclusive and caring ethos.

The promotion of wellbeing and the human rights is woven through all aspects of school life e.g the learning mentor, the playground charter, the wellbeing garden, Poppy the school dog. Through the curriculum (especially PHSE and RE) , pupils develop a good understanding of different faiths and cultures and show respect and consideration for others.

There are many opportunities for pupils to think about and express their feelings and to reflect on their learning and behaviour. This does much to promote their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, which is a real strength of the school. Pupils are happy to work well together. There are good opportunities for older pupils to take responsibility in school with various jobs and monitor positions.  If they have any concerns or worries, pupils have ‘mini mentors’ who help them to mediate when there are friendship issues.

Mini Mentors 2023-24

The school encourages pupils to be involved in making decisions and contribute to school policy. For example, pupils have a Learning Council, a Healthy Eating Council and a School Council, who are also trained as Anti-bullying Ambassadors. This is part of the underlying respect for children that underpins the school philosophy. 

Pupils enjoy a wide range of experiences through curriculum days, residential trips, visits, speakers, special days and weeks, clubs, sports and music. Forest School allows pupils to be more confident and engage in different learning styles and methods.

Through annually planned events, weekly assemblies, the RE curriculum, PHSE and music, pupils have opportunities to explore values and beliefs. They learn to respect their own feelings and beliefs and those of others. The curriculum allows children to reflect on the values and beliefs of others today, in different countries and in different periods of history. Guest speakers and visits to places of worship enhance spiritual understanding. We celebrate significant experiences such as birthdays and festivals and ensure that children have the opportunity to feel special and valued. Pupils have a strong sense of right and wrong which is promoted in assemblies, through our rewards systems, our behaviour policy and the High 5. Pupils apply these principles to their own lives and have high expectations of each other.

School Council impacts on behaviour in school and fund raising events. Safer Internet Day and Anti Bullying Week promote ensure that pupils have awareness of the risks and dangers of inappropriate use of technology and social networking. Mealtime Supervisors and their golden tickets promote the importance and reward of good manners and politeness.

Promoting attendance and punctuality ensures pupils recognise the importance of being at school. Eco Council and Healthy Living Council provide awareness of ourselves and the world around us. Supporting charities each year—gives the children a chance to help and understand the circumstances of those less fortunate than themselves. Our school Motto ‘Once a Holly Parker, always a Holly Parker’ and our school song gives the pupils a sense of identity and belonging. A ‘House’ system allows the children to feel connected and to support each other. There is a healthy sense of competition. Inter school competitions and festivals help the children get involved in local activities with other schools.

Our curriculum looks at other communities in our world and societies from the past. We promote internationalism and encourage children to be global citizens. Trips, visits and curriculum days allow the children to experience the wider world of London. Residential visits in Y5 and Y6 mean that children can experience contrasting localities to the one they live in. British Values are embedded in assemblies and special event days and displays. Concerts & shows celebrate a variety of cultures. We participate in traditions such as Nursery rhyme week. Spanish is taught throughout the school from Reception to Y6. Every year we celebrate Black History Month. Displays around the school reflect different languages and cultural backgrounds. The new Junior Duke scheme supports personal development in KS2.

Children are prepared for life in modern Britain and to be active citizens of the future through our online safety education, our global curriculum, our SMSC curriculum and our Rights Respecting curriculum. All year groups have basic first aid lessons. Our children in upper KS2 learn about FGM, knife crime, travelling safely, emergency services, gangs and drugs. This all prepares our pupils for their future life as adults. Pupils leave Holly Park equipped with the social and emotional skills in readiness for secondary school.

Our pastoral support involves the effective use of a school Learning Mentor and a pastoral teamWe provide high-quality pastoral support. All staff promote a positive respect for learning  by encouraging children to show respect for themselves, each other, the school environment (and beyond)  and also for school equipment. We also have trained mental health first aiders to support children and staff. We use the zones of regulation to help children manage their feelings and emotions. Children know how to use tool boxes to help them move from one zone to another.  Our behaviour policy is based on a restorative approach so that children feel listened to and so that children can learn from their mistakes. We use worry boxes in classrooms and we also encourage children to fill their classroom buckets.

Our PHSE curriculum is detailed, progressive and thorough. Pupils know how to eat healthily, maintain an active lifestyle and keep physically and mentally healthy. They have an age-appropriate understanding of healthy relationships and of the protected characteristics. The school provides pupils with meaningful opportunities to understand how to be responsible, respectful, active citizens who contribute positively to society.

Through talk times, discussion and debate, pupils know how to discuss issues and ideas in a considered way.

The school teaches the children how to stay safe (including online safety) and to recognise risks to their wellbeing (stranger danger, drugs and alcohol, relationship education, social media; use of technology)

The school teaches children to be healthy through our allotment (gardening club), PHSE curriculum, sport, the daily mile and take 10 exercise to increase the amount of daily exercise children do.

The school promotes equality of opportunity and diversity effectively through the PHSE curriculum, assemblies, Equality afternoon, diversity week, Talk time, a varied selection of books on offer and RE lessons. As a result, pupils understand, appreciate and respect difference in the world and its people, celebrating the things we share in common across cultural, religious, ethnic and socio-economic communities. Pupils engage with views, beliefs and opinions that are different from their own in considered ways. They show respect for the different protected characteristics as defined in law and no forms of discrimination are tolerated.