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Question Time - Your questions answered by our students

Top Ten Most Frequently Asked Questions: Here are the most frequently asked questions from prospective students. (FAQs) If you have a different question please email us on admissions@ellenwilkinson.ealing.sch.uk and we will get back to you.

1. I know everyone at my primary school but I may be the only student from my primary school who gets a place at EWS. Who can I talk to if I am feeling a bit unsure? It is perfectly fine to feel unsure or confused about things when you start secondary school. If you do feel like that you can talk to your form teacher who is there to help and support you as well as your subject teachers. If you feel you would like a bit more help, then you can go to see your Head of Year who will be happy to help. If you are walking around the school and feel a bit lost then its fine to ask any adult member of staff for some guidance.

2. What is a planner? This is the EWS diary / journal we give all students each year. Our EWS planner is designed to help you on a day to day basis with lots of information about the school that will help you. Your form tutor will expect to see your planner on the desk in form time and any important messages they have for you or for your parents should be written into your planner. If you need help writing into your planner please ask. Your planner is also used to record any homework which may be set by your teachers or the dates of any upcoming assessments. The planner will help you be organised!

3. Where do I have my lunch? Students can eat their lunch in a number of places. We have lots of outdoor space with picnic tables at school and some lovely places for you to eat such as: our cherry blossom tree lined Japanese garden, the front garden, the orchard, the redgra sports field, and the tennis courts. We also have designated indoor spaces. The dining hall, the Eatery, is where we eat hot meals. However, these arrangements may vary as part of the school’s response to the Covid-19 outbreak. Our students always say how much they really enjoy the meals at school.

4. I ride my bike to school? Where can I keep it safely? Yes, you can ride your bike to school and this is something as a school community we would like to encourage! It’s good for your health as well as for the environment. If you are going to ride to school it’s very important that you make sure you wear a proper cycle helmet and if possible a highly visible yellow vest. You should also bring a lock for your bike. There are bike racks on the school site where you can lock your bike safely at the beginning of the day. Members of staff will help you to find them when you start.

5. What happens if I am late to school? You are expected to be on time for Primary school. The difference at secondary school is that most students make their own way to school, so time-keeping becomes your responsibility, not your parents. If you are late to school you will sign in when you arrive and then join your form group. If you are late more than twice a week your tutor will speak to you about the reasons why and how you can ensure you get to school on time. The best thing to do is to give yourself lots of time to get to school and keep checking your route to school. Form time is a vital part of the day at EWS so it is important to be on time.

6. Will I get a lot of homework? At EWS we teach the full National Curriculum at Key Stage 3. You will have a broad range of subjects and teachers. Each department have their own home-learning policy and this varies per subject, depending on each rotation. We have a VLE called Firefly and are introducing Google Classrooms so that you teachers can track and monitor your home-learning. We believe reading enhances all your study so we do expect students to read, read, and read.

7. What rewards do we get at school? We have a system of achievement points. There are lots of actions which can lead to a positive achievement point being awarded, such as excellent work in a lesson, helpfulness to staff or students, independent work, taking part in competitions, representing the school, being part of an extracurricular club etc. Class teachers will award these positive points on a daily basis. The highest achievement is the school is the EWS Gold Standard. This is awarded at the end of Year 11 for students who have achieved the Gold standard in multiple years. This is made up of four elements over the year: the Gold Club; the Gold Certificate; the Gold Star and the Gold Ticket. When you achieve these awards throughout the academic year, these accumulate and go towards the Gold Standard (sometimes referred to as school colours), in Year 11. This is an extremely prestigious accolade, well worth working towards. . The winners of this award are presented with a special blouse by the Head Teacher.

8. Where can I leave my mobile phone? Mobile phones are not permitted to be used on the school site and any phone with an internet connection is banned at EWS. If parents/carers feel that their child needs to have a phone for the school journey then students may have a mobile phone in school which allows them to text and make phone calls only, examples of these are available on request from the school. They must also be clearly labelled with the child’s full name. These phones must be kept SWITCHED OFF in the student’s bag at all time when on the school site. It may only be switched on again as they leave the site at the end of the day. Parents and carers who need to contact their child during the day can ring the main office and leave a message.

9. May I wear make-up to school? Students may not wear excessive makeup to school; this is at the discretion of the Head of Year or SLT. Coloured nail varnish and false nails are not permitted. Students will be expected to remove nail varnish and makeup if it is felt to be excessive.

10. Will have I have my own locker? All students are provided with the opportunity to get a locker, although they are not compulsory. Students who opt to have a locker need to purchase a padlock from reception at the allocated time and will be then given a specific locker. Students may not bring their own padlock in from home. Students may only keep articles needed for school in their locker and perishable items such as food need to be cleared daily.