Parents have their say on school values

Thank you to all the parents who shared their views on our existing school values during the parent consultation evenings a few weeks ago. Over 150 of you had your say.

We asked parents to vote on which of our current identified values (learning, respect, creativity, relationships, inclusiveness and community) were the three most important. Learning, respect and creativity received the most number of votes in similar numbers with relationships and inclusiveness receiving approximately half the number of votes as the “winners”. When we asked parents what other values they thought were important, some clear themes emerged. Kindness and compassion were seen as key, alongside the need for children to be happy. Parents also prized values around “getting on with others” such as teamwork, tolerance, co-operation, trust and equality. The importance of “character values” such as honesty, persistence and courage were also highlighted.

Over the evenings, we had a number of very interesting conversations with parents. One of the issues discussed was the importance of having values described in a way that a 5 year old might understand. We don’t think our current stated values have got this right and we are looking to make them more child-friendly for the future.

Focus group. A number of parents have volunteered to take part in a focus group looking in more details at our school values. Thank you if you offered to do this – we will be in touch soon. We are looking for more parents to participate in this group so please let governors know if you are interested in taking part. (Either leave a message in the office or email We hope to run the group before the end of term and it should only take about an hour of your time.

This consultation with parents about our school values is part of a wider discussion with all our stakeholders (staff, children and governors) around our school values. Once we have heard what everyone has to say, governors will revise our values to reflect what our current school community feels are important.

Are you interested in becoming a school governor?

We currently have a vacancy for a parent governor on Morley’s Governing Body. In the next few weeks we will be formally asking for nominations from interested parents. An election will be held if more than one parent puts themselves forward.

You don’t need to be an expert in education to become a governor. You need to have an interest in the school and welfare of our children and the time and willingness to get involved. We would be particularly interested to receive nominations from people who have experience of:

  • being a board member
  • chairing a board, governing body or committee
  • human resources
  • law

The role of the Governing Body is to clarify the school’s vision, ethos and strategic direction, hold the head to account for the performance of the school and ensure the budget is well spent. For more information about what governors do, click here.

If you are interested in becoming a governor, please get in touch with Nicky Odgers, the chair of governors ( for an informal chat to find out more about the role and the time commitment involved.

Governor News – New Governors

Four new governors have recently been appointed to Morley’s Governing Body.

  • Ruth Kershner – Ruth is a university lecturer in primary education and psychology of education at Cambridge University. She supports trainees on the Primary PGCE course, co-coordinates the Primary Masters course and teaches in the areas of primary education, inclusive education, research methods and psychology. Prior to this, Ruth worked as a primary teacher, learning support teacher and educational psychologist.
  • Sarah Smalley – Sarah has recently retired. Until very recently she was chief executive of the Religious Education Council, a national education council that promotes inclusive RE teaching, ensuring it is relevant to children of all faiths and none. Sarah has considerable board and HR experience and worked for 30 years in education in teaching and advisory roles.
  • Anna Robinson – Anna has a background in drama teaching and before moving to Cambridge was Head of Performing Arts at a secondary school in London. She has experience of OFSTED, performance management in schools, monitoring standard and effective staff-governor relationships. Anna has a son in Year 1.
  • Marc Neesam – Marc is the Primary Education Programme Manager for the Royal Society of Chemistry and is responsible for developing their strategic plan for supporting the teaching of science across all primary schools in the UK. He is involved with developing science policy, curriculum and training opportunities for teachers. Marc is also a qualified and experienced primary teacher with particular interests in science, outdoor learning and ICT.

In the last few weeks, governors have taken the following actions to support schools improvement:

  • We have approved the following policies: grievance, sex and relationships education, exclusions, collective worship, behaviour principles.
  • Governors reviewed recent progress made towards targets identified as priorities in the school’s Raising Achievement Plan. These are: to embed and deliver a consistent curriculum, to establish new assessment procedures, to develop spelling and to further develop teaching. We were particularly pleased to note that the school in considering buying software that will make it easier for staff to track progress of children in their class and that phase and subject leaders are working collaboratively to developing new methods of self-evaluation and planning.
  • Governors reviewed data showing progress, attainment and attendance of all children in the school over the Autumn Term.
  • Governors have met weekly with Ms Brown as part of her induction.