Portway Junior School

'Aim high, do your best and never stop learning'

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Weekly Head Teacher's Blog

w/e 12th October

Parental involvement has been a feature of the last couple of weeks, it was great to have some new faces at our PTFA AGM. We had the opportunity to say thank you to last year's committee for all their hard work especially Karen Mosely who has now stepped down from the committee after many years of dedication. New ideas for fund raising events were discussed and we hope to see more parents at our next meeting on Tuesday 20th November, 6pm at school.

It has been lovely to see parents coming along to our coffee and chat sessions with Mrs O'Farrell who has arranged for an interesting range of speakers to join us. They are held on Thursday mornings from 9.15am, please drop in and see what we are doing.

The children are looking forward to Team Building Week, when they will get lots of opportunities for collaborative, problem solving and creative thinking projects from maths trails to creating the choreography, songs, props and scenes for our Production in December.


w/e 5th October

As October begins and the leaves start to fall the Autumn term is well under way. Now that everyone has settled in we have talked to the children about remembering the school rules to ensure school continues to be a happy, safe and inclusive place of learning. In the past week the children have had the exciting opportunities to take part in Derby Feste, Rock Steady Workshops and sporting events and everyone involved has represented the school brilliantly. I awarded my first Head Teacher's Award to Freddie in Year 3 for the exceptional and inspirational attitude he demonstrated this week, well done!

The Governing board have received notification that our application to become a Multi Academy Trust has been approved by the Regional Schools Commissioner. We will keep you updated on the conversion as the process progresses.

It was lovely to see new faces at our PTFA AGM and we hope more parents will join us for our next meeting on Tuesday 20th November, 6pm at school.

Reading For Pleasure: We are working hard to promote reading for pleasure in school, here are some great books your child may enjoy.

w/e 28th September

Today we said a fond farewell to Mrs Boden; after supporting children staff and parents at Portway Juniors for many years. We wish her every happiness and success in her future adventures.

Well done to the children in Years 4, 5 and 6 who were involved in the Brownlee Mini Triathlon event this week. Hopefully it may have sparked an interest in taking these sports further.

Also, congratulations to our Y5/6 Mixed football team who came third in their competition this week. All the children behaved impeccably and demonstrated excellent sportsmanship.

Following our General election the winning Party was Summer

So our Prime Minister is Joseph L and our Deputy Prime Minister is Emilia B-B.

Our first Cabinet and House of Commons meeting took place this week and the children chose the following Party names:

Yellow – Summer

Green – Spring

Blue – Winter

Red - Autumn

The children have been reminded that nail varnish, fancy hair accessories and coloured hair are NOT part of our school uniform. Please help us by reminding them about this.

As part of our drive to encourage independence we also reminded children, again, to look after their belongings as we have an ever increasing clothes and lunchbox mountain stacking up in the school hall.

Good luck to Wright Class who will be leading the Derby Feste Parade tomorrow.

w/e 21st September

It was lovely to see so many of you at the 'Back to School Fair'. The school was certainly buzzing. A HUGE 'THANK YOU' must go to the PTFA for organising the event and everyone who helped with setting up and on stalls. Please remember it is the PTFA AGM in school on Tues 2nd October. Everyone is welcome.

We also had the opportunity to meet together as part of our 'Meet the Teacher' evening. As we look forward to this new school year it is great to see Team Portway working together to support all the children in school to achieve their full potential and to have the sort of experiences which help to develop their resilience, positivity and motivation. 

This week we held hustings for the Party Leader Elections. All the children who put themselves forward were amazing. They spoke with passion, eloquence and confidence. Following the whole school vote our Party Leaders and Deputies were elected and this then prompted a General Election in school. Next week our Party Leaders, MPs and Prime Minister will begin their role leading our School Parliament. Further information will be available on our School Parliament link.

Next Saturday (29th September) children from Joseph Wright Class will be leading the Derby Feste Parade which starts the Derby Feste Arts Festival. If you are in town on Saturday please come and cheer us on. The fun begins at 10.45am at The Spot outside the Intu Centre.

w/e 14th September

What a great start to the school year. The children have settle back well into school routines and learning. We have already had 'Rock Steady' in school for an assembly, which was great fun. The new team points are looking great, it's very close at the moment with the Green Team edging ahead slightly.

Next week we will have our Party Leader elections for our new School Parliament which will then lead into our whole school vote for class MPs. We will have a School Parliament link on the website for children and parents to access once the elections are complete.

We hope to see as many of you as possible at our Back to School Fayre on Friday 21st September.

Clubs will be starting over the next two weeks please see our clubs page for details.

W/E 20th July

The last full week of this school year and still the sun is shining. Year 6 started the week with a visit from the police talking about the dangers of knife crime the children were complimented on their interesting and mature viewpoints and their responses to the discussions. The whole school had a 'Staying safe in the holidays' Day which included Fish and Chip lunch in the school grounds.

Our moving on assembly was led by Mr Butcher and the Year 6 children received their moving on books.

DIAMOND Team enjoyed a Highland Games afternoon as team winners. They were busy caber tossing, welly wanging and 'haggis' hurling and ended the afternoon with Scottish oatcakes, cheese and a soupcon of Irn-Bru.

It was lovely to see so many parents in school for the open afternoon and thank you for all the lovely comments given to myself and the staff.

We then had the amazing treat that was the Portway Musical Tea Party. The children performed beautifully and it was lovely to hear such a wide range of music and see such amazing talent on display. Well done to all the children and thank you to the music teachers, to Miss Beecroft and Miss Kerwood and especially to Mrs Hindmarch for organising it.

The week has ended with our Annual Sports Day. Again the children showed their determination and talents and we are very proud of all of them. Congratulations to RUBY Team who won the overall title this year.


W/E 13th June

A very busy week for everyone, especially the Year 6's who have been involved with their residential trip or outward bounds activities. All the children behaved brilliantly and faced the variety of challenges with great positivity. Thank you to all the staff for their hard work supporting these great experiences.

All the children in school had the opportunity to work with the University Science Dept on Wednesday. They brought in a range of wildlife creature (taxidermy) for the children to look at and touch to help them get closer to these beautiful British animals and birds and to explain more about their habitats and protecting the environment. 

The NSPCC came to school to thank the children for their amazing fundraising efforts with the sponsored walk. We raised over £3,200 for this incredible charity.

The Year 4's ended the week with their Greek Day celebrations. Everyone looked terrific and I have to say watching them 'strutting their stuff' in the catwalk show was great fun.


Year 6 THE LION KING 1 'Awesome'
Year 6 THE LION KING 2 'Stunning'
Year 6 THE LION KING 3 'The best production ever'
Year 6 THE LION KING 4 'Brilliant. I had goosebumps.'

W/e 6th July

Wow! What a week. Scorching weather, transition and performances.

The week started with transition which was a lovely opportunity for new parents to Portway to get to know staff in school. We are looking forward to working with all our new and established parents over the next few years.

Tuesday was transition day with our Year 6s visiting their new schools, new September intake children and staff visiting us and our current children having the opportunity to get to know their new teachers. It was a lovely day with lots of exciting things happening in school, including a Dino Dig for our newY3s!

Year 2 children visited us again to see the Y6 production of The Lion King and the whole school got to seethe dress rehearsals.

Yesterday the Y6 parents finally got to see our end of school production. I have posted some photos and comments from parents.

The production was a true celebration of all the children in Year 6. Every child had a say in what they did, from make-up to stage and costume design from acting, dancing and singing to technical production with sound and lighting. The children all pulled together to create an incredible production. We are so proud of them, they were all stars!!!

I would also like to thank the enthusiasm and commitment of all the staff involved as they helped make this end of year event so very special.

And finally, today we were officially awarded our Music Excellence Award. Congratulations everyone.

W/e 29th June

A super hot week for everyone. It started with Year 5 and Year 6 taking part in workshops with the NSPCC and ended with our NSPCC sponsored walk. The Year 3, Year 4 and Year 5 children watched the superb Saltmines production on Internet safety and completed workshops.The PTFA also handed out the Year 6 leavers hoodies.

Due to the weather and position of our school field, sports day had to be postponed for safety reasons until Friday 20th July, when we hope the weather will be a little cooler. The children still had their picnic lunch under the trees around the school. 

We will like to remind parents again that it is essential for children to have a cap/hat and water bottle in school everyday.  

Next week will be super busy with transition days, Year 6 production and Languages Day.


NSPCC Sponsored Walk

NSPCC Sponsored Walk 1   NSPCC Sponsored Walk 2   NSPCC Sponsored Walk 3   NSPCC Sponsored Walk 4

PTFA Film night fun.

PTFA Film night fun. 1

W/e 22nd June

An amazing week of learning with the children accessing a whole range of wider learning experiences to help prepare them for life both inside and outside school.


We were visited by First Steps to talk to the whole school about Body image and then they completed workshops with our Year 6 pupils.


The NSPCC visited the children for a whole school assembly on 'Speak out, Stay safe'. They will be completing workshops with the children in Y5 and Y6 next week.


The children enjoyed a very tuneful film night, arranged by the PTFA. We even had time for a cool down interval half way through.

Success at the Rolls Royce Engineering Challenge. Our budding Engineers had been working on their car projects with Miss Challender all term. 

Reuben and Sam - Best engineered Car (achieved full marks!!)

Olly and Jacob - 2nd Best engineered Car

Olly and Jacob - Best themed car

Amelia and Lucy - Car that travelled the furthest and highest up a ramp.

Brilliant effort, well done everyone.


The netball team is also busy competing in inter-school matches currently. Well done for their commitment and enthusiasm. Great team work and effort. Well done.


Sunscreen, sun hats and water bottles will be needed this week. Sun glasses are also useful especially to children with hay fever.

The garden is coming on a treat!

The garden is coming on a treat! 1                      The garden is coming on a treat! 2

W/e 15th June 2018

The end of a very busy week digging and making as part of our Community Garden project. The children are creating ornaments, living wigwams, colourful flowers and even a bug mansion and that's just to mention some of the creative ideas being produced to make our Community Garden an interesting and relaxing space to enjoy nature and just 'day dream'. 

A huge thank you to the parents and friends of PJS for helping with the heavy work, we couldn't have done this without you. We hope to have a grand opening in the next few weeks once we have the area planted up. 

The World Cup has started and the classes are watching how their team is doing. 

The sun is shining and the SATs are over. I would like to congratulate the Year 6 children on their calm and sensible approach to this week. They have all worked incredibly hard and demonstrated such mature attitudes to their learning. They have really earned their end of SATs party. Well done everyone! 
Community Garden winning designs 1Mood boards chosen by the Eco Council
Community Garden winning designs 2The 'Portway Tree' design by Finley

W/e 8th June:

The children have had a very inspirational week with-

  • The launch of the Year 6 production of the Lion King
  • Science Ambassadors having an amazing visit to the University's Forensic House
  • WORLD CUP DAY - The school is looking very colourful with every class now supporting one of the world cup teams.
  • Year 4 and Year 5 having an incredible workshop playing the steel drums.

Next week will be our Community Garden Project week.

School Money