For British Science week, Years 2 and 3 were asked to think about the following questions:
Are slugs important? Are they superheroes or baddies?
First they sorted and learnt some facts about slugs, such as ‘Slugs use slime to help them travel around. It helps them to glide across rough surfaces, even pieces of glass and razor blades!’ We then all headed off to the orchard in the rain to hunt for slugs! We used magnifying glasses to study them and identify some of the different parts, such as, the breathing hole and tentacles. Finally some of the children acted out a food chain starting with grass being eaten by a slug, the slug is then eaten by a thrush and that in turn is eaten by a top predator, a sparrow hawk. We discussed and demonstrated what might happen if slug pellets are used and enter the food chain.
By the end of the investigations the children were thinking much more favourably about slugs and were able to understand, that like all living things on our diverse planet, that slugs have an important role to play.
Well done years 2 and 3 for being such super slug scientists!
Pupils from St Joseph’s were proud to take part in the second annual St Piran’s Parade, a celebration of Cornwall’s patron saint (although St Michael and St Petroc may disagree) and of pride in all things west of the Tamar. Year Four pupils represented St Joseph’s at in the parade alongside those from 8 other local primary schools and pupils from Launceston College.
The schools gathered in Launceston’s magnificent town hall, where they were organised for the parade into the centre of Lanson, the historic capital of Cornwall. Cllr Tremain, town crier for the past 40 years, began the formal element of proceedings before Mayor Cllr Gordon addressed the gathered school children and members of the public. He spoke of St Piran, and that the children should be proud of who they were, where they came from, and of being Cornish (for those who were.)
Cllr Nancarrow then read the poem My Young Man’s a Cornishman by Cornwall’s poet and Launceston resident Charles Causley, before Cllr Tremain celebrated the life of St Piran , his escape from Ireland and his arrival at Perranporth, floating on the millstone that was intended as the instrument of his martyrdom.
A rousing rendition of the unofficial Cornish anthem Trelawney, (Parson Hawker’s Song of the Western Men) followed before the parade was blessed by the Reverend Alison Hardy, regrouped and paraded through the Castle grounds and back to the warmth of the Town Hall. Here, the children showed their dancing skills to traditional music played the town band before joining together in song. Pupils from many primary schools performed songs and poetry, including a performance by St Joseph’s Year 4. Their piece St Piran was written and directed by Mrs Skerry – a superb performance that really spoke of the life of St Piran.
Pasties were then provided for all children and staff thanks to the tireless work of Cllr Young’s team of volunteers and the kind sponsorship of the event by local businesses and volunteer groups.
Meanwhile, back at St Joseph’s, pasties were also the order of the day for lunch, a great Cornish delicacy. The traditional food of the miner was appropriate to mark the patron saint of tinners, whose flag of a white flag on a black background flag is said to symbolise white tin coming out of black ore, as well as the light of truth shining in the darkness. Following this, Year 3 and Year 4 were treated to lessons in Cornish, lessons they greatly enjoyed. On St Piran’s day, even in the rain, Kernow bys vyken – Cornwall is great!
We are delighted to announce that recently released Department of Education League tables for summer 2019 have proven just what exceptional results are achieved at St Joseph’s School, Launceston.
The percentage of pupils achieving GCSES at Grade 5 or above in Maths and English was an excellent 67% against a national average of 40% and a Cornwall average of 39%. The best performing state-funded school in Cornwall achieved 40%, and St Joseph’s was ahead of many South West Independent schools – including a number with selective intake – by a wide margin.
The school’s Attainment 8 score was also one of the top two in the county – an outstanding achievement for a non-selective school. Attainment 8 measures a student’s average grade across eight subjects and is designed to encourage schools to offer a broad, well-balanced curriculum. With St Joseph’s scoring 57.2 against a national average of 44.7 and a Cornwall average of 45.4, it is clear that this balance is being very successfully struck at St Joseph’s.
St Joseph’s is a dynamic and forward-looking school with traditional values and results from Reception to Year 11 demonstrate the pupils’ engagement with all they do. Children’s wellbeing is at the heart of the school, and success is built on the fundamental belief that a child who is happy and safe will succeed – and we know that success takes many forms.
Confidence and happiness underpin the academic results, results that demonstrate the benefits of small class sizes where children are keen to learn from passionate, dedicated specialist teachers.
While Year 7 is currently full, places are available for September Year 7 2020, and we are taking registrations for our Reception Class 2020.
We are very aware that Early Years are vital to a child’s education, and the fact that in 2019 100% of pupils in the Early Years achieved the expected level across the five key areas – Reading, Writing, Speaking, Numbers and Shapes and Space – against the national average in writing of 72% shows the strength of the firm foundation for life that we build.
We take pride in the success of every child, whatever their ability or areas of strength. Their results, and the school’s performance, shows just how much pride the children take in their own results – and how well they work to achieve them.