How will the school be different from other schools?
We aspire to fully exploit individual pupil’s potential and achieve excellent education standards for the whole school with holistic (mental, physical, social, cultural and spiritual) development of all pupils (including EAL, SEN, HA/G&T). The school will be all-inclusive with an international outlook and value based education based on Sikh ethos.
The curriculum will be holistic, broad and balanced with a thematic approach specialising in literacy. Each pupil will receive individual attention and the school will be family centred with opportunities for adult learning.
Where will the school be situated?
The school is currently located on Harrington Street, Derby. We will move to our permanent site on Grange Avenue, Derby, DE23 8DG during academic year 2018/19
Who can attend the school?
We currently have 1 x Reception class, 1 x yr 1 class, 1 x Yr 2 class and 1 x Yr 3 class. By 2020 we will have all primary age classes available, giving us a total number of 420 pupil spaces.
Does my child need to be of Sikh faith to attend the school?
No. Whilst the school promotes a Sikh ethos and the importance of strong values, we have a responsibility to offer an education for pupils of all faiths, and none.
How much will it cost me to send my child/children to this school?
There will be no charge to attend Akaal Primary School. It will be directly funded by the Department for Education, in the same way as all state funded schools.
Will Sikh students be treated differently?
No. Students from all faiths and ethnic groups living in the area are welcome to join the school. One of our core values is ‘Wellbeing of All’ (Sarbat da Bhalla).
Why is there need for a new school?
The existing schools in the area are oversubscribed. With new communities settling in Normanton and the surrounding area there is a need to have more schools with high standards. Our school, using the Sikh ethos, will provide a values based education capable of delivering these high standards in an outstanding environment.
Is there a need for a Sikh school in Derby?
There are about 7 to 8 thousand Sikhs, and four Gurdwaras in Derby. The Sikh faith places value on the contribution of all to the development of society and strong moral values. The Sikh ethos of liberty, equality and fraternity of humankind, and its three pillars of meditation, honest earning and sharing with no discrimination for gender, race or ethnicity, will help our young people prepare for, and understand, the diverse society they live in. Good behaviour, academic excellence, the development of the whole child, community identity and the development of an international outlook will be the basis of our approach at Akaal Primary School.
What curriculum will be followed?
We will offer the National Curriculum. This will be done using as thematic learning approach, a strong Phonics programme and outstanding teaching.
How much time will be given to studying the Sikh faith?
We will follow the SACRE rules for teaching about all faiths. No additional time will be given to the Sikh faith in normal school hours. However, enrichment classes after school will have Sikh faith studies as an option. There will be a range of other options for non-Sikh pupils.
Will the staff members be Sikh?
Staff members will be employed on the basis of ability and experience. Recruitment will be in line with employment regulations and DfE guidelines. Some teachers may be of Sikh faith.
Will you collaborate with local schools?
Yes. Our aim is to work together with local schools from the start to achieve high educational standards. We will encourage exchange of good practises with all local schools and form stronger partnerships with them.
What impact it will have on other schools in the area?
Akaal Primary School will have a positive impact on the existing schools as it will absorb over-subscription in schools beyond their capacity. In view of increasing school age population in Normanton our school will take some burden from the Local Authority. APS will create more choices for parents for where they can send their children. It will encourage healthy competition for improvement of education in all schools of the area.
Will it result in job losses in schools of the area?
There will be no job loss due to Akaal Primary School. In fact, APS will create new employment opportunities in the area as it will cater to oversubscription in schools. It will not result in the closure of any school in the area because Derby’s population is growing. In addition, the opening of APS will be based on an impact assessment before entering into a funding agreement by the Secretary of State for Education.