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Benefits of a Smaller School

The Benefits of a Smaller School

Your child is about to start their school journey, seven years at Primary and then onto the world of Secondary. Choosing which school for your child is an incredibly important decision and can seem daunting. There are many questions to ask including:

  • Will they receive an excellent education?
  • Will they be encouraged to be creative?
  • Will they learn resilience and how to get along with their peers?
  • Will they have fun?
  • Will they have opportunities to explore music and dance in extracurricular activities?
  • Will they be happy?

There are many areas to consider and compare when making the decision, one of these is the size of the school.

At St Mark's Primary School we love the fact that our small school status, keeps our families well informed and our children well educated.  Being a small, happy primary school, we are dedicated in enabling all our children to achieve their full potential.

Here are 6 reasons why your child could benefit from a small school enviroment.

 1.More attention from the teacher.

The fewer pupils there are in a school, the more time and attention the teacher can give each one. A teacher will have more opportunity to get to know their pupils, observe how they work and help them improve on their weaknesses. All our teachers get to know each child personally and make a positive contribution to their development. This is not so easy in larger schools as any specific weaknesses or lack of confidence can go unnoticed for a longer period.

 2.Better academic results

Research has been carried out that links smaller sizes to achieving greater academic results. Here at St Mark's School we seek out the innate talents in each child and provide additional assistance and encouragement where needed. 

 3.Pupil confidence

With smaller schools, pupils feel more confident to put their hand up and ask questions. They feel more at ease contributing their own ideas and feel less intimidated if they do not understand something. This helps strengthen a teacher and pupil relationship and the pupil becomes more engaged in the learning. In larger schools, it is easier to ‘hide’ behind the other pupils which could lead to not being able to understand the lesson or they could become bored which can lead to disruptive behaviour.

 4.Social Benefits

Being at school is not just about how well you achieve academically. It is also about learning positive social skills. At St Mark's we work to build resilience, this is achieved through our secure environment which promotes positive attitudes in every child, so they feel able to take risks and become more confident. We also believe in respect; manners are very important to us and each child is taught to be respectful and courteous to each other and staff. All of this will translate positively into the workplace later in life.

 5.Tailored instruction

With larger schools, it can be incredibly difficult for a teacher to keep all the pupils fully engaged as their range of abilities could be extreme. With smaller school's, a teacher will be able to tailor the way they teach to suit the abilities of all the individuals in the class and not just those who need the most help. At St Mark's, when we identify an extra learning need, we have the facilities to break into smaller groups to be able to focus on a specific area.

 6.Being able to teach!

Behind every teacher sits a mountain of administration work. Lesson planning, marking work, sourcing educational events and numerous administration tasks. Being a teacher isn’t just about teaching. In larger school's, the actual teaching can become sidelined for all their other non-teaching tasks. The benefits of having a smaller school enables the teacher to spend more time focused on doing the job they signed up for – being able to teach!

At St Mark's, our children are usually taught in mixed aged classes. During the 2020/2021 academic year there are four classes: