Extended Schools

Extended schools offer extended services in addition to the main curriculum. A full extended school will offer childcare from 8.00am–6.00pm all year round, a range of extra-curricular activities, parenting support, and access for community activities. It will also have strong connections with the health service and social services. By September 2010, all schools, by law, are supposed to be full extended schools. However, some schools make much more of their ‘extended’ nature, than others. A school with extended services can:

  • Sometimes be attractive to students who are normally wary of school. This is because it might offer lots of additional provision the young person might be interested in, like an after school on site youth club.
  • Have a genuine community atmosphere to it, because it is a hub of activity for a variety of local people.
  • Provide a holistic education for a child, because of its range of services. It can make it easier for students to link what they are learning to the outside world.
  • Often be vibrantly multi-cultural, by attracting groups from the community who would otherwise not use the school.
  • Give students a wide range of services. There could be health practitioners on site, counsellors, careers advisers and youth workers.
  • Give students easier access to learning. There might be an after school club to support students’ homework, or a breakfast club in the library.
  • Potentially give young people a more creative offer than a non-extended neighbour. There could be many activities that are not curriculum focused for young people to become involved in, for example, a climbing club, a choir, a debating group.
  • Lead to more agencies who support children, working more effectively together. For example, a nurse would be able to collaborate with a learning mentor.
  • Offer a lot more involvement to parents than a non-extended school. For example, a parent might come on site and do a yoga class and take the opportunity to look at their child’s work on display.

Further Information

Open Evening/Visit

The school might have an extended services’ manager. It is worth finding out. If not, ask a teacher about the member of staff responsible for extended services. It is a good sign if the person responsible for extended services is high profile and well known by other staff.

Prospectus

This should include information about the school’s extended services.

School Publications

The school newsletter should include information about the extended services taking place. You can contact the school and ask to be sent the latest edition. The website should give you an indication of what extended services are currently available.

Summary




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