Atkinson rd 20622

Personal Development

We offer a wide range of additional opportunities that enrich our children's learning, and reach beyond the National Curriculum and the school day.

Our core values help pupils develop their character, recognise that individual differences should be valued, be resilient, and have empathy and respect for one another. We help pupils understand and deepen their knowledge of the British values of democracy, individual liberty, the rule of law, mutual respect and tolerance.

Nothing can be more important than ensuring that our children are supported to be the best they can be within our ever-changing society. We have a duty to ensure that they have equal opportunities to be healthy, happy, learn and achieve.

Our personal development curriculum promotes cultural capital and supports pupils to be ready for their next stage in education. It weaves its way through every part of what we do at Atkinson Road.

Summary of Personal Development Activities

Emotional development
  • Careers and Skills Builder curriculum (Benchmark School accreditation)
  • Thrive School with 2 Thrive bases and a team of practitioners
  • UNICEF Rights Respecting School approach (Silver level accreditation)
  • Detailed PSHE and RSHE curriculum
  • Forest School and outdoor learning
  • High staff pupil ratios
  • Support from the schools Educational Psychologist
  • Strong welfare team/ Wellbeing Champions (Wellbeing and  Investors in Children award)
  • Access to counselling
  • Transition support and induction
  • British Values 
  • Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week
  • #Be A Champion (Wellbeing programme)
  • Internet Safety Awareness Week
  • Road safety/ bike safety instructors
  • NSPCC links to support safeguarding
Social development
  • Provision of Nursery from 2-years old
  • Nurture class
  • International New Arrivals class (British Council International School award)
  • School Speech and Language Therapist support (1-2-1, group and class support)
  • Charity fundraising activities
  • Student voice
  • Termly parent workshops and engagement activities in all year groups. Weekly, reading-based parent workshops (Nursery - Year 1). Leading Parent Partnership accredited.
  •  Elected Student Council
  • Pupil well-being policy
Physical development
  • Strong physical education curriculum enhanced by external coaches (e.g. Newcastle United Foundation)
  • Healthy eating policies and catering provision (Health Schools and Health Schools + accreditation)
  • Food preparation and nutrition lessons as part of DT curriculum
  • Anti-bullying and safeguarding policies and strategies
  • Extra-curricular sports clubs and activities available for
  • unstructured times, including lunch, playtimes and after-school
  • Holiday sports clubs.
  • School Occupational Therapist support 
  • School dentist and dental hygiene programme with children brushing their teeth in school
  • School nurse
Spiritual development
  • Strong RE curriculum with  school links and visits to all main religious places of worship
  • Support for the expression of individual faiths and the collective act of worship through our multi-faith Room of Reflection
Moral development
  • Support for refugees and awareness raising  (School of Sanctuary accreditation)
  • Positive Thrive-based behaviour management (behaviour Management policy)
  • Supporting local, national and international charities (e.g St Oswalds Hospice is the school linked charity)
  • Links with the police, fire brigade and ambulance services (all children visit Safe Works)
  • Links with the Dogs Trust
Cultural development
  • Free instrument tuition is provided to all KS2 pupils (Music Mark school member)
  • Access to cultures of other countries through the curriculum, trips and visits.
  • Removing all barriers to access to the arts through free music instrument tuition in Key Stage 2 and free trips to theatres, art galleries, museums, music and sport venues and art workshops
  • Links to local library
  • Silver ArtsMark Status
  • Strong MFL curriculum taught by specialist
  • Head teacher is a school representative on the Newcastle Cultural Education Partnership. All local cultural providers are part of this group
  • Partnership with independent cultural providers (e.g freelance artists and Seven Stories - The Centre For The Children’s Book)


Cultural Capital

Image (5)


Cultural capital is defined as the growth of knowledge, behaviours, and skills that a pupil can draw upon and which demonstrate their cultural awareness, knowledge and ability; it is one of the key ingredients a pupil utilises to be successful in society, their career and the world of work. 

We recognise that for pupils to aspire and be successful in the wider areas of their lives, they need to be given rich and sustained opportunities to develop their cultural capital. We do this in many ways, for example, through our curriculum, extra-curricular activities, trips, visits and careers activities.

Specialist Clubs

IMG 0700


Our curriculum extends beyond the National Curriculum and includes a wide range of experiences and opportunities within and beyond the school day. Our specialist club programme is designed to link with and enhance the school curriculum for all age groups from Reception to Year 6.

All clubs are run by experienced and qualified teachers or coaches who have a passion to inspire pupils and help them develop new skills. Our program is an ever-changing and broad offer and is adjusted in response to pupil views. We include sports, science, art, music, dance, computing and cooking, and we aim to have a club for everyone.

Trips and Visits

IMG 1461

Trips and visits take place throughout the school year, in all year groups linked to our learning challenges. If appropriate we also invite external speakers to deliver talks and workshops.

School and Class Assemblies

Atkinson Road 1914


A programme of assemblies based on our values-based ethos helps to promote pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, and provide clear guidance for pupils on how to grow up to be the best person they possibly can be. Alongside the values assemblies, each term pupils also take part in:

  • Safeguarding assemblies
  • Attendance assemblies
  • Sports celebration assemblies
  • Music performance assemblies
  • Rights Respecting assemblies 
  • Eco Warrior assemblies
  • Accelerated Reader assemblies    


IMG 1826

Pupils participate in a wide range of musical activities beyond the National Curriculum. Over 200 pupils in Years 3 -6 learn to play a musical instrument. Those who are learning a musical instrument or sing are given the opportunity to perform. 

Forest School

Forest Schools is designed to provide opportunities for outdoor learning in a natural environment. As a school, we are very fortunate to have our own forest school area and teachers trained to deliver the Forest Schools programme. Pupils in our Nursery and Reception age groups have regular forest school sessions. We aim to offer blocks of forest school to our children. Each session is designed around the needs of the pupils taking part and offers opportunities to address all aspects of personal development.

Learn more about Forest School at Atkinson Road

Pupils as Leaders

Pupils have many opportunities to become a leader in school. These include elected class and deputy councillors, playground leaders, eco-warriors and house captains.

Poverty Proofing

At Atkinson Road, we have worked to identify and overcome the barriers that children and young people from families with fewer financial resources face. We have had an external audit of our school which looked at many different aspects of school life and involved children, parents, carers, staff and governors.

In this way, we have explored the most effective way to spend our pupil premium allocation to ensure all our children have free and equal access to a rich school experience. We provide and wash our free PE kits, subsidise school uniforms and school trips where we provide all children with the same packed lunches to take. We are very casual about themed days e.g. World Book Day so our families are not expected to buy unnecessarily expensive items. Free books are regularly sent home e.g. as Christmas presents, prizes and as part of our parent workshops.