Our aim is to inspire the children that we teach. We want to stimulate and stretch them academically; giving them the skills and confidence to recognise how they might achieve the most. We hope that through the InspirUS programme more children will be made aware of the opportunities available to them and they will feel more confident in both their prospects and potential. We want our teaching to help the children be the best they can be; to love their learning and be hungry for more.
What is InspirUS?
InspirUS is a teaching programme run by LRGS for both boys and girls. It is open to all of Lancaster's primary schools for children in KS2. It aims to raise aspirations and to encourage pupils, especially those who may not have fully appreciated their academic potential, to explore avenues well beyond the confines of the National Curriculum. The programme of study is incredibly varied, including all aspects of the curriculum. There is a strong focus on art and creativity as we want to encourage children to discover alternative ways of thinking, working and learning. Resources will be provided to enable the children to extend their learning experience beyond our sessions.
Thanks to the generosity of some former pupils of the school, enough funding was raised to launch the InspirUS initiative, the first of its kind in the country. Kathryn Page was recruited and in autumn 2009 began visiting primary schools where she worked with the primary heads and teachers, talking through the benefits of the programme and helping to identify the children best suited for inclusion.
The first tranche of youngsters was welcomed to the InspirUS classroom in January 2010, and over the next four terms 50 primary schools in the Lancaster area were included. The selected children spend one afternoon a week at LRGS where they experience an exciting, varied and challenging programme of study which is called ‘To infinity and beyond …’ To maintain contact, children who have had involvement in the programme are regularly invited back to LRGS for open days and one off sessions.
InspirUS on the Web
In addition to the InspirUS webpage, there is also an InspirUS Moodle site, to encourage continued learning by all pupils and also to enable the InspirUS team to maintain contact with each child. The Moodle includes all the resources from each session, as well as many new challenges the children can try, to continue their critical and creative thinking skills. There is also a social networking element to the Moodle, to allow children to communicate with their new friends from different schools. This is done in a secure way and much time has been spent developing the site so it complies with the school’s E-Safety Policy and the Safeguarding of Children policy.
The InspirUS team is led by Kathryn and assisted by Michelle Bird and Cara Watson. They are also helped by an enthusiastic group of Sixth Form volunteers from LRGS.
Mrs Kathryn Page InspirUS Co-Ordinator, Head of First Year and Transition and Teacher of Geography and Maths.
BA (Hons) Geography, University of Portsmouth; PGCE, Southampton University; Advanced Certificate in Education, St Martin’s College.
Kathryn is experienced in both primary and secondary school teaching. In addition to her work in InspirUS, she is Head of First Year and Transition and also currently teaches in the LRGS Geography and Maths Departments. She has written GCSE revision guides for the BBC and has previously worked in bookshop management.
Mrs Michelle Bird InspirUS Administrator
As InspirUS Administrator, Michelle organises all paperwork involved in the programme and communication with primary schools along with supporting learning and assisting with the transport of children. She is also responsible for the development of the InspirUS website and Moodle Site.