Haimo Primary School

A Message from Lord Pickles and Lord Blunkett, followed by Haimo Primary School's best practice article

The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Haimo Primary School is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.

Blunkett signature Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Pickles signature Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles


Headteacher Kate Barnes
Always promoting
London-based Haimo Primary School is undergoing
considerable transformation, which Headteacher Kate Barnes
says excites and motivates the whole school community.
At the core of the school is a powerful focus on bringing out
the best in people. Indeed, their efforts in this area have won
them considerable recognition. It is on this foundation of family
feeling and community spirit that Haimo plans to build upon
as they expand and grow. Kate tells
TheParliamentary Review
more about the school’s strengths and the role they will play in
helping the school enter its next phase.
Our expansion puts us in a unique developmental phase. We have moved from
being a more traditional working-class school to one that is far more ethnically
diverse, which is stimulating and exciting.
Bringing out the best in people
Our commitment to, and investment in, people, led to a gold award from Investors
in People in 2016 – placing us in the top five per cent of institutions recognised by
the organisation. With high-quality professional development at the heart of our
work encouraging leadership and promoting inclusion at every level, we showed
Investors in People that we were exceptional.
The school has achieved multiple quality marks in a variety of aspects across the
school; most recently, the Governor Mark and a Gold Award for Religious Education.
This external recognition builds a huge sense of pride in children and staff alike.
»Headteacher: Kate Barnes
»Founded in 1809
»Located in London
»Type of school: State
maintained primary school
»No. of students: 370
»40 per cent disadvantaged
pupil premium children
Haimo Primary School
Highlighting best practice
Our community focus is similarly
strong, as we believe this is the area
in which people can make great
contributions to society. This is why
we foster in our children a sense of
citizenship and proactivity, ensuring
that a Haimo education creates bold,
forward-looking leaders who make
society a better place to live in.
Our whole school community is
always “finding solutions, seeking
excellence,” and this positive message
permeates everything we do. Everyone
here is tolerant and supportive of one
another, and diversity in all forms is
widely accepted and celebrated. Above
all, a strong feeling of togetherness,
something we pride ourselves on,
motivates us.
When visitors arrive at the school,
they tell us how much Haimo exudes
a family atmosphere and how happy
and safe the children say they feel.
Ultimately, this is exactly what we are
striving for.
Responsibility and activity
We are proud of the strong pupil
voice we have developed at Haimo.
Our children are exposed to a wide
range of opportunities to develop
themselves and acquire the skills and
knowledge that will provide them with
the confidence throughout their lives
to take on active leadership roles. We
see this as a very important aspect of
our work.
We take our responsibility seriously;
guiding our children and building
values that will generate thoughtful
citizens. Our “Haimo Committees”
play a key role in this effort. Over
half of the children within the school
– democratically elected – represent
their peers on a wide range of
Haimo committees. This empowers
our children to take ownership and
responsibility for areas of school and
community life that are important to
them; it lets them know that they can
make a difference.
One striking example of their work is
that, after campaigning for two years,
the school council and the ‘Junior
Travel Ambassadors’ played a decisive
role in procuring road bollards to close
Haimo Road at the start and end of
the school day. This was to prevent
road accidents near the school and
improve air quality. To acheve their
goal, the children petitioned, attended
and spoke to members at local council
meetings and worked collaboratively
with a range of groups including
Transport for London, our close
neighbours and the wider community.
Broadening horizons
for two years,
the school
council and the
‘Junior Travel
played a
decisive role in
procuring road
The Global Goals Committee promote
and campaign on the 2030 sustainable
development goals and are currently
working on a project with a substantial
budget – in conjunction with the
London Mayor’s Office – empowering
them to take control of their own
affairs, their lives and the lives
ofothers. Children have experienced
preparing planning proposals,
budgeting and spending with value for
money in mind: all useful life skills.
All of their work culminates in ‘Haimo
Parliament Meetings’ held at the local
council chambers where children come
together to meet and discuss issues in
school and how best to proceed. After
having a roundtable discussion and
bouncing ideas off one another, they
then report to other members of their
class. The children also elect a mayor
and deputy mayor who represent the
school at events.
Knowing limits, working to
Some of our children’s parents have
had poor experiences of school
and getting them involved in their
children’s education is not always
an easy task. Nonetheless, we are
breaking down barriers and have come
a long way. Parents are now more
aware that they can come to us for
anything, and we will accommodate
them without judgement. Additionally,
we have developed a lively and
thriving PTA, and we now have
parents competing to be on the
We have addressed the culture of
confrontational behaviour in the
playground by children and their
families through positive behavioural
interventions based on respect and
positive relationships. Our children take
responsibility for their behaviour and
know how to resolve conflict based
on restorative approaches within the
caring ethos of the school.
Despite the progress we have made,
there is still an issue regarding equality
of opportunity. There are still too many
children let down by their background,
poverty and lack of funding. Strategies
have to be implemented to support these
families, as right now they are lacking the
stability necessary to take full advantage
of what our school has to offer.
Society’s focus on the continual statutory
testing of primary children across the
year groups and the culture which holds
that one test can fully measure academic
excellence is a challenge. We are creative
with our curriculum in order to ensure
our children go out, interact with
the world and encounter meaningful
experiences in balance with ensuring
we achieve the set national standards
measured through the tests.
Although these challenges exist up
and down the country, I believe that
schools like ours will make a significant
contribution to opening opportunities for
children. “The Haimo Way” will continue
long into the future, as it is deeply
embedded in the school culture and is
robust enough to ensure that our basic
ethos will stay alive and well. This caring
and homely environment, combined
with our commitment to broadening
horizons, will help our children achieve
what they want to achieve. For that
reason, I am profoundly optimistic.
We are creative
with our
curriculum in
order to ensure
our children go
out, interact
with the world
and encounter
Always striving higher


This article was sponsored by Haimo Primary School. The Parliamentary Review is wholly funded by the representatives who write for it. The publication in which this article originally appeared contained the following foreword from Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss.

Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review

By Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss

Even by the standards of the day –this has been one of the most exciting and unpredictable years in British politics.

The leadership election we’ve just seen marks a huge moment in our country’s history. This government is taking a decisive new direction, embracing the opportunities of Brexit and preparing our country to flourish outside the EU.

As international trade secretary, I’ll be driving forward work on the free trade agreements that are going to be a priority for the government. Free trade isn’t just an abstract concept bandied around by technocrats. It is crucial for a strong economy and for the ability of families to make ends meet. Free trade benefits people in every part of our country, as British firms export to new markets and people doing the weekly shop have access to a wider choice of goods at lower prices.

The essence of free trade is in the title: freedom. It’s about giving people the power to exchange their goods without heavy government taxation or interference. Commerce and free exchange are the engine room of prosperity and social mobility. I’m determined to tackle the forces who want to hold that back.

One of my priorities is agreeing an exciting new free trade deal with the US, building on the great relationship between our two countries and the Prime Minister and US President. But I’ll also be talking to other partners including New Zealand, Australia and fast-growing Asian markets.

And with the EU too, we want a friendly and constructive relationship, as constitutional equals, and as friends and partners in facing the challenges that lie ahead – a relationship based on a deep free trade agreement. Our country produces some of the world’s most successful exports, and the opportunity to bring these to the rest of the world should make us all excited about the future. It is this excitement, optimism and ambition which I believe will come to define this government.

For too long now, we have been told Britain isn’t big or important enough to survive outside the EU – that we have to accept a deal that reflects our reduced circumstances. I say that’s rubbish. With the right policies in place, we can be the most competitive, free-thinking, prosperous nation on Earth exporting to the world and leading in new developments like AI. To do that, we’ll give the brilliant next generation of entrepreneurs the tools they need to succeed. Since 2015, there has been a staggering 85 per cent rise in the number of businesses set up by 18 to 24 year olds – twice the level set up by the same age group in France and Germany. We’ll help them flourish by championing enterprise, cutting taxes and making regulation flexible and responsive to their needs.

As we do that, we’ll level up and unite all parts of the UK with great transport links, fibre broadband in every home and proper school funding, so everyone shares in our country’s success.

2019 has been the year of brewing economic and political revolution. 2020 will be the year when a revitalised Conservative government turbo charges the economy, boosts prospects for people across the country, and catapults Britain back to the forefront of the world stage.

Rt Hon Elizabeth Truss
Secretary of State for International Development