Capoeira is a nice move

17th June 2005 at 01:00
Constant noise and the occasional messy classroom are no reasons for teachers to shy away from extended schooling, according to staff at Hargrave Park primary.

The 240-pupil school in Islington, north London, offers out-of-hours clubs incuding the Brazilian martial art Capoeira and circus skills until 6pm five days a week. Parents pay pound;2.50 for after-school sessions and an extra 50p if children attend breakfast club between 7.45am and 9am.

Classes attract between 40 and 60 children and are run by parents and local experts.

All teachers do is tell children daily about the clubs and note who is attending. Three teachers are paid pound;25 extra per session to run an after-school homework club twice a week.

Pupils from nearby St Joseph's RCCE primary also attend the clubs. Seven out of 10 child from Hargrave Park are on free meals. Matt Allcock, deputy head, said: "The extended school is about making their world bigger."

Tamsin Woodhead, a Year 5 teacher said: "It is a good thing. Occasionally my classroom is messy, but if I say something it is perfect the next week."

Even at the weekend the school is abuzz with children learning Arabic and the Iranian language Farsi.

Ms Meredith said: "The school is never peaceful. In the old days you could come and work in peace... (But) I think it's worth it."

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