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Chater Junior School


OPAL Play Policy

OPAL- Outdoor Play and Learning.
At Chater Junior School, we are committed to ensuring quality play opportunities are available to all our children. We believe that play is essential for physical, emotional, social, spiritual and intellectual development of each child. Most of our best childhood memories are from playing outdoors, climbing trees and exploring the wide world around us. OPAL gives us the opportunity to give those memories to your children. OPAL (Outdoor Play and Learning) is all about using naturally and man-made resources to allow children to be inspired and creative at playtime.
Please see our OPAL play policy for more detail.

Our Opal Journey so far... 


It was bubbles, balloons and smiles for last Wednesday's OPAL lift off! Ms Batliwala cut the ribbon to unveil our fun-filled OPAL shed and kick-off the beginning of a new era for Chater Junior School.

Our play team and prefects worked hard to ensure that all pupils were able to access everything that was on offer .Everywhere we looked there were smiles on faces. There were scooters, tyres ,dress-up and mud-soup served by mud-chefs in our special mud-kitchen !











April 2024
The OPAL Shed
A huge thank you to our wonderful site manager, Mr Dicks, for building our wonderful new storage unit for the OPAL equipment.




Pupil Play Leaders
At the beginning of summer term, we will be selecting Play Leaders in every class.
The Play Leader role will:
Monitor and test OPAL equipment
Help report pupil voice to the OPAL team
Be role models on the playground.

March 2024
Parent information session:
Chater parents attended an information session, along with our school governors, about how OPAL will run across the school. Ms Batliwala informed parents and governors about the reasons Chater has adopted the OPAL programme and how it will benefit pupils. Further information was sent to all parents on SeeSaw.
Parent Voice Survey:
We collected parents’ views through our OPAL parent survey. The OPAL team will use this survey to design and shape future OPAL provision. Another survey will go to parents at the end of this year.
Here are some of the questions and responses:















Ms Batliwala and Miss Pope led two assemblies this month, all about pupils making choices to manage risk. We looked at a number of pieces of play equipment we currently use on the playground - how we use them, what the rules are, what makes items risky and what are the benefits of using them!
Pupils decided that the equipment itself is not dangerous - we make it dangerous by the way in which we sometimes use it. We discussed what we mean by reducing the risk:
using equipment in a safe space
using equipment in a safe manner
reporting equipment that is broken or faulty.

February 2024
All staff attended a training session led by our OPAL mentor Neil. It was a very inspirational evening!

Ms Batliwala and Miss Pope have started to develop a mud kitchen/ digging area behind the climbing frame. Thank you to the generous donations from parents for providing pots and pans, and a huge thank you to Mr Batliwala for his help building these mini kitchen units!




January 2024
Ms Batliwala led the first OPAL assembly. The OPAL team met for their first development meeting. We discussed some quick 'playtime' wins. Ms Batliwala and Miss Pope were happy to share the news that the school have started to work towards building a fantastic loose part storage, which is due to arrive in the Spring Term! Plans for a large mud kitchen area were also discussed!

December 2023
Our OPAL display is in our school hall. This includes a mapped out vision of our new OPAL playground, pupil’s views on what their ‘dream’ playtime would be, and a list of our desired donations.




November 2023
Introducing our OPAL play team!


Ms Batliwala 

Play Coordinator 

Miss Pope 


Miss Fitgerald 


Ms Shaker 


Ms Brunori

Play Leaders 

Mrs Taj, Mrs Bala, Mrs Ahmed, Mrs Wylie, Mrs Konsinska, Mrs Begum, Miss Shah, Mrs Azad, Mrs Mittra,  Miss O’Grady & Mrs Prior. 

September 2023
The OPAL team met with Neil Coleman to go through the OPAL audit for the first time. Our Baseline score was 49% (Most schools score between 30% and 40% at baseline.) Neil said that our site had lots of potential and that there was a strong offering already in place. We just need a little more variety, all year round!