Lower School Team (N, R and Y1)

                   Welcome to Lower School!                 

It is my pleasure to welcome you to our Lower School Team page on behalf of the staff and pupils in Nursery, Reception and Year One. Each team and Year Group in Shiphay have their own section on our website.  Here's where we share our learning and you can find out more about what is happening in school. 


I joined Shiphay in 1998 and became one of the Deputy Headteachers here in 2009.  I have taught predominantly in Reception and Y1, with the additional experience of Y2 and Y4.  Whilst I enjoy supporting children of all ages in school, my heart lies within the Early Years and in developing our youngest pupils to become confident, independent children with a love of learning and playing. I have many years’ experience of leading and working within the Lower School Team and am very excited to be returning to the role of Lower School Team Leader in September 2021. I feel privileged to work alongside so many dedicated colleagues, who strive everyday to provide the very best opportunities for our youngest children. 


As the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities Co-ordinator (SENDCo) and Designated Teacher for Cared for Children, I strongly believe that all children deserve the highest quality provision and teaching to meet their needs, not just academic but also their social, emotional and physical needs. My role is to ensure that our most vulnerable children make progress and have access to any additional support they may need. In addition to Inclusion, I am responsible for monitoring and reporting on Attendance and Punctuality, helping to ensure that all pupils achieve to the best of their abilities by maximising their attendance in school. I am also the Deputy Designated Safeguarding Lead in school.


I am a firm believer that a confident and positive mindset is one of the keys to successful, lifelong learning. I endeavour to help children believe in their own abilities and strengths, have a positive outlook and have the confidence to ’have a go’ in their learning.


If at any point you would like to contact me I can be reached via 


Best wishes

Karen Duke (Mrs)

Deputy Headteacher and Lower School Team Leader