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Abbey Park Middle School is an inclusive and welcoming school.
Pupils really enjoy their learning. They are happy in lessons and when playing with their friends on the playground. Effective safeguarding processes help to keep pupils safe.
Leaders and governors have high expectations for all pupils. Pupils are well supported to be successful in their learning. Pupils with additional needs achieve well because of their individual learning programmes.
Pupils behave well in lessons and around school. They are polite and courteous to each other and adults. Pupils have a secure understanding of the different types of bullying.
They say there is very little... bullying in school. When bullying does take place, staff deal with it well.
There are many clubs available to pupils.
These are well attended. They include exciting activities such as fencing and Scottish dancing. The school dogs are a valuable addition to the school.
They make a positive contribution to the pupils' school experience. Parents recognise that staff go the extra mile for their children. One parent summed up how many feel by saying: 'Fantastic support and encouragement.
This helps to develop children beyond the curriculum and into their lives and their future.'
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Since the previous inspection, leaders have created a new curriculum. It takes account of what pupils need to learn and when they should learn it.
Subject leaders have worked with the first school to ensure that the curriculum builds on what pupils have learned before. The sequence of learning helps pupils to know and remember more over time. Subject leaders plan the vocabulary and knowledge they want pupils to know and remember.
Staff use a variety of approaches to check how well pupils are progressing in their learning.
Pupils enjoy learning new things. However, there remains some inconsistency in how the curriculum is delivered.
For example, presentation in books is generally of high quality, but this is not the case in all subjects. Also, while many pupils have a clear recall of what they have learned in lessons, in some subjects, pupils struggle to remember what they have learned before. A few pupils also struggle with their understanding of important subject vocabulary.
Pupils read with fluency, expression and confidence. Pupils at the early stages of reading are well supported to learn the sounds which letters make. Books are well matched to the letter sounds pupils are learning.
Effective support helps pupils who have fallen behind in their reading to catch up. Pupils speak with passion about a wide range of authors and books they enjoy reading.
Pupils behave well.
They are curious learners who enjoy their lessons. This means that lessons proceed with little or no interruption.
Pupils learn about and understand the difference between right and wrong.
For example, in a recent physical education lesson, pupils enjoyed the dance based on 'Macavity: The Mystery Cat'. The visit of Rebecca Redfern, a local Paralympian, inspired and motivated pupils. This helped to raise their aspirations for the future.
Pupils have a secure knowledge of other faiths. They understand how important it is to have respect for others who may be different to them. Pupils also have a good understanding of fundamental British values.
Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are well supported. Leaders and teachers quickly identify pupils who need extra help. Staff then use a wide range of support strategies to help them.
Some specialist support helps to give pupils a sense of achievement to build their self-esteem. The additional support for pupils with SEND is very effective and helps these pupils to make good progress.
Governors support and challenge leaders in equal measure.
Staff feel well supported and valued by leaders. Leaders have ensured that the well-being of staff and their workload is prioritised and considered.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
Staff recognise the need to be vigilant for any signs of pupils being at potential risk of harm. All staff receive regular training about what they should do if they have concerns. The school has a robust system for logging and following up on concerns.
Leaders work well with outside agencies to protect pupils when the need arises. They ensure that appropriate pre-employment checks take place before adults are appointed as staff members.
Pupils learn about keeping themselves safe.
Age-appropriate safeguarding themes run through the curriculum. Leaders promote pupils' well-being effectively.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
• Some pupils do not have a secure understanding of key knowledge and vocabulary in some subjects.
This reduces their ability to remember and build on what they have learned. Leaders should place greater emphasis on embedding key knowledge and ensuring that pupils understand important subject vocabulary. ? The implementation of the curriculum is inconsistent in some subjects.
This means that presentation is not always of the highest quality. Pupils are also exposed to differing vocabulary which hinders understanding in some subjects.Leaders should provide teachers with further support and training to ensure that they all deliver the curriculum effectively.