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About Abbotts Ann Church of England Primary School
Abbotts Ann Church of England Primary School continues to be a good school.
What is it like to attend this school?
Parents and pupils describe Abbotts Ann as a 'wonderful place to learn'. Leaders and teachers have created an ambitious and inclusive environment. Pupils flourish and every child has a voice.
Children have very individual induction programmes when they start school. This high level of care and support continues throughout their primary years. The school's values of love, respect, courage, responsibility and honesty are lived every day, reflecting the school's strong Christian ethos.
Teachers know pupils very well. They have very high expectations of what pupil...s can learn and how they need to behave. The youngest pupils settle quickly.
They learn in a secure and safe environment gaining confidence and making friends easily. Pupils enjoy their learning, behave well and work hard in lessons. They are given many opportunities to discuss their learning.
Pupils feel empowered by this. They say this helps them think for themselves. Pupils independently set up the Eco committee, to help their friends appreciate the importance of looking after the environment.
Pupils have high levels of trust in school staff. They say, 'There is always someone to listen to you if you are upset.' They feel completely safe and secure and describe school as 'bullying-free.'
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Leaders have maintained a good standard of education since the previous inspection. Leaders and teachers have high expectations for what pupils can achieve. Leaders have a clear vision of how and what they want pupils to learn.
They have looked at the order in which knowledge and skills are taught. In subjects such as English, mathematics and science this work has been effective, improving pupils' learning. In other subjects, while this work is under way, it is not yet fully completed.
As a result, in a few subjects, pupils' opportunities to practise skills and remember their learning from one year to another are not as good as they could be. Leaders have a sensible phased plan in place. They recognise the importance of completing this work in all subjects.
Before children start school, teachers make every effort to get to know them. Very individual induction procedures, such as extra home visits, help children to make a confident start. Children settle into the very structured routines that make them feel happy, safe and secure.
Teachers encourage children to talk about their learning right from the start. As the pupils get older and develop their vocabulary, teachers continue to allow them to do so. Older pupils enjoy the opportunities to talk about their work and challenge their friends.
This has proved a very effective way of enabling pupils to remember more across a range of subjects. It is a key feature of learning in the school.
The teaching of reading is a strength of the school, reflected in above average attainment.
Phonics (letters and the sounds they represent) is very well taught, right from when children first start school. Teaching is very well structured so that pupils can continually build on their learning. There is good support for those pupils who find reading difficult.
These pupils are quickly identified. Swift action is taken before they begin to fall behind. Older pupils focus on examining the text they are reading.
They know that they have to find evidence within the text to justify their answers. One pupil commented, 'It can't just be your own opinion; you have to find something in the text.' Pupils' love of reading and positive attitudes reflect leaders' strong commitment to making reading a top priority.
Teaching of mathematics successfully focuses on basic skills. Extensive opportunities are provided to apply these skills through reasoning and problem-solving. Consequently, pupils develop a deep understanding and recall of their mathematical knowledge.
Pupils have very positive attitudes to their learning and there is little or no misbehaviour in lessons. They work hard and enjoy the interesting tasks and activities that teachers plan. For example, Reception children effectively practised directional vocabulary in geography.
Teachers had put up cards with specific directions around the school site. Pupils had to follow the directions, making the learning purposeful, helping them understand and remember terms such as 'turn', 'right' and 'over'.
Disadvantaged pupils and pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are well supported.
Teachers make sure that they get the extra help they need through extra assistance in class or additional learning opportunities. Special programmes such as 'Lego therapy' and 'therapeutic' writing, focus on building pupils' confidence and resilience. These pupils then bring those skills back to assist learning in class.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
Leaders and governors have developed a strong culture of safeguarding in the school. Procedures for keeping children safe are clear.
Adults at all levels receive high-quality ongoing training to make sure that they are confident to act promptly should a safeguarding issue arise. Record-keeping is detailed and all concerns are recorded and followed up swiftly. Staff, parents and pupils receive online safety training.
Pupils have a good understanding of how to stay safe online. When appropriate, referrals are made to outside agencies. These are followed up meticulously to ensure that pupils and families get the help they need.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
Leaders have looked carefully at the at the order in which the knowledge and skills are taught in different subjects. In subjects such as English, mathematics, science and computing this has been highly effective in identifying opportunities for pupils to practise their skills over time. Curriculum planning is not yet as effective in all subjects.
Leaders must continue to implement their improvement plan so that this is completed for all subjects. This will enable pupils to know and remember more of their learning, across the full range of curriculum subjects.
When we have judged a school to be good, we will then normally go into the school about once every four years to confirm that the school remains good.
This is called a section 8 inspection of a good or non-exempt outstanding school. We do not give graded judgements on a section 8 inspection. However, if we find some evidence that the school could now be better than good or that standards may be declining, then the next inspection will be a section 5 inspection.
Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the section 8 inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will convert the section 8 inspection to a section 5 inspection immediately.
This is the second section 8 inspection since we judged Abbotts Ann Church of England Primary School to be good on 3–4 July 2012.