Burley St Matthias Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School

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About Burley St Matthias Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School

Name Burley St Matthias Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School
Website http://www.burleystmatthias.co.uk/
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Allie Hopkinson
Address Burley Road, Leeds, LS4 2HY
Phone Number 01133367401
Phase Primary
Type Voluntary controlled school
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Church of England
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 188
Local Authority Leeds
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Christian values are at the heart of all the school does. The school's motto is 'Everyone is special.' The co-headteachers have created a school community with a real family feel.

Staff regularly go the extra mile to keep the pupils safe and happy. They also provide fantastic support for pupils' families. Pupils enjoy their lessons.

They work hard and want to do well.

Staff have high expectations for every pupil. No one is ever 'written off'.

They want each pupil to be their best in everything. Leaders make sure that the curriculum helps all pupils to learn well. Teachers are working hard to make every subject even better.

Relationships acro...ss the school are warm and nurturing.

Pupils behave well in and around school. They are sensible on the stairs.

They cross the road safely between the two school sites. They say that bullying is very rare. If it does happen, it is dealt with quickly.

Parents and carers agree with this view.

The school has a richly diverse community. 'Pupils are exposed to all sorts of different cultures and experiences that give balance to their education,' commented one parent.

Pupils enjoy taking part in services at the local church. They enjoy exciting trips further afield.

What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?

Burley St Matthias Primary is a good school that is still improving.

The co-headteachers provide strong and effective leadership. Senior leaders and the learning support mentor work closely with them. Together, they know the school well.

They are driving it forward.

Leaders want every pupil to read well. Teachers and teaching assistants teach phonics skilfully.

Lessons follow a clear sequence. Children get off to a good start in Reception. They learn letters and sounds quickly and can soon read simple words.

Children have reading books which match the sounds they have learned. They rapidly become fluent readers in Year 1. Any who begin to fall behind get support to catch up quickly.

Pupils enjoy their daily class story sessions and the weekly 'Jackanory' assembly. During the inspection, Year 6 pupils were exploring the book 'Fantastic and Strange' by Ben Hulme-Cross and Paul Stewart. Some words, such as 'resemblance', 'banish' and 'devouring', were unfamiliar to them.

Rather than using a dictionary, pupils tried various ways to work out their meaning from the text.

Leaders have carefully planned and organised the curriculum. Pupils learn the necessary knowledge and skills in the right order.

Some plans, including English, mathematics, computing and French, are well established. Teachers check pupils' learning and build on pupils' existing knowledge. Year 4 pupils remembered last term's French work on naming body parts.

They enjoyed performing 'head, shoulders, knees and toes', in French, for an inspector. Some curriculum plans, such as history and geography, are newer. Teachers are still familiarising themselves with the new approach to some subjects.

Reception staff sequence the children's learning carefully. Children build really well on each small step of their learning each day.

Teachers do not always check pupils' learning carefully enough.

In many subjects, other than mathematics and English, it is not always clear what teachers want the most able pupils to achieve at the end of each year. These pupils sometimes find their work too easy. However, this is not the case in the Reception Year.

Children enjoy the daily 'Rainbow challenges'. These link to each day's key teaching in mathematics and literacy. Staff check very carefully how well the Reception children are learning.

Pupils who are new to English get good support to access the curriculum. So do pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). Parents agree with this.

Staff know all pupils very well, so they identify those who need extra help without delay.

Reception staff plan lots of interesting learning opportunities for the children. They quickly identify children who have specific speech and language difficulties.

Staff involve parents in their children's learning right from the start. One parent told inspectors, 'Reception class teachers are always happy to listen to any concerns or worries.'

The school's personal, social and health education programme is very effective.

Pupils consider many moral and topical questions. They learn weekly about managing their mental health. Pupils take on a range of roles and responsibilities.

They learn about different religions and cultures.

Leaders set high standards for attendance and behaviour across the school. Staff do not allow lessons to be interrupted by poor behaviour.

Most pupils enjoy coming to school. Even so, a small number of pupils are absent from school on a regular basis. They miss out on important learning.

Leaders work very closely with pupils and their families to address this issue.

Leaders have built a close-knit staff team. Staff say that leaders support them and make their workload manageable.

Governors provide appropriate challenge and support for the headteacher. Governors check the effectiveness of the use of additional funding. They are developing ways to check this even more closely.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Child protection is a very high priority in this school. The learning support mentor leads this work very effectively.

Families trust and respect her. Staff keep meticulous and detailed records. The school provides strong support for pupils' and families' mental health.

Pupils learn how to manage any risks they may face.

Staff keep up to date with safeguarding information. They know what to do if they encounter a problem.

Communication between staff is strong. Staff regularly go the extra mile to support vulnerable pupils and their families. They identify pupils and families for early help.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

Leaders have developed a clear curriculum intent. Schemes of work contain essential knowledge and skills, together with a clear teaching sequence. However, the implementation of the plans for some of the foundation subjects is not fully in place.

Current plans for some foundation subjects do not include clear end points for pupils working beyond the expected standard. This means that teachers are not always sure exactly what the most able pupils should be aiming for. Leaders need to make sure that the revised content of all subjects is implemented quickly.

They must ensure that the end points are clear for all pupils, particularly the most able pupils. . In many of the foundation subjects, teachers and leaders do not use assessment well to check pupils' understanding and inform teaching.

Consequently, pupils – especially the most able – are not always given work that is matched to their ability. Teachers and leaders should establish suitable methods of assessment to ensure that all pupils are set work that is sufficiently demanding. .

A small number of pupils are persistently absent from school. Although numbers are slowly reducing, the percentage of persistent absence was in the highest 20% nationally in 2019. These pupils miss out on important aspects of the curriculum, as well as the chance to revisit their learning.

Leaders set high standards for attendance across the school. They follow up persistent absence relentlessly and meticulously with the small number of families concerned. Leaders should continue to work with these families to reduce persistent absence further.

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