Catherine Infant School

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About Catherine Infant School


Name Catherine Infant School
Website http://www.catherine-inf.leicester.sch.uk
Inspections
Ofsted Inspections
Address Ulverscroft Road, Leicester, LE4 6BY
Phone Number 01162625422
Type Primary
Age Range 3-7
Religious Character Does Not Apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 394 (55.1% boys 44.9% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 22.0
Local Authority Leicester
Percentage Free School Meals 17.20%
Percentage English is Not First Language 88.8%
Persistent Absence 9.7%
Pupils with SEN Support 10.7%
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

This is an exceptional school, where pupils are keen to learn. The majority of pupils speak English as an additional language.

Staff make sure that this does not hold them back. Pupils achieve extremely well in reading, writing and mathematics by the end of Year 2.

Pupils told us that they 'work hard and think carefully'.

This is exactly what we saw when we visited lessons. Teachers plan interesting activities. Pupils are rightly proud of their work.

The standard of pupils' work in books is impressive.

Everyone expects pupils to behave well. Pupils respond eagerly; their behaviour is excellent.

Pupils say that they feel safe, and bu...llying does not happen. Lessons and playtimes are calm and happy. Leaders have transformed the outside areas since the last inspection.

There is so much for pupils to do. They get lots of exercise and make friends easily.

There are plenty of clubs to join.

Pupils can choose from yoga, football, reading, colouring, arts and crafts or gymnastics. They can explore new interests and develop their talents.

Parents and carers are supportive of the school.

They say that their children are 'happy and excited to come to school every day'.

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

Everyone here is ambitious for all pupils. Leaders continually seek to improve what the school offers.

Teachers plan a well-organised curriculum which is both enriching and demanding.

The teaching of reading is at the heart of this school. Children begin to learn phonics straight away in the Nursery and Reception classes.

Teachers skilfully build on what children know. The reading leader uses her expert knowledge to ensure that all make rapid progress. Pupils who need help are swiftly identified.

They receive highly effective support. All pupils read from books that closely match their phonic skills. They develop a love of books because staff read stories to them every day.

When asked what they enjoy most at school, pupils told me 'reading'.

Leaders have ensured that the mathematics curriculum is exceptionally well planned. Teachers have high expectations of all pupils.

This starts from the moment that they start school. For example, the youngest children understand what 'zero' means by thinking about what no birds in a house would look like. Teachers adapt their teaching to make sure that pupils who join the school later catch up quickly.

Pupils enjoy demanding tasks which prompt them to think more deeply. They relish the chance to explain how they have solved challenges, and become enthusiastic and confident learners.

Teachers have equally high expectations in all subjects.

When we asked pupils about the religious education topic, they could remember and compare the main features of the religions they had studied in detail. In a writing lesson, pupils at the early stages of learning English were highly motivated and enthusiastic. They were eager to practise writing sentences.

These pupils quickly catch up with their peers.

Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) achieve very well. The skilled and experienced special educational needs coordinator (SENCo) ensures that pupils' needs are quickly identified.

Staff are meticulous in making sure that the support pupils get makes a difference. The 'Galaxy Room' for pupils with complex needs is a successful addition to the school. This is where pupils receive daily one-to-one support, precisely matched to their needs.

The highly skilled staff help pupils to improve their communication skills. Pupils are beginning to manage their needs independently.

Leaders and staff provide extensive enrichment opportunities for pupils, from being eco-councillors to learning to ride bicycles and scooters safely.

All pupils join in a wide range of art-based projects. Teachers can explain how they develop pupils' characters so that they become well-rounded and confident individuals. This part of the curriculum is planned in detail and deeply established.

A pupil described this as learning 'behaviours to live by'. There are comprehensive opportunities for pupils to learn about the wide range of faiths and cultures in modern Britain.

Children in the early years settle extremely quickly and respond happily to routines.

Children concentrate and persevere. They relish learning more about 'Owl Babies', both indoors and outdoors. Staff use every available opportunity to help all children listen and speak fluently.

Leaders and staff know the pupils, and the local community, very well. They build highly positive relationships with families. Leaders and governors provide high-quality staff training.

Staff spoke warmly about how well leaders consider their well-being and workload. They said, 'Leaders are constantly asking us what they can do to support us.' Morale is high, and staff are proud of the difference that they make.

Safeguarding

The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

There is a well-established culture of concern for pupils' welfare throughout the school. Leaders make sure that staff thoroughly understand their training.

All staff know how to raise concerns. Leaders take prompt and effective action. Governors make sure that procedures and policies are rigorous.

Leaders make sure that all appropriate checks take place before adults start to work at the school. Pupils told us that they feel safe and understand what bullying is. They do not think that it happens, but do know to tell someone if they have any worries.