Chenies School

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About Chenies School

Name Chenies School
Ofsted Inspections
This inspection rating relates to a predecessor school. When a school converts to an academy, is taken over or closes and reopens as a new school a formal link is created between the new school and the old school, by the Department for Education. Where the new school has not yet been inspected, we show the inspection history of the predecessor school, as we believe it still has significance.
Headteacher Ms Rebecca Sutherland
Address Chenies, Rickmansworth, WD3 6ER
Phone Number 01923282546
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils Unknown
Local Authority Buckinghamshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection
This inspection rating relates to a predecessor school. When a school converts to an academy, is taken over or closes and reopens as a new school a formal link is created between the new school and the old school, by the Department for Education. Where the new school has not yet been inspected, we show the inspection history of the predecessor school, as we believe it still has significance.

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders want the best for everyone.

They aspire for all pupils to leave the school prepared well, socially and academically, for secondary school. Leaders have ensured that pupils experience a wide range of subjects and interesting topics. However, not all pupils achieve well enough.

This is because of inconsistencies in teaching and weaknesses in the curriculum.

Pupils enjoy school and like their teachers. They feel safe and describe the school as a friendly, caring place where 'everyone knows everyone'.

Pastoral care is strong. Bullying does not happen very often. Any upsets are dealt with appropriately.

Most pupils behave sensibly and are... respectful to each other and the staff.

Older pupils are caring and supportive of the younger members of the school community. They like to be playground 'buddies' during lunchtimes.

Many pupils readily take on extra responsibilities. Special roles include being house captains, school councillors and 'eco warriors'.

Pupils enjoy the after-school clubs such as football, taekwondo and multi-sports.

They appreciate the chance to compete in sporting events with other local schools. Enrichment activities enhance pupils' enjoyment of school. These include the recent trip to the Ashmolean Museum and the National Gallery art project.

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

The school has been through an unsettled period and experienced many changes of staff. Along with the COVID-19 pandemic, this has hampered leaders' work to make planned improvements to the quality of education. Sometimes things have been started and then paused because of staff mobility and changes to subject leadership.

Leaders have identified the key focus for pupils' learning in each subject in the wider curriculum. However, content is not yet sufficiently precise or clear. In key stage 2, pupils' learning in subjects other than English and mathematics is somewhat superficial.

This is because teachers do not always cover content in sufficient depth. Sometimes, learning activities do not align well to the curriculum intent. Currently, staff in key stage 2 do not give enough attention to some aspects of pupils' writing.

As a result, weaknesses in pupils' grammar, punctuation, spelling and handwriting limit the quality of their writing in English and in other subjects. For some years, pupils in key stage 2 have not made strong enough progress in writing.

However, there are strengths in some aspects of the school's work.

Children in the early years achieve well and build successfully on this through key stage 1. Pupils also achieve well in mathematics. In this subject, the curriculum sets out a clear pathway of progression.

Teachers regularly revisit content to help pupils understand and remember new concepts and procedures. They are quick to spot if any pupils have not understood something. Across the curriculum, staff make sure that pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are supported well.

Pupils with SEND access a suitably ambitious curriculum and are fully included in the life of the school. Leaders have appropriate systems to enable pupils' needs to be identified.

Leaders' well-judged work to strengthen reading has been successful.

The recently introduced new phonics programme is working well. Most children in early years quickly learn to read well. Across the school, story times, reading lessons and visits to the library help to get pupils 'hooked' on reading.

Older pupils talk with confidence about their favourite books and authors. Books are chosen for their literary value and often because they contribute to pupils' learning in other subjects. Assessments and ongoing checks mean that staff are on top of how pupils are getting on.

Extra support is on hand for any pupils who need more help to keep up.

Leaders make sure that pupils learn about how to keep safe and live healthily. Pupils learn about healthy relationships and how to recognise if something is not quite right.

They develop their knowledge of other religions and cultures and the importance of diversity and tolerance. Pupils know that everyone is different and should be respected.

Relationships across the school are supportive.

Parents particularly appreciate the nurturing 'family feel' of the school. Their good partnership with the school gets underway as soon as children join Reception. Equally, staff enjoy working at the school and feel supported well by leaders.

Governors are committed to the school and are clear about the school's vision and aims. They have recently restructured their meetings to enable them to work more effectively. However, governance oversight of a few aspects of the school has not been sufficiently robust.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Staff and leaders understand that it is everyone's responsibility to keep pupils safe. They know pupils well and are alert and responsive to any concerns.

Any worries, however minor, are noted and followed up appropriately. Leaders have a good understanding of local safeguarding arrangements. When needed, they enlist the support and involvement of outside agencies.

Leaders ensure that staff have regular training and updates to keep their knowledge fresh and up to date. Recruitment processes are thorough and record-keeping is clear and effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• In most foundation subjects, leaders have not identified clearly enough the most important knowledge they want pupils to learn.

Some content is decided by individual teachers and this weakens the impact of leaders' intended curriculum. Leaders need to ensure that they refine their curriculum and provide greater guidance for staff about the most important knowledge pupils need to learn and remember. ? There are some inconsistencies in teaching in key stage 2.

In subjects other than English and mathematics, teachers do not ensure that content is covered in enough depth. Learning activities do not always support pupils to learn the intended curriculum. This means that pupils are not building or deepening their knowledge well enough.

Leaders need to provide training for staff so that they can implement the curriculum consistently well. ? In key stage 2, teachers do not give sufficient attention to some aspects of pupils' writing, including their grammar, punctuation, spelling and handwriting. Weaknesses in these aspects of pupils' writing are not being addressed well enough.

As a result, pupils' writing is of very variable quality. Leaders need to provide training for staff. They need to ensure that staff give much greater emphasis to addressing weaknesses in pupils' grammar, punctuation, spelling and handwriting that currently impair the quality of their writing.

• Governors' strategic oversight of some aspects of the school's work is not sufficiently robust. As a result, governors do not have a strong enough understanding of aspects of the school's work. Governors need to put in place stronger systems to enable them to have a clearer understanding of the school's work so that they can fulfil their strategic responsibilities more effectively.

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