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The pupils at Clifton are kind and caring. They make sure that all new pupils are included, so no one is left out.
Similarly, visitors are warmly welcomed and made to feel part of the school. Pupils have the choice to move to their next school early. However, because they are happy and settled, most choose to stay.
Pupils respond well to the high expectations of behaviour set for them. Pupils sustain positive relationships with their peers and adults. This contributes to classrooms being purposeful places where pupils can learn with little disruption.
Bullying is rare, but when it happens pupils are confident that teachers will deal with it. This supports pup...ils to feel safe and well cared for.
Pupils benefit from a quality of education that develops their talents and interests across a wide range of subjects.
Pupils are enthusiastic and enjoy their learning. They love to explain how they remember what they have learned, for instance by describing what they do and why they do it, when talking about science investigations.
Pupils have opportunities to take on leadership roles.
Those who are on the school council are enthusiastic and determined. Pupils are well supported to make changes in the school.
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Leaders have made sure that the curriculum is well planned.
They have carefully considered what pupils should learn in each subject from the early years to Year 6. Teachers prepare lessons that build on what pupils have learned before. For instance, in history, pupils are asked key questions about the impact of past civilisations on us today.
Pupils can explain their thinking using historical language and they can compare reliable sources of information. Throughout each lesson, teachers check that pupils understand the ideas being taught and help to correct any misconceptions.
Leaders ensure the reading curriculum has a high priority.
Pupils enjoy reading. They talk with interest about the authors they enjoy and the books they read. Pupils learn to read as soon as they start school.
Teachers have good subject knowledge and they model the sounds clearly and accurately. Pupils regularly practise and apply their phonics knowledge when reading. Pupils read books that are closely matched to the phonics they are learning.
In all year groups, pupils who are not fluent readers receive extra teaching.
Teachers check what pupils learn regularly. In a few subjects, leaders are in the process of changing how teachers check what pupils know and remember.
The current system does not routinely give teachers the information they need to ensure that they know how well pupils are learning in these subjects. Teachers do not adapt their teaching to help pupils when they are less secure in their understanding.In the early years, teachers identify children's needs well.
They use this information to make sure they change their curriculum plans, so that children build on what they have learned before effectively. For instance, a focus on fine motor skills helps children to be able to hold a pencil and write. Children who find listening harder are encouraged using visuals cards and positive praise.
Consequently, children in the early years develop good attitudes toward learning.
Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are identified quickly. Leaders ensure that the curriculum is suitably adapted, so that pupils with SEND learn and achieve well alongside their peers.
There are some pupils in the school with more complex needs and they receive more individual teaching that supports their learning and progress well.
Leaders have constructed a well-considered curriculum to ensure that pupils' personal development has a high priority. Pupils learn to talk about how they are feeling and reflect on their actions.
They value each other's differences. Pupils learn to recognise their own and others' emotions.
Most senior leaders are new.
Swift changes have been made that have contributed positively towards improving pupils' achievement. This is evident in the teaching of phonics and early reading. Middle leaders have been developed according to their strengths and are supporting newer subject leads.
Governors assure themselves through regular visits, and by talking with staff and pupils, that leaders' work to improve the school is making a positive difference for all pupils. Leaders and governors consider staff workload and staff feel well supported.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
Leaders ensure they provide appropriate and up-to-date training, so staff understand their safeguarding responsibilities. Staff report any concerns without delay. Leaders keep accurate records of safeguarding concerns and act quickly when they need to.
Leaders make sure that they are very clear about the support that pupils should have from external agencies.
The curriculum supports pupils to understand how to keep safe online and when they are at home. Pupils understand what to do if they fall into water as they are learning about this in their swimming lessons.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
• In a few subjects, teachers are not using assessment effectively so that they know how well pupils are learning the subject knowledge intended. Teachers are not using assessment information to adapt their planning when pupils have misconceptions or do not have a secure understanding. Leaders should ensure that teachers effectively check pupils' understanding in all subjects and use this information to adapt their planning and teaching, so that pupils build effectively on what they know and can do.
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