Denaby Main Primary Academy

Name Denaby Main Primary Academy
Ofsted Inspection Rating Requires improvement
Inspection Date 25 September 2019
Address School Walk, Denaby Main, Doncaster, South Yorkshire, DN12 4HZ
Phone Number 01709863622
Type Primary
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 179 (58% boys 42% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 19.9
Academy Sponsor Astrea Academy Trust
Local Authority Doncaster
Percentage Free School Meals 46.8%
Percentage English is Not First Language 1.1%
Persisitent Absence 7.6%
Pupils with SEN Support 19%
Catchment Area Information Available Yes, our catchment area data is FREE
Last Distance Offered Information Available No

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders have made many improvements, especially over the last year. Pupils were very proud to tell us all about these changes. They are right to be proud of themselves.

Leaders have worked hard to improve pupils’ behaviour. It has been transformed. Everyone understands how they should behave. Pupils feels safe at school. This includes at lunchtime. All adults treat pupils with kindness and respect. This is helping pupils to learn and succeed.

Pupils say that there is hardly any bullying. If there is, pupils ask for help and they know that teachers will sort it out fairly. One pupil said, ‘Mr Crossley is really good. He helps us.’ Parents and carers are also delighted by the many improvements. They say that leaders are always available, and that communication is much better now. Any problems are sorted out quickly. Now that behaviour is good, leaders are making sure that the quality of education improves too.

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

There have been lots of new teachers recently. Some pupils had lots of different teachers during last year. The new teachers all stayed this September, so classes are much more settled now. Pupils know what is expected of them. The teachers are working well together as a team. Leaders are building on this. The quality of teaching is improving quickly.

When this school was inadequate, pupils did not get the chance to cover everything they were supposed to be learning. Some subjects were not taught at all. Teaching was inadequate. This means that pupils do not know or cannot remember the things they should have learned by now. Leaders and staff understand that lots of pupils need help to catch up.

The older pupils who spoke to us could not remember having any religious education. They could not remember the different faiths or religious beliefs that people may hold. While pupils show respect to each other, the curriculum is not helping pupils learn to respect people who are different from them, including those from other cultures. This is limiting pupils’ personal development.

Leaders have ambitious plans for improving the curriculum. Their new plans only started this September. Some of the teachers have only just begun to lead their subject areas. The multi-academy trust is giving these new leaders training to help them. All subjects are being taught now. Leaders are looking carefully at the content in each subject. They are focused on making sure that what pupils have to learn is being taught in the right order.

Leaders decided that improving the teaching of reading should be their top priority. They started this last January. All staff have had training to help them get better atteaching phonics. New phonics resources are helping teachers to make sure that they are teaching the right sounds in the right order. Teachers check to make sure that all pupils are keeping up. If pupils are struggling, teachers give pupils extra help. This is making sure that pupils catch up quickly.

Many parents hear their children read at home. Too often, teachers send books home that are too hard for Year 1 pupils to read. These books include words with sounds that pupils do not know, so they cannot read them. This means that pupils are not getting enough practice with their reading. It also means that they see reading as too challenging. It puts them off reading.

Older pupils told us that they enjoy reading. Pupils say that they are much more confident when they are reading aloud. They like reading in pairs, taking it in turns to read to each other. Pupils say that they read every day, and they love it.

Leaders have given teachers lots of ideas for helping pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). This is working. Teachers are skilful at setting different work for pupils with SEND. Pupils find this work challenging but not too hard. When they succeed, they are proud of their achievements. This makes them more confident when tackling new learning.

Children’s learning is not planned well enough in early years. Teachers do not expect enough of children. They do not build on the things that children already know and can do, so time is wasted. Teachers have got better at teaching phonics. Children need to have lots of chances to practise what they have learned when they are playing. Teachers are not making sure that they are putting the right things out each day to help children to do this. This is the same for numbers and early mathematics. Leaders already know that this needs to improve.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Pupils know how to keep themselves safe. All staff have had safeguarding training, so they know what to look out for if pupils have experienced harm. The safeguarding leader is very experienced. Pupils and parents trust her.

Before going to meetings with social workers, leaders ask pupils what they think. They ask pupils what they would like them to say. Leaders always make sure that pupils’ views are shared at these meetings. They check that pupils are happy with this first. Trustees and governors check carefully that everything is being done properly.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

The curriculum, including in early years, is not yet good. Leaders need to implement their plans to improve the sequencing of the curriculum. This will help pupils to know more and remember more. . The most senior school leaders are very skilful and knowledgeable. They are making a real difference. This is not yet the case for curriculum leaders. Many of these teachers have only just started in their leadership roles. They are still training to be curriculum leaders. Senior leaders should continue with their plans to develop these junior leaders. This will mean that all leaders can contribute to improving teachers’ understanding of curriculum sequencing and the quality of their teaching. . Leaders must improve the teaching of early reading by ensuring that all reading books match the letters and sounds that pupils know. Children in early years need more opportunities to practise their language skills when they are playing. Pupils in key stage 1 need more frequent opportunities to re-read familiar books in school and at home. This will build pupils’ fluency and confidence. . Leaders should implement their plans to enrich the curriculum to improve pupils’ personal development. Leaders must ensure that pupils have a greater depth of knowledge of other faiths and cultures. This will help pupils to be better prepared for life in modern Britain.