East Dene Primary

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About East Dene Primary

Name East Dene Primary
Website http://www.eastdene.org/
Ofsted Inspections
Mr Ian Tankard
Address Doncaster Road, East Dene, Rotherham, S65 2DF
Phone Number 01709512202
Phase Academy
Type Academy sponsor led
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 297
Local Authority Rotherham
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders at all levels have helped to ensure that the school is a harmonious place for all the school community.

Relationships between staff and pupils are strong. Pupils feel proud of their school and appreciate the care and help that they get from staff. Parents and carers are also proud of the school and feel included in what happens through events like 'early bird reading'.

Pupils are polite and well mannered. They move from one part of the school to another sensibly. On the rare occasions that pupils do not conduct themselves to the high standards staff expect, teachers deal with this calmly and fairly.

Pupils enjoy their breaktimes and lunchtimes where '...active leaders' help them find activities to do to keep them fit and healthy.

Pupils enjoy listening to stories at the end of the day. This is one of the many ways that pupils learn new words and ideas.

Some of these stories have important themes around diversity such as gender respect or what it is like to be a refugee. These themes help to engender tolerance and respect. This is then further built on through assemblies, where pupils gain a clear understanding of British values, like individual liberty.

Pupils say that bullying is not an issue. Leaders are not complacent about this. They investigate issues and support pupils who may be experiencing difficulties.

Pupils are reassured by all that staff do to keep the school a friendly and pleasant place to be.

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

Leaders and those responsible for governance have all had a laser-like focus on the quality of education in the school. Trust leaders and school leaders have worked together to construct a curriculum that is both well planned and right for East Dene pupils.

Leaders have planned out the important knowledge that pupils need. They have then mapped out what teachers need to do to ensure pupils build up to this knowledge.

Leaders have identified the words and phrases that pupils need to talk about what they know.

Teachers use these in their lessons to ensure that pupils learn more vocabulary and become increasingly confident in talking to others. Teachers make sure pupils get the chance to practise speaking to their classmates before presenting what they know to the class.

Leaders ensure that pupils learn new words from the books and texts that pupils read.

Leaders have ensured that pupils get off to a positive start in reading through the rigorous phonics programme. Pupils are taught the sounds that make up words and then read books with these sounds in to practise what they know. If any pupils fall behind, then staff give them short and helpful catch-up sessions.

Most pupils can read fluently and confidently when they get into Year 3.In phonics, pupils get to practise and revise sounds that they have learned in the past. This regular recapping of what pupils know is also present in other subjects.

Leaders have planned out what teachers should come back to and when to do this. Leaders have also made sure that how teachers set up their lessons includes opportunities to recap, like in the 'six part' mathematics lessons or 'I do, we do, you do' in English. This regular revisiting helps pupils to remember what they have been taught in the long term.

Leaders have ensured that pupils receive exceptionally thoughtful and effective pastoral care. Pupils who are experiencing difficulties at home or are struggling to focus in school are given the help that they need. This helps classrooms to be calm and purposeful.

Pupils come into school happy and ready to get on with what is needed.

Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) benefit greatly from this care. They are given support and changes to their work that help them to be successful.

Pupils with SEND can learn independently and contribute to class discussions. However, some pupils with SEND do not have some of their academic objectives broken down into the even smaller steps that they need. Some of these pupils struggle to blend sounds to make words even though they know the individual sounds, or are not getting better at forming letters or counting quickly enough.

Leaders have planned out the curriculum for children in the early years and are starting to add more detail to it. Leaders have ensured that there is a focus on language and stories in the early years. Staff focus on supporting children to improve their speaking.

Sometimes staff do not do this as well as leaders intend. Staff sometimes ask general questions about what children are doing and do not model language or show children clearly what to do. Leaders are aware of this and have plans and resources in place to train and develop staff.

Leaders have clear and robust systems for checking on the attendance of pupils. Leaders make regular contact with and support families to get their children to school. Leaders have identified that persistent absence continues to be stubbornly high and that they and governors must continue to reduce it.

The arrangements for governance in the school are suitable and have contributed strongly to recent improvements. A school representative group (SRG) meets with leaders to check on what is happening to improve the quality of education. A local executive governing body (LEGB) work with other Rotherham trust schools to put in support and extra capacity where needed.

Trustees then check that this is having the desired impact and ask questions where they have concerns. Trustees check that all staff have the training they need to do their job, including keeping pupils safe.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders work very well with external agencies to secure support for families who need it. They work with trust leaders and staff at Rotherham local authority in order to do this well. Staff record any concerns that they have about children, so that small details that might be needed by safeguarding leaders are not missed.

Leaders knock on doors or call families if they are worried that a child is not at school and families respond well to this as relationships are strong.

Leaders know the specific issues that pupils are more likely to face in the local community. Leaders teach pupils about the dangers of online gaming and staff know what to look out for if pupils are being targeted by criminal gangs outside of school.

Leaders respond to any concerns quickly and involve parents, so that pupils are fully supported.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Some of the curriculum in early years has been developed recently and staff have not been fully trained in how to implement it. Some interactions that staff have with children are not purposeful and do not support children in improving their spoken language or skills.

Leaders should train all staff in the early years on the new curriculum and how to model language. They should explain what children should do while learning independently, in a way that matches the curriculum. ? Leaders have not precisely defined some of the small steps of knowledge and skills that some pupils with SEND need to be successful in English and mathematics.

Some pupils know the sounds in words but struggle to blend these together to read them. Other pupils with SEND practise counting or writing but do not get better at it quickly enough as they are not building up the full range of knowledge and skills that they need. Leaders should ensure that all specific objectives for pupils with SEND are broken down into sufficiently small steps of knowledge and skills for the pupils to be successful, particularly in reading.

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