Ferndale Primary School

Name Ferndale Primary School
Website http://www.ferndaleprimary.co.uk/
Ofsted Inspection Rating Requires improvement
Inspection Date 14 November 2018
Address Ferndale Avenue, Great Barr, Birmingham, West Midlands, B43 5QF
Phone Number 01213573326
Type Primary
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 606 (53% boys 47% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 22.9
Local Authority Sandwell
Percentage Free School Meals 14%
Percentage English is Not First Language 23.1%
Persisitent Absence 11.6%
Pupils with SEN Support 6.3%
Catchment Area Information Available Yes, our catchment area data is FREE
Last Distance Offered Information Available No

Information about this school

This school is much larger than most primary schools. Pupils come from a range of backgrounds. Although one in four pupils speak English as an additional language, only a small number are in the early stages of learning English. Early years provision comprises a Nursery class for up to 78 three- and four-year-old children, and three Reception classes for four- and five-year-olds. The children in the Nursery attend part time or full time. The school has specially resourced provision for pupils with SEND. This provides for up to 10 pupils who have education, health and care plans and who are autistic or have complex communication needs. Across the school, the percentage of pupils with SEND is above that of most schools. Since the previous inspection in March 2014, there have been considerable staff changes. The headteacher joined the school in April 2016 and some other senior leaders joined in September 2016. Leaders and governors have commissioned additional support from external consultants, including one of the local authority’s school improvement advisers.

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is a school that requires improvement For a period after the previous inspection, the school’s effectiveness, the quality of teaching and pupils’ achievements were in rapid decline. In some lessons, teachers do not provide enough work that extends pupils’ learning to help them reach higher standards in reading and writing. This is particularly the case for the most able pupils. Nor are tasks always sufficiently adapted to meet pupils’ needs or address their misunderstandings. In key stage 1, the teaching does not always build on the good start made in the early years. In key stage 2, some teachers do not use assessments well enough to plan tasks that meet pupils’ abilities. Learning support staff do not always intervene well enough to help pupils. Standards are improving but pupils are still capable of doing better in key stage 2. Some pupils make unnecessary and repeated spelling and punctuation errors when writing. In key stage 1, pupils’ handwriting is not improving well enough. Leaders still have a lot to do to sustain improvements to teaching and learning. Improvements are stalling at times because : their evaluations of the quality of teaching are not always accurate enough. Although detailed improvement plans have been drawn up, leaders do not focus enough on those priorities that will address the weaknesses in teaching. The school has the following strengths Leaders are reversing the historic decline in pupils’ achievement. They are bringing back much-welcome stability to the school. Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), including those in the specially resourced provision, achieve well. Pupils behave well and there are warm and positive relationships between them and staff. Mathematics teaching is improving well. Increasingly, more pupils make good progress. Leaders provide a rich programme of curriculum activities and enrichment. These have a positive effect on pupils’ personal development and attitudes to learning. Children in the early years get off to a good start. Teaching in the Nursery and Reception classes is well managed and effective.