Finlay Community School

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About Finlay Community School

Name Finlay Community School
Ofsted Inspections
Executive Headteacher Mrs Hannah Williams
Address Finlay Road, Gloucester, GL4 6TR
Phone Number 01452530310
Phase Primary
Type Foundation school
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character None
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 385
Local Authority Gloucestershire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Finlay Community School is warm, welcoming and inclusive. The vision for all pupils to aspire, to belong and to achieve underpins the ethos of the school. Staff know pupils well.

As a result, pupils feel a valued part of the school community. Pupils are keen to learn and to do well.

Relationships in the school are positive and caring.

This starts in the early years. Children learn to play well with one another, taking turns and showing consideration of others. Pupils learn the importance of respect.

For example, pupils learn to respect others' opinions that may differ from their own. Pupils are advocates for equality. They understand that everyone is... different and the importance of treating everyone fairly.

There are high expectations for behaviour. Pupils are well behaved and polite. They listen well to adults and to their peers.

The school is calm and orderly. Disruptions to learning are minimal. Pupils know that there are adults who will help them if they have a worry.

As a result, pupils feel safe.

Pupils learn how to keep themselves healthy including their physical and mental health. They recognise the importance of brushing their teeth, of sleep and a healthy diet.

Pupils understand how to look after their emotional well-being and mental health. They learn to be grateful, to celebrate positives and to express their feelings.

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

The school has developed an ambitious curriculum.

It sets out the essential knowledge that pupils need to learn from Reception to Year 6. It is well sequenced and progressive. Teaching activities give pupils opportunities to revisit and recall their previous learning.

This helps them to know more and remember more.

The school has taken effective action to address the previous weaknesses that are evident in the most recent key stage 1 outcomes. Pupils have received the support they need to catch up and to regain lost ground from key stage 1.

Pupils' knowledge and understanding develops well during key stage 2. As a result, pupils are well prepared for secondary school when they reach the end of Year 6.

A distinct focus on teaching strategies to support pupils' learning has led to a consistent approach to teaching and learning in most classes.

The school has prioritised staff training. Staff have the subject knowledge they need to deliver the curriculum well. There is a strong focus on developing pupils' vocabulary.

Pupils broaden their vocabulary through reading a wide range of high-quality books. The curriculum identifies the subject specific vocabulary for pupils to learn. Teachers model this well.

As a result, pupils, including the youngest children in early years, learn to use subject specific vocabulary. For example, pupils in Reception Year, use words such as chrysalis to describe their learning about caterpillars and butterflies.The school has worked hard to ensure an inclusive culture permeates through the school with a shared belief that all pupils can achieve.

The school identifies the needs of pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) accurately. Some pupils with SEND have gaps in their learning. This is because at times, some activities and the support that pupils receive, do not precisely match their needs.

The school has prioritised developments in reading. Staff are keen for pupils to learn to read well and to foster a love of reading. There is a well-structured programme in place for phonics.

This starts as soon as children begin in Reception. Most pupils read books that match the sounds that they know. This helps them to read fluently and confidently.

There is a consistent approach to teaching phonics. This helps pupils to become familiar with the strategies they need to apply when reading new and tricky words.

The school is working hard to improve attendance.

It sets out clear expectations. Regular monitoring and support for families is starting to make a difference. Nonetheless, the number of pupils who are persistently absent remains too high.

These pupils miss too much school which leads to gaps in their knowledge and understanding.

The school has ensured that pupils' learning extends beyond the academic. As a result, pupils' wider development is well supported.

Pupils learn about discrimination and have an age-appropriate understanding of protected characteristics. They learn about different cultures and religions. This helps pupils to prepare for life in modern Britain.

Staff feel well supported by leaders. They appreciate leaders' consideration of their well-being and workload. Staff value the training and support they receive.

Most parents speak highly of the school. They appreciate the care that staff provide.

The federation board knows the school well.

They recognise its strengths and priorities for development. They understand and fulfil their statutory responsibilities effectively.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• The needs of a small number of pupils, including some pupils with SEND, are not met as well as they could be. At times, the learning activities do not precisely match pupils' knowledge, which means that they are unable to build on what they already know. The school should sharpen how teaching matches learning to pupils' needs, to ensure that pupils build on what they already know.

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