|Name||Fordbridge Community Primary School|
|Ofsted Inspection Rating||Good|
|Inspection Date||15 January 2020|
|Address||Crabtree Drive, Chelmsley Wood, Birmingham, West Midlands, B37 5BU|
|Religious Character||Does not apply|
|Number of Pupils||513 (49% boys 51% girls)|
|Number of Pupils per Teacher||19.9|
|Percentage Free School Meals||46.4%|
|Percentage English is Not First Language||5.3%|
|Pupils with SEN Support||18.9%|
|Catchment Area Information Available||Yes, our catchment area data is FREE|
|Last Distance Offered Information Available||No|
Fordbridge Community Primary School continues to be a good school.
What is it like to attend this school?
This school has an ambitious outlook on learning. Its leaders set high standards for everyone. In return, staff and pupils respond well, enjoy school life and do their best. Everyone works together very well to make the school a happy and successful place in which to work and learn.
Pupils’ attainment is usually above average in English and mathematics, and they achieve well across a broad range of subjects. In addition to lessons, there are lots of interesting clubs and activities, ranging from rowing to woodwork. Pupils can gain awards for achievements and commitment to these extra-curricular activities, which are presented at a ‘mini-university’.
Behaviour is managed very well so that all feel safe and classes run smoothly. Pupils who find it hard to settle in school are given lots of help in many ways. Staff work closely with different organisations who provide extra support, and they keep parents involved and informed. Bullying is not accepted. The school’s golden values of respect, resilience, reliability and responsibility underpin school life.
Staff are proud to be part of this school. They stay up to date with training and say that leaders are always on hand to offer support and advice.
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
From Nursery through to Year 6, staff promote a love and enjoyment of books and reading. Teachers are well trained and have taken part in research projects about ways to inspire pupils. There is a book club where pupils meet to discuss books, and older pupils have run a reading café. Everybody enjoyed this reading event, and it is a typical example of how the school aims to make learning fun.
The school has a well-organised phonics programme, with children taught in ability groups each day. Adults regularly read to pupils and introduce them to new authors andstories. Pupils are encouraged to read outside of school and take good-quality books home to share with parents or read on their own. In class, pupils use special ‘reading toolkits’ which help them to understand what they read.
Overall, reading is taught very well. However, some pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) do not always benefit from the same level of staff expertise as others.
Other subjects are taught well too because there is strong curriculum leadership and planning in the school. In English, mathematics and science, for example, leaders provide guidance, training and support for staff. This ensures that pupils learn the right things at the right time and understand why their education is important. This is evident in their positive attitudes to learning, resilience and achievement, both in class and in many extra-curricular activities.
In science, for instance, pupils build up their scientific vocabulary and understanding in a logical order. They can also go along to science clubs and carry out experiments and investigations that help them to think and act like scientists. This very effective approach to science is still quite new in the school, but, so far, it is working well.
In the early years, children have great provision. They are taught and cared for by well-trained staff. Two- and three-year-olds attend morning or afternoon sessions and staff place a high priority on developing their early language, communication and social skills. Good links between home and school help parents to understand expectations and how they can help their children at home. Leaders are always on hand to offer support and advice.
The school has made links with local companies to help pupils learn about the world beyond school. Pupils have worked with accountants, caterers and engineers, who have taught them new things and opened their eyes to future careers. Furthermore, pupils have been able to gain special awards that are presented at a local university.
Pupils’ behaviour is managed well, which allows everyone to learn. There are lots of rewards that recognise pupils for ‘doing the right thing’. If a pupil finds it hard to cope in school, then staff work with parents and other organisations to find ways to help. Exclusion from school is used when necessary, but it is not common.
Records relating to school attendance are kept up to date, but occasionally clerical errors have caused confusion. School leaders are alert to this and, at the time of the inspection, were putting this right.
Pupils learn about life in modern Britain and the wider world. They go on lots of trips. Visiting speakers and specialists come into school to support pupils’ work in music, sport, art and much more.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.The school team works with many different organisations to keep pupils safe. Regular training and updates mean staff know how to spot signs that a pupil may be at risk of harm. Any concerns are recorded and followed up properly. The single central record of checks on staff is kept correctly and the school site is secure.
Pupils are taught how to keep themselves safe when online or when out and about. They also know that they should report any instances of bullying so that adults can stop it.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
In some parts of the school, pupils with SEND do not benefit from the same level of resource and expertise as elsewhere. This stops them from making the best possible progress. School leaders should review the way staff manage the teaching of pupils with SEND. . The school has recently changed the way science is planned and taught, to ensure smoother progression and more practical activities. It is early days and, going forwards, leaders should continue to monitor it closely to check that the effective start is maintained. . On occasions, paperwork relating to attendance is not crystal-clear, which has led to misunderstandings about arrangements and expectations. To stop this happening, leaders should make sure that communication with parents about attendance includes all the right information.
When we have judged a school to be good, we will then normally go into the school about once every four years to confirm that the school remains good. This is called a section 8 inspection of a good school or non-exempt outstanding school. We do not give graded judgements on a section 8 inspection. However, if we find some evidence that the school could now be better than good or that standards may be declining, then the next inspection will be a section 5 inspection. Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the section 8 inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will convert the section 8 inspection to a section 5 inspection immediately.
This is the first section 8 inspection since we judged Fordbridge Community Primary School to be good on 21–22 June 2016.