|Name||Foxdell Junior School|
|Ofsted Inspection Rating||Requires improvement|
|Inspection Date||10 December 2019|
|Address||Dallow Road, Luton, Bedfordshire, LU1 1UP|
|Religious Character||Does not apply|
|Number of Pupils||353 (50% boys 50% girls)|
|Number of Pupils per Teacher||19.2|
|Percentage Free School Meals||21.3%|
|Percentage English is Not First Language||95.5%|
|Pupils with SEN Support||12.2%|
|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?
This is a welcoming and inclusive school. Pupils attend regularly and enjoy learning. One pupil commented ‘Our school is a good place to learn.’ This was typical of views expressed by others. Pupils show positive attitudes towards their learning. Nevertheless, pupils do not receive a good quality of education. Leaders are working effectively to improve the school. They want the best for everyone in the school community.
Pupils feel safe and are kept safe. They told inspectors they can talk to adults if they are feeling unhappy or worried about anything. Pupils are usually kind and friendly to each other. On occasion, a small number of pupils do not treat others with respect. Leaders take swift action to address this so that their behaviour improves. Bullying is uncommon. When it does occur, adults deal with it well.
Pupils celebrate differences within and outside the school community. They take their roles such as being a ‘values ambassador’ seriously. Leaders make sure that pupils experience a range of exciting opportunities such as visits in the local area and residential trips further afield. Leaders also make sure that vulnerable pupils and their families are supported well.
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Leaders have designed an ambitious and interesting curriculum. It is capably planned so that pupils build up skills and knowledge over time. However, teachers do not consistently deliver these plans effectively in all subjects. As a result, pupils do not achieve as well as they could.
Leaders are focused on improving the quality of the education provided by the school so that pupils’ achievement is better. Leaders’ plans have led to improvements, for example, in the way pupils learn in mathematics and science. Leaders support the staff team well and are realistic about the pressures that they face. Teachers say that leaders are approachable and help them to get better at their job.
Leaders have been successful in promoting a love of reading. Pupils read regularly and enjoy being read to by their teachers. Pupils like using the attractive school library and the reading areas in their classrooms. Nonetheless, there is not an effective curriculum in place to help the weakest readers to improve their reading. Staff are not well trained in supporting pupils who struggle to read. Leaders know that this is the case and plans to improve this are well underway.
Teachers do not provide consistently well for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). In some classes pupils with SEND are given tasks and activities which are too difficult for them. This means that they are not able to learn at a level that suits them. Leaders are not always aware that this is the case.Pupils’ attitudes towards their learning are positive. They respond enthusiastically to well-chosen learning activities. Pupils work well in pairs and groups to support each other.
Leaders provide well for pupils’ wider development. Adults teach pupils about developing physical and mental well-being. Pupils take part in a wide range of sports and activities. They say that they love using the ‘MUGA’ area for sports and games. There is effective support in place to build pupils’ self-esteem and confidence. This work also helps pupils to resolve friendship differences or behaviour and bullying issues. Pupils are taught how to be resilient in their learning and not to give up.
Governors are committed and organised in their approach. They are knowledgeable about the school. Governors provide suitable challenge and support to leaders.
Parents are positive about the school and appreciate the availability of leaders and the staff team. One parent said, ‘The staff are always approachable, friendly and really supportive of all the children.’ The school organises workshops in which parents can learn to support their children’s learning or learn new skills for themselves, for example using technology.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
Leaders prioritise the safeguarding of pupils. All necessary checks on adults are thorough and kept up to date.
Staff receive regular training. They are appropriately updated about any changes to safeguarding guidance and legislation. They know how to report concerns. Leaders’ actions taken as a result of these concerns are documented carefully and followed up.
Pupils say that they feel safe in school and know how to keep themselves safe. For example, they are taught about the dangers of the misuse of technology and cyber-bullying. Pupils told inspectors about the pupil version of the safeguarding policy which they all studied as part of guided reading.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
Teachers do not have a consistently strong knowledge of some subjects and how to teach them. This means that they do not deliver the curriculum in line with leaders’ high expectations. Pupils do not achieve as well as they should. Leaders need to continue to develop teachers’ ability to consistently deliver the curriculum well so that they: build on pupils’ prior learning; address the needs of different groups of pupils; and deepen pupils’ knowledge and skills in all subjects.
Pupils who struggle with their reading or who are new to the school and speak little or no English are not taught to read effectively. Leaders’ plans are well underway to address this through the introduction of a new phonics curriculum. Leaders should ensure that this curriculum is implemented effectively and that adults have a detailed subject knowledge of phonics and reading and how to teach them well. . Leaders are not aware that some classroom provision for pupils with SEND does not always match pupils’ ability level. This means that tasks are too hard for some pupils to complete. Leaders should check that teachers are designing and providing appropriate activities which develop the knowledge and skills of pupils with SEND and also promote their independence.