Goosewell Primary Academy

Name Goosewell Primary Academy
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 03 December 2019
Address Goosewell Road, Plymstock, Plymouth, Devon, PL9 9HD
Phone Number 01752482960
Type Primary
Age Range 5-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 560 (50% boys 50% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 23.8
Academy Sponsor Reach South Academy Trust
Local Authority Plymouth
Percentage Free School Meals 7%
Percentage English is Not First Language 4.5%
Persisitent Absence 9.3%
Pupils with SEN Support 13.8%
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?

Pupils thrive at Goosewell Primary Academy. They enjoy learning and making friends. Many pupils told inspectors that the school was very friendly and that pupils were kind and well behaved. Pupils learn about the importance of acting respectfully and with empathy for others throughout the curriculum. One pupil’s comment echoed the views of many: ‘It’s 2019, we don’t do sexism or racism, we’ve moved on.’

Pupils embrace the challenges that teachers set in their lessons. They think carefully about how they learn. For example, pupils use the classroom displays to check their spellings. Staff foster pupils’ thirst for knowledge well. Children in Reception develop positive attitudes to learning. Children share their toys and help each other to read and write.

Pupils behave very well, both in lessons and throughout the school. Staff do not have to remind pupils of the rules of the classroom. Pupils helped to create the rules and follow them diligently.

Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) learn alongside other pupils. They enjoy their lessons and flourish through strong support.

The majority of parents and carers are positive about the quality of education at the school. They appreciate the ways in which staff care for their children.

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

Leaders and staff have high aspirations and expectations of pupils. They have made reading a priority throughout the school. Due to changes to the teaching of reading, pupils read a breadth of exciting and thought-provoking texts. Pupils learn to analyse how writers use language to structure their ideas. For example, Year 2 pupils drew skilfully on the ways in which the author Fran Preston Gannon depicted dinosaurs in ‘A Dinosaur Farm’ when describing their imaginary dinosaurs.

The teaching of phonics is effective, both in Reception and key stage 1. Pupils’ books match their knowledge of letters and sounds, enabling them to learn to read successfully. Pupils are eager to learn to read and enjoy talking about the books they read.

Pupils enrich their study of history and geography through the study of exciting texts such as ‘The Ice Bear’ by Jackie Morris. Year 6 pupils were observed evaluating key information about their chosen arctic animal to write an information text. However, some areas of the wider curriculum, such as science, do not develop pupils’ knowledge and understanding as securely as English does. Teaching does not always deepen pupils’ understanding by building on scientific concepts they havestudied before.

Pupils write well. Leaders and teachers ensure that pupils read widely and increase their vocabulary and grammar. Consequently, pupils write with accuracy and consideration of their audience and purpose. Pupils reflect on their writing and edit with care. Pupils are very proud of their work.

Most pupils learn very well in mathematics. Teachers address misconceptions quickly to enable most pupils to access more complex mathematics. Leaders and teachers have planned the curriculum to ensure that pupils build upon their prior knowledge. However, a small number of pupils do not have secure understanding of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. The gaps in these pupils’ knowledge prevent them from making strong progress.

Pupils who have SEND receive bespoke support that enables them to succeed in lessons. They are included in every part of the curriculum.

Children in Reception develop a strong understanding of the world around them. Leaders have planned the curriculum with great attention to the stages of children’s development. They have planned activities to enable children to communicate well. For example, children are enthused about writing through a range of play-based activities. Children write shopping lists for the baby that they care for. Children also enjoy writing letters and words on large whiteboards. Staff immerse children in a rich reading curriculum. Children develop strong independent learning skills that prepare them well for study in Year 1.

Leaders pay great attention to the learning needs of disadvantaged pupils. They have embedded effective strategies to address barriers to their learning. Consequently, disadvantaged pupils are currently doing well.

Through the curriculum, pupils have many opportunities to learn about democracy, free speech and tolerance. For example, pupils elect their peers to the school council. Pupils discuss important issues such as pollution with reason and respect for the opinions of others.

Governors have an accurate view of the school. They are ambitious for pupils’ academic and social success. They visit the school regularly and pose challenge and support in equal measure. The overwhelming majority of staff are proud to work at the school. They feel well supported by leaders and governors in managing their workload.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective. Leaders have established a strong culture of safeguarding at the school. Pupils feel well cared for and protected. Leaders have embedded strong systems to ensure the physical and emotional well-being of pupils. Leaders work well with external agencies.

Leaders check that all staff are safe to work with children. Leaders ensure that all staff receive up-to-date training in safeguarding procedures. Staff make timely and appropriate referrals, which are diligently followed up by leaders.

Pupils know who to speak to if they have any concerns.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

Although the mathematics curriculum is well sequenced and coherent, a small number of pupils have gaps in their mathematical knowledge that stop them from accessing more complex mathematics. Leaders must ensure that all gaps in such pupils’ mathematical knowledge of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division are addressed effectively. . The science curriculum enables pupils to experiment with scientific concepts, but it does not deepen their scientific understanding and knowledge consistently. Leaders should ensure that the science curriculum builds pupils’ understanding of scientific concepts sequentially, so that they learn more and remember more.