Gusford Community Primary School

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About Gusford Community Primary School

Name Gusford Community Primary School
Ofsted Inspections
Mr Stephen Tapley
Address Sheldrake Drive, Ipswich, IP2 9LQ
Phone Number 01473682148
Phase Academy
Type Academy sponsor led
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 576
Local Authority Suffolk
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils have noticed how Gusford has improved recently.

They are happy. Pupils want to attend school and feel safe doing so. Pupils say that the school's values, such as kindness, honesty and respect, help them to get along together.

They are proud of their school. Many parents agree and comment positively about the improvement brought about by recent changes.

Pupils behave well.

The three 'rights', to learn, to be safe and to have respect, thread through all aspects of school life. This creates a calm and positive environment. Everyone understands and follows the rules.

These expectations help pupils to work hard in class.

Pupils sa...y that bullying is rare in their school. They know that staff are there to help them.

Pupils are confident that if they have any concerns, then adults will look after them.

Over time, pupils have not benefited from an ambitious curriculum. Pupils have gaps in their knowledge and often struggle to remember what they have learned in the past.

New leaders have now ensured that all subjects are well planned. It is helping pupils to become more successful in their learning.

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

Recent changes to the school leadership have had a positive effect in a short time.

New leaders have established a collaborative team spirit among all staff. They have worked together to bring about needed improvement to the school.

Leaders have ensured that all subjects are well planned.

Their curriculum programmes make clear the things pupils need to know and remember. Staff make use of questions to check what pupils remember during the lesson. Some curriculum plans are in their early stages of implementation.

Teachers have not developed the expertise they need to deliver all subjects well. In these subjects, teachers do not make connections to what pupils already know. This limits what pupils remember.

Leaders use a consistent approach to check and assess how well their curriculum intentions are working. Where curriculum plans are well established, subject leaders have made refinements to improve pupils' learning. This has not been possible across every subject.

Some subject leaders are new to their role. They are receiving training to help develop their knowledge and skills of leadership.

Previously, the curriculum in the early years did not support children to achieve well.

Leaders have taken prompt action. They have clarified what children need to learn. Children benefit from carefully planned activities.

Positive relationships with adults help to build children's confidence. Many have settled well at school in a short space of time. However, the curriculum is in its early stages of implementation.

Staff have not received all the training to support children's learning in all areas of learning. This especially applies to developing children's communication and language skills.

The new leadership team has been quick to identify weaknesses in the teaching of early reading.

All staff are now fully trained to teach phonics. Children start learning phonics as soon as they start in Reception. Books are well matched to the sounds pupils are learning.

However, the legacy of weaker teaching means that some older pupils are not learning to read quickly enough. Leaders have introduced extra support for those who find reading difficult. It is still too early to see how quickly pupils are catching up with their reading.

Leaders quickly identify needs that pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) may have. Teachers make effective use of pupils' individual plans to help them take part in class. However, not all teachers adapt their learning plans successfully, especially where curriculum plans are new.

This limits what pupils with SEND achieve because they do not access the same knowledge as their peers.

Pupils value the new systems to reward good behaviour. They are keen to demonstrate the school's values to earn golden tickets.

Pupils cooperate well together, whether in class or outside on the playground.

Personal development is a strength of the school. Pupils have opportunities to become active citizens through different roles and responsibilities.

Participation in residential trips promotes pupils' confidence and resilience. Pupils learn about different faiths and cultures and value differences in one another. As one pupil said to inspectors, 'This school respects our differences.'

Governors and the trust have worked alongside new leaders to improve the quality of education. They have not shied away from making important decisions. Governors use their knowledge of the school to challenge school leaders.

This is helping the school to improve rapidly.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

The safety and welfare of pupils are high priorities for leaders.

Leaders have ensured that there is a strong culture of safeguarding. Staff are alert to any signs of abuse. They understand how to report their concerns.

Leaders take appropriate steps to ensure that vulnerable pupils and their families receive the help they need.

Pupils learn about keeping themselves safe through their lessons. For example, they understand the possible dangers when using the internet.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Leaders have only recently introduced their curriculum programmes for some subjects. Teachers do not have the expertise to deliver these programmes effectively. This means that they do not understand how to help pupils connect their learning to what they already know, including those pupils with SEND.

Leaders should ensure that all staff receive the professional development to build their subject knowledge and to address gaps in pupils' knowledge. ? The legacy of weaker teaching has led to gaps in pupils' phonic knowledge. Those pupils who find it difficult to read are not catching up quickly enough.

This is because they are not confident in using their phonics to read accurately. Leaders should ensure that the additional help provided for these pupils is working effectively so that more pupils are reading confidently by the end of key stage 1. ? The early years provision has experienced recent changes in staffing.

Plans for the early years curriculum are new and in the early stages of implementation. Children have not had the benefit of experiencing these new approaches and, in the past, were not well prepared for Year 1. Leaders must provide staff with training so that they understand how best to support children's development, especially with their communication and language skills.

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