Haddenham St Mary’s Church of England School

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About Haddenham St Mary’s Church of England School

Name Haddenham St Mary’s Church of England School
Website http://www.haddenham-st-marys.bucks.sch.uk
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Karen Collett
Address Aston Road, Haddenham, Aylesbury, HP17 8AF
Phone Number 01844291455
Phase Primary
Type Voluntary controlled school
Age Range 4-7
Religious Character Church of England
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 180
Local Authority Buckinghamshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders and staff have high expectations for every pupil. They want pupils to grow up loving learning, with the confidence and determination to achieve their very best.

Strong values and a Christian ethos are at the heart of this school.

Pupils and staff reflect these values in their day-to-day school life. Leaders ensure that every child is cherished and valued. Warm, nurturing relationships and kindness are the norm.

Pupils are thriving at this happy school. They behave well and enjoy school. Pupils are keen to learn and achieve well.

They love the way their teachers make learning interesting and fun. Pupils relish the chance to get outside and exp...lore the forest school area, whatever the weather. Toasting marshmallows is a recent special highlight.

Pupils feel safe and say that bullying or unkind behaviour are rare. They know that staff quickly sort out any concerns. Pupils get on very well together and enjoy playing with their friends at playtime.

They respect and value that they are all different.

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

Leaders, staff and governors are rightly proud of the school. They are united in their vision to provide a curriculum that inspires pupils and prepares them well for the future.

Leaders have given careful thought to what pupils need to learn and in what order this should be taught. They have ambitions to strengthen their plans further. For example, they plan to refine the geography curriculum to include a sharper focus on the knowledge pupils will acquire.

The curriculum in early years is exceptionally well planned and taught. Leadership of this aspect of the school's work is inspirational. Children get off to a brilliant start in their education.

Staff are highly skilled. This is evident in the expert way they support children's communication and language skills. Staff use every opportunity to engage children in conversation and foster learning.

Children sustain attention and engage fully in all that there is on offer.

Leaders are determined that no pupil will leave the school unable to read. Phonics teaching gets under way promptly, and story times and 'read, write and sparkle' sessions feature daily.

Books are well matched to pupils' reading skills. Pupils encounter a wide variety of well-chosen texts. These help to enrich their vocabulary and understanding and promote a love of reading.

Staff are quick to increase reading support if pupils are at risk of not keeping up with the phonics programme. Some pupils lost a bit of ground following the pandemic disruption. Leaders have made it a priority to get these pupils back on track as quickly as possible.

Staff usually model phonics accurately and follow the school's planned learning sequence. However, there are a few inconsistencies in the teaching of phonics in key stage 1.

The mathematics curriculum is very well thought out.

There is a consistent approach to teaching new knowledge and concepts. Teachers regularly revisit learning to help pupils remember what they have been taught. This approach is also typical of teaching in the wider curriculum.

The vast majority of pupils behave sensibly and courteously and settle quickly to their tasks. They work with positive attitudes and are enthusiastic learners. Pupils enjoy the incentive of the school's 'diamond' rewards and are eager to earn their 'glitter time'.

Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are supported well. Pupils with complex needs benefit from a precisely tailored curriculum built around their needs. Leaders and governors have committed extra funds for speech and language therapy.

This ensures that pupils with language difficulties get specialist early help and support.

Leaders provide exceptionally well for pupils' all-round development. They provide a rich tapestry of extra activities for pupils to enjoy.

Leaders do all that they can to make these accessible for all pupils. The personal, social and health education curriculum is well crafted. This supports pupils very well in learning how to keep healthy and safe.

Staff are proud to belong to the school. They value the many opportunities they have to develop their knowledge and skills. Staff have nothing but admiration and appreciation for the way leaders have supported them during the pandemic.

Parents and carers are also full of praise for the school and for leaders' work. Throughout this very challenging period, staff, leaders and governors have worked together in close partnership.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

High standards of care and strong relationships are central to the school's work to safeguard pupils. Staff know pupils and families very well. They are sensitive to pupils' needs and alert to any concerns.

Staff help pupils to have the confidence to share any worries.

Effective training means that staff know the procedure to follow if they have concerns. Leaders are swift and tenacious in following these up.

They leave no stone unturned so that families and pupils get the help that they need. Leaders and governors keep careful oversight of all safeguarding arrangements.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Some staff who teach phonics have not had up-to-date training specific to the school's approach.

As a result, there are a few inconsistencies in the teaching of phonics. This risks slowing pupils' learning and progress. Leaders should ensure that all staff who teach phonics have the necessary training so that the school's phonics curriculum is implemented consistently well in all classes.

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