Halton Community Combined School

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About Halton Community Combined School

Name Halton Community Combined School
Website http://www.halton.bucks.sch.uk
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Colin Horsfield
Address Tring Road, Halton, Aylesbury, HP22 5PN
Phone Number 01296622264
Phase Primary
Type Community school
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 212
Local Authority Buckinghamshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

This school is a friendly and happy community where difference is celebrated.

Pupils love coming here. If pupils join the school mid-year, they are welcomed and helped to make friends quickly. Pupils enjoy the buddy system where older children partner with younger children.

They benefit from these positive relationships across year groups as well as strong bonds with their classmates.

Pupils are rightly proud of their school. They enthusiastically share their learning with visitors and talk confidently about their work.

The school has high academic expectations, which pupils strive hard to meet. Those with special educational needs and/or disabilitie...s (SEND) achieve well during their time at this school thanks to the excellent support they receive.

The school grounds are used well for pupils' broader development.

Pupils eagerly participate in outdoor activities to design and make shelters, grow food and build their own herb beds. They develop strong characters through the many leadership roles in the school, such as eco-warriors, subject ambassadors and school council to name only a few. Pupils become enterprising young people who understand the power of their own voices and the need to listen to others.

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

The school ensures that pupils experience a curriculum that prepares them for their next stage of education. Learning begins very strongly in the early years, where adults support children to be curious and independent. Children thrive in this vibrant environment.

Staff are highly skilled at developing children's communication and language through meaningful interactions. Where children struggle with emotions, staff expertly help them identify how they feel. This means children become confident, focused learners very quickly.

The curriculum in the core subjects is designed well and develops pupils' knowledge securely over time. However, in some other subjects, the curriculum needs refining so that it identifies the precise knowledge that pupils need to know and when. This will ensure that pupils' knowledge builds in a way that helps them remember more and connect what they know to new learning.

Staff have strong subject knowledge. They teach new knowledge confidently, with clear explanations. Staff check how well pupils understand new learning and re-explain things well when pupils struggle.

Activities are mostly well chosen so that pupils can apply their new learning and practise using new knowledge. Where appropriate, staff adapt teaching to meet the needs of pupils, including those with SEND.

Pupils become confident readers quickly.

The school prioritises early reading and builds opportunities to read across the curriculum. Pupils read often and enjoy a wide range of literature. They achieve well in reading and across the curriculum, although the school has rightly identified that pupils could achieve more highly in some subjects.

Consequently, the school is rightly building greater challenge into lessons to ensure that pupils develop a deeper understanding in these subjects.

In some subjects, assessments provide detailed information about the knowledge that pupils know. This means staff identify gaps in knowledge accurately and address these quickly.

However, there is not yet a consistent approach to assessment across all subjects, which means staff do not always have the information that they need about what pupils can or cannot do. The school is already developing a consistent approach to assessment to ensure that any gaps in pupils' knowledge are filled.

Pupils behave very well in lessons and socially.

High expectations are promoted through the school's values, such as perseverance, respect, courage and honesty. They are reinforced in assemblies and weekly celebrations of pupils who demonstrate excellent attitudes to learning or produce exceptional work. Pupils enjoy learning and opportunities to extend what they know.

Pupils' personal development is prioritised here. There is a wide range of enriching experiences, some of which are part of the '25 things to do before you leave Halton'. Pupils learn about the different faiths and cultures.

They experience music, food and dance, which broadens their understanding of the world. Pupils benefit from the numerous extra-curricular clubs that develop their interests and talents. Events like the Christmas play provide pupils with the chance to work together and celebrate their various talents with each other.

The school is reflective and passionate about improvement. It has created a culture where staff can confidently use teaching approaches that get the best from pupils. Staff value the respect and care that leaders show them.

Where the school identifies areas for improvement, they put in place effective changes. Leaders and those responsible for governance ensure that there is a clear oversight over these areas, which helps drive improvements further.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• In some subjects, the school has not yet identified the precise knowledge it intends pupils to learn. This means that pupils do not always connect knowledge or ideas together as securely as they could. The school needs to identify the knowledge it intends all pupils to learn and help them to integrate new knowledge into larger ideas.

Assessment is not yet fully developed across all subjects. As a result, in these areas staff are less able to pinpoint the next steps that are needed to move pupils on swiftly and successfully. The school should continue to develop assessment across the curriculum so that pupils are supported to secure their learning over time.

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