High Coniscliffe CofE Primary School

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About High Coniscliffe CofE Primary School

Name High Coniscliffe CofE Primary School
Website http://www.highconiscliffe.org.uk
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Kaye Boyce
Address Ulnaby Lane, High Coniscliffe, Darlington, DL2 2LL
Phone Number 01325374412
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Church of England
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 101
Local Authority Darlington
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

This is a caring, nurturing school.

Pupils and parents describe it as being part of a family. Pupils are happy. They feel safe and are well looked after by staff.

Leaders and staff aim for all pupils to achieve well. From starting in Reception, teachers ensure that the fundamentals in reading, writing and mathematics are well taught. They check carefully that pupils are progressing in these subjects.

In other subjects, leaders have planned for pupils to gain key knowledge and skills in interesting ways. Leaders have not yet finished revisions to planning for some subjects. They have clear plans to introduce further improvements.

Pupils behave very we...ll. They are kind to one another. Playtimes and lunchtimes are friendly and sociable.

Pupils say that bullying is rare. If it does happen, they are confident that staff will resolve it quickly. Leaders and staff do not tolerate any bullying.

Parents hold incredibly positive views of the school. They find leaders and staff to be approachable and supportive. Parents appreciate the activities the school provides beyond the school day.

This includes a range of sports and drama clubs. Parents believe that their children grow in confidence from starting in Reception through to Year 6.

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

Leaders have planned a sequenced curriculum which takes account of the mixed-age classes.

They have devised and implemented this effectively in reading, writing and mathematics. Leaders have started to revise the planning and approaches to teaching other subjects. Their work has been slightly delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

Where leaders have completed these developments, pupils are building secure knowledge. This builds on what they have learned earlier in school. Leaders have clear plans on how they are going to use this approach to further strengthen the curriculum.

Leaders have prioritised reading. From starting in Reception, children are taught phonics in a structured way. Teachers accurately match the books pupils read to their phonics knowledge.

This helps pupils to learn to read successfully at an early stage. Staff provide additional support to help pupils catch up where they have any gaps in phonics knowledge. Older pupils continue to have a range of opportunities to improve their reading.

These pupils can talk articulately about their book choices, authors and different genres. Leaders have established and begun to implement a programme of staff training to further develop staff expertise in teaching phonics and early reading. This training programme includes support from the trust.

Teachers check pupils' learning effectively in reading, writing and mathematics. They use this information well to identify what they need to teach pupils next. This has helped teachers to address any gaps in pupils' learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In some subjects, leaders have not yet fully developed assessment approaches, but they have clear plans to do so. As leaders revise the planning and approaches to teaching subjects, they are reviewing the school's assessment methods.

From starting Reception, staff teach children the routines and expectations for behaviour.

Reception children are attentive in adult-led group work. When selecting learning activities, they cooperate with other children and interact well with adults. Older pupils are respectful and listen carefully to staff in lessons.

Pupils' personal development is a strength of the school. The school's pledge, 'This is how we do it here', is well understood by staff, pupils and parents. The school provides a wide range of clubs for sport and guidance on healthy food choices.

This provides pupils with guidance on physical health. The executive principal and the special educational needs coordinator (SENCo) have expertise in supporting pupils' mental health. They use this to advise staff when pupils need extra help.

The school is a Royal Shakespeare Company associate school. Staff, pupils and parents enjoy the opportunities this brings to enrich their cultural experiences.

This is an inclusive school.

Leaders and staff plan carefully to meet the needs of pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities. The SENCo seeks additional external expertise where pupils need more specific support.

Staff are confident that leaders consider their workload and well-being.

They receive suitable professional development. Senior leaders provide leadership for most subjects. Development of subject leaders has started with other staff, for example in modern foreign languages.

There are plans in place to further develop subject leaders.

The school has very recently joined Melrose Learning Trust. Trustees and the chief executive officer have already gained a secure understanding of the school's strengths and priorities for improvement.

They have established clear lines of accountability for leaders. Trustees have put procedures in place to assure that leaders fulfil statutory responsibilities, including for safeguarding.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Staff are clear about the procedures to identify pupils who are vulnerable to safeguarding risks. They act promptly if they have any concerns about a pupil's welfare or safety. Leaders ensure pupils and parents receive help and support where required.

Secure procedures are in place to manage safe recruitment. The executive principal knows how to manage allegations or safeguarding concerns about staff should these occur. Staff teach pupils how to stay safe, including online.

The school's relationship and sex education curriculum helps pupils to understand what constitutes healthy relationships.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• The school's curriculum is not yet sufficiently well planned and sequenced in some subjects. However, it is clear from leaders' actions that they are in the process of bringing this about.

Leaders need to complete the process of reviewing the curriculum in all subjects within their identified timescale. For this reason, the transitional arrangements have been applied. ? Leaders have not fully developed assessment approaches in some subjects.

This makes it difficult for staff to identify if pupils have a secure understanding of the knowledge and skills taught. Leaders need to continue with their planned development of suitable and manageable assessments. ? Senior leaders have not completed their plans for developing subject leadership.

At present, senior leaders provide subject leadership in most curriculum areas. This constrains the opportunity for improving subjects. Leaders should continue to implement th0eir plans to train and develop subject leaders.

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