Highwood Primary School

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About Highwood Primary School

Name Highwood Primary School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Bindu Rai
Address Mead Way, Bushey, WD23 2AW
Phone Number 01923256210
Phase Primary
Type Community school
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 434
Local Authority Hertfordshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils are happy at Highwood Primary. They enjoy their learning. They feel safe and know that adults will help them if they are worried or concerned.

Pupils know what bullying is, and they know how to report it if it occurs. Pupils trust adults to deal with situations and keep them safe.

Pupils welcome visitors with enthusiasm, and they are confident to share what they have been learning.

From the early years onwards, adults and pupils treat each other with kindness.

The curriculum is broad and interesting. Leaders are ambitious and have high expectations for pupils.

This helps pupils to enjoy school. Most pupils have positive attitudes towa...rds learning. Pupils achieve well and are well prepared for the next stage of their education.

Pupils have opportunities to participate in a range of activities. These include trips, workshop days in school and a range of clubs, including sports, singing and dance. Pupils are proud to take on a range of leadership roles, such as play leaders, anti-bullying ambassadors, dining room ambassadors and school councillors.

They know that they make a positive contribution to school life.

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

Leaders have designed a broad and ambitious curriculum to meet pupils' needs. In most subjects, leaders have set out clearly what they want pupils to learn.

Teachers help pupils to master new skills. They explain new concepts clearly and give pupils more time, when needed, to learn something new. They use assessment well and check what pupils have understood.

Teachers revisit learning when needed. Subject leaders are knowledgeable. They carry out regular checks on how the curriculum is being implemented and check that pupils are remembering what has been taught.

Pupils usually achieve well. However, there are a few subjects where leaders have not been clear enough about what they want pupils to learn. As a result, pupils struggle to recall what they have been taught in these subjects.

Reading is a priority. There is a consistent approach to the teaching of phonics across the school. Pupils read books that are closely matched to the sounds they are learning.

Children in the early years learn to read well. Those who are not keeping up with the programme get the support they need to catch up. All pupils enjoy the '100 best books' that have been set out by leaders, which encourages pupils to read for enjoyment.

The development of vocabulary has a high profile across the school, from early years onwards, with the use of tiered 'vocabulary cakes'. This promotes the ambitious use of vocabulary during lessons, enabling all pupils to access subject-specific language.Children in the early years are very settled and happy.

The highly ambitious curriculum enables all children to achieve very well. Children show well-developed learning behaviours, such as respect for others, as they work and play together. They show high levels of resilience when learning new things.

Children are proud of their learning. Staff skilfully support all children, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), to deepen their learning through careful and effective questioning and support. Children leave the early years very well prepared for the next stage of learning.

Leaders have created an inclusive school. Staff know what needs to be in place for individual pupils with SEND. They implement this to ensure that support is provided at the right time.

Successful adaptations to the curriculum ensure that pupils with SEND are accessing the curriculum in line with their peers.

Pupils mostly meet high expectations for behaviour in the classroom. They know it is important to listen.

They show calm behaviour and have a high level of self-control. A small minority sometimes do not behave in this way, and teachers deal with this effectively. Away from lessons, some pupils struggle to behave in an appropriate way towards their peers, and some staff do not always address this well.

Pupils learn about democracy and tolerance through a well-planned programme of assemblies, trips and clubs. They know why it is important to learn about difference and respect other cultures. Pupils learn about staying healthy and keeping safe.

They use the 'safe hands' technique to choose up to five teachers or friends they would talk to if they had worries.

Governors provide strong support and challenge. They help leaders to bring their ambition to provide a good-quality education for all to life.

Leaders have focused on a well-trained and effective staff team. Staff value the support of leaders for their professional development, and they are proud to work at the school.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Staff and leaders know their pupils and families well. Leaders have created a culture of vigilance. All staff keep up to date with local issues.

Staff are well trained and confident to spot concerns about pupils. Staff are quick to report concerns. Leaders act on the concerns, and their actions keep pupils safe.

Leaders work well with external agencies to secure the help that pupils and their families need.

Leaders carry out the necessary checks on staff to make sure they are suitable to work with children.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority) ? In some subjects, leaders have not clearly identified the key knowledge they want pupils to learn.

This means that, in these subjects, pupils do not learn in a sequenced way to build on what they already know, and they struggle to recall key learning. Leaders need to identify precisely the knowledge they want pupils to learn and order it in a way that helps pupils build on previous learning so that pupils know and remember more. ? Leaders and staff do not consistently set out their expectations for behaviour.

This means that a small minority of pupils do not always make the right choice with their behaviour. This leads to some instances where pupils' behaviour falls below leaders' expectations. Leaders and staff need to continue to further establish the expectations for behaviour so that staff can apply these consistently and encourage pupils to behave consistently well at all times.

Also at this postcode
North Bushey Pre-school

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