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Pupils get off to a good start at this school because they are helped to develop personally as well as academically. This is especially true in the early years where children benefit from an exceptional and well-considered range of opportunities to develop their social skills and learn new things. They like their teachers and know that they can trust them if they have a worry or if they need some extra support.
Pupils say that this is a school where you can make friends easily and people are kind to each other.
Bullying is almost unheard of at the school. Some pupils talk about unkindness or boisterous behaviour in the playground, but adults in school deal with this q...uickly and then it stops.
Pupils are aware that some of their peers need additional support with their behaviour, but this rarely distracts them from their learning. Pupils are mature in the way they think about this and are pleased to see other pupils getting extra help when they need it.
Parents rate the school highly and feel lucky to have it in their local community.
Every parent who responded to the Ofsted Parent View questionnaire during the inspection told us that they would recommend the school. One parent summed up the views of many by saying, 'This is a friendly school where teachers are supportive and genuinely care for the children and their well-being.'
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Leaders have ensured that pupils follow a broad and rich curriculum which covers the full range of subject areas.
They are ambitious about what they want all pupils to know, remember and be able to do. To make sure this happens, they have planned opportunities for pupils to return to things they have learned previously.
Teachers who are responsible for leading subjects use their knowledge and passion to support other colleagues.
This is particularly strong in the early years where leaders have made sure that learning is highly focused and purposeful. Staff in Reception and Nursery know each pupil exceptionally well. They use this understanding to build on pupils' interests and make sure that what pupils are learning is closely matched to their next steps.
This includes pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), whose needs are identified as early as possible in Reception or Nursery. Staff expertly adapt their approach to meet these needs.
Reading is a high priority in the school.
Work begins immediately in the early years to ensure that the vast majority of pupils become enthusiastic readers by the end of Year 2. However, leaders recognise that there are an increasing number of pupils in the school who struggle to learn to read. This is particularly the case in key stage 1 and has been negatively affected by the pandemic.
Sometimes, the resources used to support these pupils are not precisely targeted at the sounds that are causing them difficulty. School leaders have recognised this and are in the process of introducing a new approach to phonics. This work is further ahead in the early years where the teaching of reading is highly precise and children learn to read very quickly as a result.
Pupils' behaviour is typically calm and orderly. Pupils are keen to demonstrate the school's values such as independence, teamwork and determination. They enjoy being recognised when they demonstrate these qualities and this motivates them to work hard.
It is rare that pupils are not focused during lessons, but if this happens, teachers deal with it effectively.
The school offers some opportunities for pupils to build on their talents and interests, such as sports clubs and ukulele lessons. Leaders have been successful in improving participation in these activities among disadvantaged pupils.
However, they recognise that there is limited involvement from some other pupil groups, such as those with SEND. This is partly because the range of activities currently on offer does not reflect the wide range of pupil interests. Some pupils want to be more involved in the wider life of the school by taking on roles such as pupil ambassador or librarian, but they are not sure how to be selected for these positions.
Leaders have a strong understanding of the school's strengths and development areas. They are motivated by their care for every pupil and their determination to provide the best possible experiences. They work hard to engage with parents and build meaningful relationships from the moment children join the school in the early years.
Governors are knowledgeable about their roles and perform them well. They work closely with leaders to support improvements and provide challenge where needed.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
Safeguarding is a securely embedded part of the way staff work. Leaders have ensured that all staff receive high-quality safeguarding and regular updates so that they have up-to-date knowledge. If staff have concerns about a pupil, they forward these on quickly and leaders take action.
Leaders keep robust records of their work to keep children safe, including where they have made referrals to external agencies.
Leaders conduct the appropriate checks on adults working in the school. Governors understand their duties with respect to safeguarding.
Pupils learn through the curriculum about how to keep themselves safe.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
• Support for pupils in Years 1 and 2 who struggle to read is not consistently effective. Staff do not routinely match the resources they use with the sounds that pupils already know.
This prevents some pupils from catching up quickly with their peers. Leaders should ensure that staff are confident and trained in delivering the new phonics programme to ensure that all pupils make quicker progress, particularly those who are struggling. ? Although the school provides some opportunities for pupils to develop their talents, engagement with these activities is mixed.
In particular, only a small proportion of pupils with SEND choose to attend extra-curricular clubs. Leaders recognise that the range of activities on offer is narrow and focused primarily on sports. They should consider how they broaden the appeal and inclusivity of their offer so that as many pupils as possible are given opportunities to pursue their interests.
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