Howard Park Community School

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About Howard Park Community School

Name Howard Park Community School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Jonathan Pickles
Address St. Peg Lane, Cleckheaton, BD19 3SA
Phone Number 01274864972
Phase Primary
Type Community school
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 237
Local Authority Kirklees
Highlights from Latest Inspection


Howard Park Community School continues to be a good school.

What is it like to attend this school?

Strong relationships between pupils and staff contribute to a positive and nurturing atmosphere in the school. Pupils talk about their feelings of safety and their trust of adults in the school. Pupils move around the school calmly and with maturity.

They are engaged in their learning and begin their work quickly. Pupils develop positive attitudes towards learning through approaches such as the 'passport to learning'.

Pupils understand the school's values and live these through their interactions with each other.

They know what these values mean in practice. As one p...upil said about the school value of ambition, 'It means being the best that you can be every day.' There is a clear and consistent understanding from pupils about what bullying is and what it is not.

When bullying is reported, it is dealt with swiftly and effectively by leaders.

Pupils enjoy a curriculum that is carefully thought through and ambitious. They have opportunities to enjoy trips, experiences and visitors that enrich their learning experiences in different subjects.

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

Leaders are ambitious and focused in their desire for pupils to be successful in the curriculum. Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are considered when leaders develop the curriculum. In subjects such as art, pupils are given opportunities to revisit what they have been taught before.

They understand how what they are learning now links with what they have been taught before. Across the curriculum, there is a clear focus on vocabulary. For example, in mathematics in Reception, children are encouraged and supported to use high-quality mathematical vocabulary, such as 'subitising' when counting objects.

Leaders have made the teaching of early reading a priority. They recently introduced a phonics curriculum that is well embedded. Phonics is taught from Reception.

Pupils read books that are closely matched to the sounds they have been taught. Children in early years and pupils in key stage 1 who need help with reading receive it. This support means that lower attaining readers quickly catch up with their peers.

Pupils in key stage 2 who need help with reading also get support. This support has some impact. However, the help these pupils get is not closely enough linked to the exact gaps in phonic knowledge these pupils have.

Pupils have positive attitudes towards reading. They value their weekly library slots and the work of the pupil librarians in recommending books that will excite them.

Pupils talk with enthusiasm about their opportunities to make a difference to others.

They talk about the charities that each class supports. There are various opportunities for pupil leadership that are seen as important by those who do those roles and those who benefit from them. For example, pupils speak about how members of the school council and the 'well-being ambassadors' have helped make the school a better place.

Pupils have an understanding of the protected characteristics and know the importance of equality. Their understanding of world faiths is supported by visits to the school from different faith leaders.

Pupils with SEND are identified quickly and effectively through rigorous processes.

There is a culture of inclusivity in the school. Pupils with SEND receive focused support from external agencies where appropriate. The achievement and attainment of pupils with SEND are closely monitored, and the provision these pupils receive is closely matched to the small-step targets in their individual plans.

Some pupils with SEND in key stage 2 who are still at the early stages of reading are not assessed regularly enough in order for their phonics support to be precise.

Staff are well supported by leaders. They feel that their workload and well-being are considered.

Leaders listen to feedback from staff in response to school policies and approaches. This feedback then helps them to make refinements that support the workload and well-being of staff but are still focused on giving pupils the best experiences and outcomes. Governors have a strong sense of their responsibility to check in with staff and leaders about their workload.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders have established clear systems for staff to follow when they are reporting concerns. These concerns are swiftly and rigorously followed up to ensure that families and pupils are supported.

Staff are aware of to whom to report safeguarding concerns. Leaders use external agencies appropriately when help is needed. There is a culture of safeguarding in the school that is underpinned by strong relationships between staff and pupils and between staff and families.

Leaders ensure that they regularly check staff's understanding of safeguarding procedures and policies. Pupils are taught important knowledge about how to keep themselves safe. For example, they are taught how to stay safe when online and how to develop their own physical and mental health.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Pupils in key stage 2 who are still at the earlier stages of reading are not supported well enough to catch up quickly. Assessment of the gaps in their phonic knowledge is not regular enough to identify precisely the sounds in which they are not secure. As a result, some pupils do not develop their speed and accuracy in reading quickly.

Leaders should ensure that the assessment for pupils at the early stages of reading in key stage 2, including pupils with SEND, is a priority. They should ensure that the support these pupils receive is closely matched to their phonics needs.


When we have judged a school to be good, we will then normally go into the school about once every four years to confirm that the school remains good.

This is called an ungraded inspection, and it is carried out under section 8 of the Education Act 2005. We do not give graded judgements on an ungraded inspection. However, if we find evidence that a school would now receive a higher or lower grade, then the next inspection will be a graded inspection, which is carried out under section 5 of the Act.

Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the ungraded inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will deem the ungraded inspection a graded inspection immediately.

This is the first ungraded inspection since we judged the school to be good in September 2017.

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