Hugh Gaitskell Primary School

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About Hugh Gaitskell Primary School

Name Hugh Gaitskell Primary School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Kate McNulty
Address St Anthony’s Drive, Beeston, Leeds, LS11 8AB
Phone Number 01132716963
Phase Primary
Type Foundation school
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 583
Local Authority Leeds
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Hugh Gaitskell Primary School is a caring and friendly school. Pupils who attend come from a range of diverse backgrounds.

This diversity is celebrated and valued by pupils and staff. There is a strong sense of community. Pupils learn about what makes them different.

They understand that any form of discrimination is wrong. Pupils look after each other. They play well together at social times and behave well in the classroom.

Pupils feel safe in school and say that adults help them with their learning. Pupils who have any worries get support from the school's counsellors. Bullying in any form is not tolerated.

On the rare occasion that it does happen..., staff deal with it well.

Leaders encourage pupils to talk about their learning and debate current affairs. Leaders have created links with the University of Leeds to raise pupils' aspirations for their future.

Pupils understand that if they work hard in school, they will be able to decide what they want to do when they are older. Inspectors spoke with pupils who aspire to be actors, authors, bankers and pathologists when they have completed their education.

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

The proportion of pupils who join and leave during the school year is much higher than the national average.

Leaders manage this well. Teachers quickly check to see if pupils who are new to school have gaps in their knowledge and support them if they need to catch up.

Pupils make a strong start to the school in the early years.

Teachers prioritise the development of children's communication and language skills. Children learn rhymes and poems. They can retell stories that adults read to them.

Children learn with curiosity, energy and enthusiasm. Teachers use a wide range of different resources that help children to remember what they are being taught.

Leaders give the teaching of reading a high priority.

They have recently introduced a new curriculum for the teaching of early reading. A local English hub school has provided training for staff to help them to teach reading well. Teachers introduce new sounds clearly and give pupils books to read that match the sounds that they know.

This helps pupils learn to read fluently. Pupils who need help to catch up in reading, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), receive effective support from well-trained staff. This is successful in helping these pupils to catch up quickly.

Leaders have reviewed the curriculum for all subjects. They have made sure that the full national curriculum is covered within subjects, such as history, mathematics, science and languages. Teachers explain new content clearly and check that pupils have remembered what they need to know.

In mathematics, staff have received training, so that they have the subject knowledge they need to teach mathematics well. Teachers encourage children to explain their mathematical thinking and draw links with what they already know. These strategies help pupils to remember the content they are being taught.

Pupils with SEND receive effective support from skilled adults. The school's special educational needs coordinator (SENCo) creates detailed support plans. These help staff understand the barriers to learning a pupil may have and what strategies they can use to help these pupils with their learning.

Recently, there has been an increase in the number of pupils with SEND who have joined the school. Leaders have employed additional staff to support these pupils and planned training to help new staff meet their needs.

Pupils behave well.

They understand the school rules and follow them closely. This leads to most classrooms being calm and orderly. Staff use effective strategies to support pupils with social, emotional and mental health needs, so that they can manage their own behaviour.

Staff encourage pupils to attend school regularly. As a result, rates of persistent absence have fallen.

Pupils have a good understanding of people from different faiths and backgrounds.

Leaders have established an effective approach to developing communication skills, which enables pupils to speak maturely about difficult issues, such as racism. Although paused because of the COVID-19 pandemic, leaders provide pupils with a wide range of after-school clubs to develop their interests. These will begin again in the next half term.

Together, governors and school leaders provide strong leadership. They have successfully strengthened the curriculum and established a welcoming and inclusive learning environment. Subject leaders' efforts to check the quality of education across the school have been hampered by the COVID-19 pandemic.

They have spoken to pupils and looked at their work. Some subject leaders have not visited lessons and so have not identified the small number of teachers who are not implementing the curriculum in some subjects as well as they could. Leaders have plans in place to address this in the coming term now that restrictions have begun to lift.

All staff spoken to and most of those who responded to Ofsted's online questionnaire for staff said they are proud to work in the school. Most feel that leaders are considerate of their workload and are supportive of their well-being.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders responsible for safeguarding are well trained and knowledgeable. They have established robust procedures for managing concerns about pupils' safety. Staff are also well trained and use these systems well.

Recent training has raised their awareness about child criminal exploitation. When leaders are made aware of concerns about a pupil, they respond appropriately. Leaders keep detailed records of the actions taken to support pupils at risk.

Pupils are taught about some of the risks they may face. They speak knowledgably about the actions that they take to use the internet safely. They also recognise some of the risks to their safety in the community and know how they would manage these, should they encounter them.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Some subject leaders have not visited lessons to make sure the curriculum for their subject is being well implemented. As a result, they have not identified that a small number of staff require additional training in order to teach the curriculum well. Leaders should check that the curriculum for all subjects is implemented well and that pupils are remembering the essential subject knowledge on the school's curriculum.

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