This is a small school with a friendly atmosphere. Pupils say, 'There are nice teachers with high expectations.' Pupils who are new to the school receive a warm welcome that helps them settle quickly.
Pupils are keen learners. They speak proudly about having a 'high work rate' in lessons. An inspector saw pupils showing equal determination during a lunchtime music club, as they learned to play tricky 'bell plate' instruments.
Lunchtime and after-school clubs are gradually being reintroduced. These were paused because of COVID-19 (coronavirus) restrictions. Pupils can enjoy activities designed to cater for a range of interests and talents.
For example, the wel...l-being club provides calming activities designed to foster positive mental health.
Behaviour across the school is consistently good. Instances of bullying are rare.
Pupils know they should tell a trusted adult if they have any concerns. Pupils say they feel happy and safe at school.
At the time of the inspection, pupils in all classes were learning about rainforests.
This is part of a new approach to the curriculum. Leaders and staff are checking how well the revised curriculum supports pupils to know and remember more. This aspect of the curriculum is still under development.
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Leaders have recently rewritten the curriculum in some subjects. Aspects of history, geography, art and science are now combined under themes, for example rainforests. The aim is for pupils to develop a rich store of knowledge and skills over time.
However, this work is not finalised. It is too soon to measure how well pupils remember and apply what they have learned in the revised subjects.
In geography, leaders have ensured that the curriculum sets out clearly what pupils should know, and when.
Teachers are currently trialling the new 'rainforests' theme. However, in lessons, younger pupils sometimes lose focus because the work is too tricky for them. Teachers are still refining how they apply the revised curriculum.
The mathematics curriculum is strong. It is well established and supports pupils to know and remember more, from early years to Year 6. Teachers break down new concepts into small, manageable steps.
They step in quickly to support any pupils at risk of falling behind. Pupils successfully apply what they already know when tackling an unfamiliar concept. They spoke proudly about their accomplishments in mathematics.
Leaders encourage a love of reading across the school. They told inspectors that 'Reading is the most important thing we teach.' Pupils have access to a wide range of books.
Leaders have recently introduced a new phonics programme. Staff have received training and are in the early stages of incorporating the new programme into the daily phonics sessions. An inspector observed pupils reading to a familiar adult.
During that activity, most pupils read from books that matched their phonics knowledge. This was not the case for a small number of pupils in Year 1. Staff plan to address this as soon as possible by introducing books linked to the new phonics programme.
Children in the early years foundation stage get off to a strong start. They are happy and well cared for in safe, well-resourced indoor and outdoor areas. The early years curriculum is well planned.
It is clear what children will learn and when. Skilled staff work well as a team. They quickly get to know the children and their needs.
This means that children settle well and develop secure knowledge and skills across all areas of learning.
Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are fully included in all aspects of school life. Staff adapt the curriculum to these pupils' needs.
They consult with parents regularly. Leaders liaise closely with special educational needs coordinators in other local schools. This helps to update staff's training and their knowledge of the needs of these pupils.
Pupils' behaviour is good, in lessons and around school. Staff set clear expectations for pupils' conduct. Pupils could explain the school's core values of creativity, collaboration and curiosity.
They know that collaboration means working together and supporting each other.
Leaders and staff promote pupils' personal development well. The school's values are evident around the school and in assemblies.
In discussion, pupils spoke about the importance of respecting differences. They appreciate learning about a range of faiths and cultures.
Staff value leaders' support for their workload and well-being.
They described themselves as being a supportive staff team. Governors understand the pressures on staff and leaders. They regularly discuss staff well-being as part of their meetings.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
The headteacher quickly took steps to strengthen the school's safeguarding culture and systems. More robust systems for logging visitors and improving site security are now in place.
Staff now understand the importance of staying alert to any concern, however small. Leaders have introduced a thorough process for recording concerns. They make sure to follow these up straight away, and to record their actions.
Pupils have confidence in staff to protect them. Leaders are currently writing a new policy to raise awareness about the dangers of peer-on-peer abuse. They recognise the importance of protecting pupils from harassment.
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 that leaders have already taken action to plan the curriculum and to train staff in how to deliver it. For this reason, the transitional arrangements have been applied.
• Leaders are in the process of rewriting the curriculum. It does not yet set out precisely what pupils should know, and when, in geography, history and art. Leaders and staff have not yet been able to measure the impact on pupils' ability to know and remember more over time.
Leaders should ensure that pupils' learning is coherently planned and sequenced in all subjects. ? Staff are currently implementing a new phonics programme. Some of the resources, including decodable books, have not yet arrived in school.
A small number of pupils do not currently read from books that match their phonics knowledge. They do not develop as fluent, confident readers as quickly as they should. Leaders should ensure that the new approach to the teaching of phonics enables all pupils to apply their knowledge accurately, when reading unfamiliar texts.