Knavesmire Primary School

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About Knavesmire Primary School

Name Knavesmire Primary School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Adam Cooper
Address Trafalgar Street, York, YO23 1HY
Phone Number 01904806545
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 471
Local Authority York
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils receive a wonderful start to their education.

They have many opportunities to develop academically and emotionally. Leaders are highly ambitious for what pupils can achieve. Pupils rise to meet their teachers' expectations.

Achievement at this school is exceptional. Pupils are enthusiastic, engaged and have a love for learning. Classrooms buzz with purposeful chatter as pupils debate and discuss exciting content in lessons.

Pupils are independent and curious. They like to ask questions and are keen to find out more. They listen attentively to adults and follow instructions respectfully.

Pupils chat happily as they move around school. They play... beautifully together outside, enjoying the outdoor library and selection of books.

Pupils talk nicely to each other.

They are polite and articulate. They know what bullying is but say it does not happen. They know that staff would do the right thing if it ever did happen.

Pupils would recommend the school to others as its safe, welcoming and there are lots of fun things to do. Pupils like the fact that you don't have to be brilliant at something to join in. They say everyone gets on well and is encouraged to take part in the 'huge' range of clubs on offer.

Pupils are expected to work hard and contribute to the life of the school. They take their playleader roles seriously and enjoy being part of the pupil action groups.

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

Leaders give pupils a wonderful primary school experience.

By the time they leave Year 6 they are very well prepared for secondary school. The curriculum is exciting, packed full of interesting knowledge and has a purpose. 'The Big Idea' concept takes pupils on a journey of discovery, challenge and ultimately to an end point where they can show off what they have learned.

Nothing is left to chance in the curriculum. Knowledge has been successfully organised into year groups. For example, in geography, children in early years learn about the classroom and playground environment.

In Year 1, pupils use the forest school provision. As pupils then move through the school they study the human and physical geography of the local area before learning all about York city centre in Year 6. This helps pupils to accumulate knowledge over time.

The high-quality curriculum and the expert way in which teachers implement it leads to exceptional achievement for pupils at school.

Leaders have a created a culture where reading is celebrated. The school library is full of high-quality texts that pupils enjoy.

The 'Knavesmire 99' encourages pupils to read and listen to 99 suggested texts. Pupils love this challenge. In early years, children receive a well organised, structured approach to learning phonics.

They quickly learn the sounds that letters make and can apply this knowledge to their reading books. Pupils are given books that match their reading knowledge. This means they can read fluently and at times with expression.

Staff, including teaching assistants, deliver high-quality reading sessions. Children in early years show high levels of concentration. They participate with real enthusiasm in lessons and demonstrate wonderful respect for others.

Leaders have invested heavily to support pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). Staff provide one-to-one support where required and appropriate adaptations to the curriculum are made. Staff have high expectations for pupils with SEND.

The curriculum is not narrowed or unnecessarily simplified. Pupils with SEND are challenged and expected to access the same curriculum as their peers. As a result, these pupils achieve well.

Pupils without SEND but who may be at risk of falling behind are effectively supported. Staff regularly check pupils' understanding, if they assess that a pupil needs additional time and support, it is swiftly put in place.

The school's aims encourage pupils to 'know more, be positive, care for each other and all succeed together'.

The 'Knavesmire character' helps pupils to meet the school's aims. The curriculum, assemblies, trips, and an extensive range of clubs support pupils to be 'creative, take risks, be resilient and be aspirational'. For example, the Year 6 trip to Barcelona includes a visit to see works by Miró and Gaudi.

Leaders want pupils to have experiences that will ignite their imagination and make them want to know more. Leaders have created a list of 50 things pupils will do before they leave Knavesmire. These activities and challenges make pupils try new things and develop personal skills and interests.

Leaders consistently promote the extensive personal development of pupils. They provide exceptional experiences that add further richness to the curriculum.

Pupils consistently demonstrate wonderful self-control.

They are deeply engaged in their learning and have highly positive attitudes towards their education.

School leaders, trustees and governors provide exceptional leadership. They make decisions based on research and evaluate if any new initiatives will benefit the pupils.

Governors and trustees hold school leaders to account for the performance of the school with appropriate challenge and support. The determination for all pupils to be successful is a priority shared at all levels of leadership.

Leaders provide extensive training opportunities for staff and give subject leaders time and support to develop their own leadership roles.

The consideration given to staff's well-being and workload means that staff enjoy working at the school and feel valued.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Designated safeguarding leads (DSLs) work with members of staff from the multi-academy trust to ensure that safeguarding procedures and incidents are frequently monitored.

As a result, school leaders have an additional level of quality assurance that pupils are being kept safe. Regular updates, on top of training, mean that there is no complacency.

All staff know it is their responsibility to be vigilant and report any signs of concern immediately.

DSLs keep detailed records of reported incidents and monitor any pupils who they have concerns about. Leaders have created an open, sharing culture so staff feel comfortable to report any worries they have. This often results in no further action required but maintains a high level of protection for pupils.

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