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Following my visit to the school on 21 March 2017, I write on behalf of Her Majesty's Chief Inspector of Education, Children's Services and Skills to report the inspection findings. The visit was the first short inspection carried out since the school was judged to be good in October 2012. This school continues to be good.
The leadership team has maintained the good quality of education in the school since the last inspection. You lead the school with a clear sense of direction and provide pupils with a caring and inclusive environment in which they can thrive. During the last year, there have been several new appointments to the school staff, including a new head of sc...hool and two new class teachers.
Your high expectations for learning and your supportive approach have enabled new staff to settle in quickly. These expectations have helped to maintain the good quality of education that the school provides. Governors speak passionately about their work and are very proud of the school's achievements.
They are knowledgeable about the external support the school has engaged with and they can explain how this is improving standards for pupils. You have sustained the high standards in pupils' behaviour since the previous inspection. Throughout my visit, pupils displayed highly positive attitudes to their learning.
They were polite, courteous and warmly welcomed me into their classrooms. Pupils take great care in the presentation of their work and proudly shared and talked about this with me. At the time of the previous inspection, the school was asked to raise standards in mathematics.
Leaders have introduced a new scheme for mathematics which has been closely supported by a well-targeted training programme for staff. Increased expectations of what pupils can achieve have had a good impact on raising standards. Greater opportunities for pupils to apply their skills in mathematical problem-solving and reasoning have also led to better progress.
Consequently, in the key stage 2 2016 assessments, Year 6 pupils achieved better in mathematics than their peers nationally. Since the last inspection, you have invested in improving the school's provision in information and communication technology (ICT). As a result of this, pupils now have regular access to a range of new technology.
My visits to classrooms showed how pupils were using this effectively to support their learning. In a Year 5/6 lesson, pupils confidently accessed a search engine to generate some facts to support a piece of descriptive writing about Tower Bridge. They demonstrated a good awareness of how to conduct a search safely.
Pupils in Year 2 spoke to me about how they can use an avatar to keep safe online. They knew that they should never give out any personal information to someone they do not know. My conversations with pupils throughout the inspection highlighted their good knowledge around the use of computing software and their understanding of subject-specific language.
As part of our scrutiny of work, we looked at how well pupils are achieving, including the most able, across the wider curriculum. Evidence in science books showed that pupils are applying their scientific knowledge and understanding effectively in their writing. Leaders have analysed curriculum coverage to ensure that pupils are gaining the required knowledge, understanding and skills.
However, opportunities for the most able pupils are still developing. You acknowledge that they would benefit from extended opportunities to work at greater depth, further applying their skills in scientific enquiry and investigation. A scrutiny of leaders' monitoring of teaching showed that you are effectively identifying strengths and further areas for development.
These are followed up in subsequent observations. However, leaders do not evaluate fully the impact of teaching on pupils' progress and attainment, including that of the most able. Safeguarding is effective.
Leaders and governors place the upmost importance on keeping pupils safe. They ensure that safeguarding arrangements are fit for purpose and that action is taken to safeguard learners. Leaders ensure that the appropriate checks are carried out on an individual's suitability to work at the school.
Safer recruitment practices explore candidates' awareness of safeguarding issues, ensuring that this is a key part of the interview process. Pupils say that they feel safe and happy at the school. This is because staff are providing them with a nurturing and caring environment in which they feel confident to share any worries or concerns.
Parents' views on the school's work in keeping pupils safe are overwhelmingly positive. All parents who responded to the parent survey agreed that their child feels safe in school and is well looked after. A typical comment written by a parent was, 'This is an excellent school with a warm and friendly environment.
Another wrote, 'Any concerns raised are dealt with swiftly and thoroughly with effective monitoring and ongoing assessment.' Leaders are well trained and knowledgeable about their safeguarding roles and responsibilities. They ensure that all staff are appropriately trained to recognise potential signs of abuse.
Staff have recently completed training to enable them to identify pupils who might be at risk of radicalisation and extremism. Records are well kept so that leaders are able to share information effectively and keep close track of ongoing cases. Leaders have a detailed understanding of the needs of vulnerable pupils and use this effectively to support them at school.
Close tracking of concerns related to absence, illness and any changes in behaviour ensure that potential issues are quickly identified. Leaders put effective support in place, ensuring appropriate parental involvement. Inspection findings ? My first line of enquiry related to leaders' actions in ensuring that the most able pupils achieve the highest levels in writing by the end of key stage 2.
Careful analysis by leaders informed them of the need to increase writing opportunities across the curriculum with a focus on specific genres and skills. Because of this, as evidence in books shows, the most able pupils are now working at greater depth in areas including instruction writing and diary entries. Teachers' high expectations for the quality of writing are upheld in all subject areas, ensuring that every opportunity is taken to improve skills further.
• My next line of enquiry focused on leaders' actions to enable key stage 1 pupils, including the most able, to achieve greater depth in reading, writing and mathematics. Leaders have provided staff with appropriate support and training to ensure a better match between planned learning and pupils' ability. Evidence in books is showing that an increased proportion of pupils are now working at greater depth in writing and mathematics.
For example, a most able pupil in Year 2 had correctly answered a complex problem-solving task by using a two-step multiplication calculation. Another, most able, Year 2 pupil demonstrated an excellent use of a range of adventurous vocabulary to engage the reader. However, not enough pupils with average starting points who have the potential to reach the higher levels are achieving this.
• My final line of enquiry was about attendance. The most recent published information suggested that overall absence is higher than the national average for pupils who are entitled to free school meals and those pupils who have special educational needs and/or disabilities. You have put in place a robust system to monitor all pupils' attendance.
You also work closely with parents to address poor attendance. This is proving to be successful, as overall attendance for pupils in these key significant groups is now broadly in line with the national average. Next steps for the school Leaders and those responsible for governance should ensure that: ? the monitoring of learning fully takes into account the impact teaching has on improving standards for pupils in significant groups, including the most able ? more middle-ability key stage 1 pupils reach the higher levels in reading, writing and mathematics by the end of Year 2 ? the most able pupils have opportunities to work at greater depth in science.
I am copying this letter to the chair of the governing body, the regional schools commissioner and the director of children's services for Devon. This letter will be published on the Ofsted website. Yours sincerely Neil Swait Ofsted Inspector Information about the inspection During this inspection, I spoke to you, staff, pupils and three members of the governing body.
I made visits to lessons to observe pupils' learning and to scrutinise their work. I considered a range of documentary evidence, which included the school's development plans, attendance records, monitoring records and safeguarding documentation. In addition, I took account of 28 responses to the Parent View online survey.