Long Crendon School

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About Long Crendon School

Name Long Crendon School
Website http://www.longcrendon.bucks.sch.uk
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Miss Amanda Cook
Address Chilton Road, Long Crendon, Aylesbury, HP18 9BZ
Phone Number 01844208225
Phase Primary
Type Community school
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 209
Local Authority Buckinghamshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Families gather eagerly outside school each morning and children greet each other cheerfully. Older pupils look after their buddies in younger year groups. Some wait for their buddies to reassure them and take them into school.

Break-times are a hive of activity. Some pupils train to be play leaders, and they relish the opportunity to organise activities for the younger pupils. Others prefer to tend the school garden and proudly shared the benefits of sampling their produce with inspectors.

Pupils feel safe here. They know who to talk to about their worries. Staff and pupils genuinely strive to live out the school values, often referring to them.

Bullying is ...extremely rare. Pupils are confident to tell adults if they are worried and know that staff will deal with concerns effectively. The school has a strong focus on well-being.

Some pupils become health and well-being ambassadors. Other pupils join eco-club and some join therapy and nurture groups.

Staff have high expectations for the behaviour of pupils.

Classrooms are purposeful and orderly. Routines are well established. Leaders have raised expectations across the curriculum but have more work to do to ensure that pupils of all abilities achieve their very best.

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

The recent changes in leadership at the school have been unsettling. The new interim headteacher has made a significant impact in a short amount of time at the school. Leaders are ambitious for pupils.

Curriculum thinking has been a recent focus and is starting to have an impact on the learning of pupils at the school. Leaders have started planned learning in key stages 1 and 2 in a coherent way. This is so that knowledge and skills develop over time and build on the already very firm foundations in the early years.

Teaching in Reception is exceptional, giving children a wonderful start to their education. Leaders have designed a curriculum that is rich and varied. It enables children, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), to achieve their very best.

Children thrive in the calm and focused atmosphere. They love learning. Staff capitalise on the children's natural curiosity to the full.

The learning environment, indoors and outside, thoughtfully provides children with the best chances to learn. Behaviour is exemplary. The teaching of early reading is strong.

Children learn in a vocabulary rich environment. Staff say, 'Keep good words in your head for your word bank.' Parental engagement is high and all speak positively about the provision.

The leadership of reading is clear and precise. Staff who teach early reading are well trained. Leaders have adopted and developed a coherent phonics programme.

Pupils receive support and challenge appropriately. Staff who teach phonics are well trained. Pupils say they love reading.

The library inspires pupils with its prominent display, which reads 'Today a reader, tomorrow a leader'. Pupils learn to read confidently and fluently.

In key stages 1 and 2, subject leaders have selected the knowledge they want pupils to learn and have sequenced it in a sensible order.

However, lessons are not always crafted in a way so as to develop the skills and understanding of all pupils. In some subjects, for example English and history, teachers focus too much on completing tasks rather than helping pupils to understand what it is they need to learn.

Teachers in key stages 1 and 2 do not use assessment to help them understand what pupils know and can do as well as they do in the early years.

Teachers do not adapt activities well enough to support or challenge pupils as appropriate. This slows their progress in learning and remembering more. Sometimes this leads to low-level disruption in lessons when pupils are not challenged.

Pupils with SEND do not receive tailored support specific to their needs. Activities are not adapted to ensure that pupils can achieve success despite the challenges they face.

The wider personal development of pupils is a strength.

Recent developments to the personal, social and health education programme have begun to make an impact. Pupils' attendance is good. Leaders provide a wide range of extra-curricular activities and residential visits for pupils.

Despite the disruption to these activities caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the school has made significant efforts to continue offering these enriching activities. Pupils develop confidence and leadership skills within the wide variety of opportunities offered, for example acting as junior road safety officers to help younger children stay safe on the roads leading to school.

Leaders and governors have not always had detailed oversight of systems and processes in the school.

Many recent changes in leadership have contributed to this. The new interim headteacher has acted swiftly to eradicate the legacy of weaknesses. Governors have provided support to leaders but have not always provided rigorous challenge to ensure leaders' own evaluation of systems and processes are sufficiently robust.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders respond appropriately to concerns when they arise. Staff are vigilant to potential concerns and, no matter how small, report these using the school's robust reporting system.

The caring culture of the school is reflected in how staff provide support for pupils. Staff are well trained in how to spot potential concerns.

Pupils learn how to keep themselves safe through the curriculum.

They also learn about keeping others safe, and they take on positions of responsibility to assist with this. For example, older pupils know to report concerns to staff if they are worried about their younger buddies.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• In key stages 1 and 2, leaders have developed strong curriculum thinking, but teaching activities are not always appropriately planned to enable progression.

As a result, pupils are not learning the key concepts or building on previous knowledge. Activities are not designed to help all pupils learn and remember more. Subject leaders must evaluate the teaching of the intended curriculum more thoroughly and ensure that staff are able to provide learning activities that are appropriate for their class.

• Assessment is not sufficiently embedded in any subject yet, apart from in the early years. Teaching is not always informed by what pupils reveal they know and can remember. Evidence teachers collect from checking what pupils understand in lessons should be used, consistently across all subjects, to plan the next steps of teaching.

• Not all teachers use the information regarding pupils with SEND effectively in key stages 1 and 2, so often their approaches are too generic and do not take into account pupils' needs effectively. This means pupils with SEND are not learning to the best of their ability. Leaders must ensure that all staff are effectively trained to provide support for pupils with SEND that is tailored to their specific needs.

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