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Longford Primary is a small, welcoming school. Staff know pupils and their families well. As a church school, pupils demonstrate the values of respect and friendship.
Some of the school population join at different times of the year. Pupils welcome those joining.
Pupils show kindness towards one another.
When there are friendship issues, pupils are confident that adults sort out issues quickly. During breaktime, pupils have few activities for play. Pupils have worked with leaders to improve this, such as introducing some games.
Leaders are aware there is more to develop.
Leaders are working to implement a well-planned curriculum. Sometimes, ...the work set for pupils does not enable them to move on quickly enough.
In lessons, pupils listen and are attentive. Some pupils become restless. When this happens, teachers manage pupils well.
Pupils enjoy collecting house points through rewards and events such as sports day. They enjoy singing and celebration. Many pupils learn musical instruments, such as the clarinet or guitar.
Leaders ensure all pupils participate in a wide range of experiences. They plan trips for all ages. For example, Year 6 visited the Harry Potter Studio, while younger children enjoyed a trip to a steam museum.
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Leaders have developed a broad curriculum planned as a two-year cycle for mixed-age classes. In history, for example, leaders have identified the skills pupils progressively learn. Pupils in Years 3 and 4 recall their learning about the impact different monarchs had on the church.
In some parts of the curriculum, teachers are still securing their own knowledge and confidence of the subject. This means that subject knowledge is not always shared or modelled in a way that helps pupils to remember.
Leaders show great care for pupils.
They create an inclusive environment. However, their ambition to prepare pupils for the future is not always realised through the curriculum. Sometimes pupils do not receive work in a timely way that allows them to move on promptly with their learning.
For example, in key stage 2 mathematics, work on measurement conversion focused on multiples of ten when some pupils could move quickly to more complex mathematics.
Leaders are in the process of developing the early years provision for children. They have made many positive changes to support children with their learning and develop their independence.
Leaders have planned a curriculum that follows statutory expectations. They align this with some of the content Year 1 learn in the same classroom. However, leaders have not identified or sequenced the knowledge children will learn.
This means there is not a progression of learning for children to build upon what they know. In early years, children use the provision to engage in free play. Staff have only just begun to be trained how to guide children's activity to enhance their formal learning.
This means they miss opportunities to have high-quality interactions with children and encourage them to purposeful activities.
Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are well supported. Teachers have the information they need to provide adaptation.
They receive bespoke training so they can be effective in managing pupils' needs.
Leaders have recently introduced a new phonics scheme to teach early reading. Teachers are systematic in teaching this.
Children learn the corresponding sounds almost as soon as they start in Reception. All staff have completed training. However, some staff do not sound out and blend confidently when they are listening to pupils read.
They are not secure in sounding out for pupils when they need help with their reading. Leaders check how well pupils are progressing. Yet, they do not do this as often as they should.
As a result, they do not have the knowledge to ensure pupils receive the precise catch-up support they need in a timely way.
Leaders make sure pupils learn a well-planned personal, social, health education (PSHE) curriculum. Pupils learn about respect, difference and keeping safe.
Older pupils learn about body changes in a timely and sensitive way.
Following a fall in standards, leaders have received a high level of support externally. This support has enabled them to prioritise the important actions for school improvement.
Leaders are sometimes too positive about the impact of their work. This means they do not identify quickly when actions are not working or need reviewing. Governors have worked with external support to develop their skills in carrying out their statutory duties.
They support leaders and staff in bringing about change. Teachers are supportive of leaders. They feel leaders listen and provide support.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
Leaders ensure there are clear processes for reporting and acting on concerns. Staff receive regular training.
They are confident to report and follow up when they identify an issue. Leaders work with external agencies and seek advice promptly.
Leaders, including governors, evaluate and check safeguarding documentation.
They ensure all statutory checks are in place for staff and visitors.
Leaders make sure pupils know how to keep themselves safe, including online. Pupils talk confidently about their personal safety.
Pupils feel well looked after. They know if they have a concern, they should tell an adult. Pupils know staff will listen.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
• Leaders have an overly generous view of the impact of the actions they put in place to bring improvement. This hinders their ability to ensure the effectiveness of their work. Leaders need to be evaluative in their monitoring so they can understand and act promptly on the next steps to school improvement.
• Some subject curriculums are in the early stages of being developed. As a result, teachers do not always have a secure knowledge of how to implement aspects of the curriculum. They do not identify when pupils are ready to move on with their learning.
As a result, some pupils who are ready, do not progress as quickly as they could. ? The early reading and phonics programme lacks rigorous and timely teacher assessment. Leaders do not systematically check the progress pupils make with their early reading as frequently as they should.
This means they are not able to ensure pupils receive the precise catch-up support they need in a timely manner. Leaders must ensure the tracking of early reading is systematic and timely. ? Leaders are in the process of developing the early year provision.
Some staff have not trained fully in facilitating learning and interacting effectively with children through the continuous provision. This means staff miss opportunities to focus on developmental learning and guide children to purposeful activities. Leaders need to ensure all staff receive the training and expertise they need to enhance their skills.
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