Minehead First School

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About Minehead First School

Name Minehead First School
Website http://www.mineheadfirstschool.co.uk
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Gemma Chapman
Address Townsend Road, Minehead, TA24 5RG
Phone Number 01643702938
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 2-9
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 298
Local Authority Somerset
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils live up to the school's values such as community, ambition and respect. Relationships between staff and pupils are warm and respectful. The school knows pupils as individuals.

Pupils get high-quality pastoral care that helps address a range of needs. This is a caring and inclusive school where all are valued. As a result, pupils enjoy school and attend well.

Expectations are high. Most pupils behave well and show positive attitudes in lessons and around the school. Bullying, when it occurs, is dealt with appropriately.

Pupils have access to a wide range of extra-curricular activities that develop their talents and interests like archery, football and s...cience clubs. Pupils are proud to take up positions of responsibility such as the sports crew, who support younger pupils in the playground. Pupils' views are represented well through the school council.

Older pupils enthusiastically told inspectors about the debating competitions with other schools.

Most parents who shared their views are positive about the support their children receive at school. One comment, typical of many, was: 'I have had a fantastic experience with Minehead First School.

My children feel safe and have a lovely relationship with staff.'

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

There have been some significant changes in leadership since the last inspection. The new leadership team has driven curriculum improvement at a rapid pace.

Strong partnership working with the trust has ensured a clear focus on curriculum. The school has developed a curriculum that is ambitious. Pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) learn all the subjects in the national curriculum.

In most subjects, the school has ensured that the curriculum starts in the early years and is clearly sequenced. Pupils build on their knowledge each year. For example, in pre-school and Reception staff prioritise and model the use of language.

This lays the foundation for pupils' educational journey. As pupils move through the school pupils use full sentences and sophisticated vocabulary to describe mathematical thinking. For example, pupils in Year 1 were discussing terms like 'addend' and 'equation'.

In a few subjects, the school has not identified the essential knowledge that pupils must know and remember. Pupils do not make connections between facts learned. For example, in history, pupils can remember key information from current topics, but struggle to link these to important concepts across historical periods.

The school prioritises early reading. Children in the early years get off to a great start. This begins from their second week of Reception.

The school's phonics programme helps pupils learn to read well. They read books that match the sounds they know, which enables them to practise becoming accurate and fluent readers. The school provides swift and targeted support for any pupils who fall behind.

This enables pupils to catch-up quickly. Reading is celebrated across the school. Pupils particularly enjoy listening to their teachers reading to them.

Stories are carefully chosen that reflect the diversity of modern Britain. Older pupils talk with confidence about the range of books they enjoy from the class and school libraries.

The school provides well for pupils with SEND.

It operates a school-based SEND provision to support a small number of pupils. These pupils benefit from a highly tailored provision designed to meet their identified targets linked to their education health and care plans. A very small number of pupils present challenging behaviour at times.

Some other pupils find this difficult. Inspectors concluded that staff manage challenging behaviour well.

The curriculum for pupils' personal, social and health education (PSHE) is well matched to pupils' age and understanding.

The school supports pupils' mental health well. Pupils understand the school's 'zones of regulation' and use these to manage their own feelings and behaviour. The school's work with the church, local library and a care home enhance pupils' social development.

Work with the local mayor and school council elections develop pupils' understanding of democracy.

The school has taken swift action to reduce persistent absence. It works with parents to overcome barriers that may prevent pupils from attending as often as they should.

The school uses many strategies to promote high attendance, including inviting pupils to a nurture breakfast club, where they are offered a cooked breakfast once a week.

Trustees and the local governing board have an accurate view of the school's strengths and priorities for improvement. They are strongly committed to improving the school further.

Staff are proud to work at the school. They feel valued and supported by the school and the trust.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• In some subjects and at times in the early years, the school has not identified the essential knowledge it wants pupils to know and remember over time. As a result, pupils do not develop a broad knowledge of the curriculum in these areas. The school and trust must ensure that the precise knowledge they want pupils to learn is identified so that they build on their knowledge over time.

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