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Pupils flourish in this welcoming and friendly school, where all pupils are included and valued.
The core values of creativity, compassion, courage and community are at the centre of everything this school does.
Leaders and staff know the pupils very well. Pupils are safe and enjoy belonging to this small, family orientated school.
They receive an education that engages their interest in a wide range of subjects.
Leaders and staff have high aspirations for every child. Pupils show an enthusiasm for learning.
They produce artistic and written work of a high quality. Pupils develop academically, personally and socially here.
Pupils de...monstrate both exceptional behaviour and exceptional attitudes to learning in lessons.
Adults promote high expectations for positive behaviour across all year groups. Incidents of low-level disruption are rare.
During their social times, pupils play happily together.
Pupils learn and show respectful manners to others. Bullying seldom happens. If it does occur, then adults deal with it swiftly.
Parents spoke highly of school leaders and teachers. They value the quality of education and the support that their children receive. One parent's comment, which was typical of many, was, 'My kids are happy at Petts Hill.'
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Leaders have created an ambitious curriculum which provides pupils with exciting learning experiences. Leaders have organised content well so that pupils can see connections between subjects. For example, pupils used their knowledge of electricity to install light bulbs into models that they constructed in a design and technology project.
From the early years onwards, effective teaching enables pupils to know more and do more. Teachers check pupils' understanding and revisit what pupils have learned before. This helps pupils build their subject-specific knowledge and skills across many parts of the curriculum.
However, in a few subjects, the development of the sequencing of knowledge and skills is not as strong.
Leaders identify the needs of pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) well. Staff support pupils with SEND and those pupils who speak English as an additional language effectively.
Identified pupils receive speech and language therapy to enhance their communication skills. Teachers adapt their teaching to meet pupils' needs, including in the early years provision. This gives all pupils, including pupils with SEND, the foundations for future learning.
Leaders prioritise reading throughout the school, starting in the early years. The phonics curriculum ensures that books are matched to the letter sounds pupils know. Pupils who struggle with their reading receive the time and support to help them catch up.
Pupils become fluent readers because reading skills are taught systematically. They benefit from an approach to group reading which emphasises pupils' comprehension. Pupils discuss their favourite books, characters and stories with enthusiasm.
Children make a good start to their education in the early years and quickly become confident and enthusiastic learners. Effective systems and routines are securely in place so pupils learn how to behave. Pupils are self-disciplined and have a real thirst for learning.
By the end of Reception, most children achieve well and are ready for the next steps in their school life.
Personal development of pupils, including children in the early years, is strong. Extra-curricular clubs, such as sporting activities, music and exercise classes help pupils build their talents and interests.
Leaders ensure that disadvantaged pupils and pupils with SEND take up the many opportunities on offer. Pupils visit a variety of places, including local landmarks and museums.
Staff take pride in preparing pupils to be active citizens.
The school's choir performs regularly at school and in the local community. Pupils have many responsibilities that they delight in. For example, they take on roles as school councillors and sports ambassadors.
Pupils who are interested in gardening tend the school's edible garden.
The broader curriculum is diverse and extends pupils' knowledge and understanding of the local area and the world in which they live. Pupils are taught about other cultures and faiths, equality and fairness.
Pupils show respect for other beliefs, cultures and opinions.
Leaders have established a caring environment for staff. Staff value the ongoing support they receive for their professional development and well-being.
Leaders make sure that staff are well-equipped to provide a consistent approach to learning.
The governing body shares school leaders' vision for all pupils to succeed. They challenge school leaders on certain aspects of the school's work.
For example, they check that resources are managed well. However, they provide less challenge on the quality of education provided by the school.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
Leaders and staff are extremely mindful of pupils' welfare. They report any concerns, no matter how small. Training reflects current government guidelines.
Staff can identify possible indicators when a child might be at risk of harm.
Leaders engage effectively with parents, carers and external agencies. If a concern does arise, leaders make prompt referrals to the relevant services to secure pupils' safety.
Pupils learn to keep themselves safe, including when using the internet. They learn what appropriate and inappropriate behaviour is, so they can report any worries they may have to adults.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
• In a few subjects, the sequencing of knowledge and subject-specific skills is not organised with sufficient detail and precision across the curriculum.
This means that pupils do not build up their knowledge and skills in these subjects in a suitably coherent and progressive way. Leaders should refine the curriculum further, making sure that it enables pupils to build their knowledge and skills securely across all subjects. ? The governing body does not hold school leaders accountable enough for the quality of education provided by the school.
As a result, school leaders' evaluation of the quality of education and proposed improvement strategies are not sufficiently tested and scrutinised. The governing body should ensure that it possesses the knowledge needed to challenge school leaders about the quality of education. The governing body should challenge school leaders with more rigour to ensure that leaders' strategies to improve the quality of education are effective.
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