Pevensey and Westham CofE Primary School

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About Pevensey and Westham CofE Primary School

Name Pevensey and Westham CofE Primary School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Luke Paramor
Address High Street, Westham, Pevensey, BN24 5LP
Phone Number 01323762269
Phase Primary
Type Voluntary controlled school
Age Range 5-11
Religious Character Church of England
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 414
Local Authority East Sussex
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils are happy and enjoy each other's company. Relationships between pupils and adults are warm and respectful.

Pupils feel safe and secure because dedicated adults work together as a team. One pupil described Pevensey and Westham as 'a home away from home'.

Pupils talk about the school's core values, such as forgiveness and resilience.

Pupils describe how and why they demonstrate the values in their learning and behaviour. They feel they help them to do better. Pupils appreciate opportunities to explore their talents and interests in a range of clubs, activities and visits.

Pupils enjoy their lessons and look forward to school each day.

P...upils are calm and focused in class, and learning is rarely disrupted by the behaviour of others. Pupils are taught and encouraged to behave well.

When bullying is identified, staff act swiftly and effectively to address it. Pupils trust staff to listen to them and sort out any worries they may have.

Parents and carers appreciate the school's nurturing ethos and dedicated staff.

One parent said, 'The staff really care about the pupils and there is a real feel of community.' Many parents are excited about the impact the principled headteacher is having on improving the school and, specifically, their child's learning.

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

Standards declined significantly since the last inspection and oversight by governors was weak.

The local authority took swift action in 2020 to intervene and provide significant support. New leaders and governors were appointed to deliver the rapid improvements needed. This is now a strongly improving school, but leaders recognise there is more to do.

Leaders have introduced well-sequenced curriculum plans, for example in phonics, and have ensured that pupils are being taught in a consistent way. By improving the school's curriculum in reading, writing and mathematics, leaders are already helping pupils to achieve more.

Leaders recognise that ensuring all children learn to read is essential.

Leaders have introduced a well-structured phonics programme, which begins as soon as children join the school in the early years. This gives them the best start possible. Pupils enjoy their daily phonics sessions.

This is because teaching is precise, and children can see how quickly their reading develops. Those who are struggling are quickly identified and receive effective help from well-trained staff. The books that pupils are given to read support their learning because they are well matched to the sounds they learn.

In other areas of learning and subjects, the essential things pupils need to know are not clear enough, for example in science, history or physical education (PE). It is not always clear to teachers, including those in the Reception Year, what knowledge they need to teach, and in what order. Some staff do not have strong subject knowledge in all the areas they need to teach.

As a result, there are gaps in what pupils know. Some pupils' misconceptions have not been identified and addressed.

Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are taught alongside their peers in lessons.

Adults make appropriate adjustments to ensure expectations of learning are the same for all. Although stronger in English and mathematics, success in meeting the needs of pupils with SEND remains too variable across the school. Leaders are aware of this and have plans in place to address it.

Pupils behave well because staff model positive behaviour and attitudes. Children in the early years learn how to regulate their behaviour and follow routines so they can focus on their learning. Pupils recognise the importance of treating others with respect.

They are kind and considerate in the corridors and at social times. Attendance and punctuality of pupils have improved because of leaders' strong oversight, high-profile communications and celebration of successes.

Leaders prioritise opportunities for pupils to develop personally, starting in the early years.

Leaders believe that every child is entitled to a range of rich experiences. These include clubs, theatre scholarships, charity work and re-establishing community links to the church. Residential trips for Year 6 have continued despite the challenges of the pandemic.

Pupils learn and appreciate responsibility through roles such as peer mediators, school councillors and sports leaders. Pupils debate issues maturely and understand how their actions impact others.

Governors are knowledgeable, skilled and able to fulfil their duties.

They are committed to providing the challenge that the school needs. Governors work closely with leaders to develop strategic plans and check rigorously that these are working as intended. Governors offer leaders useful support to help them achieve their goals.

They do this, for example, by reviewing and providing support for pupils with SEND and improving provision in the early years.

Leaders have already secured substantial support from parents, teachers and pupils. Staff appreciate and benefit from the expertise leaders bring to the school.

Leaders are considerate of staff workload and well-being without compromising their ambitions to make further improvements.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Staff are well trained to recognise signs of harm, which helps them identify children who may be at risk.

They report any concerns promptly and leaders make sure that these are followed up. Leaders know their pupils well, so they are alert to changes in their most vulnerable families' circumstances and in the local context. Checks on adults who work in school are appropriate and monitored by governors.

Occasionally, leaders need to be more proactive and involve other agencies quickly to ensure children get the help they need in a timely manner. Some minor record- keeping inaccuracies were found, that leaders are now putting right.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Curriculum thinking, in subjects other than English and mathematics, does not have sufficient detail to set out the essential knowledge pupils should know and remember.

This affects the effectiveness of teaching, including for early years and pupils with SEND. Pupils cannot always securely build on prior knowledge because the sequence of identified, small steps has not yet been fully thought through. Leaders should ensure that curriculum thinking is precise enough about what pupils need to learn and the best order in which to learn it.

• Some staff do not have the depth of subject knowledge they need to teach all the areas of the curriculum. This has an impact on how well pupils achieve. Leaders should ensure that staff are trained so that they have the knowledge they need to teach all subjects effectively.

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