Pirton Hill Primary School

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About Pirton Hill Primary School

Name Pirton Hill Primary School
Website http://www.pirtonhill.com
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Glenn Booth
Address Butely Road, Luton, LU4 9EX
Phone Number 01582507924
Phase Primary
Type Community school
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 416
Local Authority Luton
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

At Pirton Hill, pupils behave in kind and friendly ways around school. There are clear routines so that pupils can learn and play calmly and safely.

One pupil said that, 'It is better to meet friends in school than outside' because staff will help sort out problems. Pupils are confident that, when bullying sometimes happens, their teachers will put a stop to it.

Before starting lessons, such as after break- and lunchtime, there are regular moments of quiet.

This helps pupils to get ready for the next part of the school day. As pupils settle down, teachers remind them to 'strive to be the best you can be'. Pupils remember this and try hard in lessons.

...>Pupils from all backgrounds, including pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), get the support they need to learn well.

Pupils are proud of their school's achievements, such as in sport. They enjoy a range of clubs and activities.

As they move up through the school, pupils look forward to the clubs on offer for different year groups. Regular 'wow!' events build pupils' confidence and celebrate their individual achievements with families.

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

From the beginning of Nursery, children get off to a strong start.

They quickly learn the vocabulary that leaders plan for them to know. Teachers use lively songs, traditional rhymes and memorable actions to help children remember important knowledge, such as number patterns. This particularly benefits some children with SEND, who remember key gestures and use them to communicate.

In Nursery, teachers include sounds from the school's phonics programme as part of their everyday teaching. This prepares children well for an ambitious phonics programme in Reception.

Pupils' ability to read well and their love of books are top priorities for leaders.

Leaders, staff and pupils say that being a learner at Pirton Hill means being a reader. Leaders' approach to promoting reading across the school has been successful. Leaders reward pupils' reading accomplishments and inspire them to read more.

Teachers teach the phonics programme well. In Reception and key stage 1, the books that teachers use to help pupils to learn to read are chosen well. For pupils in key stage 2 who still need support with phonics, the books that teachers select are less well chosen.

These books do not match the sounds that the pupils know precisely enough. This slows down the rate at which they can learn to read fluently.

Across the school, pupils have turned leaders' routines into good habits.

Pupils respond promptly to what teachers say. Classroom environments are calm places for pupils to learn. Pupils start lessons ready and eager to learn.

Leaders have carefully thought through what subject content they want pupils to know. Subject leaders have planned important connections between the content that pupils learn. To help them teach the curriculum well, staff have had extensive training in some areas, such as reading.

However, they are still getting to grips with a small number of other subjects, such as geography. In these areas, teachers do not always have the subject-specific knowledge they need to reinforce important content. As a result, pupils do not learn important knowledge as well in these subjects.

Leaders understand their local context well and so have identified cultural experiences that are valuable to pupils. Leaders plan opportunities to celebrate the different traditions in the local community. Trips to local museums enhance what pupils learn in the curriculum.

Personal, social and health education (PSHE) and assemblies effectively promote character development and physical and mental health.

Leaders across the school take informed actions that benefit pupils. Leaders check and ensure that pupils with SEND receive support that is well matched to their needs.

Leaders' actions to encourage strong attendance, including rewarding pupils and families, have been largely effective. Nevertheless, they recognise that there is more to do to support pupils who persistently do not attend well to come to school regularly. Leaders have appropriate plans to tackle this, but these have not yielded significant improvements at this stage.

Governors have their finger on the pulse of the life of the school. In meetings with other agencies, they support school leaders to push back against obstacles that delay pupils from receiving the support they need. Governors check that the actions that leaders have taken to support staff welfare are working well.

Staff say that leaders take account of their workload. They report that leaders have created a positive team spirit in school.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

School safeguarding systems are thorough. Governors regularly review and check them. Leaders of safeguarding follow up the incidents and concerns that staff log in a speedy way.

When leaders are not satisfied that pupils' needs are being met, or when they think that other agencies have been too slow to act, they push to secure the right kind of external help. They also use the school's pastoral resources to a full extent. This support is well attuned to pupils' needs.

Leaders of safeguarding use their training and professional knowledge to ensure that staff know how to spot concerns about local safeguarding risks effectively.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• The books that weaker readers in key stage 2 use are occasionally not well matched to what pupils know. This slows down the way in which these pupils, who still need phonics teaching, learn to read.

Leaders should ensure that the books these pupils use to learn to read are closely linked to the sounds they know, so that there are no unnecessary barriers to these pupils learning to read. ? In a small number of subjects that have been more recently developed, teachers do not explain content in depth, and do not remind pupils about that content after it has been introduced. Teachers do not have enough specific training in these areas of the curriculum.

This means that pupils' knowledge is less secure in these subjects than in others. Leaders should ensure that teachers have the subject knowledge they need to teach subjects well. Leaders should also ensure that teachers revisit crucial content to reinforce what they have taught pupils.

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