Potten End CofE Primary School

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About Potten End CofE Primary School

Name Potten End CofE Primary School
Website http://www.pottenend.herts.sch.uk
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Denise Kennedy
Address Church Road, Potten End, Berkhamsted, HP4 2QY
Phone Number 01442865022
Phase Primary
Type Voluntary controlled school
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Church of England
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 204
Local Authority Hertfordshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection


Potten End Church of England Primary School continues to be a good school.

What is it like to attend this school?

Potten End Primary School is a place where pupils are valued and well cared for. Pupils enjoy coming to school and being part of this happy community.

On the playground, pupils enjoy each other's company, following the school's values of 'friendship' and 'respect'.

Children in early years play confidently in the extensive outdoor area. Pupils have faith that staff will deal with any issue or disagreement if it were to occur. Reports of bullying, for example, are taken seriously.

Pupils trust staff to sort it out so everyone gets along.

Pupils ...say that their learning is rarely disrupted by other children. Classrooms are calm places.

Poor behaviour does not happen regularly. Staff deal with it effectively when it does. Pupils use a range of strategies, taught to them by staff, to stop themselves getting cross or upset.

Pupils take part in a range of after-school clubs, including for sports such as football and basketball. They talk excitedly about how visitors come into the school and help bring their curriculum to life. Pupils told the inspector how the school's personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) education curriculum helped them understand the wider world.

It teaches them how to stay safe online and what to do if something worries them.

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

Since the headteacher joined the school, she and her team have evaluated and improved the school's curriculum. With support from the governing body and local authority, leaders have reviewed each curriculum area to ensure that the plans in place support pupils' learning.

Across much of the school's curriculum, subject plans are clear and identify what pupils need to know. Key knowledge is arranged in a logical order starting from early years and ending in Year 6. Pupils build their understanding gradually as they moved through the school.

In history, for example, by Year 5, pupils have learned about a range of ancient civilisations such as the Mayans, Romans and Ancient Greeks. Pupils have the knowledge to make detailed comparisons between them using terms such as 'invasion'.

Many subject plans support pupils' learning well.

In a small number of subjects, however, some of the important knowledge is not clear, nor sequenced as well as in the stronger subjects. Pupils make progress, but not as much as they should. Leaders' plans to address this issue are still in development.

For much of the curriculum, pupils build on and practise their learning. In mathematics, for example, younger children are taught important number skills to prepare them for Year 1. Pupils are then taught about mathematical methods to help them with their sums.

Older pupils know and use these models confidently to help them to solve tricky mathematical problems.

Teachers know their subjects well. They work with leaders to check pupils' knowledge.

Lessons are adjusted appropriately to address gaps in pupils' understanding, particularly as a result of missed learning due to the pandemic. Across a wide range of subjects, pupils achieve well. In a small number of subjects where knowledge is not as clear, assessment is not tightly linked to the knowledge learned.

Teachers find it harder to spot gaps in learning and pupils do not achieve as well.

Leaders have recently changed their reading curriculum. Starting in early years, a well-sequenced reading curriculum supports pupils to learn to read.

Adults are well trained to help pupils who find reading tricky. Pupils' books match the sounds they are learning. Pupils enjoy reading for pleasure.

They can describe how teachers make reading exciting and read them a range of stories.

Across the school, teachers use what they know about pupils to make helpful adjustments to their lessons to make them accessible for everyone. Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), for example, access the same curriculum as their peers.

Staff give pupils with SEND the help they need to succeed as well as everyone else.

The PSHE education curriculum teaches pupils about a range of different issues in an age-appropriate way. For example, pupils learn about how others may be different from themselves.

From early years to Year 6, pupils treat each other with respect and tolerance.

The school's thoughtful approach to dealing with behaviour is a strength. Staff have high expectations of how pupils should behave.

Pupils enjoy their time at school and are focused on their learning. A small number of pupils are given effective extra support to keep their behaviour on track.

The changes to the curriculum have been well managed.

Leaders are mindful about how these changes could increase staff workload. Staff say that this is not the case and that leaders are considerate of their workload and well-being.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

There is a strong culture of safeguarding. Across the school, all staff are well trained to spot whether a pupil is at risk of harm. Leaders have created clear processes for staff to report safeguarding concerns.

Records of safeguarding concerns are maintained well. They are detailed and show prompt and appropriate actions in response to safeguarding worries. Leaders work with a range of different agencies to ensure that pupils and their families get the help they need.

Staff teach pupils how to keep safe in different scenarios, for example in the community or when online.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• A small number of curriculum plans are still being developed. In these plans, key knowledge is not as clearly laid out as it is in the more developed subjects.

Consequently, for these subjects, assessment is not as useful as it could be. Leaders need to make sure that all curriculum plans sequence knowledge in a logical order and have assessment that is closely linked to the knowledge taught.


When we have judged a school to be good, we will then normally go into the school about once every four years to confirm that the school remains good.

This is called a section 8 inspection of a good or outstanding school, because it is carried out under section 8 of the Education Act 2005. We do not give graded judgements on a section 8 inspection. However, if we find evidence that a school would now receive a higher or lower grade, then the next inspection will be a section 5 inspection.

Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the section 8 inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will deem the section 8 inspection a section 5 inspection immediately.

This is the second section 8 inspection since we judged the school to be good in November 2010.

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