Pulford CofE VA Lower School


Name Pulford CofE VA Lower School
Website http://www.pulfordschool.org
Inspections
Ofsted Inspections
Address Pulford Road, Leighton Buzzard, LU7 1AB
Phone Number 01525372188
Type Primary
Age Range 2-9
Religious Character Church of England
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 262 (51.5% boys 48.5% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 22.0
Local Authority Central Bedfordshire
Percentage Free School Meals 6.9%
Percentage English is Not First Language 11.1%
Persistent Absence 2.2%
Pupils with SEN Support 9.2%%
Highlights from Latest Inspection

Main findings

Excellent work by the school's leaders, particularly in managing teaching and learning, has driven improvements extremely well since the last inspection and particularly over the last year.

The school's many existing strengths have been built upon very well. As a result, it now provides an outstanding education. Pupils make excellent progress and attain high standards because of outstanding teaching.

They thoroughly enjoy both social and academic aspects of school, and their behaviour is excellent. A varied and exciting curriculum promotes both their achievement and their enjoyment of learning. A key to the improvements in progress over the last two years is the way the leaders have improved ...assessment systems and their use to inform planning.

This means that teachers are much clearer about exactly how well pupils are progressing, and match work much more closely to their different needs. The school is quickly able to identify if any individual pupils are in danger of falling behind, and staff respond swiftly to help by planning interventions that meet their particular needs. The work of all subject leaders has made a strong contribution to these developments.

However, subject leaders have not had much opportunity to share expertise with colleagues by working alongside them in the classroom. The headteacher has identified this as a priority, and plans are being drawn up to address it. The school's strong academic success is matched by pupils' outstanding personal development.

This results from excellent care, guidance and support. The school is a thriving and extremely cohesive community, where boys and girls from different backgrounds play and work together very well. Pupils' spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is excellent.

They consider moral issues thoughtfully, and are very respectful of other's opinions and beliefs. They form very positive relationships with other pupils and with staff, and are extremely caring about each other. They have exceptionally good collaborative skills.

The school has worked hard and successfully to extend pupils' understanding of the wider world, and of different cultures, through a wide-ranging curriculum. There is a strong link with a community in Kenya, and visitors from a range of backgrounds enhance pupils' understanding. However, pupils' opportunities to link directly with contrasting communities in this country are limited.

Pupils feel happy and safe in school because they have confidence that the staff will look after and care for them. There are some very good practical systems in place to ensure pupils' safety, such as the extremely thorough checks made on adults' suitability to work with children, and all statutory requirements are met. However, the paperwork to back this up is of very variable quality, and some policies lack detail and are not sufficiently tailored to this particular school.

The school's self-evaluation is accurate and has been used very effectively to make major improvements over the last eighteen months. Staff work as a cohesive team and are keen to build further on their success. Consequently, the school's capacity to improve further is good.

Information about the school

This is a small primary school near the centre of a small town. The large majority of pupils are White British, with a few coming from a wide range of different minority ethnic heritages. Almost all pupils speak English as their home language.

The proportion of pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities is below average. A new headteacher and deputy have been appointed since the last inspection. The school has also established a before- and after-school club, Little Saints, since the last inspection.