Sparhawk Infant School & Nursery

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About Sparhawk Infant School & Nursery

Name Sparhawk Infant School & Nursery
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Ms Heidi Jordan
Address Sparhawk Avenue, Sprowston, Norwich, NR7 8BU
Phone Number 01603406406
Phase Primary
Type Community school
Age Range 3-7
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 206
Local Authority Norfolk
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils thrive at this school. They do extremely well across a wide range of subjects.

There is a very strong sense of a school community where staff care for pupils very well. The routines established lead to pupils' behaviour being excellent throughout the school. Children settle in very quickly in the Nursery and Reception classes.

Not only do pupils behave very well, but they look out for one another. They are helpful, polite and welcoming to visitors. They are keen to talk about what they enjoy.

They feel safe and know that there are adults that they can talk to if they have concerns. Pupils and staff told us that they do not remember any bullying in their school.

The school's values run deeply through the life of the school.

Pupils reflect these values through their relationships with one another and their teachers. Relationships between adults and children are excellent. Pupils value and celebrate the differences in each other, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND).

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

Leaders have worked to improve the school. Pupils enjoy many subjects. Teachers plan work based on understanding pupils' needs and ensure that it covers the requirements of the national curriculum.

Over several years, pupils have achieved very well from the time they start school to when they leave at the end of key stage 1. Links with the junior school, to which most of them go, are very strong. As a result, they are very well prepared for their next steps in primary education.

A noticeable feature of the school is the high quality of everything it does. This is particularly seen in the teaching of reading. Reading is a clear priority for the school.

Staff ensure that there is a good balance between teaching children the skills of reading and developing a joy of reading. Reading is given a high priority by leaders. Parents and carers read regularly with their children at home.

Pupils who struggle with reading have time and support from staff to help them catch up successfully. Staff have had effective training in teaching reading. This ensures that teachers and other staff use a consistent approach when teaching phonics.

Staff promptly identify pupils who are falling behind. Teachers choose books carefully, which may be on topics relevant to the week, for example mental health week. Pupils read to an adult every day at school.

At the previous inspection in April this year, the school was given only one area for improvement. This was for pupils to use subject-specific language. This has been achieved.

One of the striking features of the school is that pupils now use and understand subject-specific words. For example, in learning about the world, children in the early years talk about 'habitat'. In music, they use and understand words such as pitch and pulse.

Teachers insist on precision in the choice of words. For example, a pupil talked about pulse. The teacher responded, 'Yes, but an even better word would be?' The pupil replied, 'Tempo'.

The use of subject-specific language is now a strength across the school. The fast change is an example of the highly effective leadership in the school.

Subject leaders ensure that there are consistently high expectations in the quality of teaching in their subjects.

They provide high-quality support to help teachers teach so that pupils learn more and remember more. Subjects come alive through well-thought-out and memorable trips and visits. Leaders ensure that all pupils experience these.

The 'Sparhawk 50 things to do' provides a balance of activities. Some relate to subjects, while others are to expand pupils' cultural experience.

Pupils' spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is very strong.

For example, during the inspection, in an assembly led by a local church minister, pupils reflected on the environment and what they could do to help. Pupils linked this to the letters they had written to a supermarket. The letters explained to the supermarket how using palm oil damaged the rain forests.

Later in the day, in design and technology, pupils were beginning a project that linked to the assembly by making Christmas gifts from recycled materials.

Governors check whether leaders are doing the best that they can for pupils. Governors share leaders' high ambitions for the school and for pupils' learning and care.

Support for families is exceptional. Parents told us how they value the many resources to help parents support their children. Examples included 'phonics talks' and 'an emotional well-being presentation'.

Parents praised the school for the support provided for the growing number of families of children with SEND or for whom English is an additional language.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders know the pupils and their families well.

They go the extra mile in ensuring their safety and welfare. Pupils receive high-quality extra support for their well-being. Staff are trained regularly in how to keep pupils safe.

They are alert to any signs that pupils are at risk of harm. Leaders follow up and check on the actions of external agencies and reports are made. The procedures for the recruitment of staff are secure.

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