St Bede’s Catholic Primary School, Sacriston

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About St Bede’s Catholic Primary School, Sacriston

Name St Bede’s Catholic Primary School, Sacriston
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Sam Clarke
Address Front Street, Sacriston, Durham, DH7 6AB
Phone Number 01913710272
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Roman Catholic
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 95
Local Authority County Durham
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders have ensured that St Bede's Catholic Primary School is a safe and caring place to learn.

The school's Christian values are at its heart. Staff are rightly proud of the school's inclusive ethos. Leaders have high expectations for pupils' behaviour and conduct.

Disruption is rare. Pupils respond well to the clear structures and routines that are in place. There is a calm and purposeful environment in classrooms and around the school.

Pupils feel safe. Relationships with staff are warm and respectful. The mental health of pupils is central to the school's pastoral care.

Pupils know that there is always an adult to talk to. Pupils show respect to...wards each other and adults. Bullying is very rare.

Children are confident that staff will resolve any problems quickly when they do occur.

Pupils study all the subjects in the national curriculum. Leaders are ambitious for what pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), can achieve.

Pupils learn about a wide range of cultures and traditions. Pupils have valuable opportunities to take responsibility in school. These opportunities can include becoming buddies to the youngest children, as house captains or as school councillors.

Many pupils take part in a range of extra-curricular activities.

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

The school wants pupils to achieve well. A curriculum has been designed which helps pupils learn and remember more.

Leaders place a strong emphasis on reading and mathematics. For instance, in Reception, practical tasks enable children to make a strong start to recognising number and to developing writing skills. This enables pupils to apply their understanding from these key subjects in other areas of learning, such as art and science.

A focus on developing important knowledge and vocabulary is carefully embedded into lessons. For example, in art, pupils learn how to use a wide range of media. From Reception, pupils learn specific vocabulary and use this to critique their work.

They identify what to improve next time. In some subjects, the school has introduced a new curriculum. Staff have been trained to implement these changes.

In a small number of subjects, for example history, some knowledge is not fully sequenced between different key stages. This means that some opportunities for deepening pupils' understanding are missed.

In most subjects, teachers check what pupils have learned and what they need to do next.

For example, in mathematics, teachers review pupils' progress, adapting teaching successfully to close any gaps in pupils' understanding. In a small number of subjects, such as history, this is not carried out as successfully. Consequently, teachers are not as secure about what pupils have learned and remembered.

Leaders have prioritised the teaching of reading. They have adopted a well-constructed phonics programme. This starts in Reception.

Staff are well trained and teach phonics with confidence. The books that pupils read match the sounds that they know. This helps them practise using their phonics knowledge to become confident and fluent readers.

Staff provide extra support for pupils who have fallen behind with their reading to help them catch up.

Leaders are ambitious for pupils with SEND. They support teachers in adapting the curriculum for these pupils.

This ensures that pupils with SEND access the same curriculum as their peers. The school secures expert help for pupils with SEND when needed.

Staff establish effective routines for pupils' behaviour from the moment they start school.

As a result, pupils behave well. They show consideration for each other, and courtesy to adults. At breaktimes and lunchtimes, pupils play cooperatively.

Leaders make good use of the space available to ensure that pupils have an active breaktime. Attendance is a priority for all, including for pupils with SEND. Leaders check pupils' attendance daily.

Pupils are articulate and independent by the time they are ready to leave the school. These skills are taught through a programme of Catholic social and personal education. This enables pupils to learn about their talents and how they can be used for the good of others.

Pupils learn about different cultures. They understand British values and protected characteristics. Pupils develop personal responsibility, taking on caring and leadership roles across the school.

A few parents and carers have found changes to the communication and messaging system confusing and felt this was not addressed quickly enough. The school has since made software updates. A new trust-wide communication system is due to be introduced to improve communication with parents.

Staff are extremely positive about support they receive from leaders and recognise how hard leaders work to remove unnecessary workload.

Governors and trustees know the school's strengths well. They have regular meetings with school leaders.

This ensures that they understand what the school must do to secure improvement.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• The sequencing of the curriculum is not consistently strong across all foundation subjects.

In some subjects, assessment is not used effectively to check what pupils remember and to inform the next steps in teaching. As a result, some pupils have gaps in their knowledge. The fine tuning, implementation and assessment of the curriculum across some of the foundation subjects should be developed further.

• Some parents feel that communication from school can be unclear. This limits parents' ability to understand what is happening in school and support their children. The school should refine its communication with parents.

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