St Bede’s RC Primary School

Name St Bede’s RC Primary School
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 27 January 2015
Address Kingsway, Thompson Street East, Darlington, County Durham, DL1 3ES
Phone Number 01325466411
Type Primary
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Roman Catholic
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 305 (51% boys 49% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 29.8
Academy Sponsor Carmel Education Trust
Local Authority Darlington
Percentage Free School Meals 9.3%
Percentage English is Not First Language 5.2%
Persisitent Absence 5.7%
Pupils with SEN Support 5.9%
Catchment Area Information Available Yes, our catchment area data is FREE
Last Distance Offered Information Available No

Information about this school

St Bede’s RC Primary School is an average-sized primary school. Nearly all pupils are from White British backgrounds and the proportion of pupils who speak English as an additional language is well below average. The proportion of disadvantaged pupils is below average. These pupils are supported by the pupil premium which is additional funding provided for pupils who are known to be eligible for free school meals and those who are in the care of the local authority. The proportion of disabled pupils and those with special educational needs is below the national average. The early years unit has recently been expanded to accommodate 45 Reception children. It also has a class for Nursery children who attend on a part-time basis. St Bede’s RC Primary School converted to become an academy in August 2012. When the predecessor school, also called St Bede’s RC Primary School, was last inspected by Ofsted in March 2010 it was judged to be good. The school meets the government’s current floor standards, which are the minimum expectations for pupils’ attainment and progress in reading, writing and mathematics by the end of Year 6. The school has been through a period of instability since the previous inspection. There have been a number of staff changes, including the appointment of an acting headteacher and deputy headteacher in September 2014. The school has a breakfast club run by the governing body. The school benefits from the support of The Carmel Education Trust which is a Multi-Academy Trust.

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is a good school. The acting headteacher leads the school with passion and commitment and commands the loyalty and respect of staff, governors and parents. He is ably supported by the acting deputy headteacher. Together they have taken effective action to improve the quality of teaching and pupils’ achievement and have clear plans in place that are leading to further improvements. Pupils make good progress in reading, writing and mathematics. Standards have risen rapidly over the last few years and are above average. More pupils are now attaining higher levels by the end of Year 6, especially in reading and mathematics. They are well prepared for secondary school. Teaching is consistently good. High expectations and relationships with pupils are strengths. Pupils benefit from teachers’ secure subject knowledge and excellent behaviour management. The school is highly successful in supporting disadvantaged pupils and those who need help to catch up in their learning. Children in the early years get off to a good start. They make good progress in developing their speech, language and communication skills. Pupils’ very positive attitudes to learning contribute to their good progress. Pupils’ behaviour is exemplary in lessons and around the school. Pupils are polite and considerate, and have excellent and respectful relationships with members of staff. All pupils feel completely safe in school and know how to keep themselves safe in different situations, including when using computers. The school’s provision to promote pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is excellent, so that pupils are extremely well prepared to be considerate citizens in modern Britain. Pupils benefit from a wide range of vibrant learning opportunities. Governors have a good understanding of the school’s strengths and areas for development and support and challenge senior leaders effectively. Parents have great respect for the school and complete confidence and trust in the staff to provide a warm, welcoming and nurturing environment. It is not yet an outstanding school because : Marking and feedback do not always indicate to pupils how to improve their work, and teachers do not consistently provide opportunities for pupils to respond to their advice. Newly appointed middle leaders are not fully effective in monitoring and improving their areas of responsibility. Leaders and managers have not ensured that arrangements to assess pupils’ abilities and track their progress are sufficiently well developed to support them to make the best possible progress.