St Francis CofE Primary School

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About St Francis CofE Primary School

Name St Francis CofE Primary School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Hester Millsop
Address Aiken Road, Taw Hill, Swindon, SN25 1UH
Phone Number 01793727624
Phase Primary
Type Voluntary aided school
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Church of England
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 451
Local Authority Swindon
Highlights from Latest Inspection

Key findings

This is an outstanding school. Highly effective leadership has a very positive impact on the performance of teachers and the quality of teaching. As a result, pupils make consistently outstanding progress throughout the school and attain standards in reading, writing and mathematics which are significantly above those found in other schools nationally at the end of Key Stages 1 and 2.

Children enter the Early Years Foundation Stage with skills below expected levels for their age and they also make excellent progress. A particular strength is the way in which disabled pupils and those who have special educational needs, including those with challenging behaviour, are supported and taught so that they exceptional academic progress and achieve in line with levels expected for all pupils. Pupils achieve so well because teaching is of an exceptionally high standard and is supported by a rich and varied curriculum.

Lessons are imaginatively planned and exceptionally well taught. They meet pupils' individual needs very well and, within a strong Christian ethos, promote exceptionally good opportunities for their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. Behaviour and safety are good overall, with particular strengths in pupils' behaviour in lessons and their attitudes towards their learning.

The school recognises the need to update systems for monitoring rare instances of extreme behaviour and the organisation of morning break time. The recently appointed headteacher has made an excellent start. Because of the outstanding skills of senior leaders, the transition has been seamless and the drive for continuous improvement has not been interrupted, reflecting the highest of aspirations.

Strategic planning is very effective, although some criteria to measure the success of actions are not sufficiently explicit. Governors know the school well and effectively support the school's drive to further improve. As a result, the school has an outstanding capacity to maintain its already high standards and develop these further.

Information about the school

St Francis is a larger than average-sized primary school and pupil numbers have increased by over a third since the previous inspection. The proportion of pupils who start school other than in the Reception and Nursery classes is above average. The proportion of pupils known to be eligible for free school meals is below average, as are the percentages of pupils from minority ethnic backgrounds and those who speak English as an additional language.

In the Early Years Foundation Stage, the school has a nursery for children aged three to four years and two Reception classes for children aged four to five years. The school meets the government's current floor standards. The proportion of disabled pupils and those who have special educational needs is below average, with needs relating mainly to moderate learning difficulties and speech, language and communication difficulties.

The recently appointed headteacher took up her post in January 2012. The school has gained a number of awards, including Healthy School Status, the Becta information and communication technology mark, the silver Eco-schools award and the Interim International School award. On-site breakfast and after-school clubs are not managed by the governing body and are the subject of separate inspections.

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