St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School

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About St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School

Name St Joseph’s Catholic Primary School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Catherine McLoughlin
Address Gomm Road, Lower Road, London, SE16 2TY
Phone Number 02072374036
Phase Primary
Type Voluntary aided school
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Roman Catholic
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 226
Local Authority Southwark
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils are proud of their achievements at this aspirational primary school, and rightly so.

Across subjects, they excel in their learning.

The youngest children in early years know about the school's values of 'love, kindness and respect: the St Joseph's Way'. As they move up through the school, pupils use this as their moral compass to guide their behaviour and relationships.

The school has a very strong community feel. Older pupils support their younger peers as reading buddies. Pupils trained as 'peacemakers' help to resolve any difficulties which may arise at playtimes.

The school places a strong emphasis on teamwork and collaboration. Pupils tal...k confidently about the values that they hold in common, as well as their pride in the school's diversity. They listen and build on each other's ideas and debate big issues in a respectful way.

They are bursting to tell visitors about their love of learning.

The school provides a safe and harmonious environment. Pupils' behaviour in lessons and around the school is exemplary.

Parents and carers are greatly appreciative of the school's work. Reflecting the views of many, one parent commented that: 'The school doesn't only care about the children's welfare. It also cares about us as parents and gives us as much support as it can.'

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

The school has thought very carefully about its curriculum, which is highly effective. Teachers ensure that pupils are clear about the most important ideas they will be learning. This helps pupils to make connections over time, and build up secure and detailed knowledge.

Through careful questioning and discussions, teachers enable pupils to deepen their understanding. In addition, the school has identified the common misconceptions that pupils might hold in subjects like science, to ensure that these are addressed specifically in lessons. Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) have the extra support that they need to learn the curriculum well.

Pupils share their ideas clearly and confidently. They are respectful of those who need more time to say what they are thinking, so that everyone can participate in discussions. The school ensures that pupils can make links between the knowledge they learn and their character development.

For example, in their work on science, pupils also apply their thinking about honesty. They learn that scientists must record their findings with precision, even if they are not the results they had expected.

Teachers have the subject knowledge and the skills they need to carry out their roles very effectively.

Staff receive regular, high-quality professional development. The school is ambitious to keep improving its curriculum. For example, it is further refining its highly effective curriculum for mathematics.

A small number of classes are piloting a new approach which puts even more emphasis on explaining and modelling concepts. This ensures that pupils become highly proficient in using and apply mathematical knowledge.

From the start, children in the early years enjoy stories, songs and conversations with staff.

As a result, they learn more-complex language and vocabulary. This focus on language continues throughout the school. The school prioritises reading.

Expert teaching, together with the school's ambitious and rigorous curriculum for phonics, ensures that younger pupils learn and practise all their sounds. Extra support is quickly given to anyone who needs it. As a result, pupils quickly master the basics and move onto reading a wide range of books.

Older pupils are eager to talk about how much they love to read. They are gripped by the exciting stories in the novels which teachers select for them. They enjoy reading for relaxation and pleasure.

Pupils' behaviour is immaculate. They focus intently during lessons and move sensibly and calmly around the school. Attendance rates are high.

This is because the school sets clear expectations for attendance and punctuality. The school's monitoring is rigorous. Where families need more support, leaders work hard to understand their specific needs and improve attendance.

The school has robust procedures to identify pupils with SEND. This means that they are fully included in learning and the wider opportunities on offer, like after-school clubs.

The school's personal development curriculum has been thoughtfully designed.

Pupils are taught about staying safe online, resisting peer pressure, and respecting others. The school's work on language development supports this and pupils are taught to think carefully about their choice of words. They know how to build on another person's ideas or disagree with them courteously.

Pupils are taught to look after their mental and physical health. This links to their physical education (PE) lessons, where they develop their skills and fitness as well as learn about why it is important to stay fit and healthy. Pupils contribute actively to the local community.

For example, there are regular visits to a local care home, where pupils sing to residents. Pupils enjoy a wide range of extra-curricular activities.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

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