St Swithun Wells Catholic Primary School, Chandlers Ford

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About St Swithun Wells Catholic Primary School, Chandlers Ford

Name St Swithun Wells Catholic Primary School, Chandlers Ford
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Anne-Marie Jordan
Address Hillcrest Avenue, Chandler’s Ford, Eastleigh, SO53 2JP
Phone Number 02380266210
Phase Primary
Type Voluntary aided school
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Roman Catholic
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 194
Local Authority Hampshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection


St Swithun Wells Catholic Primary School, Chandlers Ford continues to be a good school.

What is it like to attend this school?

Parents are spot on when they say: 'Great environment, fantastic staff and great values taught to the pupils.' The simple but powerful core values of 'ready, respect and kind' permeate school life. Expectations of pupils are high, recognising and celebrating attitudes and actions that go 'over and above' the minimum.

From Reception upwards, pupils rise to adults' expectations. Classrooms are calm and purposeful. Pupils listen attentively.

They enjoy learning new knowledge and the feeling of success they get from understanding facts or mastering a n...ew skill. By the end of Year 6, pupils achieve well in reading, writing and mathematics and have accumulated secure knowledge in a range of other subjects.

St Swithun Wells is like a window on the world.

Pupils and their families come from many different countries. As another parent wrote: 'The school is very welcoming to all, and the diversity of pupils and families in the school gives all children broader insight and knowledge.' Pupils develop a healthy respect for difference.

They appreciate the care and kindness of staff and extend these values to each other. School councillors give pupils a voice in school matters. Others contribute to leading worship as members of the 'GIFT' team.

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

In the words of one parent: 'The school is a supportive environment, and it cares about the whole child, not just ticking the boxes'. The world map near the entrance celebrating families' home countries and cultures is testament to the inclusive ethos. Parents are encouraged to speak their first languages at home, to develop their child's speaking and listening skills and to help them make sense of what they are learning.

Staff use effective strategies to provide in-class support for pupils who speak English as an additional language (EAL). 'Young interpreters' partner with new arrivals to help them settle in and learn English.

The commitment to pupils' all-round development and nurturing their readiness to learn is undeniable.

Pupils are taught to understand important matters like healthy relationships and their place in the world. Activities such as 'Parliament week' bring real life into the classroom, and a range of clubs offer the chance to try different activities. Home visits before children start Reception are used to get to know their interests and needs.

The same care is taken to get to know any new pupil or when barriers to learning start to emerge. Leaders are diligent in pinpointing exactly what any additional needs are. They ensure that individual support plans are personalised and that staff understand how to help pupils in class.

Where needed, additional activities are targeted to enhance pupils' vocabulary and widen their experiences. The recently introduced 'Squirrel School' provides an important space for pupils who find being in class all day difficult, enabling them to learn in a different environment.

Learning to read and loving to read underpin pupils' success across the curriculum.

Staff kickstart an enthusiasm for books during home visits. They take a selection for children to choose from and give them their very own book bag to proudly bring it back to school. Teaching early reading skills begins as soon as children start in Reception.

Staff are well trained, so the phonics programme is delivered skilfully and accurately. They constantly look and listen to check that pupils are grasping the sounds letters make and how to write them, providing a boost where needed. Pupils quickly start to see themselves as readers as they have a taste of their own success when practising the sounds they are learning, using carefully matched books.

Those who do not learn to read as quickly as their classmates benefit from tailored support. Pupils who joined the school with no or very little English flourish as readers over time.

The mathematics programme is equally well structured and precisely taught so that pupils' knowledge and skills build from Reception upwards.

Any additional needs are met by consolidating pupils' understanding of facts and methods before moving on. In other subjects, the progression of knowledge and skills is set out, but leaders are working through a rolling programme of reviewing and refining the content. They want to ensure that the journey from early years into Year 1 and beyond is consistently clear.

The school has not, however, made as much headway as it wanted due to staff changes. That said, the school is ensuring that pupils continue to learn in the interim by keeping watch on what is happening in classrooms and trialling a new assessment approach. Subject leaders are benefiting from well-planned professional development opportunities.

They are being supported to check pupils' learning across the school through well-spaced 'subject cascades'.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority) ? Staff turnover has meant many changes to subject leadership.

This has hindered the planned pace of change to refine the curriculum. The school needs to continue to develop new leaders in their role so that they all have a clear picture of the current position of their subject and understand what needs to be even better. ? Because some subjects are yet to benefit from a revamp, guidance for staff about the progression of knowledge and skills is not always as helpful as it might be.

It is not always clear what prior learning they should be building on. In continuing its review of the curriculum, the school should agree precisely what pupils should know and retain at key points from the start of Reception to the end of Year 6.


When we have judged a school to be good, we will then normally go into the school about once every four years to confirm that the school remains good.

This is called an ungraded inspection, and it is carried out under section 8 of the Education Act 2005. We do not give graded judgements on an ungraded inspection. However, if we find evidence that a school would now receive a higher or lower grade, then the next inspection will be a graded inspection, which is carried out under section 5 of the Act.

Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the ungraded inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will deem the ungraded inspection a graded inspection immediately.

This is the first ungraded inspection since we judged the school to be good in May 2018.

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