The Craylands School

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About The Craylands School

Name The Craylands School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Kris Hiscock
Address Craylands Lane, Swanscombe, DA10 0LP
Phone Number 01322388230
Phase Primary
Type Community school
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 417
Local Authority Kent
Highlights from Latest Inspection


The Craylands School continues to be a good school.

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils say they love coming to this happy, welcoming and friendly school. All the pupils spoken to said that they felt safe in school and that staff care for, and look after them well.

Pupils say that their teachers are kind and help them. One parent wrote that her child is, 'always enthusiastic and excited to go to school and has nothing but positive things to say about the staff'.

Pupils enjoy their lessons and like to learn.

They like being 'Craylearners' and Lenny the Craylearning Lion encourages them to do their best. Pupils are encouraged to have a can-do attitude, bui...ld resilience and not be afraid to make mistakes. Pupils behave well in school.

They are not worried about bullying because they are confident that if it did happen, their teachers would always make sure it stops.

Although some parents and carers were concerned that the friendly, family atmosphere would be lost as the school grew, they are pleased that this is not the case. The comment, 'We love the community feel despite the increase in size,' was a typical view.

Teachers take their time to get to know each pupil and value pupils' interests and achievements outside school.

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

Leaders have thought carefully about what pupils should learn in each subject and when they should learn it. Teachers are clear about what pupils need to know to help them understand new things.

They build on what pupils have already learned and remembered. Teachers set great store in teaching appropriate vocabulary for each subject. Pupils use this well to help show what they have learned.

Children settle quickly when they start school in early years. Staff make sure that children are happy, safe and secure. Leaders make sure that there is an emphasis on children's speaking, reading, writing and early mathematics.

Staff keep a close check on how the children are getting on and what they need to learn next.Phonics (letters and the sounds they represent) are taught from the moment children start full time in the Reception classes. Staff are well trained to teach the phonics programme, and pupils learn phonics successfully by the end of Year 1.

Any pupil in danger of falling behind is given extra support immediately.

Pupils listen to lots of stories every day. They are encouraged to develop a love of reading at home and at school.

Older pupils continue to enjoy listening to high-quality books read to them by their teachers. Pupils ask questions and engage in discussion to increase their understanding of what they read. Pupils said, 'We like discussing our thoughts together – it helps us learn.'

Most pupils become confident, fluent readers.

Pupils enjoy mathematics and it is taught well. The curriculum leader makes sure that there is strong guidance for teachers on what to teach.

Plans build on pupils' skills and include lots of opportunities for pupils to use their knowledge in practical ways. Pupils enjoy competing as 'Times Table Rock Stars' and solving problems.

Newly revised plans in subjects other than English and mathematics show precisely what should be taught and when.

For example, in geography, plans show how pupils develop their map skills over time. Curriculum leaders of these subjects know that they must check carefully to make sure that all teachers are following the plans and that they are working well.

Most pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), achieve well in all subjects.

However, the most able pupils sometimes do not learn as well as they could. This is because teachers' expectations are not always high enough. Pupils' handwriting and presentation of their work are not as good as they should be because teachers sometimes accept poorly presented, untidy work when it is clear that pupils could do better.

Leaders and teachers are skilled in adapting plans and teaching so that the needs of pupils with SEND are met well. The pupil and parent support team keeps a close check on pupils who may be vulnerable. They establish supportive, positive relationships with pupils and their families.

The school offers a good selection of clubs and extra activities. These are appreciated by pupils and parents. Clubs and other activities such as trips and visits help pupils to become confident, self-assured and responsible citizens.

Pupils are respectful and strive to achieve a ROAR (Respect Others, Act Responsibly) certificate.

There are positive relationships between leaders and staff. Staff appreciate the fact that leaders are mindful of the workload placed on them while not expecting any less than the best teaching for pupils.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders responsible for safeguarding and all adults in the school are well trained in safeguarding. Any concerns about pupils' safety and well-being are identified rapidly.

Everyone knows what to do if they think a child might be at risk. Leaders then act immediately. Pupils receive appropriate and timely help.

Efficient and well-organised records mean that information can be shared quickly with external agencies should the need arise. Leaders provide pupils and parents with information about keeping safe online. There is a range of extra help to support pupils who may experience social, emotional or mental health issues.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

Leaders' curriculum intent is very clear, well thought through and shared by all staff. However, leaders need to ensure that teachers' expectations are always high enough so that the most able pupils are challenged to achieve the greater depth standard. .

The standard of pupils' handwriting and presentation is not consistently good enough because teachers sometimes accept poor-quality work. Leaders need to ensure that teachers have routinely high expectations for the standard of pupils' handwriting and the presentation of their work. .

Curriculum leaders in the foundation subjects need to ensure that their monitoring of the implementation of the newly revised plans is rigorous and effective. The impact of their leadership needs to be more keenly felt as the curriculum embeds fully and evolves.Background

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 a section 8 inspection of a good school or non-exempt outstanding school. We do not give graded judgements on a section 8 inspection. However, if we find some evidence that the school could now be better than good or that standards may be declining, then the next inspection will be a section 5 inspection.

Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the section 8 inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will convert the section 8 inspection to a section 5 inspection immediately.

This is the first section 8 inspection since we judged The Craylands School to be good on 11–12 February 2016.

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