The Valley Community Primary School

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About The Valley Community Primary School

Name The Valley Community Primary School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Kevan Naughton
Address Hibbert Street, Off Blackburn Road, Bolton, BL1 8JG
Phone Number 01204332684
Phase Primary
Type Community school
Age Range 2-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 524
Local Authority Bolton
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils take full advantage of the vast array of opportunities on offer at this school. They told inspectors that it is a privilege to attend such an exceptional place.

Pupils are very proud of their school and their many accomplishments.

Pupils enjoy being at school because they value learning. The school's well-established routines and procedures ensure that pupils feel well cared for and safe.

Children settle quickly in the early years. They develop positive relationships with others. Older pupils strive to uphold the school's values.

They develop exemplary behaviour and attitudes towards their learning and each other.

Leaders and staff at... all levels have extremely high expectations of all pupils. A highly effective curriculum and well-thought-out support enable them to achieve remarkably well across the whole curriculum.

This is especially true for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). Pupils are exceptionally well prepared for the next stage in their education.

Pupils respond eagerly when they are invited to contribute to the smooth running of the school.

They are keen to take up the many leadership roles that are available. For example, they support others at breaktimes or help with reading. Pupils also play a key role in keeping leaders and governors informed about the effectiveness of the school.

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

The school has skilfully crafted a curriculum across Years 1 to 6 that supports all pupils to develop an impressive body of knowledge. Pupils achieve exceptionally well as a result.

The school ensures that teachers introduce key knowledge in a logical order so that pupils recap on earlier learning and build on what they know.

Teachers are adept at checking that pupils have a secure understanding of their learning. They are alert to any misconceptions and make sure that these are tackled before pupils begin to learn something new. This makes future learning more accessible.

This success fosters pupils' enthusiasm for learning and motivates them to want to find out more.

In the early years, most children learn what they need to know in readiness for the move into key stage 1. However, the curriculum is not as clear in some areas of learning as it is in others.

This means that, in some aspects of the curriculum, staff are less sure about what children should know and be able to do by the end of the Reception Year. At times, staff miss opportunities to check for and then address gaps in children's knowledge.

The reading curriculum is highly effective.

This starts as soon as children enter the early years with a strong focus on communication and language development. For example, children in the two-year-old provision and in the Nursery Year listen with fascination to the stories and rhymes that their teachers share with them. Older pupils regularly access high-quality texts that support and enhance their understanding of language.

As a result, pupils develop an impressive range of vocabulary. This helps them to make sense of new learning and to communicate with confidence.

The phonics programme is expertly delivered by skilled staff.

Children begin to link sounds and letters as soon as they enter the Reception Year. In key stage 1, pupils build on this strong start so that they practise, extend and embed their reading knowledge over time. Pupils read fluently and accurately.

Staff make sure that any pupils who have gaps or misconceptions receive the support that they need to catch up. For example, some older pupils who speak English as an additional language benefit from additional phonics support. This helps them to build their phonics knowledge securely.

These pupils, like others in the school, become confident and accomplished readers.

Staff are expertly trained to quickly identify pupils' additional needs. Pupils with SEND receive highly effective and well-matched support to enable them to access the curriculum.

This ensures that they grow in confidence and take a full part in all aspects of school life. Their achievement is exceptional as a result.

Pupils' extremely positive attitudes to learning enable them to acquire new knowledge quickly and securely.

Pupils' behaviour rarely requires checking by staff. They are self-motivated and keen to learn. Lessons proceed without disruption.

Pupils told inspectors how important it is to try their best at all times.

The school makes sure that pupils access exceptionally high quality activities to support their personal development. Pupils are deeply respectful of those who may be different to themselves.

They learn to recognise and foster their own talents through hard work and perseverance. In addition, pupils are quick to celebrate the strengths and achievements of others. Pupils are extremely well prepared to make a positive contribution to society in later life.

They leave Year 6 as well-rounded, confident and articulate youngsters ready to make the most of all that is on offer in the secondary phase of their education.

The school regularly seeks out the views of staff, pupils, parents and carers. As a result, governors have an excellent oversight of the quality of education that pupils receive.

Staff are well supported in their workload. Their well-being is considered carefully when changes are introduced. Governors work closely with staff and pupils at the school to ensure that all pupils achieve as well as they can.

Pupils, parents and staff alike value the support that they receive from the school. Parents make effective use of the guidance that they receive from the school to enhance their children's learning at home.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• The curriculum for some areas of learning in the early years lacks clarity. This makes it difficult for staff to know what children should know and be able to do by the end of the Reception Year. The school should finalise its curriculum thinking in the early years so that children are fully prepared for the demands of the Year 1 curriculum in all aspects of learning.

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