West Thornton Primary School

Name West Thornton Primary School
Ofsted Inspection Rating Inadequate
This inspection rating relates to a predecessor school. When a school, converts to an academy, is taken over or closes and reopens as a new school a formal link is created between the new school and the old school, by the Department for Education. Where the new school has not yet been inspected, we show the inspection history of the predecessor school, as we believe it still has significance.
Address Rosecourt Road, Croydon, CR0 3BS
Phone Number Unknown
Type Academy
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Not applicable
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils Unknown
Number of Pupils per Teacher 21.0
Academy Sponsor Inspire Partnership Academy Trust
Local Authority Croydon
Percentage English is Not First Language 46.1%
Persisitent Absence 5.4%
Pupils with SEN Support 7.7%
Catchment Area Indicator Available Yes
Last Distance Offered Available No
Highlights from Latest Full Inspection (04 February 2020)
There may have been more recent inspections such as monitoring visits or short inspections. For details of all inspections, please view this provider on our map here.
This inspection rating relates to a predecessor school. When a school, converts to an academy, is taken over or closes and reopens as a new school a formal link is created between the new school and the old school, by the Department for Education. Where the new school has not yet been inspected, we show the inspection history of the predecessor school, as we believe it still has significance.

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils do not learn enough at this school. Leaders have not made sure pupils have lessons which help them build up their knowledge and deepen their understanding. Therefore pupils, including those who attract the pupil premium, are not well enough prepared for the next part of their education.

Pupils who have special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are not having their needs met well enough. Leaders and teachers do not know how to use teaching materials and adapt lessons to help these pupils achieve well.

The pupils we spoke with had a very limited understanding of how to stay healthy and of British institutions. This is because leaders are not making sure there are clear, well-organised plans to teach pupils about these things.

Some parents and carers are concerned that pupils behave poorly at the school. Not all pupils enjoy school enough. We heard about pupils who are frightened when fights occur or lack enough confidence to use the school toilets. However, other parents are more positive about pupils’ behaviour. We saw pupils who were respectful to one another and worked hard in lessons.

Staff communicate well with each other to tackle any concerns raised about bullying. When pupils say they stay off school because they are being bullied, attendance workers make sure senior leaders are alerted to this. Leaders then act promptly to do something about it.

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

Trustees have decided that the school should join the Inspire Partnership Academy Trust. Prior to this decision, leaders and governors were not effective in tackling weaknesses in the school. The trust started work in the school in January 2020. At the time of the inspection leaders from the trust had begun to provide intensive support for school leaders. After just a few weeks of this work there is not enough evidence to demonstrate that leaders now have the capacity to secure the necessary improvements.

Leaders have not shared the responsibility for leading different subjects with a range of staff. This has meant too little has been done to improve the way lessons are sequenced and organised. As a result, pupils do not benefit from subjects which are ambitious and challenging. For example, in mathematics and science pupils’ achievement is weak. This is because teachers are unclear about how to use programmes of study to plan lessons. They do not pick up gaps in pupils’ knowledge and understanding well enough.

Pupils find it hard to build on what they have learned before. Teachers say that until very recently they have been left to make up ideas for lessons as they go along.This has made their workload very challenging and demoralised some. Teachers’ subject knowledge is not used effectively to help pupils understand new things.

Until very recently, leaders have failed to make sure pupils learn to read using phonics in a planned, systematic way, including in the early years. As a result, pupils do not learn to read well or early enough. Those who fall behind, including disadvantaged pupils, do not catch up quickly. Teachers have only recently been expected to follow an agreed way of teaching phonics. They have received training on this. However, the pupils who read to us were given books which did not match their reading ability.

Pupils who have SEND are not being identified accurately or early enough. They lose out on opportunities to learn more because of the disjointed way teaching is organised. Children with SEND in the early years are not considered enough when teachers decide how to organise lessons and outdoor learning.

Pupils are missing out on effective opportunities to support their personal development. Although leaders are aware of this, little has been done to fill these gaps. For example, the school council has only just been relaunched. Lessons about British values and diversity are organised in a piecemeal fashion. However, most pupils understand how to demonstrate respect for one another’s beliefs. Regular assemblies help pupils to recognise achievements and develop their character.

Pupils usually behave well in lessons and try hard. However, some who spoke to us said this does not happen all the time. Pupils do look after teaching materials and take care of the books which they complete their work in.


The arrangements for safeguarding are not effective.

Leaders have failed to act fully on recommendations from external checks on safeguarding. A recent check continued to report shortcomings. Some of these have not been tackled.

Staff are confused about how to report a concern about a senior colleague.

Some parents and pupils are concerned about safety in toilets. Some pupils say they do not want to use them.

Leaders and governors do not have a robust and coherent way of checking and acting on safeguarding guidance and advice.

Senior leaders and governors have a secure overview of predominant risks in the local community. However, they have failed to provide opportunities for pupils to learn how to become more resilient to these risks.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

Leaders and governors have not made sure that staff understand safeguarding arrangements and that identified risks are managed well. They should urgently act to help staff know how to report a concern about a senior colleague. They should fully implement all recommendations from the recent safeguarding audit. . Leaders and governors have failed to provide pupils with adequate opportunities to learn across the range of subjects taught. Staff do not have a shared understanding about what leaders expect pupils to learn and remember. Leaders and governors should ensure that an effective, agreed programme of lessons is introduced and consistently implemented across the whole school. They should check that this is enabling pupils to learn and remember enough to prepare them for the next stage of their education. . Staff are not implementing the agreed programme for teaching phonics well enough. They do not check carefully enough that pupils read books which match their reading ability. Pupils who find it hard to learn to read are not catching up. Leaders should ensure that all staff have adequate skills to help pupils learn to read right from the start of school. . Leaders and governors have not made sure staff understand their priorities for improving the school’s effectiveness. This has meant that leaders have not tackled weaknesses quickly or effectively enough until very recently. They need to make their intentions and timescales for improvement crystal clear. . Pupils with SEND get a poor deal because teachers do not know enough about how to identify and meet their needs. Leaders need to provide effective training to ensure that teaching staff can plan lessons and use resources which enable pupils with SEND to enjoy and benefit from an effective curriculum. . Leaders and governors have not planned opportunities for pupils’ personal development well enough. As a result, pupils have concerning gaps in their experience because of the poor curriculum. Leaders should make sure opportunities for pupils’ personal development are considered systematically when implementing and further developing the curriculum.