Witton Gilbert Primary School

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About Witton Gilbert Primary School

Name Witton Gilbert Primary School
Website http://www.wittongilbert.durham.sch.uk
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Paula Nelson
Address Sacriston Lane, Witton Gilbert, Durham, DH7 6TF
Phone Number 01913710424
Phase Primary
Type Community school
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 200
Local Authority County Durham
Highlights from Latest Inspection


Witton Gilbert Primary School continues to be a good school.

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders in this small community primary school teach their pupils to appreciate the world.

Pupils respect the environment. They are encouraged to explore and play outdoors. Pupils wear their wellies during social times, and each class has a well-tended gardening bed.

Pupils enjoy gardening club and 'eco group'.

Leaders have high expectations for what pupils will learn. Leaders ensure that pupils' learning is supported by practical experiences outside the classroom.

Leaders are passionate about being an inclusive community. Staff ensure that pupils with spec...ial educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are supported effectively so that they are included in all aspects of school life. Leaders have created a culture where pupils are resilient.

Pupils do not worry about making mistakes. They are happy to 'have a go'. Older pupils enjoy residential trips where they are challenged to push themselves.

Pupils behave well. They are happy and feel cared for. They know that teachers look after them.

Pupils are taught how to deal with friendship issues. Pupils agree that bullying is rare. They say that teachers tackle bullying.

Most pupils would report bullying. However, some pupils feel that some teachers take bullying more seriously than others.

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

Leaders see teaching reading as a priority.

Staff benefit from ongoing training to ensure that they are up to date on how to teach reading most effectively. Pupils who find reading difficult are identified quickly and supported effectively. Staff enjoy sharing stories with pupils.

Leaders choose stories carefully to celebrate diversity and broaden pupils' experience.

Leaders have redesigned and improved the curriculum in recent years. Leaders have used external support to make sure that staff are supported to create high-quality subject curriculums.

Leaders have considered how pupils will build their knowledge progressively. They have decided what the key knowledge is that they want pupils to learn. However, this key knowledge is not regularly revisited or checked in some subjects.

Leaders have created an inclusive environment. Staff make effective adaptations so that pupils with SEND can learn successfully. Teachers use clear explanations in lessons.

Teachers model tasks well to make sure that pupils understand. Some teachers use questioning effectively to draw out pupils' understanding. In phonics and mathematics, teachers uncover gaps in pupils' understanding and close them very quickly.

In other subjects, staff do not check what pupils have remembered as effectively.

Pupils cooperate and treat each other with respect. Even the youngest children offer to help each other.

Pupils pay attention and participate in lessons. Teachers deal with any disruption well. Pupils are polite and courteous to visitors.

They behave sensibly in corridors and outside their classrooms. Pupils who struggle to manage their behaviour are supported effectively. Children in the early years are encouraged to be independent.

They benefit from well-established routines and high expectations. Children tackle problems with confidence. They set challenges for each other, for example challenging each other to find or complete patterns.

Leaders have ensured that pupils understand their role in the local community. Pupils enjoy a wide range of activities where they engage with the community, including taking part in Remembrance services and singing with local volunteer groups. Older pupils in school apply for 'jobs' within school so they can develop their sense of responsibility.

Leaders ensure that pupils have a wide range of experiences. All pupils will visit a theatre, a library and a museum. All pupils in Year 4 and Year 5 learn the clarinet.

Leaders value pupils' development beyond academic subjects. Pupils learn about how to manage their emotions. They are encouraged to discuss how they feel.

Leaders have prioritised pupils' mental health. Leaders make sure that pupils always have someone to talk to. Pupils learn about how to manage relationships.

Staff ensure that pupils understand tolerance and respect. Pupils display these attitudes around school.

Staff feel well supported and valued.

They explain that leaders listen to their suggestions. Leaders consider the well-being of staff. Staff are proud to work at this school.

Parents appreciate the supportive attitude of staff. Parents particularly praise how staff help pupils with SEND.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

In this small school, staff know their pupils very well. They are vigilant and recognise and report any signs of concern. Pupils trust adults to keep them safe.

Pupils learn about how to stay safe outside school, including in relation to road safety. Pupils also learn about the risks they face online and how to manage them.

Leaders take timely action to protect vulnerable pupils.

They work with external agencies to provide the right support for these pupils and their families. Leaders are persistent in securing that external help. Record-keeping reflects this.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Pupils struggle to remember some of the content that they have learned over time. They do not revisit key knowledge regularly. This means it is difficult for them to build on their prior learning and secure their understanding.

Leaders should ensure they introduce robust systems to help pupils remember what they have learned in the long term. They should also ensure that teachers check pupils' understanding in order to uncover gaps in pupils' understanding and close them very quickly.


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 July 2017.

Also at this postcode
Witton Gilbert Nursery

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