In July 2019, Ofsted inspected our school. We’ve had to wait a long while for the report to be released because of the summer holidays, but what a wonderful way to start the new school year: Ofsted recognise that St James’ is a good school! The rating of good applies to all areas: effectiveness of leadership and management; quality of teaching, learning and assessment; personal development, behaviour and welfare; outcomes for pupils; and early years provision.
The report is very positive about our school. Highlights include:
The executive headteacher has ensured that the quality of teaching is good across all year groups, including the early years.
Teachers have high expectations of what pupils can achieve.
There are good relationships between staff and pupils.
Pupils work hard, concentrate well and enjoy learning.
The very large majority of pupils attain expected standards in reading and writing…Together with their strong progress in personal development, this means pupils are well prepared for the transfer to secondary school.
Teachers engage pupils in interesting and current topics, such as climate change.
Teachers use good quality texts to stimulate pupils’ discussion and deepen pupils’ thinking.
Leaders have designed a curriculum that enhances pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development as well as practical life skills.
The school’s work to promote pupils’ personal development and welfare is good.
Opportunities for pupils to reflect, consider and reason are threaded through all aspects of their learning.
Teachers are skilled in encouraging pupils to cooperate and share ideas to develop learning.
Pupils know how to keep themselves safe and say they feel safe.’
The work of staff to promote respect and tolerance can be seen throughout the school.
Pupils are well behaved and aware of their responsibilities in society.
Pupils are looked after well and are safe in the school.
Leaders have designed a safeguarding aspect in the school’s curriculum to ensure that pupils are prepared for life in modern Britain.
Parents and carers are extremely pleased with the early years provision and how it has developed over recent years. One parent said that her child has had a ‘tremendous amount of support’.
Thank you to all pupils, parents / carers and staff for their support during the inspection and over the last couple of years. Miss Beatson and I are very proud of our school and we’re determined to keep getting better and better.