We’ll keep on improving our school, says head

Published on: 31 Mar 2014

CHRIST Church Junior School in Downend has been told by Government education watchdog Ofsted that it requires improvement.

Inspectors visited the 295-pupil school at the end of January and have recently issued a report into their findings.

The school had been rated as “good” after a previous inspection in January 2009. An interim assessment three years later showed the school had maintained this standard.

But the latest report – using the new inspection framework - highlighted areas for improvement including the quality of teaching and the achievement of pupils. However inspectors also found many positive qualities at the school and have ruled that the behaviour and safety of pupils as well as the leadership and management of the school are good.

Inspectors found pupils do not make enough progress and referred to a dip in 2013 when attainment fell to below the national average.

However, the report also revealed that pupils are now showing signs of progress in reading, writing and maths, partly due to extra targeted support.

Inspectors said standards in teaching require improvement as teaching has not been consistently good enough over time to ensure pupils make good enough progress in reading, writing and maths.

They also found teachers sometimes set work which is too easy or too hard for pupils who struggle to understand what they are learning and said they need more consistent advice on how to improve in maths.

Indicating a positive future, inspectors said: “The quality of teaching is improving strongly with some good teaching seen during the inspection.”

Positive findings were reported on pupil behaviour where they are normally “polite and courteous to one another with appropriate respect for different staff”. Behaviour in lessons was also judged to be good.

The school’s work to keep pupils safe and secure was also good and inspectors found there “is very little bullying in the school”.

The report said: “Pupils value their school and are keen to learn. This is reflected in pupils’ good attendance rates.”

Inspectors were impressed with headteacher, Alex Wilkinson, as well as other leaders and governors, saying they “set high expectations and have a clear vision for the school”.

The report also stated: “The headteacher manages the performance of staff well and there are clear targets for teachers about improving their teaching and increasing the progress of the pupils they teach.”

The school will receive another inspection within two years.

Headteacher Alex Wilkinson said: ““The acknowledgment from Ofsted that children are currently making ‘accelerated progress’, is a testament to the hard work and skills of all staff. Everyone has been, and still is, focussed on addressing the issues of ‘inconsistency of progress’ for some learners which the school and governors have been well aware of following the drop in levels pupils achieved in 2013. We are absolutely confident that when Ofsted do return they will be able to judge the school ‘Good’ at minimum and hopefully ‘Outstanding’.”

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