A UTTOXETER head teacher has vowed to continue moving forward after the school was told it ‘requires improvement’ by Ofsted inspectors.
Picknalls First School, in Oldfields Road, was told it needs to up its game following a visit from inspectors on July 10 and 11 after receiving a ‘good’ rating on its previous visit.
The report found too few pupils were working above the expected levels of skills meaning their achievement requires improvement, records about pupils’ progress do not always record approaches staff use to increase their progress rate and the children are not invited to assist staff in gathering evidence.
It also found the teaching requires improvement, not all the teachers and staff check pupils’ attainment effectively part way through the lesson, some parents do not receive detailed information about their child’s progress, some governors do not challenge leaders successfully and leadership requires improvement.
However, the inspectors did find positive aspects during the visit including the pupils being polite, courteous and well behaved and they felt safe in school.
Other strengths included children get a good start to their education in nursery and reception glasses, their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is provided for well, attendance is high and pupils punctuality is good, pupils who speak English as an additional language make effective progress in learning the language.
It also found pupils who have extra pupil-premium funding achieve well by year two.
However, head teacher Anne Tapp said although they are disappointed, they will move forward.
She said: “We are obviously disappointed with the overall required improvement grade.
“We are very pleased with the number of positive notes in the report and in fact there are more strengths than areas for development.
“The school has been judged on the last three years and although I have only been head teacher for a year, Ofsted have recognised all the things we have brought in this year have started to have an impact on pupils’ progress and attainment and we simply haven’t had enough time yet to have this sustained.
“With the areas for development, the majority of those were things we were intending to do anyway and myself, the governors and leaders are looking forward to achieving these targets quickly and thoroughly.
“Ofsted will be due to return in two years time and we are confident that we will move to at least a good on our next inspection.
“The behaviour and safety of the pupils came out as good and I want to say the children really are a credit to the school and everything which the inspector observed shows the pupils did us proud.
“The parents’ views are a way parents can rate the school and we have the most parent responses to the inspectors.
“They were overwhelmingly positive about the school.”
Picknalls is not the only school to come under the spotlight from Ofsted inspectors after Windsor Park Middle School in Springfield Road, received a monitoring visit on July 9 after its inspection in March found the school ‘requires improvement’.
The report said: “You and your senior leaders have produced an action plan which accurately identifies how the areas for improvement identified at the last inspection will be addressed.
“However, the plan does not have measurable targets and dates when these targets will be achieved.
“This prevents governors, and senior leaders, from checking whether these goals are met and that students are making the expected progress.
“You, together with other senior leaders are not responding to weaknesses in students’ progress with sufficient urgency.
“The latest data shows that across the school, students continue to make inadequate progress in reading and writing.
“The systems for checking the work of staff are not rigorous. When observing teaching and reviewing students’ work, you and other senior leaders do not focus enough on the impact teachers are having on different groups of students’ learning.”
Acting head teacher Carl Gliddon said he had already put plans in place for improvement.