Holy Cross Primary praised highly by Ofsted

Communities / Mon 13th Feb 2017 at 09:27am

OFSTED has praised Holy Cross Primary after conducting a short inspection at the Tracyes Road school.

The report states:

“Following my visit to the school on 17 January 2017, I write on behalf of Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Education, Children’s Services and Skills to report the inspection findings. The visit was the first short inspection carried out since the school was judged to be good in January 2012.

This school continues to be good.

The leadership team has maintained the good quality of education in the school since the last inspection. You have created a culture and ethos that focuses relentlessly on teaching and learning. You inspire staff to strive for the best possible outcomes for pupils’ personal development and academic achievement.

They hold you in high regard for this and are right behind you, fully in support of your passion for continuous improvement. All 21 staff who responded to Ofsted’s questionnaire agreed that the school is led and managed well. Most parents also recognise what an effective leader you are. This is evident in some of the glowing comments they made in Parent View, such as, ‘the whole school is held together by the amazing headteacher’ and ‘the school is a real credit to Miss McGuiggan and her team’.

There is so much for pupils to look forward to at school, which is why almost all parents confirmed in Parent View that their children are happy and make good progress. The curriculum is impressively enriched with visits, residential trips, visiting speakers, special events such as the international week, and outdoor learning such as geography field trips and use of the environmental woodland area. Pupils certainly have fun while they learn. Pupils make excellent progress in their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. The school promotes pupils’ understanding of diversity particularly well through the curriculum. Pupils are polite, thoughtful and, as one parent commented, ‘taught to be kind, caring and considerate’.

All pupils achieve well in music, geography, history and especially in reading and writing where standards are above average. Disadvantaged pupils, pupils who speak English as an additional language and pupils who have special educational needs and/or disabilities frequently make more progress than the rest because they are supported expertly in their learning.

Leaders recognise that, overall, pupils’ achievement in mathematics is weaker. The mathematics team is working on this relentlessly with discernible impact. All classrooms now have dedicated areas to promote learning in mathematics. There are references and prompts to guide pupils while they are learning and extra activities to try in addition to the work they are set in lessons. Teachers ensure that pupils have opportunities to discuss and explain their learning so that they can find out more about how they think. They also build in tasks that require pupils to use and apply their mathematical knowledge in reasoning and solving problems. This is an improvement since the previous inspection. However, the challenge for pupils’ learning in mathematics is still not consistently high enough to increase the number of pupils working at a greater depth than is expected nationally by the end of Year 2 and Year 6. You have rightly identified provision for the most able pupils, including the most able disadvantaged pupils, in all subjects as an area for improvement in the school’s future plans. Nonetheless, you have not specified a quantitative target in the plan so that leaders and governors can measure the school’s progress towards achieving it.

The governing body is effective in achieving the right balance of support and challenge for leaders. Governors are well trained and highly committed to knowing the school’s strengths and weaknesses through frequent visits and discussions with pupils, parents and staff. They are forward-looking in planning for the school’s future. This is one of the reasons why the school’s rapid expansion in pupil numbers over the past three years has been managed so well. While building works and recruitment of extra staff are ongoing, governors have not allowed these to distract them from their important role of checking to see how well pupils are learning.

Safeguarding is effective.

The leadership team has ensured that all safeguarding arrangements are of high quality and records are detailed and completed diligently.
 You, and the governing body, have created a culture where everyone shares responsibility for safeguarding and it is a priority. A strong ethos surrounding children’s safety and well-being exists within the school community.

Staff are all trained to the right level to fulfil their duties, including the lead professionals for safeguarding and child protection. They receive regular updates, ensuring that all are familiar with changes in guidance from the Department for Education.

You ensure that every pupil’s achievement and well-being is discussed on a regular basis, so that support can be adapted to meet their needs.
 Staff are all vetted carefully prior to appointment and all of the statutory checks

Deputy Headteacher, Shaun Kelliher said: “We are delighted with this report which pays tribute to all the work that all that the teachers, governors, parents do in order to do th every best of four children.”

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1 Comment for Holy Cross Primary praised highly by Ofsted:

2017-02-16 17:30:31

I would like to say a big congratulations to all the staff and students of Holy Cross Primary school,Bush fair. Well to all of you for working hard to achieve outstanding from Ofsted. Keep up the good and hard work. From Bush Fair Councillor, Dan Long and all at UKIP HARLOW.

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