Thursday, 11 August 2022

Junior school must improve, say inspectors

PIGGOTT Junior School in Wargrave has been told by Ofsted that it “requires improvement”.

PIGGOTT Junior School in Wargrave has been told by Ofsted that it “requires improvement”.

A report by the education watchdog found the school had deteriorated since its last full inspection 10 years ago.

Then the school was rated “good” overall and in all four categories assessed — the achievement of pupils, the quality of education, pupils’ personal qualities, the curriculum and leadership and management.

But when inspectors visited the School Hill premises in two days in October they found only the behaviour and safety of pupils was still “good”.

The achievement of pupils, quality of teaching and leadership and management were all deemed to require improvement.

The inspectors’ report said: “This is a school that is not good because pupils’ achievement is not consistently good over time. Not enough teaching is consistently good.

“Marking and feedback to pupils on their work are not consistently good across all classes and subjects. As a result, not all pupils know how to improve their learning.Teachers in charge of subjects have not yet extended their monitoring to include regular observations of teaching to enable them to identify quickly any weaknesses.

“Checks made by senior leaders and managers on the quality of teaching do not focus sharply enough on how well pupils are learning.

“The governing body is supportive of the school. However, it does not yet challenge the school’s performance enough and hold leaders to account for bringing about improvements.”

Inspectors observed 12 lessons and visited others. They found there was too much variation in the quality of marking, feedback and target setting across the school, contributing to the “inconsistencies of pupils’ progress”.

Executive headteacher Sally Akers was commended for having “quickly identified what requires improvement and is using this to improve teaching”. Pupils were deemed to be happy and kept safe and the number of year six children exceeding the expected progress had improved significantly. The report also noted the teaching of reading was good.

Mrs Akers said: “The Ofsted report acknowledges that the right actions have been identified and much of the work to improve the school has already been put in place.

“I welcome the recommendations in the report and view it as an endorsement and a mandate to make changes that enable our school to improve quickly so that a higher grading will be achieved at our next inspection.

“We have exciting challenges ahead and robust plans in place. Staff and governors are committed to this mandate to improve. With hard work, dedication and the support of parents, the school will go from strength to strength.”

The definition of a school that requires improvement is “not yet a good school but it is not inadequate”.

Another full inspection will take place within two years.

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