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Ofsted

We had our most recent Ofsted Inspection on 6th June 2019. 

It was a 'light touch' Section 8 inspection only lasting one day. We were recognised as being a GOOD AND IMPROVING school and they therefore recommended a full Section 5 inspection should be carried out next time because only Section 5 inspections can change the grade from good to higher.

The five-page letter which is sent after a Section 8 inspection (rather than a report)is extremely positive in all areas; it is full of praise for the school.

Below are some quotes from the Ofsted letter to the Headteacher: 

  • …over the past three years, the school has built an enviable track record of academic improvement, particularly at the end of key stage 2, which has led the local authority and local schools to seek your counsel and support…indeed your school is viewed as a real strength in the city.
  • Your leadership and that of your deputy headteacher has been highly effective and you are both ably supported by a very capable team of senior leaders and expert teaching and support staff.
  • …high-quality teaching, an engaging and rich curriculum and excellent levels of care, guidance and support, which promote pupils’ personal development very well.
  • You and your team have fostered a caring, inclusive and welcoming atmosphere in the school. Most pupils’ behaviour is impeccable and they are a credit to their families.
  • Pupils and staff relationships are strong.
  • The school really goes the extra mile to ensure that pupils receive a high-quality education.
  • …talented and dedicated staff, who embody the school’s core moral purpose of working to ensure that every child aims high to reach their potential, regardless of any barriers to success that may exist.
  • Your evaluation of the school’s current effectiveness is precise. You have taken highly effective actions to address aspects that were less than good.
  • [Governors] are passionate and rightly proud of the school, as well as being astute in their evaluation of the school.
  • As a school, you have forged effective links with external agencies and partners, which support the work you do to keep pupils safe.
  • Safeguarding is effective…Your safeguarding team has worked effectively to embed a culture of vigilance among all staff.
  • Pupils are confident that if they need help or guidance any member of staff would support them.
  • There is substantial evidence that since the last inspection pupils’ attainment and progress have risen sharply…This is all the more remarkable given the typical starting point of the majority of pupils, which is below expected levels on entry to the school, as well as the highly mobile pupil community you have.
  • I saw features of exceptional teaching. This was characterised by the high expectations staff had of what pupils could achieve, vibrant and engaging learning climates and environments and expert teaching, which motivated pupils, stimulating their curiosity and creativity.
  • Your support for disadvantaged pupils and those pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) is highly effective; it allows them to make rapid progress.
  • [In Foundation Stage] children benefit from excellent teaching, a language-rich curriculum and exceptional care, guidance and support.
  • Pupils enjoy the curriculum and relish the opportunities you provide them with to immerse themselves in their learning.
  • Pupils are confident, fluent readers.
  • The icing on the cake, however, is the considerably higher than average progress scores for pupils in reading, mathematics and English grammar, punctuation and spelling by the end of key stage 2 in 2018.
  • Following the last inspection, leaders were asked to respond more quickly to pupils’ learning so that work is adapted promptly within lessons and continues to challenge all pupils, particularly the most able. You were also asked to make the best of every opportunity to develop pupils’ language skills, to provide more opportunities for writing at length across the curriculum, and to encourage all pupils to present their work neatly and carefully. To your credit, these aspects have been tackled successfully.
  •  This school continues to be good…I am of the opinion that the school has demonstrated strong practice and marked improvement in specific areas. This may indicate that the school has improved significantly overall.

Comments from the 2015 report (the most recent full report):

  • A caring and harmonious school ethos which has the welfare of all pupils at its heart. 
  • Pupils currently in the school make good progress and achieve well. 
  • The quality of teaching is consistently good. This good teaching ensures that pupils achieve well. 
  • Lessons engage pupils in their learning. 
  • Pupils say that one of the best things about the school is the support they receive, especially when they do not understand what to do. They say that their teachers always have time to help and never ‘let you give up’. 
  • Teaching assistants are well informed and often lead specific programmes of support, which are having a very positive impact. 
  • From their individual starting points, pupils make good progress during their time in school. Those pupils who have been in school the longest achieve results that are similar to or above national averages. 
  • Provision for disabled pupils and those who have special educational needs, pupils new to speaking English and disadvantaged pupils is good. Specialist staff are expert at meeting the needs of these pupils across the school. 
  • Pupils are enthusiastic readers. Those heard to read by inspectors shared a love of books and eagerly discussed their favourite books and authors. There is a wide range of good-quality reading materials throughout the school. 
  • The teaching of mathematics is also good. Pupils benefit from the good subject knowledge of staff.
  • Pupils’ positive and cooperative attitudes enhance their learning and enable lessons to proceed smoothly. They behave well. Inappropriate behaviour is rare. The school works effectively with individual pupils who occasionally struggle to manage their own behaviour. 
  • Pupils are polite, friendly and helpful. 
  • The school’s work to keep pupils safe and secure is diligent, thorough and effective. 
  • The very attractive site is looked after well to ensure that pupils are as safe outside as they are inside. 
  • Pupils report that they have no concerns about bullying because they have absolute confidence in staff to deal swiftly and effectively with any worries they may have. 
  • The school’s curriculum provides pupils with a variety of good opportunities. 
  • Pupils benefit from a broad curriculum, which enables them to make good progress in academic and other subjects and also enhances their personal development. 
  • The school has developed a very strong set of values. It promotes pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development very effectively and prepares them well for life in modern Britain. 
  • Members of the governing body know the school well and have contributed to its continuing success. They are skilled and knowledgeable in analysing data about the school and attend training to improve their ability to hold the school to account. 
  • There is a strong commitment by all leaders, including governors, and staff to strive for excellence. 
  • Leaders set demanding targets for teachers in terms of raising pupils’ achievement 
  • Teachers spoke warmly of the support and encouragement they had received from their colleagues. 
  • The pupils are very proud of the high levels of respect and tolerance that exist between all members of the school community. 
  • Leaders promote equality of opportunity and any form of discrimination is not tolerated. They make sure that the additional funding which the school receives to promote the achievement of disadvantaged pupils is used well. 
  • The needs of the many pupils who join the school at different times of the school year are well met. They settle quickly and are incorporated into classes quickly and sensitively. 
  • Throughout the school, disadvantaged pupils make good progress and attain at least as well as, and in some cases better than, their peers. 
  • In the early years effective leadership and good teaching secure good achievement for children. All staff work together as an efficient team. They provide a bright and stimulating place in which children thrive.
  • Early years learning takes place in a warm and caring atmosphere where children are treated as individuals. They receive lots of praise and encouragement and this raises children’s self-esteem and confidence. As a result, they behave well.
    The areas we need to work on: 
    Improve the quality of teaching from good to outstanding by: 
  • responding more quickly to pupils’ learning so work is adapted promptly within lessons and continues to challenge all children and pupils, particularly the most able 
  • making the best of every opportunity to develop pupils’ language skills 
  • providing more opportunities for writing at length in subjects across the curriculum 
  • encouraging pupils to present their work neatly and carefully. 

Please click to see

Ofsted Webpage for Blenheim

2019 Ofsted Short Inspection Letter

2015 Ofsted Full Inspection Report 

 Department for Education Performance Tables 2018