Basic Skills Quality Mark Programme – Visit Feedback Report
School name: Horbury St Peter's and Clifton CE VC
Headteacher: Mr. John Berry
Alliance QM Assessor: Mrs. Chris BarsbyVisit date15/01/16
Purpose of Visit: ISAR
The previous development points have been considered and have been/are being implemented.
Agreed areas for development in preparation for the next Quality Mark visit:
•Continue to increase the percentage of pupils attaining level 5+ in writing at the end of Key Stage 2
•Accelerate even further the progress made by Key Stage 1 pupils to enable more to attain level 2b+ by the end of Year 2, so that they get off to a sound start in Key Stage 2 and attain above average expectations by the end of Year 6 through continued acceleration of progress
The school has improved continuously since the last Basic Skills Quality Mark renewal assessment.
Key Stage 1 standards have seen an upward trend since 2011 and are in line with national averages in all subjects.
Key Stage 2 standards are statistically significantly above those nationally in all subjects. In addition, six pupils attained level 6 in mathematics. Value added scores are statistically significantly above those nationally and all vulnerable groups perform very well. This is because pupils make very good progress, some from a below average start, during their time in the school.
The school's assessments were moderated in 2015 by the Local Authority in EYFS, Key Stage 1 and in writing in Key Stage 2 and found to be accurate.
The school was judged to be good in it last inspection in February 2012 almost 4 years ago.
The school has implemented both of the agreed points for development (see above) with great success, although the headteacher says that for the foreseeable future, writing will remain a priority.
The headteacher was very well prepared for the interim visit with a range of documentation to hand: his thorough and detailed knowledge of every aspect of his school is very impressive and backed up with easily retrievable evidence.
‘Good practice’ identified in relation to the 10 Elements of the Quality Mark
Elements 2, 3, 1 & 10 (the elements relating to assessment and expectations; planning; monitoring and evaluating impact).
Governors are kept up-to-date with the school's performance through regular input from senior and middle leaders. They have also had training in how to read and interpret a RAISEonline, but in any case, the headteacher has provided an externally analysed evaluative version of it for those who prefer that way of presentation. This gives all the key indicators of the school's success and areas for improvement and an interpretation in straightforward language.
Leaders have understandably spent quite some time researching systems for assessment without levels. They have looked with interest at what other local schools are doing, but will not commit to any particular system until after the national test results are published later this year, and the possible issue of further advice at national level. Meanwhile the school is carrying out very careful and detailed tracking of the extent and depth of pupils' coverage and understanding of the revised national curriculum. This attention to detail is also very helpful in supporting teachers' understanding and knowledge of the curriculum.
Pupil progress meetings involve the headteacher Key Stage (4 Key Stages) co-ordinator and the co-ordinator from the stage above: for example for Year 3 and Year 4 meetings, the Y5/6 co-ordinator will attend. This ensures consistency and progression. This practice means that while the school is in this period of transition with regard to assessment everyone shares a consistency of approach and a common “language” with which to discuss developments.
Elements 4 & 5 (the elements relating to under-attainment and/or underachievement
Two members of staff hold SENCO accreditation and have worked together conscientiously to ensure that national requirements are known to all staff and that provision is appropriate. This is an improvement from the last renewal assessment when there was only 1 SENCO (who was supported by the headteacher). They have provided training for staff and more training is planned for governors. The result of this is that pupils at risk of underachievement or underattainment are quickly identified and their difficulties addressed whether through first teaching, intervention or inclusion on the SEND register.
At the time of the last renewal assessment, leaders had predicted that in 2014, a small Year 6 cohort with a significant proportion who had disabilities and/or special educational needs may mean that attainment might fall in that year. However, because of the excellent provision to ensure that they did not underachieve it did not, and their value added score was statistically significantly above the national figure.
Elements 6, 7, 8 (the elements relating to teaching and learning)
The school was found to be well equipped and providing inspiring learning environments with excellent support for basic skills at the time of the last renewal. This has continued to impact on standards very positively.
The deployment of the deputy headteacher to Key Stage 1 has had a very positive impact on attainment and has contributed to his own professional development.
CPD for staff has been led by the school's priority areas for development and focused strongly on basic skills, drawing on the expertise of the school's staff.
Element 9 (the element relating to the involvement of parents and carers)
Parents and carers receive regular written reports (termly) of their children's progress and attainment and attend formal consultations twice a year. Some pupils' parents / carers are seen more frequently according to their needs. In any case, an open door policy ensures that any parent or carer can come into school and speak to teachers and the headteacher at any time.
Families are informed about the Basic Skills Quality Mark through the attractive and accessible website.
The school continues to meet the 10 Primary Quality Mark elements exceptionally well and at this half way point between renewals has already made significant improvements within the 10 elements.
I thank Mr. John Berry for his usual thorough preparation for the interim visit. I also thank his deputy Mr. Mike Gunning for his contribution. I look forward with confidence of even further improvement by the time of the next renewal assessment.