Short inspection of Oldhill Community Primary School
Following my visit to the school on 27 February 2018, 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 December 2013.
This school continues to be good.
Leaders, including governors, have maintained the good quality of education in the school since the last inspection. You and your leaders are very ambitious for the school. You have an accurate understanding of what the school does well and where there are weaknesses; you have put appropriate actions in place to address them. Senior and middle leaders are effective and support teachers to improve their practice. This has led to an improvement in outcomes across the school. Notwithstanding this, you have correctly identified that there is more to do to improve disadvantaged pupils’ outcomes in reading in key stage 2.
You are keen to learn from the success of others and have used advice and support beyond the school well to further improve key priorities in the school. As a result, the school has addressed the areas for improvement from the previous inspection.
Attainment in writing and mathematics for the most able has increased and is now close to or above outcomes nationally.
You have created a positive ethos in the school and, as a result, pupils enjoy attending and are keen to do their best. Pupils are polite and respectful and the older pupils enjoy the responsibility of supporting the younger pupils in the school. You and your staff team are proud of the developing parent association. Parents who made comments on the Ofsted online questionnaire were particularly positive about pupil behaviour, the happy staff team, inclusion, and strong teaching and learning. One parent said, ‘we feel that the teachers and staff work to build a sense of pride and unity’; another parent said, ‘we couldn’t have chosen a better school’.
Safeguarding is effective.
You, your leaders and governors have ensured that all safeguarding arrangements are effective and records are complete. All checks on the suitability of staff to work at the school are in place and are regularly monitored by the governing body. Staff appreciate the training and regular updates that they receive. As a result, they understand what procedures they must follow should a concern arise, and subsequent actions are followed up effectively. You and your leaders work closely with families and external agencies to ensure that pupils receive well-targeted support when required.
Pupils report that they feel safe in school and told me that they do not worry about being bullied. They are confident that if they had a problem it would be resolved appropriately by adults in the school. Pupils were keen to share their knowledge of how to keep safe when using computers or on social media. Parents indicated, via questionnaires, that they are confident that the school keeps pupils safe and listens to any concerns raised.
- For the first line of enquiry we agreed to evaluate the effectiveness of the school’s actions in improving the progress of disadvantaged pupils in key stage We chose this because, over time, disadvantaged pupils have not progressed as well as other pupils nationally.
- You and your leaders have developed a strong reading culture in the A new approach to the teaching of reading is supporting pupils to develop a range of reading skills and pupils say that they are well challenged. You and your leaders monitor the progress of all pupils regularly and provide effective additional support to any pupils who are falling behind.
- The organisation of texts in the school enables pupils to choose an appropriate book Pupils say that they enjoy reading and appreciate the wide range of interesting books for them to read. They are developing fluency and use a range of strategies to tackle more tricky words and understand what they are reading.
- As a result of these actions, the progress of disadvantaged pupils in key stage 2 is increasing and is closer to the progress of other pupils However, we identified that not all disadvantaged pupils read regularly with someone at home and agreed that progress would increase further if all pupils had the opportunity to read intensively with an adult.
- For the second line of enquiry, we looked at pupils’ This is because over time pupils have had higher levels of persistent absenteeism than found nationally.
- You and your leaders use a range of strategies to reduce pupils’ Pupils are encouraged and rewarded for good attendance and understand why it is important to attend school regularly. Families are actively discouraged from taking extended breaks away in school time and you are not afraid to issue
penalties when required. You have used the support of the education welfare officer and governors well. They sit with you on an attendance panel, which regularly meets families to address poor attendance.
- As a result of your actions, attendance is now nearer to the national average and persistent absence is However, we did agree that further work needs to be done to reduce persistent absence more rapidly to ensure that pupils attend as regularly as pupils nationally.
- For the final line of enquiry, we looked at how effective the governing body is in carrying out its statutory duties, including providing up-to-date information for We chose this because some statutory information about the governing body was not readily available to parents on the school website.
- Governors have a clear understanding of their roles and responsibilities and actively engage in key strategic decision-making. They support you are your leaders well and are a frequent visual presence in the school day and at community
- Committee meetings are well planned and governors are provided with detailed information by the school team to support them in their We did, however, agree that governors could challenge leaders further in order to more effectively hold the school to account for actions taken.
- Governors regularly attend training and have commissioned external consultants to provide training in-house. As a result, they have good knowledge across aspects of school life and are fully aware of aspects of the school which need to improve Governors are aware of their statutory responsibilities with regard to the website. They acknowledged that there was some confusion about who was ensuring information was kept up to date but made sure that this was rectified during the inspection.
Next steps for the school
Leaders and those responsible for governance should ensure that:
- all disadvantaged pupils, who do not read regularly at home, are given opportunities to read intensively with an adult
- strategies to improve persistent absence are developed further to ensure that pupils attend as regularly as pupils nationally
- governors provide more challenge to leaders in order to further hold them to account for their
I am copying this letter to the chair of the governing body, the regional schools commissioner and the director of children’s services for Hackney. This letter will be published on the Ofsted website.
Information about the inspection
During this inspection, I held several meetings with you and your deputy headteachers. I met with the literacy leader, three governors and a representative from the local authority. I considered the views of parents, pupils and staff, including written comments made to Ofsted. You and your literacy leader accompanied me on visits to classrooms. I talked to pupils about their learning. I looked at pupils’ books and listened to a range of pupils read. I also evaluated a range of school documentation, including school development plans, safeguarding records and information about current pupils’ achievement and attendance.