School etc

Bentley Drive Primary School Closed - for academy Aug. 31, 2012

see new Reedswood E-ACT Academy

Bentley Drive Primary School
Bentley Drive
West Midlands

phone: 01922 *** ***

headteacher: Mrs Elaine Maher Med Bed Hons

school holidays: via Walsall council

Primary — Community School

Education phase
Establishment type
Community School
Establishment #
Close date
Aug. 31, 2012
Reason closed
For Academy
OSGB coordinates
Easting: 399908, Northing: 299035
GPS coordinates
Latitude: 52.589, Longitude: -2.0028
Accepting pupils
3—11 years old
Ofsted last inspection
Sept. 30, 2010
Region › Const. › Ward
West Midlands › Walsall South › Pleck
Urban > 10k - less sparse
Investor in People
Committed IiP Status

rooms to rent in Walsall

Schools nearby

  1. Reedswood E-ACT Academy WS28RX (443 pupils)
  2. 0.3 miles Alumwell Junior School WS29UP (361 pupils)
  3. 0.3 miles Alumwell Infant School WS29UP (270 pupils)
  4. 0.3 miles Emmanuel School WS28PR (132 pupils)
  5. 0.4 miles Alumwell Nursery School WS29UP (116 pupils)
  6. 0.5 miles Birchills Church of England Primary Community School WS28NF
  7. 0.5 miles Birchills CofE Infant School WS28UH
  8. 0.5 miles Birchills CofE Junior School WS28UH
  9. 0.5 miles Birchills Church of England Community Academy WS28NF (413 pupils)
  10. 0.6 miles Croft Community Primary School WS28JE
  11. 0.6 miles Alumwell Business and Enterprise College WS29UA
  12. 0.6 miles The Jane Lane School, A College for Cognition & Learning WS20JH (145 pupils)
  13. 0.6 miles West Walsall E-ACT Academy WS29UA (847 pupils)
  14. 0.6 miles Croft Academy WS28JE (221 pupils)
  15. 0.7 miles King Charles Primary School WS20JN (308 pupils)
  16. 0.7 miles St Patrick's Catholic Primary School, Walsall WS28HN (247 pupils)
  17. 0.8 miles Beechdale Primary School WS27EF
  18. 0.9 miles North Walsall Junior School WS27BH
  19. 0.9 miles North Walsall Infant School WS27BH
  20. 0.9 miles Walsall College WS28ES
  21. 0.9 miles North Walsall Primary School WS27BH
  22. 0.9 miles Pregnant Schoolgirls' Teaching Unit WS28EN
  23. 0.9 miles The Charles Coddy Walker Academy WS27BH (230 pupils)
  24. 1 mile Lodge Farm Junior Mixed and Infant School WV124BU (327 pupils)

List of schools in Walsall

Bentley Drive Junior Mixed and Infant


Inspection report

Unique Reference Number 104164
Local Authority Walsall
Inspect ion number 355536
Inspect ion dates 30 September 2010–1 October 2010
Reporting inspector David Carrington

This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.

Type of school Primary
School category Community
Age range of pupils 3–11
Gender of pupils Mixed
Nu mber of pupils on the school roll 434
Appropriate authority The governing body
Chair Chris Jones
Headteacher Elaine Maher
Date of previous school inspection 5 March 2008
School address Bentley Drive
Telephone number 01922 721323
Fax number 01922 612907
Email address reveal email: post…
Age group 3–11
Inspect ion dates 30 September 2010–1
October 2010
Inspect ion number 355536


This inspection was carried out by four additional inspectors. They observed 20 lessons led
by 15 teachers. Meetings were held with the headteacher, deputy headteacher, senior
leaders and members of the governing body. The inspectors observed the school's work,
and looked at school planning, assessment data, samples of pupils' work, the school's
monitoring of the quality of teaching and a number of policy documents. The team
received 97 questionnaires from parents and carers and also evaluated those from school
staff and pupils.
The inspection team reviewed many aspects of the school's work. It looked in detail at the

  • The information about pupils' progress since May 2009.
  • The degree to which senior leaders and the governing body have a reliable view of
    school performance.
  • The setting of challenging targets in literacy and for higher attainers, girls and White
    British pupils.
  • Improvements made to children's progress in the Early Years Foundation Stage.The
    school's success in reducing the number of holidays taken in term-time.

Information about the school

Bentley Drive Primary is larger than most primary schools. The pupils come from the area
around the school. Nearly three-quarters of the pupils come from minority ethnic groups,
which is well above average. Most of these pupils are from Pakistani families. Two-thirds
of the pupils speak English as an additional language, which is also well above average.
Urdu, Punjabi, Mirpuri and Polish are the main home languages. The proportion of pupils
with special educational needs and/or disabilities is average. Most of these have some
form of learning difficulty. About a third of the pupils are known to be eligible for free
school meals, which is around twice the national average. An above average proportion of
pupils join or leave the school part-way through their primary education.
There has been a significant change of staff, including the senior leadership team, and
among members of the governing body during the past two years.

Inspect ion grades: 1 is outstanding, 2 is good, 3 is sat isfactory, and 4 is inadequate

Please turn to the glossary for a description of the grades and inspection terms

Inspection judgements

Overall effectiveness: how good is the school? 3
The school's capacity for sustained improvement 2

Main findings

Bentley Drive Primary School provides a satisfactory education for its pupils. Following the
many changes in staffing, the school has made good improvements to the quality of
teaching and learning. While these are satisfactory still, there is now a rising proportion of
good lessons throughout the school and, as a result, pupils' progress is improving. The
school is closing the gap in attainment that existed in the past. At present, attainment is a
little below average but in an increasing number of classes it is at the expected level,
particularly in literacy and numeracy. The headteacher's steadfast leadership and high
expectations are the driving force that has urged senior leaders, staff and members of the
governing body to strive successfully for improvement.
Pupils are making satisfactory progress. Senior leaders recognise that greater challenge
for higher-attaining pupils is the key to even better progress and improved equality of
opportunity. The school provides satisfactory opportunities for different pupils to succeed
and has raised the achievement of other key groups, such as the girls and White British
pupils. It has a well-thought-out system to track pupils' progress which enables any
underachievement to be spotted quickly and tackled effectively. Some good opportunities
are created in lessons for pupils to assess their own learning. The marking of pupils' work
in books sometimes includes useful information about how well targets are being achieved
and what must be improved next. These things are not yet consistent in all years,
Pupils behave well on the whole. The occasional fidgety behaviour is usually because the
pupils are keen to start work after listening to the teacher's sometimes lengthy
explanations. The school is a very harmonious place of work. Pupils work very well
together and are keen to help others do well. They are proud of their school and of their
friends' achievements. Pupils have a strong sense of right and wrong and usually make
wise decisions about how to respond to different challenges.
The curriculum provides appropriate opportunities for learning in all subjects. It is not yet
a good curriculum because information and communication technology (ICT) is underused
to support learning in different subjects. There are good plans in place to answer this
shortcoming. The care, guidance and support provided for pupils are among the school's
main strengths. Effective work has been done to raise attendance and reduce the number
of holidays in term-time. Staff are also successful in making sure vulnerable pupils are
helped to make the same progress as their friends. Those who speak English as an
additional language and those who join or leave the school part-way through their primary
education are supported well. The information from the progress tracking system is
particularly useful in ensuring such groups of pupils are making appropriate progress.
Thus, pupils known to be eligible for free school meals are checked carefully to ensure

Inspect ion grades: 1 is outstanding, 2 is good, 3 is sat isfactory, and 4 is inadequate

Please turn to the glossary for a description of the grades and inspection terms

their progress matches that of other groups. At present, trends in their learning and
progress are little different from those of other pupils.
The changes in the senior leadership team and among the governing body are proving
beneficial. There is renewed enthusiasm and ambition to meet priorities and challenges
effectively. School self-evaluation is robust, so these priorities and challenges are based on
reliable information. This includes the information from assessment which, after a period
when it had inaccuracies, is now reliable. The safeguarding of pupils is similarly robust.
Documents and records to support good safeguarding are up to date, analysed for any
trends and renewed regularly. Adults are watchful and take good steps to deal with any
concerns about pupils' well-being.
The school promotes community cohesion well. It uses effectively the very diverse
background of the pupils as its starting point for the celebration of different people's lives,
beliefs and cultures. This begins in the Early Years Foundation Stage, which provides well
for children's personal, social and emotional development. Children's progress in other
areas of the Early Years Foundation Stage curriculum is satisfactory and increasing. Here,
and in all other aspects of its work, there is good capacity to maintain good school

What does the school need to do to improve further?

  • Raise the level of challenge for higher-attaining pupils, by:
    ensuring that planning for all classes and ability sets stresses the skills,
    knowledge and understanding to be learned by the higher attainers
    making sure learning is brisk and purposeful at all times
    giving pupils long enough to complete their tasks without too much teacher talk.
  • Strengthen the ways assessment is used to support learning, by:
    ensuring planning for all classes and ability sets includes hard enough work for
    the higher attainers
    creating consistent opportunities for pupils to talk about their own learning
    checking that teachers' marking of books shows how well the pupils have
    achieved their targets and indicates ways to improve
    giving pupils more opportunities to assess the work in their books.
  • Improve the quality of provision in ICT, by:
    making sure ICT is used to support learning across the curriculum
    giving pupils more opportunities to use ICT.
Outcomes for individuals and groups of pupils 3

Pupils' progress is becoming more even through the school. Since the quality of learning
and teaching has improved considerably, pupils' progress is sometimes good. It is not yet
consistent, though, largely because in lessons teachers sometimes talk for too long.
Additionally, pupils' willingness to learn is not always used sufficiently to help them
develop independence and self-reliance in learning. There are, however, notable

Inspect ion grades: 1 is outstanding, 2 is good, 3 is sat isfactory, and 4 is inadequate

Please turn to the glossary for a description of the grades and inspection terms

exceptions to these trends. In a Year 3 mathematics lesson pupils in all attainment groups
were keen to identify the 'mistakes' in the teacher's calculations. They worked convincingly
at the expected level for their age as they explored some quite complex mathematics.
They were jubilant when they identified a mistake and were very keen to explain their
methods of calculation.
School data show a rise in attainment over the last 18 months. The school is now building
more effectively on children's well below the expected level of skill when they start school.
To match this, the school has set revised targets, especially for the higher-attaining pupils.
The proportion reaching the higher levels in their work is rising, although it has not yet
been maximised. Some work set for this group of pupils is almost the same as for less-
able pupils which negatively affects their response and progress in lessons. Generally
though, pupils are prepared satisfactorily for the next stage of their learning. This shows
in their workbooks, especially for writing. The vast majority of pupils attend punctually and
regularly, behave well and are keen to learn.
The school's partnerships with artists, musicians and actors are very helpful in helping
pupils develop a good range of personal and social skills as well as broadening their
education. Year 5 pupils were particularly enthusiastic about their musical instrument
tuition, which spilled into joyful and enjoyable rehearsal. Such lessons make a good
contribution to pupils' cultural development, which is extended by the celebration of
different religious festivals, special events and lifestyles.

These are the grades for pupils' outcomes

Pupils' achievement and the extent to which they enjoy their learning 3
Taking into account:
Pupils' attainment¹
The quality of pupils' learning and their progress 3
The quality of learning for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities
and their progress
The extent to which pupils feel safe 2
Pupils' behaviour 2
The extent to which pupils adopt healthy lifestyles 2
The extent to which pupils contribute to the school and wider community 2
The extent to which pupils develop wor kplace and other skills that will contribute to
their future economic well-being
Taking into account:
Pupils' attendance¹
The extent of pupils' spiritual, moral, social and cultural development 2


The grades for attainment and attendance are: 1 is high; 2 is above average; 3 is broadly average; and 4

is low

Inspect ion grades: 1 is outstanding, 2 is good, 3 is sat isfactory, and 4 is inadequate

Please turn to the glossary for a description of the grades and inspection terms

How effective is the provision?

The school has now eliminated all the inadequate teaching of the past. Good teaching and
learning happen in all years but there are inconsistencies in practice. Staff are keen to
improve their work and the rise in pupils' progress demonstrates their success in this
quest. Senior leaders know that the strengths of teaching and learning deserve spreading
across the school. Year 4, for example, enjoyed investigating three-dimensional shapes
because the teacher and teaching assistant set effective challenges and used questioning
skilfully to extend pupils' thinking, especially for girls and the higher-attaining pupils. They
managed behaviour very well. This good quality lesson was a model for the future.
There is not a high enough profile for ICT across the school. While it is taught
satisfactorily as a subject, it is not used sufficiently to support learning in a wide enough
range of subjects. The use of ICT in this way is not identified enough in planning. Its use
to set greater challenge, especially for higher-attaining pupils, is currently insufficient. In
contrast, the provision to support pupils' personal, social and health education is good
because it is well thought out, planned clearly and makes use of the talents of teachers,
teaching assistants and other adults to help pupils develop well as people.
School staff guide and advise all pupils well. A good range of partner agencies is involved
in this work. Together, they provide the reassurance and counselling that vulnerable pupils
find encouraging, supportive and beneficial. Relationships between these pupils and the
adults that support them are noticeably warm. This extends to pupils with special
educational needs and/or disabilities, and those who speak English as an additional
language who are as keen to succeed as other pupils because their needs are promoted
soundly. They make similar progress to other pupils because of this.

These are the grades for the quality of provision

The quality of teaching 3
Taking into account:
The use of assessment to support learning
The extent to which the curr iculum meets pupils' needs, including, where relevant,
through partnerships
The effectiveness of care, guidance and support 2

How effective are leadership and management?

The headteacher provides the essential guidance and drive to enable the school to meet
its priorities and targets. Her enthusiasm and inspiration encourage other staff to take
responsibility seriously and to form a good team which places the pupils' interests first.
New members of the governing body have made a confident start to their work to provide
challenge and support for senior leaders and staff. They have quickly identified, and
arranged for, the necessary training to assist them to become more probing in their work.
They have an accurate understanding of school performance and are determined to take a
greater role in promoting its strengths and improving weaker areas. All members of the
governing body play a particularly successful role in helping the school safeguard pupils

Inspect ion grades: 1 is outstanding, 2 is good, 3 is sat isfactory, and 4 is inadequate

Please turn to the glossary for a description of the grades and inspection terms

well. The necessary training is complete and the governing body has adopted an efficient
cycle of evaluation and review to make sure safeguarding is trustworthy.
Parents and carers have few concerns about the school's work to help their children make
the necessary progress. The school has formed a good partnership with them that
encourages discussion and the communication of information. The workshops to help
parents and carers understand what and how their children learn are particularly effecti ve.
A good proportion of parents and carers of Year 3 pupils attended a workshop during the
inspection which helped them understand how attainment in writing is assessed and
levelled. Partnerships with other groups, including the local authority and regional
improvement agency, have greatly aided the school's work to make learning even more
responsive to pupils' needs and to accelerate their progress.
Community cohesion is promoted effectively and senior leaders have some very positive
ideas of how it can be improved further by broadening its reach into distant communities.
Their ambition is clearly focused on the number one priority of raising attainment and
progress further and hence to make the satisfactory level of equal opportunity at least
good. The way that existing and new staff and members of the governing body have come
together to drive improvement is a significant factor in the good capacity to move the
school forward.

These are the grades for leadership and management

The effectiveness of leadership and management in embedding ambition and driving
Taking into account:
The leadership and management of teaching and learning
The effectiveness of the governing body in challe nging and support ing the
school so that weaknesses are tackled decisively and statutory responsibilities met
The effectiveness of the school's engagement with parents and carers 2
The effectiveness of partnerships in promoting learning and well-being 2
The effectiveness with which the school promotes equality of opportunity and tackles
discriminat ion
The effectiveness of safeguarding procedures 2
The effectiveness with which the school promotes community cohesion 2
The effectiveness with which the school deploys resources to achieve value for money 3

Early Years Foundation Stage

Provision in the Early Years Foundation Stage satisfactorily promotes children's progress.
As in other parts of the school, there are noticeable improvements in both Nursery and
Reception that are encouraging quicker progress. Currently, children start with well-below
the expected levels of skills and knowledge in all areas, especially in aspects of literacy.
They make steady progress and by the end of Reception most have reached their targets.

Inspect ion grades: 1 is outstanding, 2 is good, 3 is sat isfactory, and 4 is inadequate

Please turn to the glossary for a description of the grades and inspection terms

Few, however, reach the higher levels, so the key priority for the Early Years Foundation
Stage is to ensure children are provided with experiences that will enable the higher
attainers to extend their skills further.
The children enjoy their learning and are enthusiastic about coming to school. Because
their welfare needs are promoted well, they work and play safely in the knowledge they
are being looked after reliably. In one lesson observed, Reception children were
particularly keen to share their experiences of the animals brought by a visitor. This was
assisted effectively by bilingual support from the teaching assistant which allowed those at
a very early stage of learning English to contribute fully.
The leadership and management of the Early Years Foundation Stage have been changed
recently. The phase leader has made a successful start to her work of improving provision
and achievement in Nursery and Reception, especially assessment. In this it has been
possible to build on the sound practice established already.

These are the grades for the Early Years Foundation Stage

Overall effectiveness of the Early Years Foundation Stage 3
Taking into account:
Outcomes for children in the Early Years Foundation Stage
The quality of provision in the Early Years Foundation Stage 3
The effectiveness of leadership and management of the Early Years Foundation

Views of parents and carers

The views of parents and carers are extremely positive. Few parents and carers wrote
comments on their Ofsted questionnaires. Where they did, some identified weaknesses in
the way information about special events is shared and the ways in which their children
are urged to try harder. On the other hand, nearly all parents and carers think the school
helps their children keep safe and healthy. They also judge teaching to be effective in
helping their children make the necessary progress.

Responses from parents and carers to Ofsted's questionnaire

Ofsted invited all the registered parents and carers of pupils registered at Bentley Drive Primary School to
complete a questionnaire about their views of the school. In the questionnaire, parents and carers were
asked to record how strongly they agreed with 13 statements about the school. Inspection team received 97
completed questionnaires by the end of the on-site inspection. In total, there are 434 pupils registered at
the school.
The table above summarises the responses that parents and carers made to each statement. The
percentages indicate the proportion of parents and carers giving that response out of the total number of
completed questionnaires. Where one or more parents and carers chose not to answer a particular question,
the percentages will not add up to 100%.

Statements Strongly
Agree Disagree Strongly
Total % Total % Total % Total %
My child enjoys school 59 61 34 35 3 3 0 0
The school keeps my child
41 42 55 57 1 1 0 0
My school informs me about
my child's progress
41 42 52 54 3 3 0 0
My child is making enough
progress at this school
34 35 58 60 2 2 1 1
The teaching is good at this
41 42 52 54 1 1 0 0
The school helps me to
support my child's learning
38 39 51 53 7 7 0 0
The school helps my child to
have a healthy lifestyle
39 40 56 58 0 0 0 0
The school makes sure that
my child is well prepared for
the future (for example
changing year group,
changing school, and for
children who are finishing
school, entering further or
higher education, or entering
32 33 58 60 4 4 0 0
The school meets my child's
particular needs
34 35 58 60 4 4 0 0
The school deals effectively
with unacceptable behaviour
34 35 53 55 7 7 1 1
The school takes account of
my suggestions and concerns
23 24 61 63 7 7 1 1
The school is led and
managed effectively
34 35 55 57 4 4 2 2
Overall, I am happy with my
child's experience at this
36 37 54 56 4 4 0 0


What inspection judgements mean

Grade Judgement Description
Grade 1 Outstanding These features are highly effective. An outstanding school
provides exceptionally well for all its pupils' needs.
Grade 2 Good These are very positive features of a school. A school that
is good is serving its pupils well.
Grade 3 Satisfactory These features are of reasonable quality. A satisfactory
school is providing adequately for its pupils.
Grade 4 Inadequate These features are not of an acceptable standard. An
inadequate school needs to make significant improvement
in order to meet the needs of its pupils. Ofsted inspectors
will make further visits until it improves.

Overall effectiveness of schools

Overall effectiveness judgement (percentage of schools)
Type of school Outstanding Good Satisfactory Inadequate
Nursery schools 58 36 4 2
Primary schools 8 43 40 9
Secondary schools 10 35 42 13
Sixth forms 13 39 45 3
Special schools 33 42 20 4
Pupil referral units 18 40 29 12
All schools 11 42 38 9

New school inspection arrangements were introduced on 1 September 2009. This means that inspectors now
make some additional judgements that were not made previously.
The data in the table above are for the period 1 September 2009 to 31 March 2010 and are the most
recently published data available (see Please note that the sample of schools
inspected during the autumn and spring terms 2009/10 was not representative of all schools nationally, as
weaker schools are inspected more frequently than good or outstanding schools.
Percentages are rounded and do not always add exactly to 100. Secondary school figures in clude those that
have sixth forms, and sixth form figures include only the data specifically for sixth form inspection

Common terminology used by inspectors

Achievement: the progress and success of a pupil in their learning,
development or training.
Attainment: the standard of the pupils' work shown by test and
examination results and in lessons.
Capacity to improve: the proven ability of the school to continue
improving. Inspectors base this judgement on what
the school has accomplished so far and on the quality
of its systems to maintain improvement.
Leadership and management: the contribution of all the staff with responsibilities,
not just the headteacher, to identifying priorities,
directing and motivating staff and running the school.
Learning: how well pupils acquire knowledge, develop their
understanding, learn and practise skills and are
developing their competence as learners.
Overall effectiveness: inspectors form a judgement on a school's overall
effectiveness based on the findings from their
inspection of the school. The following judgements,
in particular, influence what the overall effectiveness
judgement will be.
The school's capacity for sustained
Outcomes for individuals and groups of pupils.
The quality of teaching.
The extent to which the curriculum meets
The effectiveness of care, guidance and
pupils' needs, including, where relevant,
through partnerships.
Progress: the rate at which pupils are learning in lessons and
over longer periods of time. It is often measured by
comparing the pupils' attainment at the end of a key
stage with their attainment when they started.

2 October 2010
Dear Pupils
Inspection of Bentley Drive Primary School, Walsall WS2 8RX
Thank you for welcoming us so warmly when we visited your school recently. You were
eager to find out about our work and to show and tell us about your time in school. Those
of you we spoke with told us you enjoy school and that the adults look after you well.
We judged that your school is satisfactory and that it is making good improvements to
make sure you make faster progress and reach higher levels in your work. At the moment
the higher attainers do not make quick enough progress. All of you could be given more
chances to check how well you are learning and talk about your targets. In addition, you
could be given more time to use ICT to help you make good progress in all subjects.
These are the three main improvements for your school.
You and your parents and carers told us about the things your school does well. Like
you, we think it helps you to work together well, enjoy the company of other people and
to celebrate the work and achievements of others. Your headteacher, teachers and other
staff all want you to learn effectively and they are making some important changes to
teaching and the curriculum to help you reach even higher levels in your work. They have
already made good changes to some things and they have the skill to improve your school

even more.

At the moment you are helped satisfactorily to get ready for the next stage in your
education. To help your teachers improve this you can tell them more about how well you
think you are learning and what you find easy and what is harder for you. Ask them to set
you more challenges too.
Yours sincerely
David Carrington
Lead inspector


print / save trees, print less