School etc

Featherstone Girnhill Infant School

Featherstone Girnhill Infant School
Hardwick Road
West Yorkshire

phone: 01977 722690

headteacher: Mrs Sally Lowe Ba Hons Pgtc


school holidays: via Wakefield council

105 pupils aged 2—6y mixed gender
135 pupils capacity: 78% full

60 boys 56%

≤ 234a54b34c45y186y14

45 girls 43%

≤ 234c45y76y14

Last updated: June 19, 2014

Primary — Community School

Education phase
Establishment type
Community School
Establishment #
OSGB coordinates
Easting: 442227, Northing: 419680
GPS coordinates
Latitude: 53.672, Longitude: -1.3623
Accepting pupils
3—7 years old
Census date
Jan. 16, 2014
Ofsted last inspection
July 4, 2013
Region › Const. › Ward
Yorkshire and the Humber › Hemsworth › Featherstone
Urban > 10k - less sparse
Investor in People
Committed IiP Status
Free school meals %

rooms to rent in Pontefract

Schools nearby

  1. 0.2 miles Featherstone Purston Infant School WF75HF (197 pupils)
  2. 0.3 miles Featherstone Purston St Thomas Church of England Voluntary Controlled Junior School WF75BG (215 pupils)
  3. 0.9 miles Featherstone Technology College: With Physical Disability Resource WF75AJ
  4. 0.9 miles The Featherstone Academy WF75AJ (377 pupils)
  5. 1 mile Featherstone North Featherstone Junior and Infant School WF76LW (315 pupils)
  6. 1.6 mile All Saints Featherstone CofE (VA) Junior Infant and Nursery School WF76BQ (201 pupils)
  7. 1.7 mile St Wilfrid's Catholic High School and Sixth Form College: With Speech and Language Resource WF76BD
  8. 1.7 mile St Wilfrid's Catholic High School & Sixth Form College: A Voluntary Academy WF76BD (1771 pupils)
  9. 1.8 mile Pontefract Larks Hill Junior and Infant School WF84RJ
  10. 1.8 mile Streethouse, Junior, Infant and Nursery WF76DJ (117 pupils)
  11. 1.8 mile Pontefract Larks Hill Junior and Infant School WF84RJ (208 pupils)
  12. 1.9 mile Pontefract Halfpenny Lane Junior Infant and Nursery School WF84BW
  13. 1.9 mile Wakefield Independent School WF41QG (161 pupils)
  14. 1.9 mile Pontefract Halfpenny Lane Junior Infant and Nursery School WF84BW (439 pupils)
  15. 2 miles The King's School Specialising in Mathematics and Computing WF84JF
  16. 2 miles Ackworth School WF77LT (462 pupils)
  17. 2 miles The King's School Specialising in Mathematics and Computing WF84JF (1044 pupils)
  18. 2.1 miles Sharlston Community School (3-11): With Visual Impairment Resource WF41DH (224 pupils)
  19. 2.1 miles New College Pontefract WF84QR
  20. 2.2 miles Ackworth Bell Lane First School WF77JH
  21. 2.2 miles Pontefract Carleton Park Junior and Infant School WF83PT
  22. 2.2 miles Ackworth Howard CofE First School WF77HH
  23. 2.2 miles Bell Lane Primary (J and I) School WF77JH (278 pupils)
  24. 2.2 miles Ackworth Howard Church of England Voluntary Controlled Junior and Infant School WF77HH (174 pupils)

List of schools in Pontefract

School report

Featherstone Girnhill

Infant School

Hardwick Road, Featherstone, Pontefract, West Yorkshire, WF7 5JB

Inspection dates 4–5 July 2013
Overall effectiveness This inspection: Outstanding 1
Previous inspection: Good 2
Achievement of pupils Outstanding 1
Quality of teaching Outstanding 1
Behaviour and safety of pupils Outstanding 1
Leadership and management Outstanding 1

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is an outstanding school.

Pupils make excellent progress and achieve
Teaching is consistently good and much is
outstandingly well. From very low starting
points, a high proportion of pupils attain
average standards in reading, writing and
mathematics. The proportion of pupils
reaching the highest level of attainment is
just below the national average.
outstanding. Teachers and classroom
assistants are highly committed to pupils’
success and very determined that pupils
achieve high standards. The thorough
assessment of pupils’ learning ensures that
pupils have very good advice and constant
support for improving their work.
Behaviour is exemplary and attitudes to
The headteacher, senior leaders and a very
learning are outstanding. From Nursery Year to
the end of Year 2, pupils greatly enjoy and are
stimulated by excellent educational
experiences. The world of learning opens up
for them in all of their work and activities. They
are greatly enthused by learning new
knowledge and skills and feel very safe and
secure in school.
committed staff team are highly ambitious.
Their high expectations produce excellent
teaching and outcomes for pupils. Governors
are robust in supporting and challenging the
school ensuring, alongside leaders, the school
maintains its strong capacity to sustain

Information about this inspection

  • The inspector visited seven lessons observing four of the school’s five teachers. One lesson was
    observed jointly with the headteacher.
  • Meetings were held with senior leaders, pupils, representatives of the governing body and a
    representative of the local authority.
  • The records examined included data on pupils’ attainment and progress, a sample of pupils’
    work in reading, writing and mathematics, a summary of the school’s view of its own
    performance, procedures for keeping pupils safe and the most recent external review of the
    school’s work.
  • There were too few responses made by parents to Ofsted’s on-line questionnaire (Parent View)
    for the inspector to be able to access them.

Inspection team

Alan Lemon, Lead inspector Additional Inspector

Full report

Information about this school

  • The school is much smaller than the average-sized primary school.
  • The very large majority of pupils are of White British heritage.
  • The proportion of pupils known to be eligible for the pupil premium is well above average. The
    pupil premium is additional funding for those pupils who are known to be eligible for free school
    meals, children from service families and those children who are looked after by the local
  • The proportion of disabled pupils and those with special educational needs supported through
    school action is well above average. The proportion of pupils supported through school action
    plus or who have a statement of special educational needs is below average.
  • The school provides a daily breakfast club and an after-school club once a week for pupils.
  • A children’s centre on the same site as the school and managed by the governing body is
    inspected separately.

What does the school need to do to improve further?

  • Raise teachers’ expectations even higher in order that the proportion of pupils reaching the
    highest level of attainment in reading, writing and mathematics increases and is at least in line
    with the national average.

Inspection judgements

The achievement of pupils is outstanding
  • Many children start the Nursery Year with very low levels of skills and development. Children
    settle very quickly and thrive on the wide variety of work and play offered. They make rapid
    progress from the outset in all areas of development, especially in speaking, reading and writing,
    because adults give very close attention to encouraging these key skills. Given a choice of
    activities, boys and girls were interested in choosing writing or counting games.
  • By the end of Reception Year, children achieve outstandingly well. There is a significant increase
    in proportion of children reaching the expected or a good level of development compared to that
    at the start of Nursery Year. Improvements in the Early Years Foundation Stage provision, that
    for learning outdoors in particular, impact positively on children’s learning.
  • The very good start made in Nursery and Reception Years in developing children’s literacy is
    convincingly captured in the check on Year 1 pupils’ skills in linking letters and the sounds they
    make. Coming from their very low starting point in the Nursery Year, in 2012, pupils achieved
    broadly average results matching Year 1 pupils nationally.
  • By the end of Year 2, in 2012, standards in reading, writing and mathematics were broadly
    average, and slightly higher than the national average, as a result of pupils continuing to make
    exceptional progress. Compared to the proportion of pupils starting Year 1 at the expected level
    in reading, writing and mathematics, three times as many reached this level by the end of Year
    2. The school’s data for 2013 and inspection evidence show that these impressive outcomes are
    being maintained.
  • Throughout the school, adults provide pupils with excellent support if they have any difficulty
    with learning ensuring all pupils have an equal opportunity to achieve outstanding results.
    School leaders are rightly ambitious to build further on Year 2 results and increase the
    proportion achieving the highest levels in reading, writing and mathematics even further. This is
    realistic given the good proportion of pupils who are only an extra terms work below reaching
    the highest level.
  • Pupils supported through the pupil premium performed exceptionally well in 2012. They
    outperformed other pupils in reading and writing and matched them in mathematics only
    because 100% of pupils attained the expected level.
  • The very close check kept by leaders and teachers on each pupil’s progress greatly reduces the
    risk of any falling behind. Well-planned approaches to reading, writing and mathematics make
    sure those who need it get the extra boost to keep them on track. The breakfast club each
    morning is very effective in helping the few pupils who find learning to read particularly difficult
    to practise and gain the necessary skills.
  • Pupils with disabilities or special educational needs all benefit from well-targeted support in
    lessons. Some benefit as well through the pupil premium funding. Their needs are very well
    understood and managed ensuring they make very good progress over time.
The quality of teaching is outstanding
  • Teachers and their assistants know pupils extremely well by using rigorous, accurate assessment
    procedures, and by keeping a constant check on learning during lessons and thorough marking
    of pupils’ work. Pupils are given good advice on improving their work and their literacy and
    numeracy targets focus sharply on the next steps they need to take to get to the next level.
    Leaders understand the school is at the point where more pupils can now attain the top level in
    reading, writing and mathematics if teachers raise their expectations even higher.
  • There is a good amount of time given to teaching literacy and numeracy. Many opportunities are
    provided in all activities for pupils to use and improve their key skills. When children from
    Nursery and Reception Years are outside, adults stay close to them asking questions and very
    effectively encouraging conversations. Children examining the plants they had grown and their
    insect habitat were very animated in observing and describing what they saw.
  • Lessons are very well planned and teachers use very good approaches for promoting learning,
    reflecting their knowledge of pupils and how each pupil learns best. As a result, teaching is lively
    and fast paced, with pupils thoroughly enjoying lessons. The division of pupils into small groups
    at a similar stage of learning leads to them being set work matched to their ability and is
    challenging. Similarly, in this way some small groups receive very effective additional support
    from teaching assistants, particularly where pupils have special educational needs.
  • New knowledge and skills are clearly explained to pupils and are very well illustrated, especially
    in mathematics. For example, in a year 2 mathematics lesson this ensured pupils understood the
    different scales used for measuring, such as time and capacity.
  • Teachers are highly skilled in teaching reading. They set high expectations and from an early
    stage. This stretches pupils’ skills beyond word recognition into understanding stories, making
    inferences and finding answers to questions in the text. The key features of writing well are also
    expertly taught and constantly emphasised, so that Year 1 pupils confidently recall facts about
    punctuation and language that make their writing interesting.
The behaviour and safety of pupils are outstanding
  • Pupils’ behaviour is outstanding. They respond very positively to teachers’ high expectations for
    good behaviour and positive attitudes to learning. Pupils gain a great deal of self-confidence
    from the earliest stage. They are very keen to be involved and to contribute in every lesson and
  • There is a calm, purposeful atmosphere throughout the school, in lessons and on the
    playground. Bullying among pupils is not evident and pupils feel that bullying is not a significant
    feature of their experience at school. Pupils say this is because their concerns, if they ever have
    one, will be dealt with quickly and effectively by an adult.
  • In the Nursery and Reception Years, children are used to getting out and putting away their
    outdoor play equipment and take seriously the responsibility for doing so. Doing jobs and
    managing responsibilities is a significant part of each pupil’s experience.
  • Pupils have much respect for adults and each other, which they extend to how they think about
    and understand others whose culture and beliefs are different from theirs. They are considerate
    and polite. The school has a concise, simple set of rules for behaviour to guide pupils. Pupils
    quote these precisely. They use them to behave appropriately and in doing so demonstrate
    strong moral awareness and knowledge of right and wrong. They are very aware and
    disapproving of when and by whom the rules are broken.
  • In 2012, attendance was below average and it is above average this year as a result of leaders’
    concerted effort to tackle absence. The figure for attendance in this small school are significantly
    affected by a few pupils’ absence.
The leadership and management are outstanding
  • School leaders are very ambitious in raising pupils’ achievement, whatever their starting points,
    to as high a level as possible. Now that they have produced excellent results, leaders are fixed
    upon taking as many pupils as possible to the next level of attainment.
  • Staff value pupils greatly and this ensures each pupil thrives in their personal and academic
    development. Their arrangements for keeping pupils safe are robust. Throughout the school,
    staff are very consistent in the way they encourage pupils to work hard and achieve. They are a
    small, closely-knit team who work together very effectively and ensure their performance
    throughout school meets leaders’ high expectations.
  • All staff take part in checking the effectiveness of the school. Senior leaders keep a continuous
    check on pupils’ progress and the quality of teaching. The school’s strengths and areas for
    improvement are clearly understood. They inform its well-articulated development plans and
    objectives for teachers related to strengthening of their performance and professional
    development. The local authority checks the school’s performance annually and provides light-
    touch support knowing the strengths of leadership and management.
  • Leaders have an excellent capacity for improving the school even further and have made
    exceptional progress on improvement since the last inspection. This had a positive impact upon
    standards of literacy, Early Years Foundation Stage provision and in pupils’ attendance. They are
    also increasingly successful in including many parents in supporting the school’s academic aims.
  • The curriculum gives very strong emphasis to literacy and numeracy. Provision for reading,
    writing and mathematics is very well developed the school. A wide variety of activities is offered,
    which capture pupils’ interests and develop their talents, after-school sports for boys and girls in
    particular. The whole curriculum makes a significant contribution to pupils’ outstanding spiritual,
    moral, social and cultural development.
  • The governance of the school:

The governing body has a full membership, which is an improvement since the last inspection.

Governors scrutinise robustly data on pupils’ progress and the impact from spending the pupil
premium funding on pupils’ achievement. The headteacher’s reports on the quality of teaching
and teachers’ performance are now evaluated by governors in relation to pupils’ outcomes,

teachers’ pay and their career advancement. Governors are well organised to fulfil all their

responsibilities and have a range of expertise, in finance, health and safety and education to

do this effectively. They stay in close contact with the school and know the school’s work well

from the headteacher’s and other detailed staff reports and by making regular visits.

What inspection judgements mean


Grade Judgement Description
Grade 1 Outstanding An outstanding school is highly effective in delivering outcomes
that provide exceptionally well for all its pupils’ needs. This ensures
that pupils are very well equipped for the next stage of their
education, training or employment.
Grade 2 Good A good school is effective in delivering outcomes that provide well
for all its pupils’ needs. Pupils are well prepared for the next stage
of their education, training or employment.
Grade 3 Requires
A school that requires improvement is not yet a good school, but it
is not inadequate. This school will receive a full inspection within
24 months from the date of this inspection.
Grade 4 Inadequate A school that requires special measures is one where the school is
failing to give its pupils an acceptable standard of education and
the school’s leaders, managers or governors have not
demonstrated that they have the capacity to secure the necessary
improvement in the school. This school will receive regular
monitoring by Ofsted inspectors.

A school that has serious weaknesses is inadequate overall and
requires significant improvement but leadership and management
are judged to be Grade 3 or better. This school will receive regular
monitoring by Ofsted inspectors.

School details

Unique reference number 108168
Local authority Wakefield
Inspection number 412704

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 3–7
Gender of pupils Mixed
Number of pupils on the school roll 107
Appropriate authority The governing body
Chair Kay Binnersley
Headteacher Sally Lowe
Date of previous school inspection 22 September 2009
Telephone number 01977 722690
Fax number 01977 722691
Email address reveal email: head…


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