Ferham Primary School
phone: 01709 740962
headteacher: Mrs Helen Simpson
210 pupils capacity: 110% full
120 boys 52%
110 girls 48%
Last updated: June 18, 2014
Primary — Community School
- Education phase
- Establishment type
- Community School
- Establishment #
- OSGB coordinates
- Easting: 441516, Northing: 392748
- GPS coordinates
- Latitude: 53.43, Longitude: -1.3766
- Accepting pupils
- 3—11 years old
- Census date
- Jan. 16, 2014
- Ofsted last inspection
- July 10, 2013
- Region › Const. › Ward
- Yorkshire and the Humber › Rotherham › Rotherham West
- Urban > 10k - less sparse
- Private Finance Initiative
- Part of PFI
- Free school meals %
- 0.1 miles The Masbrough Centre S611AJ
- 0.4 miles Thornhill Primary School S611TD (339 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Kimberworth Community Primary School S611HE (231 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Kimberworth Comprehensive School S611HE
- 0.6 miles Kelford School S612NU (98 pupils)
- 0.6 miles The Alternative Resource Centre S611HE
- 0.8 miles Meadow View Primary School S612JD (268 pupils)
- 0.9 miles Winterhill School S612BD (1212 pupils)
- 1 mile St Bede's Catholic Primary School S611PD
- 1 mile Rotherham College of Arts and Technology S651EG
- 1 mile St Bede's Catholic Primary School S611PD (330 pupils)
- 1.1 mile Fenton Wood PRU S613EQ
- 1.2 mile St Ann's Infant School S651PJ
- 1.3 mile The Blenheim Centre S651NN
- 1.3 mile St Ann's Junior School S651PD
- 1.3 mile Canklow Woods Infant School S602XJ
- 1.3 mile Canklow Woods Junior School S602XJ
- 1.3 mile Wingfield Business and Enterprise College S614AU
- 1.3 mile Abbey School S612RA (96 pupils)
- 1.3 mile Thomas Rotherham College S602BE
- 1.3 mile St Ann's Junior and Infant School S651PD (430 pupils)
- 1.3 mile Canklow Woods Primary School S602XJ
- 1.3 mile Wingfield Academy S614AU (778 pupils)
- 1.3 mile Canklow Woods Primary School S602XJ (217 pupils)
Ferham Primary School
Ferham Road, Rotherham, S61 1AP
|Inspection dates||21–22 May 2015|
|Overall effectiveness||This inspection:||Good||2|
|Previous inspection:||Requires improvement||3|
|Leadership and management||Good||2|
|Behaviour and safety of pupils||Good||2|
|Quality of teaching||Good||2|
|Achievement of pupils||Good||2|
|Early years provision||Good||2|
Summary of key findings for parents and pupils
This is a good school.
It is not yet an outstanding school because
| The school is well led by a highly motivated and |
The quality of teaching is consistently good.
Pupils also benefit from effective support within
Systems for tracking pupils’ progress are rigorous.
The school is a friendly and welcoming place
dedicated headteacher and equally committed
staff. The governing body knows the school very
well and is instrumental in securing
improvements. Together, this effective team face
and surmount the challenges set them by the high
numbers of pupils who join and leave the school
outside normal times.
Lessons engage pupils in their learning. They
benefit from good-quality questioning, which
promotes language skills well.
the classroom, in groups or individually, as
appropriate to their needs.
where pupils behave well, are attentive in lessons
and keen to learn. Pupils are kept safe in school
as well as when out on visits. They feel safe and
well cared for.
| Achievement is good overall. Pupils make good |
The school promotes pupils’ spiritual, moral, social
The early years provision is good. Children are
Attendance is well documented and good
progress, often from starting points that are
significantly below those typical for their age. All
groups of pupils receive consistently good support,
which enables them to achieve well during their
time in school.
and cultural development extremely well. Pupils
know right from wrong. They have opportunities to
reflect. They appreciate fundamental British values
such as tolerance and respect for people from all
walks of life.
made to feel welcome and settle quickly. They
enjoy a wide range of exciting activities and make
good progress because their needs are well
attendance is rewarded. This has led to
| Pupils are not always given sufficient guidance to |
Occasionally, the most able do not move on
There are missed opportunities for pupils to talk
enable them to improve their work.
quickly enough to more challenging work.
about their work before starting to write.
| Expectations of what pupils can achieve within a |
There are missed opportunities to share the best
Teaching does not use information and
given period of time are not high enough.
practice that exists in school.
communication technology effectively enough to
develop pupils’ skills.
Information about this inspection
- Inspectors visited several lessons or parts of lessons, some of which were observed jointly with the
headteacher. They looked at a range of pupils’ work and heard a number of pupils from Year 2 and Year 6
- Meetings took place with the headteacher, senior leaders, staff and groups of pupils. Inspectors also met
the vice chair and other members of the governing body. They held a meeting with a representative from
the local authority.
- Inspectors looked at a range of documentation, including the school’s data on pupils’ progress and records
relating to pupils’ behaviour, attendance and safeguarding.
- Inspectors observed playtimes, assemblies and lunch breaks. The examined displays around school and
also in classrooms.
- Inspectors were unable to take into account responses to the online questionnaire, Parent View, as there
were too few to register. However, inspectors looked at the results of a parent questionnaire carried out
by the school.
- The views of staff and pupils were also considered.
|Christine Millett, Lead inspector||Additional Inspector|
|Aileen King||Additional Inspector|
Information about this school
- Ferham is slightly smaller than the average-sized primary school.
- The Nursery offers part-time places. Reception children attend on a full-time basis.
- Approximately half of the pupils are of Pakistani heritage. Others are from a range of ethnic backgrounds.
The majority of pupils speak English as an additional language and an increasing proportion of pupils
speak little or no English when they start at the school.
- The proportion of pupils known to be eligible for support through the pupil premium funding is above that
found nationally. The pupil premium is additional funding to support disadvantaged pupils known to be
eligible for free school meals and those children who are looked after by the local authority.
- The proportion of disabled pupils and those who have special educational needs is below average.
- The proportion of pupils who join and leave the school at times other than the normal starting point is
- The school does not meet the government’s current floor standards, which are the minimum expectations
for pupils’ attainment and progress in reading, writing and mathematics by the end of Year 6.
- Rotherham Central Children’s Centre is located on the school site and is subject to a separate inspection.
The last inspection took place in October 2011. This report can be found on the Ofsted website.
- The school is part of the Winterhill Learning Community.
What does the school need to do to improve further?
- Improve the quality of teaching from good to outstanding by:
making sure that the quality of marking is consistently good throughout the school and pupils know how
to improve their work
raising teachers’ expectations of what pupils can achieve in lessons
checking the progress of pupils within lessons and moving them on to more challenging work as soon
as they are ready
providing, where necessary, appropriate training for staff to enable them to improve provision in
information and communication technology to enhance pupils’ learning and skills
giving pupils, particularly those new to speaking English as an additional language, time to talk about
their work before they begin writing
continuing to share the best practice that exists in the school.
|The leadership and management||are good|
- Leadership and management are good because they have developed a culture which has secured
improvements since the previous inspection, resulting in good teaching, behaviour and achievement.
- There is a good sense of team work within the school with staff willing to take on extra responsibilities to
cover for staff absence. Staff are committed to consolidating what has been achieved so far and building
on this to bring about further improvement. Effective senior and middle leaders drive forward the school’s
programme of ongoing improvements.
- The school’s plans for improvement are based on an accurate view of its effectiveness. They identify
actions to help the school meet the targets it sets itself. Subject leaders have become increasingly
involved in the checking of the quality of teaching and learning in their areas through lesson observations
and looking at the work in pupils’ books.
- Leaders check the quality of teaching and how well pupils are doing regularly during the year through
meetings about pupils’ progress. This information is used to set targets to promote faster rates of progress
for different groups of pupils. Consequently, any gaps in attainment between disadvantaged pupils and
other pupils in the school are closing.
- The school has adopted a rigorous system for managing the performance of teachers. Teachers’ pay is
clearly linked to how effectively they enable pupils to learn. Staff training is suitably linked to targets set
for teachers, as well as current priorities for improving the school.
- Pupils’ learning experiences across a range of subjects are varied and memorable. These are enhanced
through related visits and visitors. Links between subjects enable pupils to build on the skills they acquire
in reading, writing and mathematics. Computing and French extend pupils’ skills further. However, the use
of information and communication technology is not consistent across the school.
Pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is promoted strongly through participation in
events such as the Rotherham Children’s Festival. This includes opportunities to play a musical instrument,
sing in a choir, perform Shakespeare and see their art work exhibited at the Rotherham United football
Pupils learn about different religions and cultures and are developing an understanding of life in modern
Britain. Through the subjects taught, they gain an understanding of how the past has shaped the present.
Pupils see democracy in action through the election of the school council. They understand the need for
rules and show mutual respect in the way they listen to and learn from each other.
- Pupils from all backgrounds and of all abilities are welcomed into school. The school is diligent in its efforts
to ensure that all pupils, particularly those who start school at different times during the school year,
receive additional help and support as appropriate to their needs. However, pupils do not yet achieve
equally well across the key stages. The school is committed to equality of opportunity for all pupils and
discrimination is not tolerated. All pupils have access to the extra activities and visits that take place.
- The pupil premium funding is used effectively to ensure that disadvantaged pupils receive any support
needed and have access to the same opportunities as other pupils in school. As a result, they achieve at
least as well as other pupils in school.
- The school is making good use of the additional primary physical education and sport premium. The
employment of specialist teachers is increasing pupils’ access to physical education and providing
additional training for teachers. The funding is also used to ensure that all pupils can swim.
- The school has good working relationships with the children’s centre and local secondary school, which
ensure smooth transition from one phase to another.
- Governors make sure that statutory responsibilities, such as safeguarding requirements, are in place and
- The local authority has a highly effective relationship with the school, offering a good range of support for
governors, leaders and teachers. The school has access to further support and training should it be
- The very large majority of parents who responded to the school’s survey have positive views of the school.
They are encouraged to be involved in their children’s learning through information evenings, drop-in
sessions, newsletters and celebration assemblies. Parents and families receive sensitive and valuable
support from the school through family learning sessions. Interpreters are present at all meetings with
parents as required.
- The governance of the school:
The governing body is committed to supporting the school to continue to improve. In response to the
previous inspection, it has undergone a review by a national leader of governance and carries out a
self-review annually. This has increased governors’ ability not only to support the school but to
challenge and question school leaders on actions being taken. Governors receive valuable information
from school leaders about the progress of pupils and make regular visits to the school to gain accurate,
first-hand information about the quality of teaching. Governors are involved in the process of checking
how well the school is doing compared to other schools, as well as in discussions around the school
development plan. They understand the school’s strengths and areas for improvement and are involved
in assessing the school’s effectiveness. Governors understand the performance management of the
headteacher and how the performance of other staff links to salary progression. They know how the
school rewards good teaching and tackles any underperformance. Governors take advantage of training
opportunities to develop their expertise and so enable them to fulfil their roles. They have benefited
from the significant support offered by the local authority. Governors keep a close eye on the school’s
budget. They are aware of the impact that pupil premium funding has on pupils’ progress and how the
additional sports funding is being used.
|The behaviour and safety of pupils||are good|
- The behaviour of pupils is good.
- Pupils are polite, friendly and helpful. They are very willing to talk about their school and the enthusiastic
‘tour guides’ are eager to show visitors around. Many pupils spoke of how much they enjoy coming to
school and used words such as, ‘friendly’, ‘fun’, ‘exciting’, and ‘respectful’ to describe it.
- The school actively promotes good behaviour through the popular rewards system. Pupils earn points that
can be saved or spent in the school shop. As a result, behaviour in lessons is good and very little time is
wasted. Inappropriate behaviour is rare. The school works effectively with individual pupils who
sometimes struggle to control their behaviour.
- Pupils show respect for their teachers and classmates. They listen well and learn from each other through
successful collaboration with learning partners. In discussions with inspectors, pupils were confident and
explained their work clearly.
- Movement around school, at lunchtime and in assemblies, is extremely orderly. Pupils consistently follow
well-rehearsed routines, which make for a calm and harmonious atmosphere. Playtimes are active, social
occasions where friends get together to play or chat. The playground is well equipped with a good range
of small equipment and larger wooden climbing frames. Some of the younger pupils thoroughly enjoy
dressing up and performing their own stories on the playground stage.
- Pupils willingly take on responsibilities and carry out tasks around the school to the benefit of all. For
example, playground pals are present at playtimes, music monitors prepare for assemblies and the school
council considers how to improve aspects of the school’s work further.
- As a result of the high numbers of pupils who join or leave the school outside of normal times, attendance
remains below average. The school is extremely vigilant in keeping track of its pupils who remain on
school registers until their whereabouts is known. The school works tirelessly to support all families and
pupils where attendance is low. The importance of good attendance is promoted constantly throughout
the school and persistent absence is followed up rigorously. Good attendance is rewarded weekly and
- The school’s work to keep pupils safe and secure is good. Parents and staff agree that pupils are kept
safe. One pupil commented that, ‘Teachers look after you, just like your parents at home.’
- Pupil safety is paramount. Because of the location of the school near a canal and very busy main roads,
pupils are taught how to keep themselves safe in these situations. The police and contractors instruct
pupils on crossing roads safely and all pupils learn to swim. Other visitors, such as the fire service, cover
other aspects of personal safety.
- Pupils learn to understand the term ‘bullying’ and the difference between that and falling out. The majority
of pupils know there are different forms of bullying, such as cyber-bullying. Safe use of the internet is
promoted in all classes.
- Pupils know that staff care and someone is always there to help them in times of difficulty. They say they
are treated fairly and no-one is left out.
- The school’s policies to protect and keep children safe are in place and reviewed regularly.
|The quality of teaching||is good|
- The quality of teaching and learning throughout the school, including in the early years is good.
As a result of the strong relationships between pupils and adults, there is a very positive climate for
learning throughout the school. Pupils have sufficient confidence in staff to ask for help if it is needed.
- Teachers’ subject knowledge is good. They ask questions that require detailed answers that not only
check pupils’ understanding but also help develop the language skills of those pupils who speak English as
an additional language.
- Teachers and skilled teaching assistants give good levels of support to disabled pupils and those who have
special educational needs. Bilingual support is available to help those who are new to speaking English as
an additional language. Staff know their pupils’ needs well and provide purposeful activities to ensure that
these pupils catch up with their classmates. Highly effective support is also on hand to increase pupils’
personal, social and emotional development.
- Teachers ensure that tasks are appropriate to the varying needs of pupils. However, occasionally teachers
do not always check pupils’ learning in lessons often enough to make sure that they move pupils on
rapidly once they have mastered a task; nor do they make it clear how much work they expect pupils to
complete. Consequently, a small number of pupils in some classes do not achieve as well as they might.
- The quality of the marking of pupils’ work has improved. Pupils’ work is regularly and accurately marked
and often teachers provide comments to help them improve their work. However, this approach to
marking is not consistent across the school. Consequently, pupils do not always know what they must do
in order to improve their work, especially in mathematics.
- The teaching of writing is good. Pupils are given opportunities to write for different purposes. They benefit
from a wide range of first-hand experiences to inspire them to write. Some pupils, particularly those who
speak English as an additional language, do not always have the opportunity to discuss what they want to
write about before putting pencil to paper. However, achievement in writing is improving.
- Pupils are enthusiastic readers. Those heard to read by inspectors shared a love of books and eagerly
discussed their favourite books and authors. They were able to explain clearly how the school had helped
them become better readers. They described a range of approaches that they would use, such as
‘sounding out’ and ‘breaking the word up,’ when coming across an unknown word. There is an abundance
of good quality reading materials throughout the school.
- The teaching of mathematics is also good. Pupils benefit from practical activities to help them with new
learning, which leads to a genuine enjoyment of the subject. For example, in one class pupils were
learning to interpret graphs. They could not wait for playtime to be over so they could finish their work.
They became totally absorbed in what they were doing, discussing their findings eagerly with their
partner. Achievement in mathematics is also improving.
- The school has a good range of information and communication technology equipment. However, neither
staff nor pupils use it regularly enough to promote pupils’ learning and skills effectively enough.
- Attractive displays along corridors and in classrooms celebrate pupils’ achievements and show that their
work is valued.
- There are still too few opportunities for staff to benefit fully from the good teaching practice of their
|The achievement of pupils||is good|
- An exceptionally high number of pupils start school at different times of the school year and leave again
after relatively short periods of time. As a result, class groups are constantly changing and only a small
proportion of pupils remain in school from early years, or Key Stage 1, until the end of Year 6. This means
that published data do not give an accurate picture of pupils’ achievement. In addition, an increasing
number of pupils arrive with little or no knowledge of the English language and some have never been to
school before. Therefore, starting points are low for these pupils.
- The school’s tracking of pupils’ achievement is rigorous. It not only follows the progress of those pupils
who have been in school longest, which it refers to as non-mobile pupils; it also keeps track of the
progress of individuals who have not been in school for sustained periods of time. This system, supported
by other evidence gathered by inspectors during the inspection, shows that, from their individual starting
points, pupils make good progress during their time in school.
- In 2014, the results of the national screening check for phonics (letters and the sounds they represent) of
all Year 1 pupils were below the national average, but showed an improvement on the previous year. In
addition, many pupils who did not meet the standards in 2013 had done so by the end of Year 2. Pupils of
Pakistani heritage, who made up half of this class and tended to remain in school, scored well above the
- Standards by the end of Year 2 vary year-on-year according to the early years experiences of pupils. In
2014, published results showed that standards were below average in reading, writing and mathematics
with no pupils reaching the higher Level 3 in writing. Current data, supported by inspection evidence from
observing learning in lessons and the work in pupils’ books, show an improvement in all areas. While still
below national averages overall, some pupils are now reaching the higher levels. However, those pupils
who have been in school the longest achieve results that are similar to national averages.
In 2014, the results of the national tests taken at the end of Year 6 showed that attainment in reading,
writing and mathematics was below the national average for all pupils. However, the proportion of pupils
who had attended school since Key Stage 1 or earlier, achieved much nearer to national averages and
made at least the levels of progress expected of them. Progress in mathematics was better than expected.
The non-mobile, most-able pupils achieve well during their time in school. In 2014 a higher proportion of
the most-able pupils reached the higher levels in reading and mathematics than in previous years. The
most able pupils currently in Year 6 are working at higher standards than their most able peers last year.
This is supported by evidence in pupils’ books and the most recent data collected by the school.
- The proportion of disabled pupils and those who have special educational needs varies from class to class,
as does the complexity of their needs. The school quickly identifies individual needs and provides good
systems of support that are carefully monitored. From their starting points, these pupils make similar good
levels of progress as their classmates.
- The needs of those 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. The acquisition of language for
those pupils for whom English is an additional language is rapid. They catch up quickly and achieve well.
- In 2014 over half the pupils in the Year 6 class were disadvantaged, of whom many were new to school,
so meaningful comparisons between their achievement and non-disadvantaged pupils in the school and
nationally are impossible to draw. School data, supported by inspection evidence, show that, currently, the
actions introduced by the school to narrow any gaps between disadvantaged pupils and others are
continuing to have the desired impact.
- Good-quality teaching is having a significant impact on achievement throughout the school. Work in pupils’
books and the school’s own assessment records show that progress in reading, writing and mathematics
in all classes is continuing to improve, with the vast majority of pupils now making at least good progress.
|The early years provision||is good|
- Good leadership and teaching secure good achievement for all children in the early years. All staff work
together as an efficient team. They provide a bright and stimulating place to learn in which children thrive.
They keep a close check on children’s progress and take prompt action if any child gives cause for
concern. Staff identify the learning needs of all groups of children and take steps to ensure these needs
- Routines are quickly established so children understand the standards of behaviour expected of them.
They learn to listen to each other respectfully and to share responsibilities. Children are encouraged to
tend to their own individual needs. All this 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 and ensures they behave well.
- The quality of teaching is good. The early years provides a wide variety of learning experiences. Adults
interact well with children and are constantly looking for ways in which to extend children’s skills. As many
children are just starting to learn to speak English or speak English as an additional language, there is an
appropriate focus on developing their skills in communication, reading and writing. Good use is made of
the outdoor area. However, there is less focus on reading, writing and mathematics outside, which are
sometimes not promoted as strongly as they are indoors.
- Children achieve well during their time in the early years. From varying, and often very low, starting points
they all make good progress. Good links between classes ensure that the moves from one class to the
next are smooth. Not all children who start in early years move onto the end of Key Stage 1 and those
who do are often joined by children from other settings or who have not yet been to school. However,
children in the Reception class are well prepared for Year 1.
- Good relationships with parents and the sharing of information begin before children start school through
home visits. Parents are welcomed into the classrooms and are encouraged to attend ‘stay and play’
sessions. This gives children the opportunity to share their work and experience pride in their
- Staff have a high regard for children’s safety and ensure they are safe at all times.
What inspection judgements mean
|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
|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
|Unique reference number||106839|
This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.
|Type of school||Primary|
|Age range of pupils||3–11|
|Gender of pupils||Mixed|
|Number of pupils on the school roll||230|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Date of previous school inspection||10 July 2013|
|Telephone number||01709 740962|
|Fax number||01709 552315|