Gordon Infants' School
phone: 020 84782977
headteacher: Miss J Tilley
179 pupils capacity: 123% full
115 boys 52%
105 girls 48%
Last updated: June 18, 2014
Primary — Community School
- Education phase
- Establishment type
- Community School
- Establishment #
- OSGB coordinates
- Easting: 544788, Northing: 186235
- GPS coordinates
- Latitude: 51.556, Longitude: 0.087128
- Accepting pupils
- 3—7 years old
- Census date
- Jan. 16, 2014
- Ofsted last inspection
- Nov. 29, 2012
- Region › Const. › Ward
- London › Ilford South › Mayfield
- Urban > 10k - less sparse
- Free school meals %
- 0.1 miles St Peter and Paul's Catholic Primary School IG11SA (460 pupils)
- 0.3 miles Winston Way Primary School IG12WS (715 pupils)
- 0.4 miles Isaac Newton Academy IG11FY (362 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Cleveland Junior School IG11EW (553 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Cleveland Infants' School IG11EW (327 pupils)
- 0.5 miles South Park Junior School IG39HF
- 0.5 miles South Park Infants' School IG39HF
- 0.5 miles Woodlands Infants' School IG12PY (430 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Woodlands Junior School IG12PY (467 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Loxford School of Science and Technology IG12UT
- 0.5 miles Hyleford School IG39AR
- 0.5 miles South Park Primary School IG39HF (813 pupils)
- 0.5 miles The John Barker Centre IG11UE (4 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Loxford School of Science and Technology IG12UT (2405 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Canon Palmer Catholic School IG38EU
- 0.6 miles Ad-Deen Primary School IG12XG (72 pupils)
- 0.6 miles The Palmer Catholic Academy IG38EU (1214 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Christchurch Junior School IG14LQ
- 0.7 miles Christchurch Infants' School IG14LQ
- 0.7 miles St Aidan's Catholic Primary School IG14AS
- 0.7 miles Five Rivers London IG38RG
- 0.7 miles Christchurch Primary School IG14LQ (1064 pupils)
- 0.7 miles St Aidan's Catholic Primary School IG14AS (466 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Seven Kings High School IG27BT (1387 pupils)
Gordon Infants’ School
Golfe Road, Ilford, Essex, IG1 1SU
|Inspection dates||29–30 November 2012|
|Overall effectiveness||This inspection:||Good||2|
|Achievement of pupils||Good||2|
|Quality of teaching||Good||2|
|Behaviour and safety of pupils||Good||2|
|Leadership and management||Good||2|
Summary of key findings for parents and pupils
This is a good school.
It is not yet an outstanding school because
| Pupils’ attainment has significantly improved |
Teaching and learning are good. Teachers
Pupils enjoy coming to school, feel safe there
over the past two years.They make good
progress as they move through the school,
particularly in writing. Pupils enjoy writing for
different purposes across a range of subjects.
use their strong subject knowledge to ensure
pupils make good progress in English and
and behave well. The school celebrates its
diverse range of languages and cultures
during curriculum activities and assemblies.
| The professional development of teaching and |
The ambition and drive for improvement of the
The governing body supports and contributes
support staff accurately targets areas of need
and is linked well to school priorities.
headteacher inspires the staff. The tracking of
pupils is effective and made a significant
difference to mathematics achievement in
to the work of the school well. Governors are
involved in the effective monitoring of the
school’s work and in planning for its future.
| Teaching is not consistently challenging |
Teachers do not use the information they
enough for pupils, because the planned
activities are sometimes delayed at the start
have about pupils’ reading skills to guide the
reading of those groups of pupils working
independently of the teacher.
| Occasionally the pace of lessons in the Early |
Parents are not given sufficient opportunity to
Years Foundation Stage is too slow, reducing
the amount of time available for activities that
help pupils to think for themselves and take
control of their own learning.
share and celebrate their children’s learning.
Information about this inspection
- Eighteen lessons were observed, of which three were joint observations with the headteacher or
deputy headteacher. In addition, inspectors made short visits to seven lessons. Each class was
observed at least once. Inspectors also observed senior leaders reporting back to teachers on
the quality of learning and pupils’ achievement in lessons. Inspectors observed children playing
at lunch and playtime and listened to a sample of Year 2 pupils read.
- Inspectors had discussions with the Chair of the Governing Body, a representative from the local
authority, the headteacher, senior leaders, middle leaders, all the teaching staff and a group of
- Inspectors looked at a range of documentary evidence, including the school’s records of pupils’
progress, documents relating to health and safety, staff vetting procedures and special
educational needs, documents on the school website, minutes of governing body meetings, local
authority reports on the school, and the school’s checks on its progress and priorities for
improvement. Pupils’ written work was also scrutinised.
- Inspectors took account of the responses of 15 parents and carers to the online questionnaire
(Parent View) as well as the school’s most recent survey of parents and carers and the results of
26 staff questionnaires. Inspectors met some parents and carers informally at the start of the
|Rebekah Iiyambo, Lead inspector||Additional inspector|
|Jim McVeigh||Additional inspector|
Information about this school
- This is an average-sized infant school.
- A very high proportion of pupils speak English as an additional language, some of whom are at
the early stages of learning English.
- An above-average proportion of pupils are eligible for the pupil premium, which provides
additional funding for children in the care of the local authority and for pupils known to be
eligible for free school meals.
- The proportion of pupils with special educational needs identified at school action, school action
plus or with a statement of special educational needs is lower than in most schools.
- The majority of pupils are of Pakistani heritage, with those of Indian and other Asian heritage
making up the next largest groups.
- The school has the Primary Quality Mark for basic skills, awarded for the third time, May 2011
and Inclusion Quality Mark awarded, July 2012.
What does the school need to do to improve further?
- Increase the proportion of outstanding teaching by:
accelerating children’s progress in lessons by getting pupils working quickly, reducing the
amount of whole-class teacher explanation and asking questions that prompt pupils’ thinking
ensuring that adults in the Early Years Foundation Stage do not spendtoo much valuable
learning time working with the whole class when children could be more profitably engaged in
encouraging teachers and support staff to share the ‘Special Books’ with parents and carers
so that they can contribute to their children’s learning at home.
- Acceleratepupils’ progress in reading by:
building on staff’s effective record keeping to plan and deliver effective reading sessions,
particularly guided reading when groups work independently of the teacher
encouraging pupils, alongside their parents and carers, to experience a wider range of fiction
and non-fiction reading books at school and at home.
|The achievement of pupils||is good|
- Improvements in the quality of teaching since the last inspection have resulted in pupils making
good and improving progress from their starting points, including disabled pupils and those with
special educational needs.
- Children start in the Nursery with skills and knowledge which are generally well below the levels
expected for their age. Their language skills are particularly poor. They get off to a good start
developing communication skills through play.
- In Reception, teachers produce ‘Special Books’ that show the good progress children are making
through selected pieces of work and photographic evidence of achievement. Unfortunately
parents have not had sufficient access to these books to observe, celebrate and comment on
their children’s success at school and at home.
- Standards of reading and writing at the end of Key Stage 1 have been steadily rising each year.
More-able Level 3 pupils perform particularly well.A significant number of pupils are able to write
at length by the end of Key Stage 1. Year 2 books show neat writing, although not joined up,
with complicated sentences and the use of adventurous vocabulary. One pupil started a story
with: ‘In the middle of the night, Thomas woke up and …’ He then wrote at length to describe a
fire fighter in action.
- Phonics (letters and the sounds they make) are taught well and in the recent screening check a
high proportion of pupils achieved above the national average.
- Pupils of all abilities confidently read books provided by school and school staff keep good
records of pupils’ reading achievement. However, when pupils chose their own books, their
reading is not monitored well enough to challenge them to make full use of the skills they
develop during adult-led sessions.
- A focus on mathematics over the past two years raised attainment in the subject to above the
national average in 2012. The pupils now use a range of approaches to solve problems.
- Different groups of pupils make similar progress. For example, those from families who speak a
language other than English at home quickly learn English and are able to make good progress
in their reading and writing in Years 1 and 2.
- Pupils who are eligible for the pupil premium and those who arrive at different times of the
school year make good progress. For example, one parent, new to the United Kingdom and the
school, commented, ‘My child has only been at the school for a few weeks and I’m really happy
with how they are doing in school.’
|The quality of teaching||is good|
- Overall, good teaching enables pupils to make good progress in their learning. A small amount of
teaching was outstanding. The best teaching uses interventions by the teacher to refocus the
pupils on the key learning within a lesson and lets pupils evaluate how well they and their
classmates are doing. In the weaker lessons, teachers do not allow pupils enough time to work
out things for themselves or learn from each other.
- In the Nursery and Reception classes, adults are mindful of the need to extend the children’s
language skills by asking them open-ended questions, so they have to think. Inside and outside
provision in these classes is good, with a broad range of stimulating activities that motivate and
excite the children. When allowed to be independent,children initiate their own play and
persevere with self-selected activities. For example, a Reception class child carefully constructed
a symmetrical model of a robot and was excited to share it with adults and other children.
- In a small number of lessons, children listen for long periods or are askedto respond to
questions that require only‘yes’ or ‘no’ answers and which do not encourage children to think for
themselves. Occasionally, a teacher may spend too long time with an individual child, so that the
pace of learning for the class as a whole slows down.
- Teachers plan well. They create opportunities for pupils to write in many different contexts and
across a range of different subjects, which develops pupils’ interest in, and stamina for, writing.
For example, teachersencourage pupils to share their ideas with the whole class orwith their
neighbours before they start writing.
- Teachers’ subject knowledge in phonics, literacy and numeracy is strong. They make good use
of resources, such as word-building cards or web-based materials, that help pupils’ confidence.
For example, a Year 2 class made good use of computers to improve their spelling when word
processing text about the Great Fire of London. The teacher’s questions about why the red line
appears under words helped them to identify words that needed correcting and stimulated pupils
to use other key functions.
- Marking is regular and consistent, but pupilsdo not always have the chance to respond to
comments made by teachers.
- Support staff are deployed well. Where teaching is most effective, teachers ensure that support
staff know their role at all stages of a lesson and are well prepared to help in developing pupils’
learning. In a Reception class, a disabled pupil was helped to move around the inside activities,
such as painting, computer games and building blocks, and also had access to outside learning
in the shop area.
- A nursery nurse, while playing alongside children in the outside water-play area, stimulated
children to explore their own experiences of pouring water by making the water scented and
coloured and providing access to different types of containers. However, this imaginative
practice is not apparent throughout the Early Years Foundation Stage, because some children
are directed through activities too closely by adults.
|The behaviour and safety of pupils||are good|
- Pupils enjoy being at school and arrive with a smile on their faces. They behave well in lessons
and as they move around the school. The behaviour ladder used in classes provides a good
structure for pupils to modify their own behaviour. They try hard to avoid being placed in the
‘orange zone’ and as a result they know how behaviour rules must be observed.
- Year 1 and 2 pupils talk confidently about how teachers ‘sort out’ minor incidents of
misbehaviour, such as snatching crayons or pencils in class. They know about different types of
bullying and described some of the activities they experienced during anti-bullying week.
- Pupils’ attitudes to learning are positive, especially when they are working independently at
carefullyplanned and resourced activities. These attitudes to work contribute to the good
progress they make.
- Relationships throughout the school’s diverse community are very harmonious. Staff and pupils
respect each other, so that pupils are confident to ask for help when they need it. This ensures
they have time to think clearly about how to complete activities and to extend them to produce
their best work. When in the playground, pupils get on well with each other.
- Pupils, parents and carerssaid that pupils feel safe and know whom to talk to if they feel sad.
They were unanimous about how the school helps them to eat healthily.
- Attendance has improved yearbyyear and now compares well with the national average. The
school has worked hard to discourage parents from taking their children on long holidays abroad
during school term time.
|The leadership and management||are good|
- The headteacheris dynamic and has the determination and skill to continue developing a staff
team committed to ensuring that the children make the best possible progress. The school
shows that it has strong capacity to improve further because there has been a significant
improvement in pupils’ attainment and progress over the past two years.
- The school has accurately identified its weaknesses and has produced well-constructed plans to
address them. These plans have all the information needed to support development, but the
targets set are not measureable.
- Staff morale is high and staff share the senior leadership team’s clear views about how
successful the school can be. They are working well together to bring about improvement. Staff
are proud of what has been achieved for the pupils.
- Senior and middle leaders are capable, have a clear and accurate picture of the strengths and
weaknessesof their areas of responsibility and monitor well to ensure that different groups of
children make good progress.
- The tracking of pupils’ progress is effective. For example, the school identified the reasons for
pupils’ broadly static levels of attainment in mathematics and this resulted in a programme of
support and challenge for class teachers. The impact of this is seen in the considerable
improvements made in 2012.
- The school has robust arrangements for performance management, including the regular
monitoring of teaching. Staff find the feedback helpful in developing their professional skills.
These processes have helped to improve the quality of teaching and the progress made by
pupils. Support staff have also benefited from high-quality professional development and are
now providing improved support for pupils who speak English as an additional language.
- The curriculum is rich and provides a wide range of experiences for pupils to extend their
learning. Pupils’ social, moral, spiritual and cultural development is strong. For example, pupils
can describe why Guru Nanak is special, state the date of his birthday and talk confidently about
religious celebrations, such as Eid and Diwali. They are fully aware of the Punjabi language
being the language of the month and all sang with enjoyment, ‘Heads, shoulders, knees and
toes’ in Punjabi, during a whole-school assembly.
- The local authority provides effective support and has worked well with the senior leadership
team, middle leaders and the governing body. They confirm the school’s own evaluations of
pupils’ achievement and the quality of leadership.
- Arrangements for safeguarding pupils and ensuring their safety meet all current requirements
and the school works well with parents and carers, keeping them informed through regular
newsletters, text messages and the lively website.
- The governance of the school:
Governors are much more challenging than they were at the previous inspection. They made a
strategic decision to appoint the current leadership team and theyhold the headteacher to account
well through performance management. They are also supporting the professional development of
middle leaders and making better links with the wider community. Governors have a clear
understanding of the promotion of teachers and of progression in their salaries. They understand
the school budget, monitoring the staffing budget carefully. They have a clear understanding about
how the pupil premium is spent to support the particular needs of eligible of pupils. Governors
make highly effective use of their current expertise both to monitor and support the work of the
school. An impending re-constitution has provided them with the opportunity to audit current
governor skills, so as to ensure the new governing body can extend its skill base and build on
existing strengths. They visit the school regularly to gain a first-hand understanding of how well
the school is working. This helps to ensure that all staff maintain a tight focus on improving the
quality of teaching and pupils’ progress. Governors carry out their statutory duties effectively,
ensuring that procedures for safeguarding pupils are well managed and regularly reviewed.
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 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.
|Unique reference number||102808|
This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.
|Type of school||Infant|
|Age range of pupils||3–7|
|Gender of pupils||Mixed|
|Number of pupils on the school roll||219|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Date of previous school inspection||17–18 November 2009|
|Telephone number||020 8478 2977|
|Fax number||020 8514 7218|