School etc

Highlees Community Primary School Closed - for academy Aug. 31, 2013

see new Highlees Primary School

Highlees Community Primary School
Ashton Road

phone: 01733 *** ***

headteacher: Mrs Emma Ward Bsc (Qts) Npqh

school holidays: via Peterborough council

Primary — Community School

Education phase
Establishment type
Community School
Establishment #
Close date
Aug. 31, 2013
Reason closed
For Academy
OSGB coordinates
Easting: 517077, Northing: 300416
GPS coordinates
Latitude: 52.589, Longitude: -0.27324
Accepting pupils
4—11 years old
Ofsted last inspection
Oct. 11, 2012
Region › Const. › Ward
East of England › Peterborough › Ravensthorpe
Urban > 10k - less sparse

Rooms & flats to rent in Peterborough

Schools nearby

  1. Highlees County Junior School PE37ER
  2. Highlees County Infant School PE37ER
  3. Highlees Primary School PE37ER (364 pupils)
  4. 0.4 miles Ravensthorpe Primary School PE37NB (222 pupils)
  5. 0.4 miles Sacred Heart RC Primary School PE39XD (208 pupils)
  6. 0.4 miles Bretton Woods Community School PE38DF
  7. 0.4 miles Ravensthorpe Junior School PE37NB
  8. 0.4 miles Ravensthorpe Infant School PE37NB
  9. 0.5 miles Ellindon Residential Special School PE38RQ
  10. 0.6 miles Middleton Junior School PE39XJ
  11. 0.6 miles Middleton County Infant School PE39XJ
  12. 0.6 miles Thorpe Primary School PE39UG (471 pupils)
  13. 0.6 miles Heltwate School PE38RL (138 pupils)
  14. 0.6 miles Thorpe County Infants' School PE39UG
  15. 0.6 miles Thorpe Junior School PE39UG
  16. 0.6 miles Middleton Primary School PE39XJ (324 pupils)
  17. 0.7 miles Eyrescroft Primary School PE38EZ (397 pupils)
  18. 0.7 miles Jack Hunt School PE39PN (1729 pupils)
  19. 0.7 miles Eyrescroft Junior School PE38EZ
  20. 0.7 miles Eyrescroft Infant School PE38EZ
  21. 0.9 miles Watergall Infants' School PE38NX
  22. 0.9 miles Watergall Junior School PE38NX
  23. 0.9 miles Watergall Primary School PE38NX (320 pupils)
  24. 0.9 miles Iqra Academy PE38YQ (66 pupils)

List of schools in Peterborough

School report

Highlees Community Primary


Ashton Road, Westwood, Peterborough, PE3 7ER

Inspection dates 11–12 October 2012
Overall effectiveness This inspection: Inadequate 4
Previous inspection: Satisfactory 3
Achievement of pupils Inadequate 4
Quality of teaching Inadequate 4
Behaviour and safety of pupils Requires improvement 3
Leadership and management Inadequate 4

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is a school that requires special measures.
The school has the following strengths

Pupils’ achievements in reading, writing and
The quality of teaching is inadequate. In too
Pupils’ behaviour requires improvement when

mathematics are inadequate. Too much weak
teaching means that pupils are not acquiring
skills in these subjects as quickly as they
many lessons, pupils’ needs are not met well
enough and those pupils who require extra
help receive only limited support from
teaching assistants.
tasks are not closely matched to their abilities
and they lose interest in lessons.
Leadership and management are inadequate.
The role of recently appointed middle leaders

Checks on the performance of leaders and staff
have not resulted in higher standards or led to
improvements in teaching and learning quickly
in evaluating teaching and learning has not
been sufficiently developed. Consequently,
weaknesses in teaching, including for pupils
who speak English as an additional language,
are slowing pupils’ progress.
The new headteacher and leadership team
The behaviour of pupils around school is
have begun to galvanise support from staff
and governors and they are working with a
fresh determination to bring about
often exemplary. In lessons where teaching is
effective, pupils are keen to learn and work
hard. Behaviour is improving.
The Pupil Premium is being used to accelerate
Children get off to a good start in Reception
progress successfully and is raising standards
in literacy and numeracy for the more
disadvantaged pupils.
because provision is managed well and
teaching is usually good.
Inspection report: Highlees Community Primary School, 11–12 October 2012 2 of 10

Information about this inspection

  • The inspectors observed 27 lessons of which four were joint observations involving the
    headteacher and both deputy headteachers. Inspectors observed senior leaders reporting back
    to teachers on the quality of teaching and learning and pupils’ achievement seen in lessons.
  • Meetings were held with the pupil council and a group of Key Stage 2 pupils, the chair of the
    governing body and two other governors, the headteacher and other leaders.
  • A meeting was held with a representative of the local authority about the support and advice
    provided for the school.
  • There were 14 responses to the online questionnaire (Parent View) by the end of the inspection.
    The inspectors also sought the views of several parents and carers who they met on the school
  • The inspectors observed the school’s work, and looked at a number of documents including: the
    school’s own data on pupils’ recent and current progress; planning and monitoring
    documentation; records relating to behaviour and attendance; and safeguarding records.

Inspection team

Joseph Peacock, Lead inspector Additional Inspector
Judith Payne Additional Inspector
Elizabeth Davis Additional Inspector
Inspection report: Highlees Community Primary School, 11–12 October 2012 3 of 10

Full report

In accordance with the Education Act 2005, Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector is of the opinion that this
school requires special measures because it is failing to give its pupils an acceptable standard of
education and the persons responsible for leading, managing or governing the school are not
demonstrating the capacity to secure the necessary improvement in the school.

Information about this school

  • The school is much larger than the average sized primary school and the numbers have
    increased significantly this year with 57 new pupils being admitted. Most of these pupils speak
    English as an additional language and most are in the Key Stage 1 classes. Many pupils join or
    leave the school during the year.
  • There are two classes in each year group from Reception to Year 6.
  • The proportion of pupils from different minority ethnic backgrounds is high, making up almost
    half of all pupils. Just over one-third of these pupils speak English as an additional language. In
    all, 28 different languages are represented in the school.
  • Half of all pupils attending the school are eligible for the Pupil Premium (this is additional
    government funding for pupils known to be eligible for free school meals and/or in local
    authority care). This figure is well above average.
  • The proportion of disabled pupils and those with special educational needs supported through
    School Action is above average.
  • The proportion of pupils supported at School Action Plus or with a statement of special
    educational needs is average.
  • The school does not meet the government’s floor standard, which sets the minimum
    expectations for pupils’ attainment and progress.
  • There have been many staffing changes over the past two years, including 12 new teachers, five
    different headteachers and a new deputy headteacher. The current headteacher was appointed
    in April 2012 after a period as associate headteacher.
  • Links with a local outstanding school ended in May 2012. In September 2012, a new shadow
    governing body started to take over from the interim executive board. This transition period is
    due to end in December 2012.
  • Westwood and Ravensthorpe Children’s Centre and the Young Generation pre-school are based
    on the site and are inspected separately. Building work is in progress to improve the
    accommodation used by these settings.
  • The school runs a breakfast club each morning.

What does the school need to do to improve further?

  • Make teaching and learning consistently good in lessons by:
    improving the way teachers plan work so that it is set at the right level for all groups of pupils
    improving the quality of support provided by teaching assistants so that they contribute to
    pupils’ learning in and out of the classroom effectively

making sure that pupils who speak English as an additional language receive the support they

need so they make at least good progress.

  • Raise attainment in reading, writing and mathematics throughout Key Stages 1 and 2 by:
    - ensuring that pupils are taught to read effectively
    - providing pupils with more opportunities to write in their exercise books in English and other
    subjects rather than using individual white boards and worksheets
    - ensuring that the teaching of basic number skills, especially in Key Stage 1, is done
Inspection report: Highlees Community Primary School, 11–12 October 2012 4 of 10
  • Ensure that leadership and management are effective in driving improvement by:
    requiring leaders at all levels, including the governing body, to focus rigorously on tackling the
    key priorities identified in the school improvement plan and then checking the impact of their
    work to ensure pupils make much faster progress
    making sure that subject leaders, and the new progress and attainment leaders, focus on
    improving teaching and accelerating pupils’ progress, particularly for those pupils who speak
    English as an additional language
    making sure that governors set challenging targets for teachers and leaders so that they are
    held fully to account for their performance.
Inspection report: Highlees Community Primary School, 11–12 October 2012 5 of 10

Inspection judgements

The achievement of pupils is inadequate
  • Pupils’ achievement is inadequate in Key Stages 1 and 2 mainly because weaknesses in the
    quality of teaching have not been eliminated. In Key Stage 1, the school is failing to meet the
    needs of an increasing number of pupils who speak English as an additional language,
    resulting in low overall attainment in reading, writing and mathematics. The progress of
    these pupils has declined considerably since the last inspection. The amount of specialist
    teaching they receive is not proving to be adequate for them to learn English quickly enough.
  • By the end of Year 6, overall standards remain below average in English and mathematics.
    Relatively few pupils achieve higher than expected standards although this proportion is
    increasing slowly. Pupils who start at the school in the Reception class and stay until the end
    of Year 6 make significantly better progress than pupils who join the school at other times.
  • Pupils do not make consistent progress from year to year because in some year groups
    teaching is inadequate. In some mathematics lessons, for example, teachers do not plan
    sufficiently demanding work.
  • Children in the Reception classes are effectively taught early reading skills every day in
    sessions where they learn letters and their sounds (phonics). Learning support assistants
    provide effective help so that Reception children develop their speaking and listening skills
  • The reading skills that children acquire in the Reception classes are not being built upon.
    Pupils are not taught to read or write well enough in other parts of the school. This means
    that older pupils often struggle with their work because their reading skills are weak. A range
    of effective measures for Year 6 pupils, such as one-to-one support, is resourced by
    additional funding for pupils supported by the Pupil Premium funding. As a result, almost all
    of these pupils make good progress with some improving rapidly in Year 6.
  • The Pupil Premium funding is starting to have a positive effect on the achievement of eligible
    pupils. For example, breakfast booster classes, one-to-one tuition and ‘Easter school’ are all
    helping to close the gap in attainment between these pupils and their classmates.
  • When children enter the Reception classes, their knowledge and skills are typically well below
    those expected for pupils of this age. A large proportion speak English as an additional
    language. Well-managed provision and good teaching ensure that children settle quickly and
    have a good start to school. Exciting and interesting activities that extend children’s
    knowledge, skills and understanding of the world around them, such as playing with bubbles
    and making sandwiches, are supported effectively by teachers or other adults.

Outdoor learning for Reception children is enjoyable with a good range of independent

activities and games, such as hopscotch, are used to promote their counting skills. As a
result, most children make good progress in all areas of learning. However, because of their
low starting points, many do not attain the early reading, writing and numeracy skills

expected of them by the time they enter Year 1.

The quality of teaching is inadequate
  • Action taken by the headteacher, senior staff and governing body to improve teaching has
    only had limited success. Learning in one-third of the lessons observed during the inspection
    required improvement or was inadequate because tasks were either too easy or too difficult
    for the pupils.
Inspection report: Highlees Community Primary School, 11–12 October 2012 6 of 10
  • The support provided by teaching assistants in the classroom, or when teaching groups in
    other areas, varies in quality with some being inadequate. When pupils are not sufficiently
    challenged by teachers or given the right level of support from teaching assistants, the
    management of their behaviour becomes more difficult as they lose interest in learning.
  • In a few lessons, introductions to the whole class are too long and not appropriate for all
    ability groups. Some pupils at the early stages of learning English find it particularly difficult
    to understand what is expected of them. As a result, these and other pupils are not
    developing their reading, writing and mathematics skills quickly enough.
  • In lessons where teaching is more effective, teachers use assessment information carefully to
    plan appropriate tasks for all groups of pupils. In these lessons, teachers expect more of the
    pupils who respond much better as they enjoy doing more challenging tasks. For example,
    pupils in Year 6 enjoyed solving difficult number puzzles or real-life problems involving

Teachers’ marking is usually thorough and detailed; comments show clearly how pupils can

improve their work and there are some examples of pupils responding to them. The
improved quality of marking is helping to raise standards but this is not consistent in all

classes, reflecting weaknesses that still exist in the quality of teaching.

  • Teachers often work effectively during lessons to promote spiritual, moral, social and cultural
    development. They make good use of pupils working collaboratively in pairs to discuss new
    learning, and topic work about other countries and religions raises pupils’ awareness and
    understanding of ethnic, religious and cultural diversity in the United Kingdom.

Pupils are currently not being prepared well enough for the next phase in their

education. This is because too few are achieving the standards expected in literacy

and numeracy.

All parents met during the inspection appreciated the good relationships between

staff and their children.

The behaviour and safety of pupils requires improvement
  • Inconsistent teaching and low expectations affect pupils’ behaviour and attitudes to learning.
    Pupils’ behaviour requires improvement, particularly in lessons where teaching is inadequate
    as some pupils lose their concentration, especially when tasks are not sufficiently engaging to
    hold their interest. Pupils say that they feel safe and enjoy coming to school. ‘Behaviour is
    much better since the new headteacher arrived’ is a commonly held view of pupils and their
    parents, reflecting more ambitious expectations by leaders.
  • There have been no permanent and few fixed-term exclusions under the leadership of the
    new headteacher reflecting improved behaviour management. Pupils are polite and show
    respect to one another and staff around school. Behaviour is good in the well-organised
    breakfast club.
  • The school has ensured that pupils of all ages have a good understanding of different types
    of bullying, including racist comments and name calling. All those spoken to say that bullying
    in any form rarely happens and pupils, parents and carers are confident that adults will
    communicate any concerns when dealing with any such incidents
Inspection report: Highlees Community Primary School, 11–12 October 2012 7 of 10
  • Any cases of inappropriate behaviour are dealt with effectively. Pupils are confident that the
    staff will look after them if they have any concerns. Parents spoken to during the inspection
    agreed that the school makes sure that pupils are well behaved and that it deals effectively
    with bullying.

Attendance is broadly average and improving. The headteacher and staff have worked hard

and with some success to increase attendance and reduce persistent absences.

The leadership and management are inadequate
  • Leadership and management have not done enough to improve teaching. As a result, too
    many pupils are underachieving. The school is failing to give pupils an acceptable standard of
    education or prepare them adequately for the next stage in their education.
  • However, the new headteacher knows where the weaknesses in teaching are and has made
    the setting of targets for teachers and leaders more rigorous. Up to now, a lack of rigorous
    performance management linked to carefully targeted professional training and development
    has contributed to the weaknesses in teaching persisting over time.
  • The newly formed leadership team is getting to grips with improving the school, but it is very
    early days. Both deputy headteachers share the headteacher’s vision and are beginning to
    help improve teaching by checking on its quality, although they are only just starting out in
    their new roles.
  • Positive responses from the staff questionnaire reveal that staff are committed to improving
    the school. Their involvement in checking one another’s and pupils’ performance each term
    shows their determination to support senior leaders.
  • The learning opportunities provided for pupils do not result in them making enough progress
    in literacy and numeracy. This applies particularly to those pupils who speak English as an
    additional language. There is a good range of after-school clubs for pupils to enjoy and these
    contribute well to pupils’ achievement and to their spiritual, moral, social and cultural
  • The support and advice provided by the local authority is resulting in more lessons where
    teaching is effective and some pupils are achieving higher standards in English and
    mathematics. Nevertheless, there is still some way to go to eliminate all inadequate teaching.
  • The school works well with parents and carers and the small number who responded to
    Parent View were positive about the school. Most agreed that pupils are happy and said they
    would recommend the school to others.
  • The governance of the school:
    Governance is improving. There is a wealth and breadth of relevant expertise amongst
    governors, many of whom are working alongside members of the interim executive board.
    Their collective expertise as interim governors is helping the school to begin to improve; for
    example, the school’s budget is now managed more effectively than in the past. All governors
    are developing their role in helping to evaluate the school’s effectiveness and are beginning to
    hold leaders to account through asking searching questions. They measure teachers’
    performance against national guidelines when setting pay levels and overseeing salary
    progression for the headteacher and teachers. The leadership team and governors ensure
    that all statutory requirements relating to safeguarding are met.
Inspection report: Highlees Community Primary School, 11–12 October 2012 8 of 10

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.

Inspection report: Highlees Community Primary School, 11–12 October 2012 9 of 10

School details

Unique reference number 110768
Local authority Peterborough
Inspection number 401150

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 4–11
Gender of pupils Mixed
Number of pupils on the school roll 357
Appropriate authority The governing body
Chair Ms Elaine Hedgecock
Headteacher Emma Ward
Date of previous school inspection 15 September 2009
Telephone number 01733 264294
Fax number 01733 264283
Email address reveal email: off…


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