Holy Family Catholic Primary School, Addlestone
Headteacher: Mr Martin Vassallo
Diocese of Arundel and Brighton
211 pupils, Mixed
|Unique Reference Number||125210|
|Inspection date||19 November 2008|
|Reporting inspector||Jane Chesterfield|
This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.
The registered childcare, managed by the governing body, was inspected under section 49 of the Childcare Act 2006.
|Type of school||Primary|
|School category||Voluntary aided|
|Age range of pupils||4–11|
|Gender of pupils||Mixed|
|Number on roll|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Chair||Mr J Delany|
|Headteacher||Mr M Vassallo|
|Date of previous school inspection||17 January 2005|
Date of previous funded early education|
|Not previously inspected|
|Date of previous childcare inspection||Not previously inspected|
|School address||Ongar Hill|
|Telephone number||01932 846366|
|Fax number||01932 830093|
|Inspection date||19 November 2008|
© Crown copyright 2008
The inspection was carried out by two Additional Inspectors. The inspectors evaluated the impact of the school's strategies to improve boys' writing, looked at how well teaching meets the needs of more able pupils, and investigated the impact of leadership on achievement and standards. Evidence was gathered from performance data and other documentation; discussions with senior staff, pupils and governors; sampling of lessons and of pupils' work; observations of children and adults around the school; and parents' questionnaires. Other aspects of the school's work were not investigated in detail, but the inspectors found no evidence to suggest that the school's own assessments, as given in its self-evaluation, were not justified, and these have been included where appropriate in this report.
The school serves a residential community of mainly owner-occupied housing. Very few pupils are eligible for free school meals. About a quarter of pupils are from minority ethnic backgrounds, which is broadly average, although the proportion learning English as an additional language is below average. Few pupils have learning difficulties and/or disabilities; these are mainly moderate learning difficulties or speech and language difficulties. The number of pupils with statements of special educational needs is in line with the national average. The school offers Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) provision in its Reception class. There is a privately run nursery on the school site.
Overall effectiveness of the school
Holy Family is a good school where pupils achieve well and get a good start to their education. The caring ethos and excellent relationships provide pupils with an environment where they are valued as individuals and where they can thrive. Parents are very supportive of the school and recognise its many strengths. One commented that 'the school really lives up to its name and feels very much like a family', while another felt that 'the school celebrates all of the children's successes, no matter how small'.
Consistently good teaching, good academic guidance and an interesting curriculum are the reasons why pupils make good progress. Pupils enter the EYFS with a level of skills in line with that expected for their age, and they make good progress in Reception and in Years 1 and 2. The school has identified that more able pupils in these years, especially boys, do not always reach the levels of which they are capable in writing. It has introduced strategies to make writing more appealing to boys, and these are already beginning to have an impact, which is evident in improved results last summer. Pupils continue to make good progress in Years 3 to 6. They reach consistently above-average standards by the time they leave. In English these standards are often very high. The proportion of pupils reaching the higher levels in Year 6 is not always as great as it might be, especially in science.
Pupils are happy to come to school and enjoy learning, because teaching is good throughout the school. Relationships in every class are very good and expectations for behaviour are high, with the result that lessons run smoothly and without interruption. Lessons proceed at a good pace and stimulating links are made across the curriculum, so pupils are interested in what they are learning. Pupils are encouraged to evaluate their own learning. The 'learning walls' that older pupils are compiling are a good example of them thinking about what they have achieved. Teachers provide most pupils with a good level of challenge so that they are stretched and motivated by what they are doing. However, there is not always enough challenge for the more able pupils to enable them to develop the independent learning skills of which they are capable, and so reach the higher levels of attainment, especially in science. Teaching assistants give good support to pupils. Those with specific learning difficulties, or who are new to learning English, are well supported in class or in their withdrawal groups so that they make good progress.
The school offers its pupils a well-planned curriculum which develops their literacy and numeracy skills well and gives them a good grounding in other subjects. Excellent improvement in the facilities for information and communication technology (ICT) means that pupils now have the chance to use their ICT skills in other subjects, and they relish the opportunity to do this. Year 6 pupils, for example, were very keen to use the ICT suite to produce newspaper reports of the Little Red Riding Hood story, using a publishing application. There is a good range of clubs, visits and visitors, which brings the curriculum to life, and pupils talk with enthusiasm of the opportunities that they are given to play sport or to sing in the choir. Pupils do not yet have the chance to learn a modern foreign language, though a number of pupils and parents say they would welcome this.
Pastoral care is strong. One parent commented that, 'the school has a great philosophy, teaching respect, kindness and support' and this is mirrored in the example that staff set for pupils. Arrangements for safeguarding pupils are robust and daily routines are well organised to promote pupils' well-being. Pupils have a good understanding of how to be healthy and are very safety conscious and considerate of others. Their behaviour in the playground and around the school is outstanding. Older pupils, in particular, have good opportunities to take on responsibility, and parents value this. One said, 'The best feature is the way the school involves the older children in helping the younger ones - teaching them responsibility and encouraging them to care and respect one another.' Parents confirm that their children are always happy to come to school, and their attendance is consistently above average. Their good literacy, numeracy, ICT and social skills mean that they are well prepared for secondary school.
The success of the school is down to good leadership and management at all levels. The headteacher and the deputy are good role models for other staff. Systems for self-evaluation and development planning are well established and give the school clear direction, for example in the work being done to improve writing. Targets are challenging. Systems for tracking pupils' progress are thorough and well used, and subject leaders are involved well in monitoring the work in their areas. The school contributes well to community cohesion. Governors have a good understanding of their role and play a full part in monitoring, evaluating and supporting the work of the school. Leaders have a clear understanding of where the school is and what it needs to do to improve further. As a result, it has a good capacity for future improvement.
Effectiveness of the Early Years Foundation Stage
Children join the school with a level of skills that are in line with those expected for their ages. Parents like the way they are helped to quickly settle in. As one explained, 'I am sure that this was because his teachers ensured that the children felt happy and comfortable with their surroundings.' It is also because the staff take care to arrange pre-school visits for children and their parents, reflecting good links with parents. The EYFS is well run - the staff who share responsibility for teaching liaise closely with each other and are consistent in their approach. They keep a careful track of how well the children are doing, to build up a comprehensive profile that shows the children's good progress. By the time they leave the Reception class, almost all of the children are working securely within the levels expected for their age, with several exceeding them. However, fewer attain the very highest levels in the end-of-year assessments than in other schools in the local authority.
Children are looked after well and they enjoy a good mix of activities led by adults and those that they have chosen for themselves. They get on well with each other and mostly listen attentively, although some still need reminding not to call out and to give others a turn to answer teachers' questions. It is teachers' well-focused questioning that contributes most to the children's good pace of learning. For example, in a session where the children looked at author David McKee's book 'Elmer', about an elephant who plays tricks on his friends, the teacher was careful to ensure the children noticed that the author had not given the book title and name a capital letter, and asked the children why. One child offered the explanation, 'Perhaps Elmer was playing a trick on him.'
|Any complaints about the inspection or the report should be made following the procedures set out in the guidance 'Complaining about inspections', which is available from Ofsted's website: ofsted.gov.uk.|
|Key to judgements: grade 1 is outstanding, grade 2 good, grade 3 satisfactory, and grade 4 inadequate.||School Overall|
|How effective,efficient and inclusive is the provision of education,integrated care and any extended services in meeting the needs of learners?||2|
|Effective steps have been taken to promote improvement since the last inspection||Yes|
|How well does the school work in partnership with others to promote learners' well-being?||2|
|The capacity to make any necessary improvements||2|
|How effective is the provision in meeting the needs of children in the EYFS?||2|
|How well do children in the EYFS achieve?||2|
|How good is the overall personal development and well-being of the children?||2|
|How effectively are children in the EYFS helped to learn and develop?||2|
|How effectively is the welfare of children in the EYFS promoted?||2|
|How effectively is provision in the EYFS led and managed?||2|
|How well do learners achieve?||2|
|The standards¹ reached by learners||2|
|How well learners make progress, taking account of any significant variations between groups of learners||2|
|How well learners with learning difficulties and/or disabilities make progress||2|
|How good are the overall personal development and well-being of the learners?||2|
|The extent of learners' spiritual, moral, social and cultural development||2|
|The extent to which learners adopt healthy lifestyles||2|
|The extent to which learners adopt safe practices||2|
|The extent to which learners enjoy their education||2|
|The attendance of learners||2|
|The behaviour of learners||1|
|The extent to which learners make a positive contribution to the community||2|
|How well learners develop workplace and other skills that will contribute to their future economic well-being||2|
|How effective are teaching and learning in meeting the full range of learners' needs?||2|
|How well do the curriculum and other activities meet the range of needs and interests of learners?||2|
|How well are learners cared for, guided and supported?||2|
|How effective are leadership and management in raising achievement and supporting all learners?||2|
|How effectively leaders and managers at all levels set clear direction leading to improvement and promote high quality of care and education||2|
|How effectively leaders and managers use challenging targets to raise standards||2|
|The effectiveness of the school's self-evaluation||2|
|How well equality of opportunity is promoted and discrimination eliminated||2|
|How well does the school contribute to community cohesion?||2|
|How effectively and efficiently resources, including staff, are deployed to achieve value for money||2|
|The extent to which governors and other supervisory boards discharge their responsibilities||2|
|Do procedures for safeguarding learners meet current government requirements?||Yes|
|Does this school require special measures?||No|
|Does this school require a notice to improve?||No|
02 December 2008
Inspection of Holy Family Catholic Primary School, Addlestone,Addlestone,KT15 1BP
Thank you for being so helpful and friendly when we visited your school. We really enjoyed meeting you and talking to you. We agree with you and your parents that Holy Family is a good school, and we could tell that you are happy to be there. You are doing well in your lessons, because your teachers know how to make your work interesting so that you learn new things.
We were very impressed with your excellent behaviour in school and in the playground, and we thought that you all get on together very well indeed. The staff take good care of you, and those of you who need extra help are well supported.
The headteacher and his staff run the school well, and want to make it even better in the future. We have agreed that they are going to do more to make sure that all of you achieve as well as you can in science. They are also going to make sure that everyone has work that is right for them in lessons, and that no one has work that is too easy. You can help by telling your teachers if you find your work too easy or too hard, and by letting them know if you finish your work before everyone else.
Well done to you all, and best wishes for the future.