Kessingland Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School
Headteacher: Mrs Patricia Lynn Hogan
Diocese of Norwich
285 pupils, Mixed
|Unique Reference Number||124736|
|Inspection dates||24–25 May 2010|
|Reporting inspector||Lynne Blakelock|
|Type of school||Primary|
|School category||Voluntary controlled|
|Age range of pupils||3–9|
|Gender of pupils||Mixed|
|Number of pupils on the school roll||230|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Headteacher||Patricia Lynn Hogan|
|Date of previous school inspection||30 January 2007|
|School address||Field Lane|
|Telephone number||01502 740223|
|Fax number||01502 743074|
|Inspection dates||24–25 May 2010|
© Crown copyright 2009
This inspection was carried out by three additional inspectors, who observed 10 teachers over 14 lessons and held meetings with groups of pupils, staff and governors. They observed the school's work, and looked in detail at documentation including information about pupils' progress and attainment, the school development plan and minutes of the governing body meetings. Questionnaires from 100 parents and carers, and from 18 staff and 65 pupils were analysed.
The inspection team reviewed many aspects of the school's work. It looked in detail at the following:
This is an average sized school compared to those of the same type. Most pupils are White British and speak English as their first language. A few are from the Traveller community. An above average percentage of pupils are known to be eligible for free school meals. The percentage of pupils who have special educational needs and/or disabilities is slightly above the national average. A higher proportion of pupils than found nationally start or leave the school at other than expected times.
The school has a Nursery class which children can attend from the term following their third birthday. Due to the Suffolk Schools reorganisation programme, from September 2010 the school will start to take pupils into Year 5 and in September 2011 into Year 6. It works in partnership with other schools in the locality and is forging links with a new pyramid of feeder schools and high schools in preparation for the reorganisation. In order to cater for the increased number on roll, a building programme is in place to provide two new classrooms and to extend the hall.
The school holds the Activemark award and the Eco Silver award. It has achieved the Playground Award with distinction and holds Healthy Schools status.
|Inspection grades: 1 is outstanding, 2 is good, 3 is satisfactory, and 4 is inadequate|
|Please turn to the glossary for a description of the grades and inspection terms|
Overall effectiveness: how good is the school?
The school's capacity for sustained improvement
The school provides a good quality of education. Its actions show that all pupils are valued for who they are and encouraged to contribute fully to school life. As a result, pupils are happy and their personal development is good. Their behaviour is excellent.
Pupils make good progress in their time at the school because teaching and learning are effective. Pupils who have special educational needs and/or disabilities also make good progress because provision for them is carefully planned within a nurturing environment in which they develop confidence in their abilities. By the end of Year 4, pupils' attainment is above average and this is aided significantly by the school's good systems to assess the quality of pupils' learning. The use of assessment procedures has developed well since the last inspection, resulting in work that matches pupils' needs closely, and in the setting of very appropriate targets that pupils work hard to achieve. Assessment is good rather than outstanding as the school judges because marking is inconsistent and pupils do not always know how to improve their work. Sometimes the wording of lesson objectives is hard for pupils to understand.
The key to the school's good performance is the hard work of the staff, led well by the headteacher and deputy headteacher. They give a very clear direction to the school's work. Their accurate understanding of future priorities, based on effective monitoring, points to a good capacity for further improvement. Good management by subject leaders, who have increased their monitoring roles, confirms this. The governing body is extremely supportive and increasingly holds the school to account. However, it does not routinely know enough to be able to influence the school's strategic direction. Sound safeguarding practices lead the way in helping to ensure pupils' safety, but procedures are not always reviewed rigorously enough.
The school opens up pupils' worlds through the good curriculum. The staff have extended this through their good promotion of community cohesion, particularly in the school and local community. Increasingly the school is enabling pupils to make good progress in discovering the social, religious and ethnic contexts of those living further afield. Overall, the provision has contributed well to pupils' good spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. While attendance is satisfactory, not all pupils attend as often as they could, which slows down their progress.
Outcomes for individuals and groups of pupils
From broadly average starting points, pupils make good progress through Year 1 and Year 2, which continues through Year 3 and Year 4, because of an interesting and creative curriculum, good support and effective teaching. Consequently, standards rise steadily through the school and challenging targets are met and sometimes exceeded. The progress of pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities is also good because well thought out tasks, in which they are guided by effective and encouraging support from teaching assistants, enthuse them. Expectations of the staff are high and pupils respond to them. All of these features were evident in a lesson where a group of lower ability pupils were sorting out data about football clubs and pop stars to put into a bar chart or pictogram. They made good progress and were able to explain confidently to other pupils what they had done and how. In another lesson, good links were made between subjects so that while there was a combined focus on literacy and numeracy, the pupils also made good progress in their scientific skills through discovering that animals can be grouped together by their similarities. More able pupils were also challenged well in many lessons, often by them using newly acquired skills to solve problems.
The pupils are always busy in this school. They are proud to carry out jobs and roles, such as representing their class on the school council and fund-raising, which help them to develop their personal and inter-personal skills. Together with their above average standards, pupils are well-prepared for the next stage of their education. Attendance, though, is average, because some pupils do not attend every day that they can. Through playtimes and lessons, they demonstrate a good understanding of how to be safe and how to keep healthy. A healthy eating day, involving parents and carers, has led to a greater uptake of nutritious eating choices. Pupils' spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is good. They show a very strong sense of what is right and wrong, demonstrated in their outstanding behaviour, and in their very considerate dealings with others. They respect the beliefs of others, encouraged by their good understanding of how cultural differences have shaped our heritage and are playing their part in caring for the environment through recycling.
These are the grades for pupils' outcomes
|Pupils' achievement and the extent to which they enjoy their learning|
Taking into account:
The quality of pupils' learning and their progress
The quality of learning for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities and their progress
|The extent to which pupils feel safe||2|
|The extent to which pupils adopt healthy lifestyles||2|
|The extent to which pupils contribute to the school and wider community||2|
|The extent to which pupils develop workplace and other skills that will contribute to their future economic well-being|
Taking into account:
|The extent of pupils' spiritual, moral, social and cultural development||2|
1 The grades for attainment and attendance are: 1 is high; 2 is above average; 3 is broadly average; and 4 is low
A common strength of teaching is the very positive relationships between staff and pupils. Pupils are always told the purpose of learning, but sometimes this is not expressed simply enough for all pupils to understand. Targets are in place in the large majority of lessons. The best practice is when teachers word these targets simply so that pupils are very clear about what they need to achieve. The collection of accurate information about pupils' progress has developed significantly since the last inspection. Increasingly, this is used to set work that challenges pupils very well, offering a range of tasks and learning methods. Marking has improved since the last inspection and usually tells pupils about their achievements. Verbal feedback is very helpful to pupils, who also enjoy evaluating their own work and getting feedback from their learning partner. However, written advice in exercise books, about how pupils can move further forward in their learning, is far less regular. While, therefore, assessment practices are good, their impact on pupils' learning is not yet outstanding.
The curriculum promotes pupils' achievement and personal development well. A growing number of lessons link subjects imaginatively so that the pupils can learn and practise a wide range of skills. Planning ensures, however, that literacy and numeracy are the focus of learning. Much improved provision of computers strengthens this aspect. The school makes good use of its sports' partnership both in lessons and in the very popular after-school clubs. They add to pupils' good enjoyment of learning, their range of academic, sporting and social skills and justify the school's Activemark. Pupils' creative talents are encouraged, as seen in the excellent artwork around the school. Provision for those pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities is good because pupils' needs are specifically catered for. That for gifted and talented pupils is at an early stage and being developed.
The school looks after the pupils carefully, with the staff knowing and understanding their individual needs and circumstances. Much is done to develop their confidence and self-esteem in a school that sees this aspect of its work as fundamental. Parents and carers express their pleasure at being involved in an increasing number of events such as workshops to help their children's learning. Support for those pupils with behavioural issues, and for those who find some aspects of learning difficult, is very carefully planned, monitored and checked, enabling them to move forward well. It is strengthened by constructive partnerships with outside agencies, which provide specialist help. The percentage of pupils who are persistent absentees has fallen sharply due to the staff's concerted actions but not enough is in place to encourage good attendance by all pupils.
These are the grades for the quality of provision
|The quality of teaching|
Taking into account:
The use of assessment to support learning
|The extent to which the curriculum meets pupils' needs, including, where relevant, through partnerships||2|
|The effectiveness of care, guidance and support||2|
The headteacher, supported well by the deputy headteacher, gives a very clear direction to the school's work. In this forward-thinking school, all members of staff are seen as key players in the continuous drive for improvement and are given opportunities to develop their leadership roles. Robust monitoring of the outcomes of learning, including termly evaluations of pupils' work, leads to prompt actions to boost the progress of any pupils who are at risk of falling behind. This ensures good equality of opportunity for all pupils. The professional development of staff is well matched to the school's needs and good practice is routinely shared to ensure that provision is good and that targets for improvement are met. From the start of their education, a wide range of partnerships promote effectively the provision and quality of support and guidance for the pupils. This is particularly so for Traveller children and their families who settle very well in the caring school community. The very committed governing body oversees the school's safeguarding practices soundly but the checking of policies and procedures is not always robust. While it is beginning to challenge the school's performance more regularly, the governing body does not know enough about the school to be able to influence its strategic direction. The school makes a strong contribution to promoting its own community cohesion and that of the locality; it is developing links nationally and internationally and beginning to evaluate the effectiveness of its work.
These are the grades for leadership and management
|The effectiveness of leadership and management in embedding ambition and driving improvement|
Taking into account:
The leadership and management of teaching and learning
|The effectiveness of the governing body in challenging and supporting the|
school so that weaknesses are tackled decisively and statutory responsibilities met
|The effectiveness of the school's engagement with parents and carers||2|
|The effectiveness of partnerships in promoting learning and well-being||2|
|The effectiveness with which the school promotes equality of opportunity and tackles discrimination||2|
|The effectiveness of safeguarding procedures||3|
|The effectiveness with which the school promotes community cohesion||2|
|The effectiveness with which the school deploys resources to achieve value for money||2|
Children start school below average in several aspects of learning, particularly in their communication and social skills. They settle into the school well, helped by careful preparation for their arrival. Pre-school providers and parents and carers are viewed as important partners in their children's education. The Nursery is a strength due to the myriad of opportunities for the children to initiate activities. The children make good progress overall through the Early Years Foundation Stage, including in their speaking and listening skills, because they have a wide range of activities that match their needs accurately and which they find exciting and fun. Occasionally, activities can be over-directed by the teacher. By the end of the Early Years Foundation Stage, the children achieve standards that are broadly in line with those found nationally.
Visits to local places of interest, such as the library, expand children's horizons. The outdoor area is used well to extend the provision, although the planned canopy is not yet in place and there is no direct access for one of the Reception classes. Daily routines back up children's learning in lessons and reinforce their understanding of what to do to stay safe. Teachers' modelling of kind and responsible behaviour is adopted by the children, who make good progress in their personal development. Computers are part of daily learning and are one example of the school's good opportunities for the children to learn independently within a secure environment. Leadership and management are good. Children's learning is recorded conscientiously, giving a full picture of their achievements, and is used accurately by staff to plan future work.
These are the grades for the Early Years Foundation Stage
|Overall effectiveness of the Early Years Foundation Stage|
Taking into account:
Outcomes for children in the Early Years Foundation Stage
The quality of provision in the Early Years Foundation Stage
The effectiveness of leadership and management of the Early Years Foundation
Almost all parents and carers say that their children enjoy school. A very large majority are positive about all aspects of school life. One parent described the school by saying, 'This is a lovely, caring school, where the children are able to flourish.' It starts in the Early Years Foundation Stage where a parent wrote, 'I am pleased with my child's progress, including in reading and writing.' Another said, 'Expectations are high in the Reception class.' A very small number of parents and carers have individual concerns that have been shared with the headteacher, while preserving the anonymity of pupils and of parents and carers.
Ofsted invited all the registered parents and carers of pupils registered at Kessingland Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School to complete a questionnaire about their views of the school.
In the questionnaire, parents and carers were asked to record how strongly they agreed with 13 statements about the school. The inspection team received 100 completed questionnaires by the end of the on-site inspection. In total, there are 230 pupils registered at the school.
|My child enjoys school||65||65||34||34||1||1||0||0|
|The school keeps my child safe||59||59||29||29||8||8||1||1|
|My school informs me about my child's progress||45||45||49||49||5||5||0||0|
|My child is making enough progress at this school||58||58||37||37||2||2||0||0|
|The teaching is good at this school||62||62||34||34||2||2||0||0|
|The school helps me to support my child's learning||49||49||46||46||3||3||0||0|
|The school helps my child to have a healthy lifestyle||52||52||43||43||2||2||0||0|
|The school makes sure that my child is well prepared for the future (for example changing year group, changing school, and for children who are finishing school, entering further or higher education, or entering employment)||52||52||40||40||0||0||1||1|
|The school meets my child's particular needs||54||54||42||42||1||1||0||0|
|The school deals effectively with unacceptable behaviour||47||47||39||39||9||9||1||1|
|The school takes account of my suggestions and concerns||49||49||40||40||5||5||1||1|
|The school is led and managed effectively||50||50||42||42||2||2||2||2|
|Overall, I am happy with my child's experience at this school||63||63||33||33||1||1||0||0|
The table above summarises the responses that parents and carers made to each statement. The percentages indicate the proportion of parents and carers giving that response out of the total number of completed questionnaires. Where one or more parents and carers chose not to answer a particular question, the percentages will not add up to 100%.
|Grade 1||Outstanding||These features are highly effective. An oustanding school provides exceptionally well for all its pupils' needs.|
|Grade 2||Good||These are very positive features of a school. A school that is good is serving its pupils well.|
|Grade 3||Satisfactory||These features are of reasonable quality. A satisfactory school is providing adequately for its pupils.|
|Grade 4||Inadequate||These features are not of an acceptable standard. An inadequate school needs to make significant improvement in order to meet the needs of its pupils. Ofsted inspectors will make further visits until it improves.|
|Overall effectiveness judgement (percentage of schools)|
|Type of school||Outstanding||Good||Satisfactory||Inadequate|
|Pupil referral |
the progress and success of a pupil in their learning, development or training.
the standard of the pupils' work shown by test and examination results and in lessons.
|Capacity to improve:|
the proven ability of the school to continue improving. Inspectors base this judgement on what the school has accomplished so far and on the quality of its systems to maintain improvement.
|Leadership and management:|
the contribution of all the staff with responsibilities, not just the headteacher, to identifying priorities, directing and motivating staff and running the school.
how well pupils acquire knowledge, develop their understanding, learn and practise skills and are developing their competence as learners.
inspectors form a judgement on a school's overall effectiveness based on the findings from their inspection of the school. The following judgements, in particular, influence what the overall effectiveness judgement will be.
the rate at which pupils are learning in lessons and over longer periods of time. It is often measured by comparing the pupils' attainment at the end of a key stage with their attainment when they started.
26 May 2010
Inspection of Kessingland Church of England Voluntary Controlled Primary School, Lowestoft, NR33 7QA
We enjoyed meeting you and talking with you when we visited your school recently. With your help, we found out lots about what you learn and what you like best.
Your school is a good school, in which you make good progress, reach above average standards by the time you leave, and in which you are supported and guided well. You, and your parents and carers, are happy with the school and what it provides for you. You said, and we agree, that learning is interesting, with lots of opportunities for you to learn for yourselves and to learn a variety of skills across subjects. Teaching is good. You behave excellently, showing kindness and support for each other from the Early Years Foundation Stage onwards.
Your headteacher and the staff work hard for you and want to make the school even better. In particular they want you to make even quicker progress. To help this to happen, we have asked them to make sure that in lessons the purpose of learning is always worded in such a way that you understand what it means. The staff will also make sure that the marking of your work tells you what you need to do next to improve. Congratulations to a lot of you for attending school every day. While attendance is satisfactory, not enough of you attend as often as you could. The staff are going to involve the school council in finding ways to help you all understand the importance of good attendance for your future well-being. The governing body is going to help with all of these improvements by checking how well the school is progressing and by reviewing all school practices thoroughly.
We were pleased to see the new building being constructed and send you all our best wishes for September when your school keeps its Year 4 pupils as they move into Year 5.
|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. If you would like Ofsted to send you a copy of the guidance, please telephone 08456 404045, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.|