Mowmacre Hill Primary School
Headteacher: Mrs D Fritche
289 pupils, Mixed
|Unique Reference Number||120078|
|Local Authority||Leicester City|
|Inspection dates||6–7 May 2009|
|Reporting inspector||Marion Thompson|
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|
|Age range of pupils||3–11|
|Gender of pupils||Mixed|
|Number on roll|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Date of previous school inspection||16 May 2006|
Date of previous funded early education|
|Not previously inspected|
|Date of previous childcare inspection||Not previously inspected|
|School address||Tedworth Green|
|Telephone number||01162 356350|
|Fax number||01162 364687|
|Inspection dates||6–7 May 2009|
© Crown copyright 2009
The inspection was carried out by two additional inspectors.
This is an average size school and Early Years Foundation Stage. The majority of pupils come from White British backgrounds. Other members of the school population come from a diverse range of backgrounds. An above average percentage of pupils are at the early stages of learning English. The proportion of pupils with learning difficulties and/or disabilities is high. A larger number of pupils than is usual leave or join the school during the academic year. The school has gained the Healthy Schools Award.
Overall effectiveness of the school
This is a good school, which provides an effective education for its pupils in Years 1 to 6 and the Early Years Foundation Stage. It has won the strong support of parents, who appreciate the good quality of pastoral care provided for pupils and their families. This helps children to feel safe and valued and consequently they enjoy their learning. They also love the wide range of after-school clubs, for example in cookery or art, provided for them. Children feel 'special', because, as one parent accurately wrote, 'Children have constant praise and encouragement to make them feel important as individuals.'
Good personal development is promoted by all members of the staff team. Behaviour is good, and pupils' positive attitudes support their learning. Supervisors often join in with pupils' play at lunchtime. They encourage children to eat balanced meals. As a result, pupils develop a good awareness of how to live a healthy lifestyle. Due to the strenuous efforts made by the school, attendance is rising and is now broadly average. Pupils take their significant responsibilities in the school and local community seriously. For example, the environmental group organises recycling, showing a good awareness of issues which affect us all. Pupils demonstrate keen appreciation of the natural world and their spiritual awareness is outstanding. Good social development and satisfactory skills in literacy and numeracy prepare them appropriately for the next stage of their education.
Achievement has improved consistently over the last few years and in 2008, results in national tests were the highest ever. Standards are now broadly average by the end of Year 6 and pupils achieve well from their low starting points on entry to the Early Years Foundation Stage. Progress has accelerated, especially in English and mathematics in Year 2, during this academic year. Pupils with learning difficulties and/or disabilities make good progress, because their specific needs are addressed effectively. Good academic guidance is having a positive impact on pupils' learning. Close monitoring of progress ensures that barriers to learning are addressed swiftly. Actions are tailored to the needs of each individual child. Pupils are clear about their targets and marking provides them with very specific guidance on how to achieve them.
Good, lively teaching and an engaging curriculum are also raising achievement. In lessons, staff consistently promote good moral, social and cultural development and intellectual curiosity. A particular strength is the way in which pupils are encouraged to formulate their own questions and to solve problems. For example, a Year 4 class relished the challenge of a whole-day investigation into finding out the reasons for the death of a frog! Speaking and listening skills are developed well in all areas of the curriculum. Pupils who are at the early stages of learning English particularly benefit from this approach, which also supports the development of writing skills. Despite considerable improvement, progress in science is not quite as rapid, because assessment and target setting are not as well developed. In the small minority of lessons where teaching is satisfactory, lessons are less demanding and conducted at a slower pace, slowing the rate of pupils' progress.
The driving force behind improvements is the outstanding and demanding leadership of the headteacher. The introduction of challenging targets has raised expectations and pupils now reach them. Planning is prioritised well and is based on an accurate evaluation of the work of the school. Individualised support has resulted in significant improvements in teaching and subject leadership. A few leaders are not yet fully confident in monitoring their subject areas. Despite carrying a vacancy, governors provide good support and challenge for the school.
The school is well led and managed and has good capacity to improve. It makes a good contribution to community cohesion by providing opportunities for all groups of pupils to achieve well and to develop respect for the range of faiths and cultures within Britain. It meets the needs of the local community well, for example through popular classes to help parents to support their children's learning more effectively.
Effectiveness of the Early Years Foundation Stage
Children enter Foundation Stage 1 with levels of skills that are low for their age, especially in communication and mathematical skills. They settle in well, due to good quality care. Induction processes are sensitive to the needs of parents and children. Many parents stay for a short time every morning, helping children to have a calm start. Children now achieve well, especially in communication and social skills, reaching broadly average standards in most areas by the time they go into Year 1. This is because of improvements in provision over the last year and is a significant improvement on previous years. Careful tracking of progress enables staff to match teaching and the programme of activities closely to children's needs. These observations are carefully recorded in my 'Scrap book', which provides good information for staff and is valued by parents. Indoor and outdoor activities are well planned to develop all areas of learning. Planning presents children with a good balance of activities they initiate themselves and those directed by the teacher. However, until building work is completed in the summer, outdoor provision is dependent on the weather. Occasionally, opportunities are missed for children to develop independence, for example to register themselves. Children learn to listen attentively, share, take turns and initiate activities. Communication skills develop well because of adults' skilful interventions. The focus is now on improving calculation, a relatively weaker area.
Achievement and standards
Standards are broadly average by Year 6, representing good achievement from pupils' low starting points on entry. Pupils are on track to achieve their challenging targets in English and mathematics. Achievement in writing, previously an area of particular weakness, has improved throughout the school, because of the effective strategies the school has introduced. The same is true in mathematics, where pupils have made good gains in number work. Progress for all pupils, but especially the most able, has improved markedly, particularly in Year 2. Progress in science has been slower, but is beginning to accelerate, especially in Year 6. In the small minority of lessons which are less demanding, pupils make slower progress.
Personal development and well-being
Moral, social and cultural development is good and spiritual development is outstanding. Pupils respond sensitively to art and music and talk freely about their emotions. They pay due regard to the safety of others around school and have a good understanding of all aspects of health education, for example the effects of drug abuse. Pupils have adopted the school's commitment to racial equality. They reject inappropriate or racist language and there is very little bullying in school. On the few occasions when it occurs, it is dealt with swiftly and effectively. Pupils make a good contribution to the school and local community, for example by visits to a local old people's home, but make a more limited contribution to the international community. Attendance is rising and children are punctual; this, together with the satisfactory standards they reach, helps prepare them soundly for their future lives.
Quality of provision
Teaching and learning
Lessons are characterised by clear learning objectives, and planning which builds on previous learning. Respectful relationships with adults ensure pupils are motivated to learn. In most lessons, pupils are presented with a good level of challenge. For example, in a Year 2 lesson in mathematics, skilful questioning ensured that pupils described the properties of the geometric shapes using very exact mathematical terminology. In the small minority of lessons which are only satisfactory, the pace is slower, expectations are not as high and pupils are confused occasionally by insufficiently clear guidance on what they are expected to do. Marking is consistently good and pupils are usually given enough time to follow up the clear advice they are given.
Curriculum and other activities
The curriculum is broad and balanced and meets the needs of all pupils, including those at the early stages of learning English, well. Carefully planned interventions help pupils to overcome difficulties in learning. Well-targeted support enables pupils with learning difficulties and/or disabilities to make good progress. Enrichment, for example a visit from an Islamic musician, interests pupils and develops their understanding of the wider cultural environment in contemporary Britain. However, links with schools abroad are at the early stages. Problem-solving activities such as running a business, which require a range of personal and academic skills, are developing well.
Care, guidance and support
Systems to ensure pupils' health, safety and well-being are good and those to promote attendance are extremely robust. Child protection procedures and those to safeguard pupils were secure at the time of the inspection. Good pastoral care from all staff within the school ensures that pupils thrive. All staff know pupils well and are alert to their needs. Academic guidance is good and has supported rapidly improved achievement in English and mathematics. Close monitoring of progress ensures that difficulties are spotted at the early stages. Pupils are aware of their targets and use them to help improve their work. This is not yet quite as good in science, but is improving.
Leadership and management
The headteacher provides strong and ambitious leadership, which is successfully focused on improving achievement. She is supported well by a capable senior team and staff. The school evaluates its work closely and is creative in addressing problems. A good contribution is made to community cohesion by developing pupils' understanding of their rights and responsibilities as national and global citizens. Strong commitment to community cohesion is demonstrated by the governors' decision to donate land to build a neighbouring Children's Centre with which it is closely involved. International links, whilst underway, are at the early stages. The school has made good improvement since the previous inspection.
|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||3|
|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||3|
|The behaviour of learners||2|
|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||3|
|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|
8 May 2009
Inspection of Mowmacre Hill Primary School, Leicester LE4 2NG
Thank you for greeting us with such politeness when we visited your school. A number of your parents replied to our questionnaire so please thank them. Most of them think the school provides you with a good education in Years 1 to 6 and the Early Years Foundation Stage and we are pleased to confirm that they are right. Children in the Early Years Foundation Stage get off to a good start, because teaching and the programme of activities are good and it is well led. Children's personal development is good, because of the good quality of care the Early Years Foundation Stage staff provide. It was nice to see so many parents working with the children first thing in the morning, helping them to settle well.
You make good progress and by the end of Year 6 reach broadly average standards in English and mathematics. This is because staff keep a close eye on how well you are doing and plan activities to give you special help you when you need it. Teaching and the curriculum are lively and well matched to your needs. Those of you who find it more difficult to learn do well because you are supported well. The headteacher and staff are working hard to make sure things carry on improving. Those of you who are at the early stages of learning English make good progress because teachers develop your listening and speaking skills well in all lessons.
You know the staff take good care of you, so you feel safe and valued. This helps you to become more confident and interested in your learning. You enjoy school and a lot of you attend the after-school clubs the school runs. You take your responsibilities, like being a member of the eco club, EMAS, seriously and try to improve the school. Your lunchtime supervisors help you to stay healthy and active and often join in your games. Your satisfactory skills in literacy and numeracy and good social skills prepare you soundly for the future. Many of you show real appreciation for art and music through your comments and emotions. The school has worked hard and successfully to improve attendance, so keep it up!
In order to improve things further, we have asked the school to make sure that staff keep a closer eye on your progress in science and make sure your targets help you to improve. We have also asked the school to make sure you are kept on your toes in all lessons by teaching that makes you think hard and make good progress!