Orrets Meadow School
phone: 0151 6788070
headteacher: Mrs Carolyn Duncan
66 pupils capacity: 100% full
50 boys 76%
20 girls 30%
Last updated: June 18, 2014
— Community Special School
- Establishment type
- Community Special School
- Establishment #
- OSGB coordinates
- Easting: 326925, Northing: 389725
- GPS coordinates
- Latitude: 53.399, Longitude: -3.1005
- Accepting pupils
- 7—11 years old
- Census date
- Jan. 16, 2014
- Ofsted last inspection
- May 14, 2012
- Region › Const. › Ward
- North West › Wallasey › Leasowe and Moreton East
- Urban > 10k - less sparse
- SEN priorities
- SpLD - Specific Learning Difficulty
- Special classes
- Has Special Classes
- Free school meals %
- 0.1 miles Sandbrook Primary School CH469PS (169 pupils)
- 0.4 miles Sacred Heart Catholic Primary School CH468UG (401 pupils)
- 0.4 miles Moreton Christ Church CofE Primary School CH460PB (362 pupils)
- 0.4 miles Clare Mount Specialist Sports College CH469PA (185 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Eastway Primary School CH468TA (208 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Hayfield School CH494LN (109 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Overchurch Infant School CH494NS (316 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Overchurch Junior School CH494NS (340 pupils)
- 0.7 miles St Paul's Catholic Primary School CH437TE (98 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Lingham Primary School CH467UQ (320 pupils)
- 0.9 miles Manor Primary School CH437ZU (95 pupils)
- 0.9 miles St Oswald's Bidston CofE Primary School CH437XG
- 0.9 miles St Joseph's Catholic Primary School Upton CH496LL (309 pupils)
- 0.9 miles Wallasey School CH461RB (710 pupils)
- 0.9 miles Foxfield School CH466BT (117 pupils)
- 0.9 miles Ballantyne Junior School CH437XG
- 0.9 miles Bidston CofE Infant School CH437XG
- 0.9 miles The Henry Meoles School L461RA
- 0.9 miles Bidston Village CofE (Controlled) Primary School CH437XG (311 pupils)
- 0.9 miles The Kingsway Academy Wirral CH461RB
- 1 mile Leasowe Primary School CH461RU (162 pupils)
- 1 mile Upton Hall School FCJ CH496LJ
- 1 mile Oxley School L461QA
- 1 mile The Observatory School CH437QT (49 pupils)
Orrets Meadow School
|Inspection date(s)||14–15 May 2012|
|Unique Reference Number||105140|
|Inspect ion number||377182|
|Inspect ion dates||14–15 May 2012|
|Lead inspector||Brian Padgett HMI|
This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Educati on Act 2005.
|Type of school||Special|
|School category||Community special|
|Age range of pupils||7–11|
|Gender of pupils||Mixed|
|Number of pupils on the school roll||77|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Acting Headteacher||Morag Kophamel|
|Date of prev ious school inspection||25 June 2009|
|School address||Chapelhill Road|
|Telephone number||0151 6788070|
|Fax number||0151 6774663|
This inspection was carried out with two days' notice. Inspectors observed 12
lessons. They saw nine teachers teach. Meetings were held with parents, groups of
pupils, governors, a representative of the local authority and staff. The inspection
team received information about the school’s partnerships with secondary schools by
|Brian Padgett |
|Her Majesty's Inspector |
email and telephone. Inspectors observed the school at work and looked at pupils’
exercise books and a range of documentation, including that on safeguarding and
pupils’ progress. The results of questionnaire returns from staff and pupils were
analysed, along with 49 responses from the parents’ questionnaire.
Information about the school
Orrets Meadow is a community special school for pupils of primary-school age with
specific learning difficulties. Admissions to the school are controlled by the local
authority. Most of the pupils have a statement of special educational needs. Their
specific learning difficulties include dyslexia, dyspraxia, attention deficit, dyscalculia,
Aspergers Syndrome and autism. About three-quarters of pupils have at least one
additional learning difficulty, such as social, emotional and behavioural difficulty
and/or speech, language or communication difficulties. Twenty-seven of the Year 4
pupils attend the school for one year as part of a new pilot programme aimed at
raising the literacy skills of the lowest-attaining pupils in the authority. These pupils,
whose special educational needs are identified at the school action plus stage, are
admitted on the basis of their reading and writing performance at the end of Key
Most pupils enter the school during Year 4 or Year 5 and stay for an average of
seven terms. Most then transfer to mainstream secondary schools. However, some
pupils are at the school for a longer or shorter period and a minority transfer to other
special schools when they leave Orrets Meadow. A few return to mainstream primary
schools. Occasionally, a pupil will spend his or her Year 3 or 7 at the school.
Many pupils, nearly a half, are known to be eligible for free school meals. Most pupils
are boys and almost all are of White British heritage.
Since the previous inspection the school has been led by an acting headteacher,
nominally for three days each week. She is also the headteacher of a nearby primary
The school has Healthy School status and the Basic Skills Quality Award.
The school is the base for Orrets Meadow Services, which provides outreach,
training, assessment and advice services for pupils and students with specific
learning difficulties within Wirral schools. This service was not inspected.
Inspect ion grades: 1 is outstanding, 2 is good, 3 is sat isfactory and 4 is inadequate
Please turn to the glossary for a description of the grades and inspection terms
|Achievement of pupils||1|
|Quality of teaching||1|
|Behaviour and safety of pupils||2|
|Leadership and management||1|
- Orrets Meadow is an outstanding school that is extremely successful in
providing for pupils who are experiencing difficulty with their reading and
writing. In the relatively short time pupils are at the school they make
remarkable progress in their reading, writing and mathematics. Moreover, they
grow in confidence and in self-belief and, by Year 6, they are in a strong
position to succeed at secondary school. Parents and carers think extremely
highly of what the school achieves and how it involves them.
- Teaching is of the highest quality and is never less than consistently good.
Teachers are expert in teaching reading and writing. Staff in general are
extremely effective in encouraging pupils’ personal development, leading to
outstanding spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. Building on
existing success, there is scope to enhance pupils’ learning even further by
encouraging them to make a bigger contribution to lessons.
- The rules covering the admission of pupils to the school have changed since the
previous inspection. Exceptional leadership by the acting headteacher and her
team has ensured the school has adapted very successfully to the increase in
the range and complexity of pupils’ learning needs and to ensuring a very
effective start for the Year 4 pilot programme. The curriculum is very well
designed to meet pupils’ needs and is of excellent quality. The performance of
staff is monitored very thoroughly and the school has developed an outstanding
capacity to sustain excellence.
Pupils’ behaviour is good and for most, very good. Pupils feel very safe at the
school and have exceptional confidence in their teachers. The admission of
pupils with additional social, emotional and behavioural difficulties has caused
the school to develop strategies to support such pupils. Good progress is being
made but there is some improvement needed to eradicate occasional disruption
to lessons. Pupils enjoy school and attendance is high, above that for
mainstream primary schools.
What does the school need to do to improve further?
- Continue to develop strategies to help pupils with additional social, emotional
and behavioural difficulties manage their behaviour in order to maximise their
learning and avoid disrupting the learning of others.
- Increase the proportion of teaching judged outstanding through the greater
involvement of pupils by, where appropriate, encouraging pupils to make a
bigger contribution to lessons, to work cooperatively with other pupils and to be
given more choices in their work.
Achievement of pupils
Pupils enter the school with levels of attainment in basic skills that are low for their
age, frequently several years below that of their peers. For pupils on the Year 4 pilot,
attainment in reading and writing is among the lowest within the local authority at
the end of Key Stage 1, at age seven. All pupils, regardless of their starting points
and their additional special educational needs, make outstanding progress. For
example, pupils on the Year 4 pilot have, on average, already made 17 months
improvement in their reading age from September. Their parents are delighted.
Pupils’ progress in lessons was never less than good. They responded well to the
precision teaching of literacy. Pupils admitted to Orrets Meadow in Years 4, 5 and 6
with statements of special educational needs also make remarkable progress. Their
progress exceeds that for pupils with statements generally, regularly being within the
top 25% of such pupils nationally. So much progress is made in learning the basic
skills that, despite the relatively short time pupils spend at the school, they
frequently exceed the progress expected of all pupils across the whole of Key Stage
2. Although most pupils remain slightly below the average in reading by the time
they leave the school, nearly all have the necessary basic skills to cope with the
demands of secondary schooling successfully. A minority attain the national
expectation of Level 4 of the National Curriculum in English and mathematics.
Of equal importance to the school, parents and the receiving secondary schools is
the growth in pupils’ confidence and self-esteem. From being pupils who are
reluctant to try they become pupils who are keen to have a go. For example, Year 6
pupils with a wide range of learning difficulties persevered exceptionally well to
complete the end of Key Stage 2 tests, including challenging reading assignments,
Quality of teaching
Teachers are expert teachers of reading and writing, with a deep knowledge of
teaching literacy to pupils with specific learning difficulties that has built-up over
many years. The morning sessions are devoted to the systematic teaching of basic
skills, including the development of speaking and listening, using a wide variety of
strategies to interest and engage pupils, such as through games and competitions.
All aspects of literacy and numeracy are taught precisely and consistently and backed
up by homework. Expectations are high and this can be seen in pupils’ exercise
books, where pupils’ work is very well presented and marked. Teachers call on an
excellent range of resources. They make very good use of technology, using
interactive whiteboards, and pupils frequently use laptops, for example, to research
topics. As a special school, there is a high level of individual support for pupils and
teaching assistants play a very important role in class and about school, particularly
during small group work when teachers plan to meet pupils’ additional special
educational needs. Pastoral care is excellent and this is another aspect of the work of
the school where teaching assistants make a major contribution.
Outstanding relationships are a keynote for the school, quickly established. Pupils
and parents and carers recorded 100% faith in the quality of teaching in
questionnaires. Praise and celebration of achievement occurs frequently. Rigorous
assessment of the progress of individual pupils enables teachers to set ambitious and
realistic targets for pupils and they are very adept at ensuring pupils and their
parents and carers are well-informed about next steps.
The quality of teaching observed was never less than good. Just occasionally,
teachers missed opportunities for some pupils, whose confidence was high, to play a
larger part in lessons, whether in reading for others, for example, or in playing a lead
role in managing a task.
Behaviour and safety of pupils
All parents and carers responding to the parents’ questionnaire felt their children
were safe at school. Virtually all the pupils felt safe. Behaviour is very good. Pupils
enjoy school and show care and respect for each other. They do not feel bullied in
any way and they have innate trust in the teachers to help them should they require
it. Pupils have a clear and developing sense of right, wrong and fairness. As the
school has admitted a growing proportion of pupils with specific conditions, such as
attention deficit and autism, and as more pupils have social, emotional and
behavioural difficulties as additional needs, managing pupils’ behaviour and helping
pupils manage their own behaviour have become more important. Pupils and their
parents and carers acknowledge occasional disruption of learning in lessons. The
school is working hard and successfully to become more expert in this aspect of the
school’s work, including by working closely with a partner special school for pupils
with behavioural difficulties. It has a clearly understood set of rewards and sanctions.
Nevertheless, as evidenced by a small number of fixed-term exclusions, school
leaders acknowledge that further progress is needed and they have developed plans
of good quality to achieve this.
Attendance is very good, above the average for mainstream primary schools and well
above that for special schools. Punctuality is excellent, as the vast majority of pupils
arrive by school bus.
Leadership and management
The learning needs of pupils have changed significantly since the previous inspection
as the introduction of new criteria has opened admission to pupils with more
complex additional needs. Also, the Year 4 literacy pilot has introduced a complete
new cohort of pupils to Orrets Meadow. When the long-serving headteacher retired
nearly three years ago, the governing body was unable to recruit a permanent
replacement. Working with the local authority, the governing body was successful in
securing the part-time appointment of a headteacher from a nearby primary school
as acting headteacher. It is to the great credit of the school, particularly to the acting
headteacher, deputy headteacher and senior staff that, despite such challenging
circumstances, the school has gone from strength to strength, meeting every new
challenge with success. By the very nature of the pupils’ outstanding achievement
the school plays an important role in promoting equality, narrowing the gap in
achievement between these pupils and others, and tackling discrimination. The
existing strengths of the teaching recorded by the previous inspection have been
maintained and developed further to meet the more complex needs of pupils
entering the school. Staff performance management and professional development
have contributed to the school’s improvement. School self-evaluation and the
tracking of performance are very rigorous. Staff are committed to the school and
keen to take on leadership roles. Leadership is distributed effectively at all levels.
The governing body commands an impressive range of expertise and experience and
has good parent representation. It is well-informed.
The arrangements for safeguarding are rigorous and are of the highest quality. The
curriculum is outstanding and exceptionally well designed to meet the pupils’ learning
needs. Pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is outstanding. As a
consequence, despite unpromising starts to their primary education, pupils are well-
equipped with excellent attitudes and values for secondary education and, indeed,
What inspection judgements mean
|Grade 1||Outstanding||These features are highly effective. An outstanding 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 of schools
|Overall effectiveness judgement (percentage of schools)|
|Type of school||Outstanding||Good||Satisfactory||Inadequate|
|Pupil referral units||9||55||28||8|
New school inspection arrangements have been introduced from 1 January 2012. This means that
inspectors make judgements that were not made previously.
The data in the table above are for the period 1 September to 31 December 2011 and represent
judgements that were made under the school inspection arrangements that were introduced on 1
September 2009. These data are consistent with the latest published official statistics about
maintained school inspection outcomes (see www.ofsted.gov.uk).
The sample of schools inspected during 2010/11 was not representative of all schools nationally, as
weaker schools are inspected more frequently than good or outstanding schools.
Primary schools include primar y academy converters. Secondary schools include secondary academy
converters, sponsor-led academies and city technology colleges. Special schools include special
academy converters and non-maintained special schools.
Percentages are rounded and do not always add exactly to 100.
Common terminology used by inspectors
|Achievement:||the progress and success of a pupil in their learning and |
development taking account of their attainment.
|Attainment:||the standard of the pupils' work shown by test and |
examination results and in lessons.
|Attendance||the regular attendance of pupils at school and in lessons, |
taking into account the school's efforts to encourage good
|Behaviour||how well pupils behave in lessons, with emphasis on their |
attitude to learning. Pupils' punctuality to lessons and their
conduct around the school.
|Capacity to improve:||the proven ability of the school to continue improving based |
on its self-evaluation and what the school has accomplished
so far and on the quality of its systems to maintain
|Floor standards||the national minimum expectation of attainment and |
|Leadership and |
|the contribution of all the staff with responsibilities, not just |
the governors and headteacher, to identifying priorities,
directing and motivating staff and running the school.
|Learning:||how well pupils acquire knowledge, develop their |
understanding, learn and practise skills and are developing
their competence as learners.
|Overall effectiveness:||inspectors form a judgement on a school's overall |
effectiveness based on the findings from their inspection of
|Progress:||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.
|Safety||how safe pupils are in school, including in lessons; and their |
understanding of risks. Pupils' freedom from bullying and
harassment. How well the school promotes safety, for
16 May 2012
Inspection of Orrets Meadow School, Wirral, CH46 9QQ
You may recall when inspectors from Ofsted spent two days in your school. It was the week
when the Year 6 pupils were doing their national test papers in English and mathematics, the
SATs. I am writing to you to tell you how we judged your school. First, I must thank you for
your help. We learned a lot about the school from watching you in lessons, reading your
questionnaire returns and from talking to you.
All of you come to Orrets Meadow because you were having difficulty learning to read and
write in your local primary schools. As reading and writing are so important for your future it
is really important you catch up. That is exactly what you do. You make truly remarkable
progress in reading, writing and mathematics. We also saw how much you grew in
confidence because you are learning so well. Your exercise books had writing of high quality
that you can be proud of.
The reasons behind your success are straightforward enough to understand although hard to
achieve. You are taught by expert teachers of reading and writing in a school where all the
staff work extremely hard to make sure you are safe and well cared for. They give you back
your confidence. Also, your school is exceptionally well led and run by Mrs Kophamel and her
team of leaders and managers, each committed to making the school even better.
We were able to help, by making two recommendations. The first is for teachers to let you,
the pupils, make a bigger contribution to lessons, to give you more opportunities to have
your say and show what you are capable of. We can only suggest this if you are already
learning really well and already show a strong sense of responsibility. The second is for staff
to become even more expert in helping those few pupils who find managing their behaviour
difficult. Although your parents and carers were 100% behind the school, they, and some of
you, worried occasionally that lessons were sometimes disrupted.
Most of you will leave to go onto secondary high schools. We know from talking to those
schools that Orrets Meadow pupils do well there and put their new skills and confidence to
good use. That was no surprise to us.
Good luck for the future.
Her Majesty's Inspector