Saint Mary Magdalene Church of England Primary School
phone: 020 88543531
headteacher: Mrs Claire Harrison
840 pupils capacity: 48% full
185 boys 46%
220 girls 55%
Last updated: Sept. 1, 2014
Primary — Voluntary Aided School
- Education phase
- Religious character
- Church of England
- Establishment type
- Voluntary Aided School
- Establishment #
- OSGB coordinates
- Easting: 543204, Northing: 178925
- GPS coordinates
- Latitude: 51.491, Longitude: 0.061326
- Accepting pupils
- 3—11 years old
- Census date
- Jan. 16, 2014
- Ofsted last inspection
- Oct. 23, 2012
- Diocese of Southwark
- Region › Const. › Ward
- London › Greenwich and Woolwich › Woolwich Riverside
- Urban > 10k - less sparse
- Free school meals %
- 0.1 miles Cyril Henry Nursery School SE185AP
- 0.1 miles Mulgrave Infant and Nursery School SE185DA
- 0.2 miles Mulgrave Primary School SE185DL (521 pupils)
- 0.2 miles Pulse and Water College SE186PF
- 0.3 miles Right Choice Project SE186BB (23 pupils)
- 0.4 miles Cardwell Primary School SE185LP (488 pupils)
- 0.4 miles St Peter's Catholic Primary School SE187BN (210 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Woodhill Primary School SE185JE (540 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Foxfield Primary School SE187EX (625 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Foxfield Infant School SE187EX
- 0.6 miles ASD Learning Centre - Woolwich SE186SW
- 0.7 miles Nightingale Primary School SE187JJ (238 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Notre Dame Catholic Primary School SE183SJ (207 pupils)
- 0.7 miles New Directions E162LS (172 pupils)
- 0.7 miles University Technical College, Royal Borough of Greenwich SE78LJ (281 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Woolwich Common Nursery School SE184DJ
- 0.8 miles Foxhill Centre SE183AT
- 0.8 miles St Margaret's Church of England Primary School SE187RL (295 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Storey Primary School E162LS
- 0.8 miles Greenwich Community College at Plumstead Centre SE187DQ
- 0.8 miles Holborn College SE78LN
- 0.9 miles Pound Park Nursery School SE78AF (185 pupils)
- 0.9 miles South Rise Junior School SE187PX
- 0.9 miles South Rise Infant School SE187PX
Saint Mary Magdalene
Church of England Primary School
Kingsman Street, London, SE18 5PW
|Inspection dates||23–24 October 2012|
|Overall effectiveness||This inspection:||Outstanding||1|
|Achievement of pupils||Outstanding||1|
|Quality of teaching||Outstanding||1|
|Behaviour and safety of pupils||Outstanding||1|
|Leadership and management||Outstanding||1|
Summary of key findings for parents and pupils
This is an outstanding school.
| Exceptionally skilled leadership, vibrant |
In English and mathematics, pupils’
Teachers’ outstanding use of imaginative and
All teachers have consistently high
learning experiences and high-quality
teaching enable pupils to achieve
attainment at the end of Year 6 is much
higher than in most schools nationally.
innovative methods captures pupils’ interest
and enthusiasm. As a result all pupils,
regardless of their starting points, make
expectations of pupils. Their first-rate
marking of pupils’ work and constructive
guidance in lessons guide their next steps in
| Pupils’ behaviour is excellent and they feel |
Leaders, staff and governors have secured
The range of work covered in Years 1 to 6 is
The school’s very caring atmosphere underpins
extremely safe. Pupils enjoy attending very
much and many hardly miss a day in school.
excellence in nearly every aspect of the
school’s work. They continually check on what
works well and what needs improving to
ensure that pupils’ needs are fully met.
highly imaginative and practical and meets the
interests and aspirations of all pupils in the
pupils’ excellent spiritual, moral, social and
Information about this inspection
- The inspection team observed teaching in parts of 19 lessons. Two joint observations were
conducted with the headteacher and deputy headteacher.
- Discussions were held with senior staff, teachers, two representatives of the governing body, a
representative from the local authority and pupils.
- Inspectors analysed a range of documentation including, the school’s checks on its performance,
plans for improvement, day-to-day health and safety arrangements, including checks on staffing,
policies and records of pupils’ progress.
- The inspection team took account of 11 responses to the online ‘Parent View’ survey, along with
the schools’ recent survey of parents’ and carers’ views.
|Kewal Goel, Lead inspector||Additional inspector|
|Kath Beck||Additional inspector|
|Peter Thrussell||Additional inspector|
Information about this school
- The school is currently expanding. The Early Years Foundation Stage consists of a Nursery and
two Reception classes. There are two classes in each year group from Years 1 to 3 and one class
in Years 4, 5 and 6.
- The school moved into a new building on its original site in March 2011.
- The proportion of pupils from minority ethnic heritages is well above the national average, as is
the proportion of those who speak English as an additional language.
- The proportion of pupils supported through extra ‘pupil premium’ funding is above the national
- The proportion of disabled pupils and those with special educational needs supported by school
action is similar to most schools.
- The proportion of pupils with severe special educational needs, supported by school action plus
or with a statement of special educational needs, is higher than usually found.
- The senior leadership team provides support for a local primary school.
- The school meets the current government floor standards, which set the minimum expectations
for pupils’ attainment and progress.
What does the school need to do to improve further?
- Help all children to develop independence and make even more rapid progress in the Early Years
Foundation Stage by allowing them to choose more of their activities themselves, solve harder
problems and talk with adults about what they are learning.
|The achievement of pupils||is outstanding|
- The school has been extremely successful in sustaining pupils’ high levels of achievement during
its rapid expansion. All groups of pupils make excellent progress. By the time they leave, pupils
are very well prepared for their time in secondary school. Their essential skills in English and
mathematics are mastered to a high degree and they are confident in applying them in different
- Pupils of all ages read widely and with enjoyment. Their writing is lively, imaginative and
captures the interest and emotions of the reader. Pupils cover a great deal of work in
mathematics and are confident in tackling mathematical ideas that are not usually encountered
until they are much older.
- Children join the school with skills and knowledge that are below expectations for their age.
They make good progress in the Nursery, especially in their personal, social and emotional
development. They continue to make good progress in the Reception classes, especially when in
developing their early reading, writing and mathematical skills. A few children are not confident
to learn on their own, solve difficult problems without adult help or discuss what they are
learning. However, nearly all start Year 1 with levels of knowledge, skills and understanding that
are much higher than those usually found for their age.
- Teachers ensure that pupils build extremely well on their previous learning in Key Stage 1. Much
of the teaching appeals to pupils’ interests and imagination. They make rapid gains in their
reading, writing and mathematical skills. Most enter Year 3 writing confidently, using joined up
handwriting, and using their excellent knowledge of the sounds letters make to spell correctly.
- Pupils who are capable of doing harder work rise to the challenges provided by their teachers
and make outstanding progress. In 2012, 50% of pupils attained higher than expected levels of
attainment in English and more than 60% in mathematics.
- Skilled and directed support for disabled pupils, those with special educational needs and those
who speak English as an additional language, means they make excellent progress. Some have
individually planned activities that meet their specific needs very well. The use of the extra ‘pupil
premium’ funding is highly effective, so that those pupils for whom it provides support make
- Making sure everyone gets an equal chance to succeed, while valuing the differences in
backgrounds and beliefs of pupils, is central to the work of the school. Many lessons include
activities related to the different cultures in the school. This makes learning meaningful and
relevant to everyday life. For example, when learning about how shapes fit together, Year 2
pupils explored the patterns in clothing materials from Nigeria and Ghana.
|The quality of teaching||is outstanding|
- Teaching is consistently outstanding in Years 1 to 6. Teachers have high expectations of what
pupils can do, they plan motivating and captivating learning experiences, use skilful questioning
and place a strong emphasis on the basic skills of literacy and numeracy.
- Teachers make clear at the start of every lesson what pupils are expected to learn in their work,
and the high level of challenge set helps them to achieve as well as they can. This makes a very
important contribution to the rapid rates of pupils’ learning.
- Teachers use a variety of approaches to meet and respond to pupils’ different learning needs. As
a result, pupils are highly interested and motivated to learn and make outstanding progress. For
example, in Year 6, pupils responded really well to the teacher’s high level of challenge to
explore ways to make a reader react to a piece of writing. Pupils conscientiously shared their
ideas about the feelings of two young evacuees, one who was sad and the other who saw it as a
time of adventure. Their determination to write about how one or the other character may have
felt was first rate.
- Teachers’ planning is thorough and takes into account fully the skills pupils need to learn in all
subjects. Staff use their exceptionally creative ideas and expertise to make sure that activities
are closely matched to the age, abilities and interests of their pupils.
- Newly appointed staff in the Early Years Foundation Stage are generally skilful at developing a
wide range of children’s skills. For example, when children are working with grown-ups on early
reading, writing and mathematical skills, they make rapid progress and learn good work habits.
However, from time to time, their planning of activities does not take into account fully the
opportunities for a few children to be more independent in their learning or to develop their
ideas to the full.
- Arrangements to provide specialist support and teaching for disabled pupils and those with
special educational needs are highly effective and enable them to make excellent progress. For
example, teachers’ positive and sensitive response to pupils with behavioural difficulties ensures
that pupils remain fully interested and no learning time is lost. Teaching assistants demonstrate
excellent understanding of pupils’ needs and support them very effectively.
- High-quality marking of pupils’ work and constructive guidance by teachers involve pupils in
deciding what to do next and how to influence their own learning. Pupils say they like the time
to consider the comments made about their work so that they are actively involved. They take
pride in what they do well and know they too are responsible for making sure they do as well as
|The behaviour and safety of pupils||are outstanding|
- Pupils’ energetic and lively enthusiasm is, through high-quality teaching, channelled into very
positive attitudes to learning. Pupils take pride in presenting their work to high standards,
working collaboratively, listening to different points of view and sharing their ideas to help one
another learn. Often there is a buzz in the class, and sometimes it is almost possible to hear a
pin drop as pupils concentrate on the task in hand.
- Relationships are excellent. Pupils behave exceptionally well in lessons and around school. They
are well mannered and polite to one another and to adults. Scrutiny of behaviour records and
discussions with pupils and staff show that this is typical over time.
- Pupils are exceptionally well motivated about learning and enjoy being in school. All know they
have a responsibility to care for others and to look after the new school building. Not
surprisingly, they enjoy attending and most of them miss very few days..
- Pupils take on a range of responsibilities and carry them out in a mature way. They are
‘Guardian Angels’ for new nursery and reception children, play-deck buddies, monitors,
lunchtime helpers, and stair and hall monitors. These roles make very important contributions to
their high levels of personal development.
- Pupils feel extremely safe and secure. They told inspectors that if they have any concerns,
teachers and other staff deal with them promptly. School records show that bullying is rare and
dealt with robustly and successfully. Pupils have a very good understanding of different forms of
bullying and know about internet safety.
- The school sets clear and consistent boundaries for ensuring pupils’ excellent behaviour. Safety
routines are systematic and consistent. All pupils know the ‘Golden Rules’ and understand the
consequences if they choose to misbehave or do the wrong thing.
- A number of school-based records on behaviour indicate excellent improvements over time for
individuals and groups who have found it hard to live up to the school’s high expectations of
behaviour and care for others.
|The leadership and management||are outstanding|
- Exceptionally skilled leaders, managers and staff have ensured that high levels of achievement
have been maintained during the school’s rapid growth. They have continued the successful
drive to maintain and improve all aspects of the school since the previous inspection.
- Senior leaders are willing to ‘lead from the front’ to ensure that the school continues to improve.
Their accurate checks on how well the school is performing, which lead to very clear steps for
action, mean that any weaknesses are remedied very quickly.
- All teachers and teaching assistants have clear targets for improvement which are checked upon
regularly. This has had an exceptional impact on raising the quality of teaching and learning
across the school because all staff know exactly what is required of them. Pay rates and salary
progression are linked closely and effectively to the quality of teaching. Governors are fully
involved in implementing robust performance management systems that challenge staff to
improve their skills in teaching, which in turn contribute greatly to the outstanding achievement
- The school’s strong caring atmosphere has a great impact on the daily life of the school and, as
a result the level of pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is high. The school
places high value on developing pupils’ basic literacy and numeracy skills, reflection, expression
of feelings and independent learning.
- A new curriculum helps teachers to be creative and pupils to be imaginative in developing their
knowledge and understanding across different subjects. Films, drama, and the creative arts
particularly allow pupils to express their original ideas.
- The school works very well with parents and carers, the local community and other schools. It
has a dedicated home-school link worker who supports families who may need help and advice.
- The school’s arrangements for safeguarding are maintained to a very high degree, including staff
vetting procedures and day-to-day health and safety arrangements.
- The local authority has taken a light touch approach to the school, given the school's track
record of performance. It uses the expertise of senior staff to support the raising of attaimment
in another school.
- The governance of the school:
All members of the governing body share the same high expectations for the pupils as the
senior leadership team. They monitor the effectiveness of the school rigorously and its
comparative performance in relation to other schools nationally. The governors challenge the
senior leaders robustly on proposed changes, such as the new staffing and leadership
arrangements and the curriculum. They have a thorough understanding of pupils’ performance
and question senior leaders to ensure that areas for improvement are dealt with quickly. They
manage the budget efficiently, using the ‘pupil premium’ additional funds to ensure even the
most vulnerable pupils make rapid progress.
What inspection judgements mean
|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.
|Unique reference number||100171|
This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.
|Type of school||Primary|
|School category||Voluntary aided|
|Age range of pupils||3–11|
|Gender of pupils||Mixed|
|Number of pupils on the school roll||360|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Headteacher||Mrs Claire Harrison|
|Date of previous school inspection||5–6 December 2007|
|Telephone number||020 8854 3531|
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