St Bonaventure's Catholic Primary School
phone: 0117 3532830
headteacher: Mrs Lucille Charles
420 pupils capacity: 99% full
190 boys 46%
225 girls 54%
Last updated: July 8, 2014
Primary — Voluntary Aided School
- Education phase
- Religious character
- Roman Catholic
- Establishment type
- Voluntary Aided School
- Establishment #
- OSGB coordinates
- Easting: 358548, Northing: 175671
- GPS coordinates
- Latitude: 51.478, Longitude: -2.5983
- Accepting pupils
- 4—11 years old
- Census date
- Jan. 16, 2014
- Ofsted last inspection
- June 12, 2013
- Diocese of Clifton
- Region › Const. › Ward
- South West › Bristol West › Bishopston
- Urban > 10k - less sparse
- Investor in People
- Committed IiP Status
- Free school meals %
- 0.2 miles Bishop Road Primary School BS78LS (731 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Henleaze Junior School BS94LG
- 0.5 miles Henleaze Infant School BS94LG (271 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Redland High School for Girls BS67EF (481 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Claremont School BS94LR (69 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Redland High Junior School BS67EF
- 0.5 miles Redland Green BS67EH
- 0.5 miles Redland Green 16-19 BS67EF
- 0.5 miles Henleaze Junior School BS94LG (378 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Redland Green School BS67EH (1358 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Westbury Park Primary School BS67NU
- 0.6 miles Westbury Park Primary School BS67NU (411 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Ashley Down Primary School BS79PD (449 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Ashley Down Infant School BS79PE (181 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Sefton Park Infant School BS79BJ (218 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Sefton Park Junior School BS79BJ (294 pupils)
- 0.7 miles St Christopher's School BS67JE (34 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Bristol Steiner School BS66UX (215 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Colston's Primary School BS66AL
- 0.8 miles Torwood House School BS66XE (64 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Colstons Girls' School BS65RD
- 0.8 miles Brunel College of Arts and Technology BS79BU
- 0.8 miles Colston's Girls' School BS65RD (736 pupils)
- 0.8 miles The Dolphin School BS65RD (90 pupils)
St Bonaventure's Catholic
Egerton Road, Bishopston, Bristol, BS7 8HP
|Inspection dates||12–13 June 2013|
|Overall effectiveness||This inspection:||Good||2|
|Achievement of pupils||Good||2|
|Quality of teaching||Good||2|
|Behaviour and safety of pupils||Outstanding||1|
|Leadership and management||Good||2|
Summary of key findings for parents and pupils
This is a good school.
It is not yet an outstanding school because:
| Pupils make good progress and achieve well. |
Teaching is good overall and some is
Children in Reception have an outstanding
Pupils’ behaviour and attitudes are stunning.
Children enter school with skills and
understanding expected for their age. By the
time they leave, standards in reading, writing
and mathematics are well above the national
outstanding. Most teachers have strong
subject knowledge and high expectations of
pupils. Learning support assistants support
pupils well in lessons.
start to their life in school. They receive very
effective help and are given exciting and
interesting things to do.
They are passionate about learning and care
deeply about their work and each other.
| Pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural |
The partnership between the headteacher,
Governors play a major part in checking on the
Teamwork and collaboration are essential
development is outstanding. The school’s core
values of trust and respect are deeply
embedded from the outset.
staff, governors and pupils has created a
caring environment where pupils can thrive
personally and achieve well academically.
work of the school. They use their skills well
and strengthen the overall leadership of the
elements of the school’s approach. This is
reflected in pupils’ excellent attitudes to
| Leader and managers do not always focus |
sharply enough on pupils’ progress when
checking the quality of teaching.
| Some teachers’ use of information about |
A number of Year 3 pupils are not making the
pupils’ performance is not carefully enough to
set work at the right level for them.
same progress as their peers.
Information about this inspection
- Twenty three lessons or part lessons and an assembly were observed and every class was
visited. Two visits to lessons were undertaken as joint observations with the headteacher and
deputy headteacher. A short number of visits to classrooms were made to look at pupils’ work in
their books and the range of activities on offer to pupils. Inspectors listened to some pupils in
Year 1 and Year 3 read.
- Discussions were held with the headteacher, other senior leaders and a representative from the
local authority. Two representative groups of pupils from Years 3 to 6 were spoken with to
gather their views about the school and talk to them about their work.
- Two meetings were held with the Chair of the Governing Body and seven other governors.
- Inspectors analysed 102 responses to the Ofsted online questionnaire, Parent View, about the
school and the responses from 12 members of staff to the Ofsted questionnaire.
- A range of documentation was scrutinised, including the school’s plans for improvement, data
and information on pupils’ progress and minutes of governing body meetings. An analysis of the
school’s records of monitoring of teaching and the management of performance was conducted.
- During this inspection, inspectors asked additional questions designed to ascertain the school’s
view on the impact and effectiveness of the local authority services to support school
improvement. The information will contribute to work being carried out by Ofsted to assess the
use, quality and impact of those services.
|Richard Light, Lead inspector||Her Majesty’s Inspector|
|Janet Edwards||Additional Inspector|
|Elizabeth Strange||Additional Inspector|
Information about this school
- The school is a larger than average-sized primary school.
- The proportion of disabled pupils and those who have special educational needs supported at
school action is below average. The proportion supported at school action plus or with a
statement of special educational needs is also below average.
- The proportion of pupils eligible for the pupil premium is below average. This is additional
government funding provided to schools to support pupils who are known to be eligible for free
school meals, those in local authority care and those with a parent or carer in the armed
- There is a privately run pre-school on the school site which was not inspected at this time.
- The school meets the government’s current floor standards, which set the minimum expectations
for pupils’ attainment and progress.
What does the school need to do to improve further?
- Improve the quality of teaching by:
making sure all teachers accurately use the information available about pupils’ prior
achievement to plan challenging activities that better meet their wide range of abilities
providing pupils with clear criteria for what they need to be able to do in order to achieve the
next step in their learning
- Accelerate the rate of progress for pupils in Year 3 to match that of other pupils in the school.
- Ensure that procedures to check on the performance of teachers are firmly rooted in the
progress that pupils are making.
|The achievement of pupils||is good|
- Children enter school with skills and abilities that are generally in line with those expected for
their age. They make outstanding progress in Reception, benefiting from a very well-resourced
environment, a rich variety of activities and regular checks on their learning. Children enter Year
1 with skills above the national average.
- For the past four years standards at the end of Key Stages 1 and 2 in reading, writing and
mathematics have been well above average when measured using average points scores. Pupils
make good progress through Years 1 to 6 so by the time they leave school their standards are
high. Very large proportions reach the expected levels and higher than expected levels for their
age in national tests.
- The progress of pupils entitled to support from the pupil premium is similar to that of other
pupils. The gap in their attainment and that of their peers, which was wide in 2012, is now much
narrower. They now achieve standards similar to the national average in reading and
mathematics and above average in writing.
- Pupils make good progress in reading because of the high-quality teaching and texts used to
stimulate pupils’ interest. This is also having a positive influence on pupils’ writing and reducing
the variation in standards between the two subject areas. In 2012 the gap between achievement
in reading and that in writing was double what was seen nationally. Now it is narrower than the
- Pupils achieve well in mathematics. In lessons they use mathematical language accurately and
develop their understanding of mathematical concepts well. Well-planned independent activities
enable pupils to apply their mathematical knowledge successfully in a variety of problem solving
- Disabled pupils and those who have special educational needs are well provided for. Targeted
programmes such as ‘reading recovery’ help pupils catch up rapidly. Learning support assistants
provide strong support to pupils in lessons and in catch-up programmes. Practical approaches
and aids to enable pupils to access planned activities in lessons help pupils achieve well.
- In lessons, pupils sustain their concentration admirably, persevere at tasks and listen attentively
to teachers. Even when lessons lack imagination, pupils keep up their enthusiasm for learning.
They cooperate very well and are at ease working independently, in pairs or in group situations.
This prepares pupils well for their next stage of education.
- School sports teams, for example in netball, are successful at a national level because of the
specialist teaching they receive. Pupils as young as Year 2 confidently and regularly perform
challenging piano pieces in front of the whole school.
- Most of the 102 parents and carers who responded to the online parent survey said they feel
their children make good progress. In addition, the pupils who met inspectors were extremely
positive about their lessons and the progress they make.
|The quality of teaching||is good|
- Overall, teaching is good across the school. Teachers have strong, technical subject knowledge,
and they need to in order to challenge these very capable pupils. The school’s ‘three-way peer
training plan’ is improving teaching and further deepening teachers’ skills.
- Teaching in Reception is outstanding. Children are given interesting and varied activities that link
together exceptionally well. Plentiful opportunities to apply their skills in phonics (letters and the
sounds they make), for example to write signs for their ‘treasure island’ as part of their work on
an aquarium theme, are developing children’s writing skills rapidly. Independence and self-
motivation are fostered early. Children spontaneously record their own work, such as number
sentences when carrying out a fish spotting activity.
- Where teaching is best, lessons ensure that pupils’ needs are well met through effective learning
sequences. High expectations, good modelling of tasks, personalised feedback and deep
questioning that requires pupils to think hard routinely challenge and support pupils’ learning.
- Where teaching is less effective, teachers talk for too long and the pace of learning slows. In
Year 3, information is not used carefully enough to plan work at the right level for pupils’ needs.
This means that work is sometimes too easy for them.
- Paired work is used effectively to develop pupils’ use of language throughout the school. In Year
2, pupils animatedly discussed baby pictures of themselves when studying growth and
differences. In Year 4, pupils excitedly explored the impact of using different adjectives in their
writing. In Year 6, an open-ended mathematical investigation into Fibonacci’s sequence
prompted pupils to devise their own questions such as ‘What if you extend the sequence?’ and
‘Are there any different patterns using the multiples of 9?’
- Teachers use carefully considered questions and give pupils time to think about and deepen
their understanding. The visual interpretation of a word problem in a Year 5 mathematics lesson
that focused on the method pupils used, and not the answer, was highly effective. This gave
time for pupils to carefully use mathematical language when expressing and exploring their
- The teaching of reading is strong. Teachers know the technical aspects of text structures and
how language works. Pupils are taught how to manipulate texts to create an effect. Teachers
check carefully language and punctuation use during lessons. Pupils were heard to explain why
they had used commas in a clause and more importantly, what impact this had on the reader.
- Examples of advanced and mature comments made by older pupils have established a highly
developed learning dialogue with teachers. This style of thoughtful work, both on the part of the
teacher and pupils, is highly skilled. However, many other pupils are unclear of what the criteria
is for their next step in learning and what they need to do to get there.
|The behaviour and safety of pupils||are outstanding|
- Pupils’ behaviour is exemplary. An exceptionally friendly and polite atmosphere permeates the
school. Pupils get on very well with each other and with adults. They enjoy school and are
extremely keen to learn. There is a deep dislike of any poor behaviour; a hushed silence of
shock descended the class when a teacher thought a pupil might be chewing a sweet during a
lesson; he was not!
- Pupils respond extremely positively to the high expectations of them in lessons. Their behaviour
and attitudes make a particularly powerful contribution to their own learning.
- The typically inclusive nature of the school is summed up by the pupils who told an inspector of
their wish that a new pupil could speak English ‘so we could tell him we are nice, kind and
friendly, because he is blind and he can’t see us smiling’.
- Pupils are very quick to help and support each other in classes and around the school. On seeing
a younger pupil struggle with her shoelace on the playground an older pupil stopped to help.
When asked if it was her sister, the younger pupil replied ‘No, I’m not sure who that was, but it
really helped because I find tying my laces very hard.’
- Pupils are extremely confident, mature and knowledgeable about their own needs and the needs
of others. Independence is fostered right from the word go. Even at the age of four, children
carry out activities, follow instructions and complete tasks by themselves in a trustworthy
manner. These early routines are effectively built upon through the school.
- Pupils have a very good understanding of different types of bullying. They say it is extremely
rare and any problems are quickly dealt with. Pupils have a very thorough understanding of how
to stay safe, including e-safety.
- Pupils act safely and feel very safe in school. Parents and carers are overwhelmingly positive
about the school’s ability to keep their children safe.
- Pupils’ attendance is good because they thoroughly enjoy coming to school.
|The leadership and management||are good|
- The headteacher, in combination with other senior leaders, is determined to bring about further
improvements to the school. The conscientious, reflective and calm style of leadership has
engendered a great amount of trust among the staff and wider community. These characteristics
are complemented well by the different skills of other senior leaders and all combine to make an
- The school knows its strengths and areas for further development well through the wide
programme of activities to check on the quality of teaching and pupils’ progress. This
information is shared fully with governors. However, the scrutiny of books and lesson
observations do not place a sharp enough focus on the progress pupils are making when
forming judgements about a teacher’s performance.
- Leaders and managers reacted methodically to a dip in results in 2012. The revised school
improvement plan is mature, ambitious and reflects a deeper understanding of learning. Its
success can be seen in the improved quality of subject leadership in English and mathematics,
science and information and communication technology (ICT). Training through a peer study
approach is helping to improve teaching, demonstrating the school’s good capacity for further
- The curriculum’s depth and richness are developing pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural
awareness outstandingly well. Visitors to the school, a wide variety of trips, many after-school
activities and the chance to perform to real audiences raise pupils’ aspirations.
- Performance management arrangements provide support and appropriate training for teachers.
More challenging targets in 2012 that are linked to the school improvement plan priorities, the
Teachers’ Standards and pupils’ achievement have raised expectations and improved teaching
which is now mostly good or better. Teachers are aware of the relationship between
performance management, promotion and salaries.
- The local authority is effective in supporting and challenging the school to improve. Direct
support to the headteacher by the school improvement officer has strengthened the quality of
leadership in the school. Advice and support to school leaders to learn from outstanding practice
have improved the quality of teaching. Training provided to governors is helping them interpret
school data robustly and carry out their performance management duties. Firm challenge to the
school, following a dip in its performance in 2012, by carrying out additional monitoring visits
has raised expectations and is improving pupils’ achievement.
- The governance of the school:
The governing body is highly skilled and effective. Governors strengthen the overall leadership
of the school considerably. Governors are acutely aware of the school’s strengths and
weaknesses. They are highly ambitious for further improvements. They use the good quality
information provided for them to ask searching questions about the performance of different
groups of pupils. They make sure the pupil premium is well spent and check that the pupils
entitled to the funding are benefiting from its use. Governors are fully supportive of the
school, but also consistently challenge its performance. A series of paired visits to the school
to gain first-hand evidence helps fully inform governors of the impact of school improvement
plans. Consequently, governors are very aware of how good teaching is in the school and how
priorities set in the school improvement plan are helping to make it even better. They know
that an even sharper focus on the progress of all pupils will help the school become
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||109255|
|Local authority||Bristol City of|
This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.
|Type of school||Voluntary aided school|
|Age range of pupils||4–11|
|Gender of pupils||Mixed|
|Number of pupils on the school roll||406|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Date of previous school inspection||14–15 October 2008|
|Telephone number||0117 9247212|
|Fax number||0117 9428127|