St Francis' Catholic Primary School
phone: 020 85340476
headteacher: Mrs Natasha Scott
420 pupils capacity: 110% full
260 boys 56%
205 girls 44%
Last updated: Sept. 16, 2014
Primary — Voluntary Aided School
- Education phase
- Religious character
- Roman Catholic
- Establishment type
- Voluntary Aided School
- Establishment #
- Open date
- Sept. 1, 1992
- OSGB coordinates
- Easting: 539224, Northing: 185147
- GPS coordinates
- Latitude: 51.548, Longitude: 0.0064926
- Accepting pupils
- 3—11 years old
- Census date
- Jan. 16, 2014
- Ofsted last inspection
- Jan. 30, 2013
- Ofsted special measures
- In special measures
- Diocese of Brentwood
- Region › Const. › Ward
- London › West Ham › Forest Gate North
- Urban > 10k - less sparse
- Free school meals %
- St Francis' RC Infant School E151HB
- St Francis' RC Junior School E151HD
- 0.1 miles Maryland Primary School E151SL (461 pupils)
- 0.1 miles Maryland Infant School E151SL
- 0.1 miles East London Independent Special School E151HB (62 pupils)
- 0.1 miles Hafs Academy E151JW (53 pupils)
- 0.2 miles Colegrave Primary School E151JY (585 pupils)
- 0.2 miles Colegrave Infant School E151JY
- 0.3 miles Ronald Openshaw Nursery School E151JP (94 pupils)
- 0.3 miles Sarah Bonnell School E154LP (1177 pupils)
- 0.4 miles Stratford Circus E151BX
- 0.5 miles Earlham Primary School E79AW (376 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Odessa Infant School E79BY (340 pupils)
- 0.5 miles St James' CofE Junior School E79DA (339 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Downsell Junior School E152BS
- 0.5 miles Downsell Primary School E152BS (653 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Jenny Hammond Primary School E113JN (263 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Park Infant School E154AB
- 0.6 miles Park Primary School E154AE (504 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Gurney School E79HW
- 0.6 miles Azhar Academy E79HL (245 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Stratford College London E154PH
- 0.6 miles The Woodlands Montessori Preparatory School E152DD
- 0.6 miles UK Community College E154QS
St Francis' Catholic Primary
Maryland Park, London, E15 1HB
|Inspection dates||22–23 October 2014|
|Overall effectiveness||This inspection:||Requires improvement||3|
|Leadership and management||Good||2|
|Behaviour and safety of pupils||Good||2|
|Quality of teaching||Requires improvement||3|
|Achievement of pupils||Requires improvement||3|
|Early years provision||Requires improvement||3|
Summary of key findings for parents and pupils
This is a school that requires improvement. It is not good because
The school has the following strengths
| Not enough pupils make good progress, |
The information that the teachers collect about
In some lessons teachers do not check how well
particularly in writing. Too few pupils reach the
higher levels of attainment by the end of Year 2.
Too few reach higher levels in writing by Year 6.
what pupils know and can do is not always used
effectively. Some work is too easy for pupils and
too hard for others.
pupils are doing and adjust the activity to secure
faster rates of learning and progress.
| Teaching is not consistently good enough for pupils |
Not all teachers mark pupils’ work well enough so
Staff in the early years do not use information well
to make good progress over time, especially in
writing. Pupils do not have enough opportunities to
write at length or to use their writing skills in other
that pupils know how to improve. Marking in
subjects other than English and mathematics does
not help pupils to improve their writing skills
enough to build on children’s learning and to
measure their progress from their starting points.
| Pupils’ behaviour has improved and is good. Pupils |
The school promotes pupils’ spiritual, moral, social
The proportion of pupils reaching the levels
are polite and keen to do their best. They feel
safe and are looked after well.
and cultural development effectively. Music, in
particular, provides pupils with memorable and
enjoyable learning experiences.
expected for their age in reading, writing and
mathematics is rising.
| Strong leadership from the headteacher has driven |
Leaders, including members of the governing body,
improvements and developed the skills of other
leaders. This gives the school the capacity to keep
have raised expectations and have eradicated weak
teaching. They are determined to secure further
|Inspection report:||St Francis' Catholic Primary School, 22−23 October 2014||2 of 9|
Information about this inspection
- Inspectors observed the school’s work and looked at a number of documents, including information on
pupils’ current attainment and progress, improvement planning, the use of pupil premium and sport
funding, and records relating to behaviour, attendance and safeguarding.
- Inspectors visited 16 lessons, of which three were observed jointly with senior leaders. They looked at
pupils’ work, sometimes with senior leaders.
- Inspectors observed break times and lunch time, as well as attending an assembly.
- Inspectors met with two groups of pupils to talk to them about their work.
- Inspectors met senior and middle leaders, members of the governing body, and a representative from the
- The team analysed the 52 responses to the online questionnaire, Parent View, and spoke briefly with
some parents and carers who attended the African drumming assembly.
- Inspectors analysed 31 questionnaires completed by staff.
- Evidence from monitoring inspections in May and December of 2013 and in March and June of 2014 was
also taken into account.
|Jane Wotherspoon, Lead inspector||Her Majesty’s Inspector|
|Mary Hinds||Her Majesty’s Inspector|
|Inspection report:||St Francis' Catholic Primary School, 22−23 October 2014||3 of 9|
In accordance with section 13 (4) of the Education Act 2005, Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector is of the opinion
that the school no longer requires special measures.
Information about this school
- When the school was inspected in January 2013, it was deemed to require special measures.
Improvements were required to the quality of teaching and to leadership and management, including
- There have been significant changes in staff since the inspection in 2013, including at senior level. The
headteacher joined the school in September 2013 along with several new senior staff and teachers. Five
teachers joined the school in September 2014.
- The school is larger than average. It provides part-time places for nursery-aged children who attend either
five mornings or five afternoons.
- Almost all pupils are from minority ethnic groups, with those from Black African and Black Caribbean
heritages together forming about half the school. About a third of pupils speak English as an additional
language; this is higher than average.
- The proportion of pupils known to be eligible for the pupil premium is broadly average. The funding is
used to support pupils who are eligible for free school meals and children who are looked after.
- The proportion of disabled pupils and those who have special educational needs supported by school
action is below average. The proportion supported through school action plus and those that have
statements of special educational needs are broadly average.
- In 2013, the school met the government’s floor standard, which sets the minimum expectations for pupils’
attainment and progress.
What does the school need to do to improve further?
- Secure consistently good or better teaching across all year groups and subjects to improve rates of pupils’
planning activities that are not too easy or too hard for pupils of different abilities, and especially to
challenge the more-able pupils
changing activities in response to pupils’ understanding so that the learning is at a faster pace in
giving pupils more opportunities to write at length and to use their writing skills in subjects across the
making sure that the good quality marking in some year groups happens in every class and all subjects
so that pupils have detailed feedback about what they have done well and what they need to do next.
- Build on the recent improvements to provision in the early years by:
securing greater consistency in the way that records of children’s individual learning are compiled and
the information is used to ensure activities build on what children can do already
making sure that observations of children’s learning are transferred into an accurate record of their
starting points from which their progress can be measured.
|Inspection report:||St Francis' Catholic Primary School, 22-23 October 2014||4 of 9|
|The leadership and management||are good|
- The headteacher provides good leadership. She has driven rapid improvements since joining the school a
year ago. She has not held back from making difficult decisions and taking determined action to improve
the quality of teaching. As a result, both the quality of teaching and pupils’ achievement are improving
strongly. Both staff and governors share her high aspirations.
- Senior leaders check the impact of their work in improving the quality of teaching rigorously. Priorities for
improvement are based on robust evidence and accurate information about pupils’ performance. The
recent sharp focus on reading has been highly successful.
- The headteacher has chosen new middle leaders carefully to bolster the effectiveness of leadership and
management and to strengthen the school’s capacity to improve. She has invested much time and
expertise to strengthen their skills as leaders. They are fully responsible and held to account for their
areas of responsibility including the quality of teaching and pupils’ achievement. For example, the new
early years leader has already made significant changes to the provision in this key stage.
- All staff are held to account for the progress their pupils make, including support staff. They are set
challenging targets based on individual professional needs and linked to the school’s priorities. Progress
towards their targets is reviewed regularly. Staff feel well supported and make full use of training and
support to improve their practice further.
- The school promotes equality of opportunity and tackles discrimination effectively. Staff have created an
ethos in which all pupils are valued and which encourages them to value the contributions of others.
Leaders use the pupil premium funding effectively so that all pupils have access to a full range of subjects
- The subjects, themes and topics that pupils are taught are broad and relevant to their interests and
needs. Pupils have many visits and visitors to enrich their learning. While teachers focus on creating
opportunities for pupils to write in English and in other subjects, they do not ensure that pupils write for
extended periods of time. Furthermore, they do not reinforce literacy skills through their marking of other
- Pupils have good opportunities to broaden their experience and understanding of the world and of life in
modern Britain. Religious festivals are celebrated as is the diversity of cultures within the school. The
Catholic ethos permeates school life. Pupils’ personal development is promoted effectively through a range
of opportunities to take on responsibilities and to work in the service of others.
- The primary sport funding is used well. Teachers have benefited from working alongside sports coaches to
improve their teaching of physical education. Pupils are fitter and healthier. They say that they enjoy a
much wider range of sporting activities.
- The local authority has provided valuable support for the school during its time in special measures.
Officers have worked with leaders to strengthen the quality of teaching, including eliminating inadequate
teaching. They have also supported governors through a programme of training tailored to their needs.
- The governance of the school:
Governors are as ambitious for the school as the headteacher. They are much more adept at holding
senior leaders to account for the quality of their work than in the past. A range of training enables them
to make better use of data. The appointment of new governors has strengthened the governing body
and more members are taking an active role. Minutes from their meetings show that governors leave no
stone unturned. They ask leaders challenging questions, and they have begun to gather their own
independent information through a planned programme of visits linked to the school’s priorities.
Governors have reviewed pupil premium spending and have a good understanding of the impact this
has on the achievement of those pupils who are entitled to additional support.
Governors have supported leaders in taking tough decisions to improve the quality of teaching. They
ensure that any increases in teachers’ pay are linked to their performance. They set the headteacher’s
targets and review progress diligently.
Governors check that arrangements to keep pupils safe are up to date and meet current requirements.
|The behaviour and safety of pupils||are good|
- The behaviour of pupils is good. Pupils appreciate the clear system for rewards and sanctions that are
implemented consistently by all staff. They like the recognition they get for trying their best and behaving
well. Equally, they understand the consequences of any inappropriate behaviour. The number of incidents
is small given the size of the school. The school’s evaluation of the impact of the behaviour policy shows
its positive effect in improving behaviour over time.
|Inspection report:||St Francis' Catholic Primary School, 22-23 October 2014||5 of 9|
- Pupils have positive attitudes to learning and they rise to the teachers’ high expectations. They enjoy
school and are keen to learn; this has a positive impact on their achievement.
- Pupils are respectful and kind to others. They listen and cooperate well together, both inside and outside
the classroom. They take pride in their work and, as a result, the presentation of their work has improved
- The school’s values are promoted well through strong relationships between adults and pupils, and
through assemblies. Pupils genuinely enjoy celebrating each other’s achievements. For example, pupils
listened intently to their friends playing the African drums and at the end of the performance applauded
- Pupils welcome the opportunities that they are provided to sing, to learn to play a musical instrument and
to attend sports clubs. The older pupils appreciate the residential visits arranged in Year 6.
- The school’s work to keep pupils safe and secure is good. Pupils have confidence that adults will sort out
their concerns. The learning mentor provides good support and advice for pupils. There are few incidents
of bullying. Pupils have a good understanding of all types of bullying, including cyber bullying. They are
able to demonstrate maturity in keeping themselves safe, including when using the internet. Attendance is
above average and the learning mentors follow up lateness and absence rigorously.
|The quality of teaching||requires improvement|
- Teaching is not yet consistently good. The mixed picture of teaching quality over time is still present.
However, the quality of teaching is improving and weaknesses are being eradicated. Importantly, teachers
reflect on their practice and are keen to improve.
- Pockets of good teaching lead to good achievement; for example, the systematic and consistent approach
to teaching reading has led to much success. As a result, pupils make good progress in reading. Senior
leaders are working hard to achieve the same level of consistency in the teaching of writing and
- Scrutiny of pupils’ work shows mainly consistent approaches in marking. At its best, teachers’ marking
gives pupils clear pointers of what to do next. Time is allowed for pupils to follow up on comments and so
consolidate their learning. Marking in other subjects is more variable. There are not enough examples of
pupils writing at length. This leads to lost opportunities to maximise learning and for pupils to use their
skills across subjects.
- By and large, activities engage pupils and make them keen to learn. The work is not always matched to
the right levels. In particular, teachers do not always expect enough of the more-able pupils who are
capable of achieving more. This is especially evident in subjects other than English and mathematics
where often all pupils are given the same tasks.
- The teaching and learning policy sets out clear expectations of the kind of environment that teachers
should create in their classroom to which all teachers adhere. Teachers have high expectations of pupils’
behaviour, and relationships are positive so pupils want to do well for their teachers.
- Where teaching is having a positive impact on pupils’ learning and progress, teachers’ expectations of
what pupils will have learnt by the of the lesson are patently clear. Activities are presented in an
interesting way that enthuse pupils. Where teaching is not so strong, pupils’ learning is not pushed on at a
fast enough pace, especially for more-able pupils. This feature was apparent in lessons during the
inspection and is evident in the pupils’ written work.
|The achievement of pupils||requires improvement|
- Children start the nursery class with skills, knowledge and understanding which are sometimes below what
is typical for their age. Some children have poor language and communication skills and/or speak little
English. In the past, children have not always achieved as well as they should in this key stage, but
progress is now beginning to speed up.
- In 2014, attainment at the end of Year 2 and Year 6 was broadly average in reading, writing and
mathematics. Most pupils made the progress expected of them during Key Stage 2 except in writing.
Pupils’ written work is improving as they learn to edit their work, but pupils do not write at length or in a
sustained way in other subjects.
|Inspection report:||St Francis' Catholic Primary School, 22-23 October 2014||6 of 9|
- In 2014, few pupils reached the higher levels in all subjects in Key Stage 1, and in writing in Key Stage 2.
Most-able pupils are not always challenged enough in lessons to make the progress they should.
- Throughout all key stages, pupils’ progress is beginning to speed up and, as a result, attainment is rising
in most year groups. Better teaching means that there is now much less variability in the rates of progress
than in the past.
- In 2013 those pupils eligible for the pupil premium made slower progress than all other pupils and the
attainment gap in Year 6 was just over a year in mathematics, almost a term and a half in reading and a
term in writing. In 2014, school information shows that this gap has almost closed. This is the result of
targeted teaching to boost the achievement of these pupils.
- Likewise, there have been improvements in pupils’ knowledge of phonics (the link between letters and the
sounds they represent). The proportion meeting the expected standard in the Year 1 check is now in line
with the national average.
- The school’s systematic approach to teaching reading has improved pupils’ reading skills significantly.
Pupils read fluently and have a real love of reading. Attainment in reading is rising.
- Those pupils who are at risk of underachieving are identified quickly and have additional support to close
any potential gaps in their learning. There are no significant differences in the achievement of different
groups of pupils, including those that speak English as an additional language.
- Disabled pupils and those with special educational needs make similar progress to all other pupils. They
have targeted support to meet their needs from their teachers and from teaching assistants.
|The early years provision||requires improvement|
- Provision in the early years continues to improve. Children choose from a wide range of interesting and
varied activities. More everyday activities are provided now to support children’s mathematical
development. New climbing equipment provides a healthy challenge for children’s risk taking and the
development of physical skills.
- Children are confident to explore and investigate because they feel safe and are kept safe. They play
cooperatively together and take turns well. Adults model expected behaviour and, as a result, children
show respect and consideration for others.
- Small numbers in the nursery mean that children have plenty of space to explore their surroundings and
learn about the world around them. A determined focus on developing children’s communication and
language skills helps those who are quiet or who speak little English to catch up quickly. Adults teach
children new words and model how to speak clearly in sentences.
- Despite some weaknesses in the provision last year, attainment at the end of the Reception Year was
much better in 2014 than in 2013. Although communication and language, reading and writing are weaker
aspects of children’s learning, the proportion meeting expected levels in these areas was higher than the
national figures. This group of children was well prepared for Year 1.
- The new leader has made a positive start. She is well aware of aspects that require further improvement
and has appropriate plans to develop provision further. The new system for making observations of
children’s learning is promising. Nevertheless, it is undermined by inconsistencies in the way that staff
compile the records of children’s learning so that they can use the information to build on what children
can already do.
- The quality and frequency of observations of children’s learning are better than in the past. However, the
information is not used to create an accurate record of children’s starting points in order to measure their
progress over time.
- Links with parents are productive and staff seek to engage parents in their children’s learning. For
example, during inspection, a presentation of the work children have been doing linked to Black History
Month was well attended by parents.
|Inspection report:||St Francis' Catholic Primary School, 22−23 October 2014||7 of 9|
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
|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
|Inspection report:||St Francis' Catholic Primary School, 22−23 October 2014||8 of 9|
|Unique reference number||102770|
This inspection was carried out under section 8 of the Education Act 2005. The inspection was also deemed a
section 5 inspection under the same Act.
|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||450|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Date of previous school inspection||January 2013|