School etc

Stimpson Avenue Primary School Closed - for academy March 31, 2014

see new Stimpson Avenue Academy

Stimpson Avenue Primary School
Stimpson Avenue

phone: 01604 *** ***

headteacher: Mrs Iris McBrearty

school holidays: via Northamptonshire council

485 pupils aged 2—10y mixed gender
420 pupils capacity: 114% full

255 boys 53%

≤ 263y344a74b84c115y336y307y368y299y3110y30

230 girls 47%

≤ 243y244a104b84c165y276y307y238y309y2810y30

Last updated: June 20, 2014

Primary — Community School

Education phase
Establishment type
Community School
Establishment #
Close date
March 31, 2014
Reason closed
For Academy
OSGB coordinates
Easting: 476819, Northing: 261336
GPS coordinates
Latitude: 52.245, Longitude: -0.8763
Accepting pupils
4—11 years old
Census date
Jan. 16, 2014
Ofsted last inspection
July 2, 2013
Region › Const. › Ward
East Midlands › Northampton North › Abington
Urban > 10k - less sparse
Free school meals %

rooms to rent in Northampton

Schools nearby

  1. Stimpson Avenue Academy NN14LR
  2. 0.2 miles Barry Primary School NN15JS (465 pupils)
  3. 0.4 miles Vernon Terrace Primary School NN15HE (254 pupils)
  4. 0.4 miles Northampton Christian School NN32HT
  5. 0.5 miles Northampton School for Boys NN15RT
  6. 0.5 miles St Andrew's College NN15DG (85 pupils)
  7. 0.5 miles Northampton School for Boys NN15RT (1485 pupils)
  8. 0.6 miles Cliftonville Middle School NN15BW
  9. 0.6 miles Weston Favell Preparatory School NN33HN
  10. 0.7 miles Cedar Road Primary School NN32JF
  11. 0.7 miles St Matthew's School NN32JB
  12. 0.7 miles Education & Youth Services Ltd NN12BG (9 pupils)
  13. 0.7 miles Cedar Road Primary School NN32JF (419 pupils)
  14. 0.8 miles Wallace Road Nursery School NN27EE (78 pupils)
  15. 0.8 miles Abington Vale Primary School NN33NQ
  16. 0.8 miles Kingsley Park Middle School NN26JA
  17. 0.8 miles Fairfields School NN26JN (109 pupils)
  18. 0.8 miles Abington Vale Primary School NN33NQ (298 pupils)
  19. 0.9 miles Kingsley Primary School NN27EE (268 pupils)
  20. 0.9 miles Trinity School NN26JW
  21. 0.9 miles St George's Middle School NN13RF
  22. 0.9 miles Bridgewater Primary School NN33AF (473 pupils)
  23. 0.9 miles Parkside Independent School NN15NL
  24. 0.9 miles Northampton Middle School NN13RF

List of schools in Northampton

13 February 2014
Mrs Ann Hooley
Stimpson Avenue Primary School
Stimpson Avenue
Dear Mrs Hooley

Special measures monitoring inspection of Stimpson Avenue Primary

Following my visit with Sally Lane, Additional Inspector, to your school on 11–12

February 2014, I write on behalf of Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector of Education,
Children’s Services and Skills to confirm the inspection findings. Thank you for the

help you gave during the inspection and for the time you made available to discuss

the actions which have been taken since the school’s previous monitoring inspection.

The inspection was the second monitoring inspection since the school became
subject to special measures following the inspection which took place in July 2013.
The full list of the areas for improvement which were identified during that
inspection is set out in the annex to this letter. The monitoring inspection report is
Having considered all the evidence, I am of the opinion that at this time:
The school is not making enough progress towards the removal of special measures.

The local authority’s statement of action is fit for purpose

The school may not appoint newly qualified teachers before the next monitoring
This letter and monitoring inspection report will be published on the Ofsted website.

Serco Inspections
Colmore Plaza
20 Colmore Circus Queensway
B4 6AT
T 0300 123 1231
Text Phone: 0161 6188524
reveal email: enqu…
Direct T 0121 679 9166
Direct email: reveal email: hele…

I am copying this letter and the monitoring inspection report to the Secretary of

State, the Chair of the Governing Body and the Director of Children’s Services for


Yours sincerely
David Carter

Her Majesty’s Inspector


The areas for improvement identified during the inspection which took
place in July 2013

  • Improve the quality of the teaching overall, and particularly in mathematics, so
    that it is consistently good or better by making sure that:
    across all subjects, teachers’ plan challenging work and worthwhile activities
    which are closely matched to pupils’ specific needs and abilities
    there are frequent opportunities for pupils to talk about their learning in
    work is planned to support the progress of all pupils, particularly boys, those
    known to be eligible for free school meals, the less able and Bangladeshi
    beginners in English are taught to speak, read and write English effectively in
    all subjects and consideration is given to providing additional specialist
    teaching for bilingual pupils so that they make good progress in English and
    there are more opportunities for pupils to undertake practical activities, to
    solve problems and use their mathematical skills across different subjects 
    teachers have regular opportunities to observe good teaching in the school
    and beyond
    leaders and managers check teaching regularly and provide well-focused
    feedback and support.

  • Improve leadership and management by ensuring all leaders:
    set clear, time-limited targets for making improvements in teaching and
    gather evidence regularly to ensure that targets are met, including evidence
    from regular observations of teaching
    put an effective performance management system in place for all teaching
    keep a close check on pupils’ progress and take immediate action when there
    are differences between the progress of different groups of pupils
    evaluate the impact of pupil premium funding on the progress of individual
    improve communication with parents.

  • Improve governance by ensuring that the governing body:
    holds all leaders and teachers rigorously to account for pupils’ progress and
    checks that government safeguarding requirements are fully met and that all
    staff are trained in child protection within recommended timescales
    checks that required policies and procedures are available, both in the school
    and on the school website
    commission an external review of governance in order to assess how this
    aspect of leadership and governance may be improved.

Report on the second monitoring inspection on 11–12 February 2014

Inspectors observed the school’s work, scrutinised documents and met with the

interim acting headteacher, members of the school’s leadership team and other
staff, members of the governing body and a representative from the local authority.
Inspectors met with groups of pupils from Key Stage 1 and 2.


Since the last monitoring inspection, the headteacher has retired. The local authority
appointed an interim acting headteacher for the autumn term 2013 following a brief
period when the deputy headteacher led the school. The governing body has made
an agreement with the Department for Education that the school will become a
sponsored academy from 1 April 2014. The sponsor is EMLC. As a result, the local
authority and EMLC have appointed a second interim acting headteacher who took
up her position on 1 January 2014. She has been appointed to serve until the end of
the summer term 2014, when she will oversee the transition from the school
changing its status from being a maintained school to a sponsored academy.

Achievement of pupils at the school

In 2013, although pupils’ attainment at the end of Key Stage 2 rose in mathematics

and writing, it declined in reading; standards remained as low as they did in 2012.
The published results highlighted a significant variation between subjects in relation
to the proportion of Year 6 pupils reaching expected standards of Level 4. In writing,
the proportion was broadly average. However, in reading and mathematics, it was
considerably below average. Fewer boys than girls reached the expected standard in
mathematics and writing. Compared with their starting points at the end of Key
Stage 1, the progress of Year 6 pupils in mathematics and reading remained well
below average.
Teacher assessment of the current Year 6 pupils indicates that their progress has

begun to increase. As a result, pupils’ attainment is closer to the national average

than in 2012 and 2013. The proportion of pupils making expected rates of progress
are similar to what is typical nationally, but because pupils are not challenged
sufficiently during lessons, few are making progress which is better than expected.

Teachers’ most recent assessments show that pupils’ progress in Year 3, 4 and 5 is

not fast enough to overcome past underachievement. Apart from Year 4 pupils in

reading, pupils have not made sufficient progress to meet the school’s own targets

which were set for the end of the autumn term 2013.
At the end of Key Stage 1, attainment in 2013 was lower than the previous year but
it rose slightly in reading. The proportion of Year 1 pupils who met the required
standards in the national screening test for phonics (letters and the sounds they
make) was higher than in 2012 and was above the national average.

At Key Stage 1, rates of progress remains uneven. In reading and writing, pupils’

progress during the autumn term was not fast enough to ensure that enough pupils
are on track to attain expected standards by the end of Year 2. However, in

mathematics, pupils’ progress has improved and attainment is closer to being

Children currently in the Early Years Foundation Stage started with lower than
expected levels of knowledge, skills and understanding. Leaders’ current analysis
shows that children are making at least expected rates of progress in developing
their skills in communication and language, reading, writing and in their
mathematical understanding.
Leaders’ analysis shows that girls are making better rates of progress than boys in
reading and writing. As a result, as pupils move through Key Stage 2, gaps in
attainment become wider, with the result that boys attain lower than their peers
nationally by the time they leave the school. However, boys are making better
progress than girls in mathematics.
The recently appointed leader for disabled pupils and those who have special
educational needs has ensured that the additional help that pupils are provided with,
more closely supports their development. As a result, these pupils, as well as those
of lower ability, have made expected rates of progress during the autumn term
Bangladeshi pupils are making improved rates of progress in reading and writing.
However, they are not making the same gains in their learning in mathematics. To
tackle this, these pupils are being provided with additional support in mathematics.
More-able pupils are making too little progress in lessons because work is not
sufficiently demanding to challenge their thinking and extend their learning. As a
result, more-able pupils do not complete as much work as they are capable of

because teachers’ expectations of what they can achieve is too low. Leaders are not

setting targets for this group of pupils at the end of Key Stage 2 and are not tracking
their progress closely enough. Consequently, too few pupils are reaching the
standards of which they are capable, especially in mathematics.

The quality of teaching

The quality of teaching has not improved markedly since the previous inspection.
The school did not meet its own targets for securing the proportion of teaching
which is judged to be good or better by the end of the autumn term 2013. Teachers
in Key Stages 1 and 2 are not making precise enough use of the information that

they have about pupils’ prior learning in order to provide work which challenges

them. Their workbooks show that pupils are not making sufficient gains in their
knowledge, skills and understanding over time. Teachers are not using questions
effectively to assess how well pupils are learning or check closely enough on their
work during lessons. Consequently, more-able pupils, in particular, are not provided
with additional challenges to help them make faster rates of progress.
Pupils are not given enough opportunities to develop their reasoning skills in
mathematics. This is because they are not applying their knowledge of place value
and skills in calculation frequently enough in order to solve problems in mathematics
and in the other subjects that they study.
Where good aspects of teaching were observed, pupils of different abilities were
more aware of what they were expected to achieve by the end of the lesson. They
were provided with opportunities to discuss their learning with the teacher and each
other and were challenged to produce work of a good standard. Children in the Early
Years Foundation Stage are mostly provided with a range of activities which help
them to learn at an appropriate rate without the direct supervision of an adult.
Pupils who are learning English as an additional language are provided with
appropriate support to help them develop their skills in speaking, reading and writing
across a range of subjects.

Behaviour and safety of pupils

Pupils generally display positive attitudes to learning. Pupils try their best, even
when the work which they are doing is not challenging enough. Pupils say that the
new interim headteacher has revised the behaviour code. Pupils value the clarity of
the new approach because they know the incentives and rewards for good learning
and behaviour, and the sanctions if they do not follow the rules. Pupils say that
behaviour has improved and that the school is a calmer place, especially at break-

times. Pupils’ attendance has improved compared to the same term in 2012. It is

now average. Pupils say that they enjoy coming to school.

The quality of leadership in and management of the school

The local authority, representatives of the academy sponsor, and current leaders of
the school acknowledge that frequent changes in leadership has not been conducive
to ensuring that the areas identified for improvement at the previous inspection have
been addressed effectively enough. For instance, teachers confirm that they have
not been involved in discussions regarding their performance, neither in terms of
targets being set for the progress of pupils in their care or for arrangements for their
professional development.
During the autumn term, the local authority adviser was instrumental in ensuring
that checks on the quality of teaching through visits to lessons commenced, and
these are becoming more frequent. Teachers are now being provided with feedback
on how to improve. The new interim headteacher has built upon this approach by
working alongside teachers and, where appropriate, has identified teachers to visit
other schools in order to observe teaching. Teachers are appreciative of levels of
support which they are receiving and they say that this has made them aware of
what is expected in their practice. However, leaders recognise that checks on the

quality of teaching, by considering work in pupils’ books and discussions with

teachers regarding the progress of pupils, are not sufficiently embedded in order to
effectively hold teachers to account for improvements in their practice. Leaders of
English and mathematics have only recently begun to develop their skills in checking
on the quality of teaching in their areas of responsibility. As a result, they have a
limited understanding of the frailties in teaching which are at the root cause of

pupils’ underachievement. As a result, they are not influencing teaching sufficiently

in order to secure rapid improvements.
The local authority adviser worked closely with the former interim acting
headteacher, as well as the senior leadership team, in order to draw up an
appropriate school improvement plan during the second half of the autumn term
2013. The plan sets out a series of appropriate actions which are targeted on
making improvements to the quality of teaching. The plan contains milestones so
that leaders and governors can check the rate of improvement and the extent to

which teaching is having a positive impact on pupils’ achievements. However, there

remains insufficient focus on the proportion of pupils making better than expected
rates of progress or the proportion of pupils targeted for attaining Level 5 or 6 at the

end of Key Stage 2. This is because the school’s system for measuring and tracking
pupils’ achievements is not rigorous enough. Despite having a focus on the

performance of different groups of pupils and individuals, the analysis of the
progress of more-able pupils and those of middle ability is not undertaken carefully.
Furthermore, this information is not being used precisely enough by teachers
routinely in order to provide pupils of different abilities with appropriate levels of
challenge in their work.
The recently appointed leader for disabled pupils and those who have special
educational needs has focused her attention sharply upon pupils who are eligible for
support via the pupil premium funding. She has coordinated additional support for
these pupils, both from teachers and teaching assistants. Her analysis shows that
pupils eligible for support through the pupil premium made improved rates of
progress during the autumn term 2013. However, the gaps in attainment between
these pupils and their classmates remains too wide in reading, writing and
mathematics in Key Stage 2.
Governors quickly commissioned an external review of governance following the
previous section 5 inspection. Governors wasted no time in responding to the
recommendations in the review regarding safeguarding and ensuring that required
policies and procedures were available for parents and carers to access on the

school’s website and within school. A safeguarding audit was carried out in the

autumn term to ensure that all safeguarding requirements are met. Governors set
up a school improvement committee in order to keep a close eye on the rate of
improvement. Due to the action plan being completed only in the second half of the
autumn term 2013, governors have not met regularly enough in order to check the
rate of improvement and hold leaders to account for the extent to which actions are
having a positive impact on pupils’ achievements. Consequently, information about

pupils’ performance is not being used by governors quickly enough in order to make

decisions on how to address differences in the rates of progress and attainment of
different groups of pupils. This limits the extent to which the school promotes
equality of opportunity. Governors have improved the school’s website and have
produced regular newsletters to keep parents and carers informed of developments
in the transition towards becoming an academy, as well as about the general life of
the school. Governors, however, are not collecting systematically the views of
parents and carers in order to inform their strategic thinking.

External support

Since the previous monitoring visit, the local authority has supported the school to
identify a suitable sponsor for when it becomes an academy. Once, following the
retirement of the headteacher, governors agreed to become a sponsored academy
under EMLC, the local authority recognised the need to broker support in order to
oversee the transition from being a maintained school to a sponsored academy. The
local authority deployed an experienced headteacher who acted as the initial interim
headteacher of the school for the remainder of the autumn term 2013. She worked
closely with the local authority in order to develop a plan for improvement alongside

the local authority’s statement of action. Following the judgement at the first

monitoring inspection, the local authority has now taken appropriate steps to ensure
that the statement of action is fit for purpose. The statement of action has sharper
measures of success and has targets that take into account the prior
underachievement of pupils.
The local authority brokered support from a second interim headteacher, who was
appointed from January 2014. The interim headteacher has begun to implement the

school’s plans for improvement, including actions to improve the quality of teaching.

Although teachers are beginning to benefit from feedback from observations and
working with other schools, the support is not yet having the impact on improving
the quality of teaching to the extent which was anticipated when the plans were
drawn together. As a result, the impact of external support has been limited. The
interim headteacher has contributed effectively to stabilising the day-to-day running
of the school.
The school should take further action to:

 accelerate the progress of more-able pupils so they are able to reach the

standards of which they are capable.

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