The Oaklands Primary School Closed - academy converter Dec. 31, 2012
phone: 0121 *** ***
headteacher: Mr Adrian Davies
Primary — Community School
- Education phase
- Establishment type
- Community School
- Establishment #
- Close date
- Dec. 31, 2012
- Reason closed
- Academy Converter
- OSGB coordinates
- Easting: 412293, Northing: 282586
- GPS coordinates
- Latitude: 52.441, Longitude: -1.8206
- Accepting pupils
- 3—11 years old
- Ofsted last inspection
- Oct. 16, 2012
- Region › Const. › Ward
- West Midlands › Birmingham, Yardley › Acocks Green
- Urban > 10k - less sparse
- The Oaklands Primary School B277BT (265 pupils)
- 0.2 miles Archbishop Ilsley Catholic School B277XY (1153 pupils)
- 0.4 miles Acocks Green Junior School B277UQ
- 0.4 miles Acocks Green Infant and Nursery School B277UQ
- 0.4 miles Holy Souls Catholic Primary School B276BN (417 pupils)
- 0.4 miles Acocks Green Primary School B277UQ
- 0.4 miles Acocks Green Primary School B277UQ (494 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Severne Junior Infant and Nursery School B277HR (441 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Ninestiles School B277QG
- 0.5 miles Kineton Green Primary School B927EB (239 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Ninestiles School, an Academy B277QG (1312 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Yarnfield Primary School B113PJ
- 0.7 miles Al-Burhan Grammar School B113DW (105 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Yarnfield Primary School B113PJ (685 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Lakey Lane Junior and Infant School B288RY (413 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Cottesbrooke Junior School B276JL (350 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Cottesbrooke Infant School B276LG (345 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Eastbourne House School B276LL
- 0.8 miles St Margaret's Church of England Voluntary Aided Primary School B927RR (240 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Our Lady of Compassion Catholic Primary School B927EG (339 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Cottesbrooke Infant School B276LG
- 0.8 miles Kimichi School B276LL
- 0.9 miles Reynalds Cross School B927ER (107 pupils)
- 0.9 miles Swanswell School B927ER
The Oaklands Primary
Dolphin Lane, Acocks Green, Birmingham, B27 7BT
|Inspection dates||16–17 October 2012|
|Overall effectiveness||This inspection:||Requires improvement||3|
|Achievement of pupils||Requires improvement||3|
|Quality of teaching||Requires improvement||3|
|Behaviour and safety of pupils||Requires improvement||3|
|Leadership and management||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
| The quality of teaching is not strong enough |
Teachers do not teach phonic skills (linking
Teachers too often repeat the same
Teachers do not always effectively correct
When marking pupils’ work, teachers do not
to ensure that all pupils make good progress,
particularly the more-able.
letters and sounds) well, or hear younger
pupils read often enough.
mathematical exercises and do not help
pupils adequately to use their skills to solve
grammar, punctuation and spelling.
give clear guidance on how pupils may
| Pupils are not taught how to learn on their |
The headteacher gathers and analyses a huge
Senior leaders do not check teachers’ planning
The governing body does not probe the links
own. This holds pupils’ progress back,
especially those who are more able.
amount of information about pupils’ progress
but does not use it effectively to raise
achievement throughout the school.
in advance of lessons to see whether work is at
the right level for all pupils.
between teaching, development planning and
pupils’ performance well enough.
| Nursery and Reception children quickly learn |
The school ensures that pupils work and play
to share, take turns, listen to and respect
each other. Pupils build on these good
personal skills throughout their time at
in a safe learning environment, and also learn
how to keep themselves safe.
| Teachers manage pupils’ behaviour well and |
Because the school has fostered good
pupils concentrate even when not particularly
stretched or motivated by what they are given
relationships with parents, pupils’ attendance
has improved and is now about average.
Information about this inspection
- The inspectors observed teaching and learning in 14 lessons, made visits to six others, and
listened to two groups of pupils read.
- The headteacher joined the lead inspector for three observations, and together they looked at
work in pupils’ books.
- Meetings were held with staff, groups of pupils, and three members of the governing body, and
a telephone conversation took place with a representative from the local authority.
- Inspectors looked at a range of evidence including: the school development plan; self-evaluation
information; the school’s data for tracking pupils’ progress; teachers’ planning; monitoring
reports; the work in pupils’ books; minutes of governing body meetings; and the school’s
documentation relating to safeguarding.
- Inspectors met some parents informally at the start of the school day and took account of the 22
responses from parents that were posted on Parent View (Ofsted’s online parent questionnaire).
- The inspection was quality assured by one of Her Majesty’s Inspectors.
|Doris Bell, Lead inspector||Additional Inspector|
|Jennifer Taylor||Additional Inspector|
Information about this school
- This is an average-sized primary school.
- The proportion of pupils eligible for the pupil premium, which provides additional funding for
children in local authority care and pupils known to be eligible for free school meals, is well
- The proportion of pupils identified with special educational needs, supported through school
action is average.
- The proportion of pupils supported at school action plus or with a statement of special
educational needs is above average.
- The proportions of pupils from minority ethnic backgrounds, including those for whom English is
an additional language, are above average.
- The school meets the government’s floor standards, which set the minimum expectations for
pupils’ achievement and progress.
- The school has its own breakfast club. It has achieved a Healthy Schools Award.
What does the school need to do to improve further?
- Strengthen teaching so that pupils throughout the school make more rapid progress by:
making sure all teachers have high expectations of what pupils can achieve so that they can
help them to reach their potential
ensuring that teachers give more-able pupils harder work to keep up the pace of their
increasing opportunities for pupils to work on their own so that they are better able to think
and learn for themselves
improving the quality of teachers’ marking so that pupils understand clearly how they can
improve their work
giving pupils time to respond to marking, do corrections and learn from their mistakes.
- Speed up pupils’ progress in reading and writing by ensuring that:
all staff fully understand how to teach letters and their sounds and encouraging pupils to use
the knowledge and skills they develop to improve their reading and writing, particularly their
staff listen to younger pupils reading more frequently, and that pupils always have books
that take their reading skills further
pupils understand and use punctuation and grammar correctly in all of their writing, and that
their handwriting is clear and legible, and spelling accurate.
- Speed up progress in mathematics by:
ensuring that number and problem-solving skills are taught well throughout the school so
that pupils understand the basic concepts long before they get to Year 6
ensuring that teachers provide increasingly challenging real-life mathematical problems for
pupils to solve using their knowledge of numbers.
- Improve the impact that leadership and management have on teaching and learning by:
ensuring assessments are always accurate, and data and target setting are used effectively
to secure good progress for all pupils
checking planning before teachers use it to ensure that the work planned is at the right level
for each pupil, and teachers have high expectations of all groups
developing the skills of the governing body in understanding information about pupils’
|The achievement of pupils||requires improvement|
- Children start Nursery with skills that are below those expected for their age. Although their
learning still requires improvement, they are closer to where they are expected to be when they
start Year 1. The provision for outdoor learning has improved since the previous inspection,
providing better opportunities for children to develop a range of skills outdoors as well as
- Attainment is usually broadly average at the end of Year 2 and Year 6. In 2012, attainment in
Year 2 fell to below average. Following a dip in attainment in Year 6 in 2011, pupils reached
higher standards in Year 6 in 2012 than in previous years.
- The proportion in Year 6 making better than expected progress in English and mathematics
exceeded that found nationally in 2012. Nevertheless, in Years 3 to 5, too few pupils exceed the
expected rate of progress to ensure that these improvements are sustainable. Progress is better
in Year 2 than in Year 1.
- Pupils enjoy reading, and they read daily in guided reading sessions. However, younger pupils
do not read often enough on their own with adults. A number of pupils are not able to use their
developing knowledge of letters and sounds to help them, because some of the teaching is
- Weaknesses in handwriting, grammar, spelling and punctuation persist in pupils’ writing through
to Year 6. Teachers do not systematically correct such errors, therefore, pupils are not
constantly reminded to avoid them. Lessons too often start with pupils having to complete
pedestrian tasks that many find too easy. Opening sessions often last too long, leaving pupils
too little time to practise the skills they have learned.
- In mathematics, pupils complete many exercises accurately but have too few opportunities to
use their skills to solve mathematical problems. When they are given opportunities, the problems
do not increase enough in complexity to ensure work is hard enough for all pupils, and
particularly the more-able.
- The progress of disabled pupils, and those who have special educational needs improved in
2012, alongside other pupils. These pupils are often withdrawn in smaller groups to boost their
learning. They make good progress in their groups but do not always transfer their learning to
their work in class.
- There is no discernible difference between the progress of pupils for whom the school receives
extra money and that of other pupils.
- Pupils from minority ethnic groups did better than other pupils in 2012, and those for whom
English is an additional language quickly learn to speak English. Nevertheless, they sometimes
struggle to read words they do not know, and staff do not always check that they, or other
pupils who might struggle, know the meanings of new or unfamiliar words.
|The quality of teaching||requires improvement|
- The quality of teaching varies too much to ensure pupils in all year groups make good progress
each year. The upturn in Year 6 in 2012 was helped by the use of pupil premium money to
increase staffing levels in Year 6 so that pupils could be taught in smaller groups. This has been
continued with the current Year 6 group.
- Teachers tend to tell pupils how to do things rather than guide them to find things out for
themselves. They sometimes ask and answer their own questions, leaving pupils little time to
think for themselves. The opposite was true in an excellent Year 4 lesson, where pupils were
strongly encouraged to work together and discuss and improve their learning. Here, the teacher
skilfully guided learning and ensured all pupils made at least good progress.
- Pupils’ work is always marked but written marking does not always give clear guidance on how
to improve. The school’s practice of not systematically marking punctuation, grammar and
spelling limits the pupils’ progress in writing. Teachers in Years 3 and 5 left such errors
uncorrected in their own writing as they modelled for pupils what they wanted them to do. This
- Much work in English and mathematics consists of exercises that are at the same level for all the
pupils, despite their differing abilities. The exercises are sometimes too easy for everybody and
result in little learning. For example, in a Year 6 English session, less-able pupils filled in blanks
on worksheets, while other pupils copied the worksheet out, filling in the blanks as they did so.
This wasted valuable writing time.
- The teaching of letters and sounds requires improvement. Adults are sometimes too quick to say
the sounds and words, instead of letting pupils read and say them, and learning is not always
followed up with tasks that help pupils to consolidate and extend what they have learned. In
Year 2, the use of computers in teaching reading was not effective because pupils were largely
left to their own devices, with little guidance from the program or teacher.
- Disabled pupils and those who have special educational needs, and pupils who are falling
behind, are targeted for extra help, usually from teaching assistants. Teachers do not always
ensure that pupils use what they learn in withdrawal groups to improve their learning in class.
|The behaviour and safety of pupils||requires improvement|
- The youngest children are developing good social skills and attitudes. They get on well together
and respond positively to adults. Throughout the school, pupils have positive attitudes to
learning. They concentrate on their work, persevere and complete tasks, but admit work is
sometimes too easy and they lose interest in it. They do not readily work independently, or take
initiative to find things out for themselves, because they are not sufficiently encouraged to do
- Pupils mostly behave well in lessons and in the playground. They and their parents feel
behaviour is well managed, although pupils say lessons can sometimes be disrupted by poor
behaviour and that irritates them. They feel safe in school, and the school ensures they know
how to keep themselves safe in and out of school. Parents appreciate this.
- Pupils know what bullying is, and explain why it is wrong, saying, for example, that persistent
name-calling, or recurring physical violence, makes others sad. They know what to do and who
to turn to should they experience or know of any bullying. They trust the teachers to deal
quickly with any poor behaviour that arises. Pupils show care and consideration for others and
work together well in lessons.
- The school council, supported by class councils, gives pupils a voice in the running of the school,
which they appreciate. Pupils raise funds for various charities and learn the importance of
contributing to the school and wider community. Extra-curricular clubs and activities are very
popular, and several have waiting lists because numbers are limited depending on the activity.
|The leadership and management||requires improvement|
- The senior leaders’ expectations are too low and their strategies do not make enough impact on
pupils’ achievement. The headteacher explained that the school had adjusted assessment data in
some year groups to try to give a more accurate picture of the proportion of pupils showing the
expected two levels of progress between Year 2 and Year 6. The information, however, shows
that year on year progress is very variable, and the school does not have a clear enough picture
of what constitutes good progress over time.
- The school’s analysis of pupils’ work shows that teachers’ assessments are not always accurate.
Moderation meetings, where teachers share and level work together, are beginning to tackle this
issue. Staffing has been increased in Year 3 as well as in Year 6 this year, in response to the dip
in attainment in Year 2 in 2012. The school agrees that the teaching of letters and sounds is not
- The assistant headteachers check and comment on teachers’ planning after teaching has taken
place and teachers have evaluated it themselves. They are therefore unable to guide teachers
on whether learning is at the right levels for different ability groups before teaching takes place.
The school leaders do not hold individual teachers to account thoroughly enough for the
progress that pupils make in different year groups. Pupils, and especially the more-able, miss out
because of this.
- The local authority’s support for the school has been very general and light touch. This is
because the school sought support elsewhere.
- The school development plan sets out an agenda for improvement that is heading in the right
direction. However, the school rates its own performance too highly because senior leaders and
members of the governing body do not have a good understanding of how to identify and
correct weaknesses. Although staff training is linked to development planning and teacher’s
individual targets, senior leaders do not systematically follow up whether the training has been
- Despite the weaknesses identified in this report, the actions of leaders and governors have had a
positive effect. Additional government funding that was spent to support pupils in Year 6 last
school year successfully boosted achievement. Attendance has also improved. These show that
the school does have the capacity to improve.
- Assemblies and work in different subjects encourage pupils to reflect, consider others and
develop spiritually. Pupils have a good understanding of right and wrong and why it is important
to get along with everyone. Pupils are made aware of different faiths and cultures through their
work in different subjects. All of this contributes to their spiritual, moral, social and cultural
- The school ensures all pupils are fully included in everything it offers. However, learning is not
always at the right level to ensure all groups of pupils make equally good progress.
The governance of the school
Members of the governing body do not ask searching enough questions of the headteacher,
for example, about pupils’ progress and how it might be speeded up. They wisely approved
the use of pupil premium funding to buy in extra staffing so that pupils can be taught in
smaller groups. They know that attainment rose in 2012, and are rightly concerned about
whether the improvement can be sustained. However, they have not checked to see whether
progress is speeding up in the rest of the school to ensure continued improvement. Governors
do not have a good grasp of how to use data to check on the school’s performance. The
governing body keeps a weather-eye on the targets set for teachers and on teachers’ salary
movement. They ensure the school fulfils its statutory responsibilities and, where relevant,
attend training to keep up-to-date. All staff are vetted and appropriately trained to keep pupils
safe and free from harm.
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||103194|
This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.
|Type of school||Primary|
|Age range of pupils||3–11|
|Gender of pupils||Mixed|
|Number of pupils on the school roll||242|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Date of previous school inspection||12 October 2010|
|Telephone number||0121 7062168|
|Fax number||0121 7062168|