phone: 020 83177659
headteacher: Miss Susan Vernoit
20 boys 74%
5 girls 19%
Last updated: June 20, 2014
— Community Special School
- Establishment type
- Community Special School
- Establishment #
- Open date
- Sept. 1, 2001
- OSGB coordinates
- Easting: 544602, Northing: 178478
- GPS coordinates
- Latitude: 51.487, Longitude: 0.081266
- Accepting pupils
- 5—11 years old
- Census date
- Jan. 16, 2014
- Ofsted last inspection
- Oct. 23, 2012
- Region › Const. › Ward
- London › Greenwich and Woolwich › Glyndon
- Urban > 10k - less sparse
- Special classes
- Has Special Classes
- Free school meals %
- South Rise Junior School SE187PX
- South Rise Infant School SE187PX
- Nine Acres School SE187NB
- 0.1 miles South Rise Primary School SE187PX (662 pupils)
- 0.2 miles St Patrick's Catholic Primary School SE187QG (360 pupils)
- 0.2 miles Mulgrave Junior School SE187QA
- 0.3 miles Conway Infant School SE181QY
- 0.3 miles Foxfield Primary School SE187EX (625 pupils)
- 0.3 miles St Margaret's Church of England Primary School SE187RL (295 pupils)
- 0.3 miles Plumstead Manor School SE181QF (1455 pupils)
- 0.3 miles Foxfield Infant School SE187EX
- 0.3 miles Greenwich Community College at Plumstead Centre SE187DQ
- 0.3 miles Conway Primary School SE181QY (435 pupils)
- 0.3 miles Negus Sixth Form Centre SE181QF
- 0.4 miles Conway Junior School SE181QY
- 0.5 miles Foxhill Centre SE183AT
- 0.5 miles Heronsgate Primary School SE280EA (795 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Nightingale Primary School SE187JJ (238 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Greenslade Primary School SE182QQ (241 pupils)
- 0.5 miles St Peter's Catholic Primary School SE187BN (210 pupils)
- 0.5 miles ASD Learning Centre - Woolwich SE186SW
- 0.6 miles Bannockburn Primary School SE181HE (664 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Right Choice Project SE186BB (23 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Plumcroft Primary School SE183HW (661 pupils)
Robert Street, Greenwich, London, SE18 7NB
|Inspection dates||23–24 October 2012|
|Overall effectiveness||This inspection:||Good||2|
|Achievement of pupils||Good||2|
|Quality of teaching||Good||2|
|Behaviour and safety of pupils||Good||2|
|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
| Very good support from staff ensures that |
School improvement has been sustained
Pupils of different ages, backgrounds and
pupils make quick progress in learning to
manage their own behaviour both in school
and at home.
despite changes in the complexity of pupils’
needs and in staffing.
abilities make good progress. They achieve
well, particularly in the development of their
communication and social skills and are well
prepared for their secondary education.
| Teachers mostly provide activities that engage |
Pupils feel extremely safe and secure, they
The school is well led, there is a successful
The pupil premium is used to good effect in
pupils’ interest. They mark pupils’ work
regularly and accurately, ensuring that pupils
know what they need to do to improve.
enjoy school and have positive attitudes to
learning and support each other very well.
focus on improving teaching and learning.
making the curriculum more interesting and
relevant for pupils.
| Occasionally, the questions teachers ask |
pupils do not help them to deepen their
| Senior leaders and governors do not make the |
best use of information about pupils’ progress
to check that they are closing the gaps with all
Information about this inspection
- The inspector observed eight lessons. All seven teachers were observed. The majority of these
were observed jointly with senior leaders. In addition, a number of other short visits were made
to other lessons.
- Meetings were held with the school council and other pupils, the Chair of the Governing Body
and another governor, and school staff including senior and middle managers.
- The inspector took account of responses to the on-line questionnaire (Parent View) in planning
the inspection. During the inspection the school’s analysis of its own questionnaire responses
from parents and carers and pupils was used to provide a clearer picture of their views.
- The work of the school was observed and a range of documents were looked at, including the
school’s own information on pupils’ past and current progress, planning and monitoring
documentation, records relating to behaviour and attendance and safeguarding.
|Stuart Charlton, Lead inspector||Additional inspector|
Information about this school
- Waterside is a small special school for pupils with behavioural, emotional and social difficulties
(BESD). Many have associated speech, language and communication needs. All pupils have a
statement of special educational needs, or are being assessed for one.
- Most pupils are from White British or Black British/Caribbean heritages, with a range of other
minority ethnic heritages represented. The proportion of pupils known to be eligible for
additional funding through the pupil premium is very high.
- On behalf of the local authority, the school manages an outreach support service to teachers
and pupils in mainstream schools
- The senior leadership team consists of the headteacher, the Waterside school deputy and the
deputy with responsibility for the outreach service.
What does the school need to do to improve further?
- Make sure that, in all lessons, the questions teachers ask pupils helps them to deepen their
- Ensure that senior leaders and governors make the best use of information about pupils’
progress to check that the pupils are closing the gaps with all pupils nationally.
|The achievement of pupils||is good|
- Pupils make good progress and achieve well. Before they enter Waterside, pupils have
experienced disruption to their education and consequently their starting points are low, and
often very low. In their time in school, pupils’ understanding, knowledge and skills are developed
well, so that the attainment for the majority is closer to that expected for their age. Challenging
targets are set for pupils so that they achieve well irrespective of their special educational needs,
gender or ethnic origin.
- On entry to the school, pupils’ needs are carefully assessed and the support pupils require
clearly identified. They settle quickly into their new school due to the high quality support they
receive from staff. When pupils move to their new secondary schools at the age of 11, the
transition is managed very well so that learning is not disrupted.
- Many pupils, particularly those in the younger classes, use pictorial and visual prompts to aid
communication. Generally, they apply these skills, and their numeracy and personal skills, very
well across different areas of learning.
- By Year 6, pupils use oral approaches to communicate, depending on their needs. They learn to
recognise numbers and develop basic number concepts. Pupils make particularly good progress
in developing their skills in communication and they learn to express their views effectively.
Pupils’ reading skills and writing skills are developed particularly well with those pupils for whom
it is appropriate. Nevertheless, by the end of Key Stage 2, pupils’ attainment in reading and
writing remains below expectations in spite of their good progress.
- Throughout their time at Waterside, the high emphasis placed on developing pupils’ self-esteem
and confidence and on learning to manage their own behaviour pays off and pupils leave with
greatly improved social skills. In a Year 4 art lesson, for example, the teacher managed pupils’
behaviour extremely well so that any disruption was ignored by pupils and learning was not
- Parents and carers report that they are very pleased with the progress their children make and
their view is consistent with the inspection findings that pupils make at least good progress.
|The quality of teaching||is good|
- Teachers have good subject knowledge and ensure systematic development of pupils’ literacy
and numeracy skills. They are very effective in teaching pupils with complex behavioural
difficulties. Relationships between staff and pupils are excellent and pupils receive extremely
high quality care, guidance and support. The seamless way in which teachers and support staff
work together is integral to the success pupils achieve.
- Staff are effective in building pupils’ confidence so that pupils are keen to try new things, which
makes an important contribution to the promotion of pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural
- Rigorous and thorough systems to record pupils’ progress have been developed, including
observations and photographs of their achievements. This information is used well to help
teachers to plan lessons that meet individual needs, and shows that teaching and learning over
time have been good. The school is very effective in helping parents and carers to understand
and to support the learning needs of pupils with complex learning difficulties at home.
Across the school, there are examples of high quality teaching where staff set the highest
expectations for pupils and use a very wide range of teaching activities to ensure excellent
outcomes. For example, in a Year 6 science lesson, the teacher used questioning very effectively
to consolidate earlier learning and to develop pupils’ understanding of fair testing. Through very
focused questioning she ensured that pupils used the correct technical language for the range of
practical techniques they used and developed mathematical skills related to sharing and
proportions. Pupils’ learning was extremely well supported by the learning support assistant.
- Such exemplary practice is not entirely secure across the school and in a small minority of
lessons teachers do not always use sufficiently open-ended questioning to help every pupil to
deepen their understanding.
|The behaviour and safety of pupils||are good|
- The school makes substantial improvements to the lives of pupils, both at school and at home,
through developing positive attitudes to learning and in helping them to manage their own
- Pupils enjoy coming to school. Their attendance at Waterside is broadly average, which is a
significant change compared with that at their previous primary school.
- The school’s records and reports from parents and carers confirm the improvements the school
makes to pupils’ behaviour. A significant proportion of the pupils were new to the school in
September 2012. Consequently, there were isolated instances during the inspection when staff
had to explain the school’s expectations of behaviour to these pupils and although they
responded to this well they did not always immediately recognise how they needed to change
- Pupils say they make good friends in school and there is a calm and harmonious working
atmosphere throughout. All staff receive extensive training in how to best manage pupils’
behaviour and use the school’s system effectively to ensure improvements in pupils’ behaviour
from when pupils first start at Waterside.
- Pupils are respected as individuals, and staff use praise and rewards to best effect to reinforce
progress in personal and academic development. As a result, there have been no recent
exclusions and, overall, pupils’ behaviour is good.
- Parents and carers indicate that they feel their children are safe and secure at all times and that
any type of bullying is extremely rare; records show that any such instances are dealt with
appropriately. This view is supported by the pupils themselves. Staff devote a great deal of time
to helping pupils to listen carefully to instructions and respond to the feelings of others.
|The leadership and management||are good|
- The headteacher sets high expectations for staff and pupils. She has a very clear vision about
how the provision should develop and is very well supported by senior leaders and other staff.
- She has established a real sense of purpose across the school. Crucial to this is the high quality
teamwork which has been developed. The policies and practices that have been introduced are
having a very positive and immediate effect on improving pupils’ performance.
- The emphasis placed on the professional development of staff expertise ensures ongoing
improvement in classroom practice and an enthusiasm from staff about improving the way they
meet pupils’ needs. Rigorous checks on teaching and learning ensure that performance
management is effective and full account is taken of national teaching standards. However,
senior leaders and governors do not always use information about pupils’ progress to check that
gaps are closing with all pupils nationally.
- Across the school, the newly-developed topic-based curriculum ensures the systematic
development of pupils’ basic skills. It is interesting and meets pupils’ needs well.
- The wide range of enrichment activities and the annual residential are easily accessible to all
pupils. These aspects of the curriculum are effective in promoting pupils’ spiritual, moral, social
and cultural development. The breadth of these activities and their accessibility show that the
school values every one of its pupils regardless of their difficulties and tackles discrimination with
determination and vigour. These values are at the heart of everything the school does and, as a
result, all groups of pupils achieve equally well.
- The involvement and support of all agencies ensure that pupils quickly receive the extra help
they need. The outreach team is effective in identifying pupils’ needs across the authority and in
supporting Waterside pupils when they re-integrate into mainstream schools. It provides support
and advice for teachers in other schools which is much appreciated.
- The issues identified at the previous inspection have been tackled and significant improvements
have been made to the provision even though the complexity of pupils’ needs has increased and
there have been staff changes including senior leaders and governors. This shows that the
school has good capacity to improve further.
- The governance of the school:
The governing body challenges the school well and uses resources effectively. It ensures that
policies and procedures, including those relating to safeguarding, are of the highest quality and
have a positive impact on the life of the school. The arrangements for managing the
performance of teachers are thorough and carefully linked to the professional development of
all staff, so that the quality of teaching and learning and pupils’ achievements continue to
improve even though the complexity of pupils’ needs is increasing. Staff move through the
salary scales appropriately. Governors have ensured that the school has used the additional
funding it received from the pupil premium initiative very effectively to make the curriculum
more responsive to pupils’ needs, so that the outcomes for pupils continuously improve.
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||133401|
This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.
|Type of school||Special|
|School category||Community special|
|Age range of pupils||5–11|
|Gender of pupils||Mixed|
|Number of pupils on the school roll||29|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Date of previous school inspection||4–5 November 2009|
|Telephone number||020 831 77659|
|Fax number||020 831 72315|