School etc Great British

Woolaston Primary School

Woolaston Primary School

01594 529270

Headteacher: Mrs Rosalind Escott


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155 pupils aged 4—10y mixed gender
189 pupils capacity: 82% full

90 boys 57%


65 girls 42%


Last updated: June 19, 2014

Primary — Community School

Education phase
Establishment type
Community School
Establishment #
OSGB coordinates
Easting: 359588, Northing: 200184
GPS coordinates
Latitude: 51.699, Longitude: -2.5861
Accepting pupils
4—11 years old
Census date
Jan. 16, 2014
Ofsted last inspection
Oct. 2, 2013
Region › Const. › Ward
South West › Forest of Dean › Hewelsfield and Woolaston
Village - less sparse
Free school meals %
Learning provider ref #

Rooms & flats to rent in Lydney

Schools nearby

  1. 1.8 mile Aylburton Church of England Primary School GL156DB (64 pupils)
  2. 2.6 miles Whitecross School (Foundation) GL155DZ
  3. 2.7 miles Three Castles College GL155ET
  4. 2.7 miles The Dean Academy GL155DZ (828 pupils)
  5. 2.9 miles Lydney Church of England Community School (VC) GL155JH (210 pupils)
  6. 3.2 miles Brockweir County Primary School NP167NW
  7. 3.4 miles St Briavels Parochial Church of England Primary School GL156TD (134 pupils)
  8. 3.5 miles Severnbanks Primary School GL155AU
  9. 3.5 miles Severnbanks Primary School GL155AU (223 pupils)
  10. 3.6 miles Bream Church of England Primary School GL156JW (181 pupils)
  11. 3.6 miles Primrose Hill CofE Primary School GL155TA
  12. 3.6 miles Primrose Hill Church of England Primary Academy GL155TA (237 pupils)
  13. 4.3 miles Pillowell Community Primary School GL154QT (80 pupils)
  14. 4.6 miles Tutshill Church of England Primary School NP167BJ (212 pupils)
  15. 4.9 miles Yorkley Primary School GL154RR (131 pupils)
  16. 4.9 miles Llandogo C.P. School NP54TJ
  17. 5 miles Clearwell Church of England Primary School GL168LG (43 pupils)
  18. 5 miles Wyedean School and 6th Form Centre NP167AA
  19. 5 miles St Johns-on-the-Hill School NP167LE (326 pupils)
  20. 5 miles Wyedean School and 6th Form Centre NP167AA (1119 pupils)
  21. 5.1 miles Oldbury on Severn Church of England Primary School BS351QG (60 pupils)
  22. 5.1 miles Sharpness Primary School GL139NU (94 pupils)
  23. 5.1 miles Ellwood Primary School GL167LY (137 pupils)
  24. 5.1 miles Parkend Primary School GL154HL (59 pupils)

List of schools in Lydney

Ofsted report: Newer report is now available. Search "115559" on latest issued Oct. 2, 2013.

Woolaston Primary School

Inspection Report

Unique Reference Number115559
Local AuthorityGloucestershire
Inspection number326222
Inspection dates11–12 February 2009
Reporting inspectorMary Harlow HMI

This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.
The registered childcare, managed by the governing body, was inspected under section 49 of the Childcare Act 2006.

Type of schoolPrimary
School categoryCommunity
Age range of pupils4–11
Gender of pupilsMixed
Number on roll
School (total)198
Government funded early education
provision for children aged 3 to the end
of the EYFS
Childcare provision for children
aged 0 to 3 years
Appropriate authorityThe governing body
ChairAndy Woodnutt
HeadteacherSue Bowen
Date of previous school inspection 19 September 2005
Date of previous funded early education
Not previously inspected
Date of previous childcare inspection Not previously inspected
School addressNetherend
GL15 6PH
Telephone number01594 529270
Fax number01594 529270

Age group4–11
Inspection dates11–12 February 2009
Inspection number326222

Inspection report Woolaston Primary School, 11–12 February 2009

© Crown copyright 2009



The inspection was carried out by one of Her Majesty's Inspectors and one Additional Inspector.

Description of the school

Woolaston Primary School is smaller than the average primary school. It serves the village and neighbouring towns and villages. Most pupils are of White British heritage and none are learning English as an additional language. The number of pupils with learning difficulties and/or disabilities is broadly in line with the national average and these pupils have moderate learning difficulties or behaviour problems. An acting headteacher has been in post for two terms due to the secondment of the headteacher to the local authority. There is a privately run playgroup on the school site providing Early Years Foundation Stage provision.

Key for inspection grades

Grade 1Outstanding
Grade 2Good
Grade 3Satisfactory
Grade 4Inadequate

Overall effectiveness of the school

Grade: 2

'We are very pleased with the progress our children have made at Woolaston Primary school. All the staff are friendly and helpful.' 'We are very lucky to have a school like this for our children.'

These comments reflect the views of most parents and they are right! Woolaston is a good school; it is indeed a harmonious community where pupils thrive. All at the school are working exceptionally hard to do the best for the pupils; as a result pastoral care is outstanding.

Achievement across the school is good. The children get off to a flying start in Reception where all make at least good and often excellent progress because of exceptional teaching and care. This good progress continues across Key Stages 1 and 2 and pupils attain above average standards in all subjects by the time they leave. Pupils with learning difficulties and/or disabilities achieve well because of the good attention they receive from all the adults. Pupils' speaking and listening skills are well developed because of the school's strong commitment to ensuring their good personal development.

Relationships between the adults and the children are excellent. This ensures good, and frequently excellent, behaviour. Teaching is consistently good. Consequently, the pupils respond enthusiastically, concentrate well and work hard. That said, there are insufficient opportunities for the pupils to take responsibility for their learning, and assessment, including marking, although rigorous, does not involve pupils enough to ensure they all fully understand their targets for improvement.

The curriculum is good. Every effort is made to provide the children with practical, motivating experiences that stimulate their thirst for learning. Good links are developing between subject areas where relevant, and opportunities for outdoor learning are a real strength. The school works well with the local community and there is an excellent range of visits and clubs on offer which the pupils, parents and carers appreciate.

Leadership and management are good at all levels. The way senior leaders managed a tricky start to the inspection due to difficult travelling circumstances was exemplary. The support they received from the chair of governors was also commendable. The school knows itself well and sets the right targets to make it even better. Governance is strong and partnerships are good. Overall, parents are very supportive of the school. Nonetheless, understandably, a significant majority expressed concerns about the absence of the headteacher, recent temporary staffing issues and the new setting arrangements for mathematics. The governors and senior leaders are taking these concerns seriously and appropriate plans are in place to resolve them. The school has made good progress since the last inspection and has good capacity for continued improvement.

Effectiveness of the Early Years Foundation Stage

Grade: 1

'My child is making excellent progress.' 'My child has settled into school very well, teaching is fun and creative.'

These parental comments are fitting tributes to the high quality of provision in the Reception. The children make an impressive start to their lives in school due to the outstanding care and welfare they receive, coupled with exemplary induction procedures. Most children arrive with the skills typically expected for their age and a significant number have well-developed personal skills. They demonstrate exceptional levels of enjoyment, independence and concentration in all areas of their learning because of 'truly outstanding' teaching, as one parent aptly commented. Consequently, they make at least good, and often excellent, progress in all aspects of learning because activities capture their imagination and excite them to learn. In lessons, the children move around the classroom confidently and calmly, fully aware of the daily routines, including independent registration. They play and work well together and are happy to plan and pursue their own learning interests independently. Lessons are vibrant, full of rich well-resourced opportunities for the children to explore the world around them, yet at the same time develop the important skills in language, number, information and communication technology and personal development. Planning such as the imaginative work on 'Percy the Park Keeper' is structured carefully to achieve this and activities in the outside classroom are chosen sensitively to enrich all aspects of their learning. The use of a camera linked to the computer and interactive whiteboard to photograph birds visiting the bird table was an excellent example of how learning is brought alive for the children.

Leadership and management of the Early Years Foundation Stage are outstanding. The adults keep a very close check on each child's progress and assessment systems are rigorous. Parents are kept informed appropriately and all documentation is of a high quality.

What the school should do to improve further

  • Increase the opportunities for pupils to take responsibility for their learning.
  • Involve pupils more in the assessment of their work and that of their peers.
  • Ensure marking provides clear guidance to pupils on how to improve.

Achievement and standards

Grade: 2

Pupils enter Year 1 with levels that are above national expectations due to the excellent start made in the Reception. They make good progress through Key Stage 1, especially in writing where recent intervention work has been effective in raising standards. National assessments at the end of Year 2 in 2008 show that standards are above average in writing and mathematics and just above average in reading. Inspection evidence showed that good teaching of letters and sounds (phonics) in Years 1 and 2 is now improving attainment at the higher levels in reading. Younger pupils were observed reading fluently with confidence, expression and enjoyment.

Pupils continue to make good progress throughout Key Stage 2 due to consistently good teaching coupled with rigorous assessment to track individual achievement. Although targets set for pupils are challenging, the performance of different groups is not clearly documented and easily accessible. Standards in art, as evidenced in high quality displays such as 'portraits', 'Greek bowls' and 'kites', are above those found nationally due to excellent specialist provision. The skilled teaching assistants are well deployed; as a result, pupils with learning difficulties and/or disabilities make good progress.

Personal development and well-being

Grade: 2

The dedication and commitment exhibited by all the adults to the development of the whole child results in pupils believing that they can achieve. Without exception, children enjoy school and feel they have a voice. All are delightful and refreshingly open in conversation, showing a well-developed sense of respect and care for others. This is particularly noticeable in 'talking partners' and group play.

Because the school places a strong importance on developing the pupils' self-esteem, their spiritual, social, moral and cultural development is good. Pupils benefit from a good range of opportunities designed to cultivate these aspects, for example the 'global compassion' programme and the poignant assembly on 'perseverance' where the pupils sing with enthusiasm. The steady work of the school council to improve play resources contributes to the harmonious ambience at lunchtimes where the pupils play together happily. Attendance has improved recently; it is now good, as is punctuality.

Behaviour is good, and at times exemplary. The pupils move sensibly in class and cooperate well in paired discussions and group tasks. Around the school, they say 'hello' to visitors and adults and invariably greet them with warm, friendly smiles. Pupils demonstrate an excellent understanding of the importance of eating healthily and participating in exercise. They feel very safe in school and know there is an adult to turn to if in need. When asked about bullying, a pupil said, 'there is always someone to turn to if we have a problem'. Pupils are developing good basic skills that prepare them for their next school and later life.

Quality of provision

Teaching and learning

Grade: 2

Lessons are well planned with clear learning objectives and there are good cross- curricular links which make learning interesting. As a consequence, pupils work well and develop good attitudes to learning. That said, there are insufficient challenges provided for pupils to take responsibility for their learning and to be involved in their own and the assessment of others. Teachers deploy a good range of strategies and resources which match pupils' learning styles, enabling them to make good progress. For example, younger pupils used appropriate actions enthusiastically to reinforce the use of punctuation as they read the class book and older pupils thrived on the excellent problem-solving tasks to apply their knowledge and understanding of shape, fractions, multiplication and decimals.

Curriculum and other activities

Grade: 2

Carefully designed topics and meaningful links planned between subjects ensure that the curriculum motivates pupils to learn. Staff work hard to bring learning alive through relevant opportunities for outdoor learning and first-hand experiences. This support pupils' achievement; for example, visits to a local castle and the Forest of Dean have helped to inspire boys to improve their creative and descriptive writing. Well-chosen themes promote community cohesion, and the local environment is used extensively. The school also ensures pupils learn about other cultures, as evidenced in displays and curriculum plans. Regular use of the school minibus enables pupils to make visits to local centres, and appropriate international links have been established with a school in France and a cultural link with Japan to enrich learning. Nonetheless, there is scope for more opportunities for independent and collaborative learning. Thoughtfully planned breaks in the timetable, coupled with a rich provision of after- school clubs and activities, contribute to pupils' excellent understanding of healthy lifestyles.

Care, guidance and support

Grade: 2

Adults are exceptionally committed to the care and welfare of the pupils, which contributes to the pupils' enjoyment at school. Procedures to ensure that pupils are safe are in place, including those relating to child protection. The site is well maintained, attractive and secure. The school has worked hard to develop extended provision through the breakfast club. This is well organised and provides an excellent start to the day. There are good links with outside agencies to ensure that pupils' social and emotional needs are met. Although pupils' progress is checked robustly, not all marking identifies what they have done well and what they need to do to improve.

Leadership and management

Grade: 2

Highly committed and caring leadership by the acting headteacher, ably supported by a skilled senior leader and staff team, is ensuring that the school continues to move forward in spite of recent difficulties in staffing. The senior team possess complementary strengths; discussions are refreshingly honest and leaders, including governors, have an accurate picture of the strengths and weaknesses of the school. The delegation of leadership is good throughout the school and all adults are developing into competent leaders of learning. They receive effective professional support; as a result, there is an infectious team spirit permeating throughout the school. The school's systems for checking on its improvements are rigorous but they are not sufficiently sharply focused in its improvement plan. The governors know the school well and are holding the school to account in a challenging and supportive manner.

Any complaints about the inspection or the report should be made following the procedures set out in the guidance 'Complaining about inspections', which is available from Ofsted's website:

Annex A

Inspection judgements

Key to judgements: grade 1 is outstanding, grade 2 good, grade 3 satisfactory, and grade 4 inadequate.School Overall

Overall effectiveness

How effective,efficient and inclusive is the provision of education,integrated care and any extended services in meeting the needs of learners?2
Effective steps have been taken to promote improvement since the last inspectionYes
How well does the school work in partnership with others to promote learners' well-being?2
The capacity to make any necessary improvements2

Effectiveness of the Early Years Foundation Stage

How effective is the provision in meeting the needs of children in the EYFS?1
How well do children in the EYFS achieve?1
How good is the overall personal development and well-being of the children?1
How effectively are children in the EYFS helped to learn and develop?1
How effectively is the welfare of children in the EYFS promoted?1
How effectively is provision in the EYFS led and managed?1

Achievement and standards

How well do learners achieve?2
The standards¹ reached by learners2
How well learners make progress, taking account of any significant variations between groups of learners2
How well learners with learning difficulties and/or disabilities make progress2

Personal development and well-being

How good are the overall personal development and well-being of the learners?2
The extent of learners' spiritual, moral, social and cultural development2
The extent to which learners adopt healthy lifestyles1
The extent to which learners adopt safe practices2
The extent to which learners enjoy their education2
The attendance of learners2
The behaviour of learners2
The extent to which learners make a positive contribution to the community2
How well learners develop workplace and other skills that will contribute to their future economic well-being2

The quality of provision

How effective are teaching and learning in meeting the full range of learners' needs?2
How well do the curriculum and other activities meet the range of needs and interests of learners?2
How well are learners cared for, guided and supported?2

Leadership and management

How effective are leadership and management in raising achievement and supporting all learners?2
How effectively leaders and managers at all levels set clear direction leading to improvement and promote high quality of care and education2
How effectively leaders and managers use challenging targets to raise standards2
The effectiveness of the school's self-evaluation2
How well equality of opportunity is promoted and discrimination eliminated2
How well does the school contribute to community cohesion?2
How effectively and efficiently resources, including staff, are deployed to achieve value for money2
The extent to which governors and other supervisory boards discharge their responsibilities2
Do procedures for safeguarding learners meet current government requirements?Yes
Does this school require special measures?No
Does this school require a notice to improve?No

1 Grade 1 - Exceptionally and consistently high; Grade 2 - Generally above average with none significantly below average; Grade 3 - Broadly average to below average; Grade 4 - Exceptionally low.

Annex B

Text from letter to pupils explaining the findings of the inspection

17 February 2008

Dear Children

  • Inspection of Woolaston Primary School, Lydney GL15 6PH

I am writing to say thank you very much for giving us such a warm welcome during our recent visit to your school. We were impressed with the way you greeted us so courteously with warm, friendly smiles. We enjoyed talking with you about your work, seeing you play together and hearing you sing so enthusiastically in assembly. What delightful children you are! Your school is good in many ways. Here are some of the special things that it does well:

  • Your school looks after you exceptionally well and the adults want to do their best for you.
  • Your behaviour and attitudes to learning are good; at times, they are exemplary. Everyone in the school cares for each other, including the playground buddies!
  • In Reception, you get off to a flying start in all aspects of your learning; you make good progress in all other year groups and achieve good standards by the time you leave Year 6.
  • Your teachers plan interesting activities for you, which help you to enjoy school.
  • The school council takes its responsibilities seriously and it has made a significant contribution to the purchase of play equipment which you appreciate.
  • There are lots of clubs and visits, which you participate in enthusiastically. You contribute well to the local community.
  • Your acting headteacher and other adults are always looking for ways to make your school an even better place to be. They listen to your views and those of your parents and carers in helping them to do this.

You have such a caring acting headteacher, supportive adults and committed governors at the school. We have asked them to make sure that you have more opportunities for independent work and become more involved in the assessment of your work so that you are clear about your targets for improvement.

It was a real privilege to visit Woolaston. Keep up the good work and, most importantly, continue to enjoy your learning.

Best wishes for the future; we hope that you achieve great things!

Mrs Harlow HMI

Lead inspector

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