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‘Welcoming’ Shropshire school keeps good rating

By Andrew Morris | Prees | News | Published: | Last Updated:

Inspectors have praised a “welcoming and friendly” primary school where pupils achieve well across all subjects.

Ofsted visited Whixall Church of England Primary School last month, confirming that it continues to be rated ‘good’. They found that pupils feel safe and arrive at school excited about what they will learn that day, while staff are cheerful.

The school converted to an academy in December 2016 and is part of the Fields Multi-Academy Trust and has a Christian ethos, inspector Niall Gallagher said. He added: “This is a welcoming and friendly school where pupils achieve well. 

“Staff have high expectations of all pupils. Pupils arrive in the morning excited about what they are going to learn. Staff greet them cheerily and welcome them by name. 

“Staff and pupils know each other well. This helps pupils to feel safe and secure. 

In full:

“Pupils know who to go to if they are worried and are confident they will get the help they need. Pupils are kind to each other and have excellent manners. 

“They hold classroom doors open for each other and wait patiently in line for lunch.”

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He added: “The school is distinctly Christian. Staff promote the values of respect, care, support, tolerance, perseverance, forgiveness and trust. 

“Each term, they focus on a different value. They involve parents in this, too, by providing resources to help them promote it at home. Pupils behave well in lessons. During playtime and lunchtime they play nicely, and no one is left out. 

“On the rare occasions when pupils are unkind to each other, staff step in and resolve it quickly. 

“Pupils who spoke to inspectors said that they were happy and felt safe in school.”

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Mr Gallagher said pupils achieve well in a range of subjects because the curriculum is well-planned and teachers make sure that lessons connect to each other. 

He added: “Two years ago, leaders noticed that pupils were not achieving as well in mathematics as they were in reading. Leaders have addressed this successfully.”

Mr Gallagher said that to improve, the school can use assessment of how well children understand lessons more consistently.

He said lessons are not “sequenced consistently well in all subjects”.

For example, in history, topics are not taught in an order that allows pupils to build their knowledge and develop their skills incrementally.

Andrew Morris

By Andrew Morris
Local Democracy Reporter - @AndyMorrisLDR

Local Democracy Reporter covering Shropshire.

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