Following our recent Ofsted inspection in November and December 2019, I am absolutely delighted to inform you that Newtown C of E Primary School has been graded as GOOD across all of the five key judgements within the new Ofsted Framework. This ends a 14 year legacy of the school being graded as Requires Improvement or below and I am thrilled that Newtown can now be seen as beacon of education within the local community.
As a school we were overwhelmed with support received from parents and carers of pupils, past and present, and cannot thank you enough.
As you will see from the report, the unusual occurrence of the Inspectors visiting a second time was due to the initial Inspection team needed to document more evidence and therefore additional evidence was needed to be gathered by a new Inspection team. This was not due to anything the school did or not do. However this now means that an unprecedented five Inspectors, including two HMI’s, have judged the school as good.
The inspection report celebrates the incredible pupils and wonderful staff that learn and work here and make it the fabulous place it is. We are delighted to be able to share it with you all (please see Ofsted section of the website). It is also available to download on the Ofsted website from Friday 24th January 2020.
We are so proud of our school and are thrilled that Ofsted also recognise how hard all pupils and staff work to make it a brilliant place. I am particularly proud of the following key points of the report:
- Pupils enjoy school and feel safe
- Leaders set the bar high, aiming to help pupils learn that there are no limits to what can be achieved
- The Senior Leadership team have considerably strengthened the quality of education on offer
- The school’s curriculum is well designed and sequenced thoughtfully
- Leaders’ quest to continually improve the school is highly evident
- The learning environment is positively buzzing
- The school is inclusive and a hub of activity where all are encouraged to succeed
In addition, the inspectors have identified key areas to continue to develop which I will need to ask for your help as parents. They include:
- Reading aloud to adults – As you know, reading is a passion at Newtown C of E Primary and children reading out loud regularly to you as parents and carers at home, is equally as important as reading to an adult in School. We will shortly be communicating with you more ways in which you can access our Community bookshop and library as a family.
- Improving Handwriting – Pupils need to improve their presentation and need support to increase the legibility, consistency and quality of their handwriting.
- Reducing fixed term exclusions – Behaviour is GOOD at our school but on the minimal occasion that further consequences are necessary, we are updating our behaviour policy to include ways in which consequences can be implemented aimed at a reducing the number of fixed term exclusions.
Another area that I would like to ask for your support with is that the Inspectors agreed that the school are doing all we can to ensure children are at school every day and on time. However we will continue to need your support with this, especially around persistent absence. If any parent is having issues with their child’s attendance or punctuality please contact me or Mrs Bull, Hone School Link Manager, and we will look at the best ways to support you as a family.
I am honoured to lead an amazing team here at Newtown and it is our sense of team in a huge way that got us through an incredibly demanding inspection period. It is the people that make Newtown the place it is and I am so very proud and glad to have such amazing people who show love, courage and friendship each and every day.
As such, I feel it is important to celebrate our many achievements this year and we have organised a whole school reward trip to Marwell Zoo on Thursday 13th February 2020. I will send out a separate letter about this very shortly. We are also in the early stages of organising a celebration event of our recent achievements for our local school community, centred around an open morning with special visitors, which will be very exciting.
Once again, may I take this opportunity to thank you as parents and carers for your unwavering support as we continue to ensure that your child is happy, inspired and challenged during their primary school years at Newtown C of E Primary School.
Mrs Howlett, Headteacher