School thrilled over ‘good’ Ofsted rating

Maidenbower Junior School has been rated 'good' by Ofsted
Maidenbower Junior School has been rated 'good' by Ofsted

Staff at Maidenbower Primary are celebrating after their school was rated 'good' for the first time in seven years.

The school, in Harvest Road, underwent a two-day inspection in May and the findings were published on Tuesday (June 20).

In his report, inspector Bruce Waelend praised headteacher Elaine Jenkins as having had a "wholly positive impact on the school" since she stepped up to the post in October.

Mr Waeland said morale among Mrs Jenkins' staff was "very high" and added: "She has united the staff behind a clear vision of improving outcomes and accelerating progress for all pupils."

The report said previous weaknesses in teaching had been tackled and pupils were now making good progress across most subjects.

Mr Waeland said: "Pupils achieve well in reading because leaders have placed a strong emphasis on making reading a rewarding, enjoyable experience."

In addition, improvements were made in writing and maths, while the children's work in art, science and history were seen to be of "the same high standards seen in mathematics and English".

Staff had been "rightly disappointed" by the children's test results at the end of Key Stage 2 in 2016, which saw their achievements in reading, writing and maths fall below the national standard.

But Mr Waeland said Mrs Jenkins and her team had "spared no efforts in getting to grips with the reasons for this poor performance". He added that, thanks to the "effective measures" taken, this year's cohort is well placed to achieve a higher standard.

The report praised the behaviour of the children both in and out of lessons. Mr Waeland said almost all of the youngsters had positive attitudes to learning, adding: "Pupils behave well around the school. They are polite and well-mannered, thoughtful and respectful to adults and their peers alike."

Reacting to the report, Mrs Jenkins said: "The enthusiasm and motivation from our teaching staff and school leadership to continue to raise standards and provide amazing learning opportunities for our children has been recognised.

"The school is supported by a fantastic admin team who are dedicated to the well-being of the children.

"We are thrilled with the confirmation that we are a good school."

When it came to areas requiring further work, Mr Waeland said the attendance levels of disadvantaged pupils and those with special needs needed to be improved, and teachers needed to strengthen their subject knowledge to ensure more children achieved higher standards in reading, writing and maths.

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