OFSTED has conducted an inspection of Kenningtons Primary in Aveley after they had received complaints regarding “behaviour and standards in the provision of social needs”.
The government education watchdog came to the school based in Tamar Drove, Aveley in June 2018 and have reported their findings to headteacher, Jo Sawtell-Haynes.
The report states:
“My first line of enquiry to ascertain if the school continues to be good was about how well leaders meet the needs of pupils who have special educational needs (SEN) and/or disabilities. This is because the school’s performance data raised questions over whether some pupils who have SEN and/or disabilities made strong enough progress in 2017, and because the information about SEN provision on the school’s website lacked detail. In addition, Ofsted also received a complaint prior to the inspection about SEN provision.
You have given teaching assistants additional training to improve their skills in supporting pupils who have SEN and/or disabilities and I saw that this has had a positive impact on their learning. You give pupils who need it extra help outside their normal lesson times. However, you agree that provision for pupils who have SEN and/or disabilities is not yet as consistently strong as it could be. You have recently introduced a new system for tracking their progress and have plans in place to improve this aspect of the school further, including introducing a new SEN policy.
My next line of enquiry related to whether you ensure that pupils behave well and are safe from bullying. Prior to the inspection, some parents and carers raised concerns with Ofsted about behaviour. Ofsted’s online survey, Parent View, also showed that some parents were dissatisfied with this aspect of the school.
The report from the most recent Ofsted visit to the school in March 2016 recommended that you should improve communication with parents about the school’s policies and procedures for safeguarding and the management of pupils’ behaviour.
The wider evidence I gathered on this inspection did not confirm the parental concerns about behaviour. In and out of lessons, pupils behaved well, rarely needing a reminder from adults. Outside, at breaktime and lunchtime, pupils played well together. They enjoy their free time in a responsible way. In the dining areas, pupils have good table manners. They are calm and sensible and move around the building in an orderly way. Pupils typically have positive attitudes to learning. They respond quickly and well to adults’ requests and instructions.
Pupils I spoke with told me that there is not much poor behaviour. They say that there is ‘less and less silly behaviour’ because of the good way staff deal with it. Staff agree that behaviour is well managed and that leaders support them in doing this. All staff who responded to Ofsted’s survey said that behaviour is at least good and that there is a culture which encourages calm and orderly conduct.
There is a significant difference between the negative perceptions of some parents seen in Parent View and the experiences pupils have. You recognise the need for better communication to improve the perceptions some parents have of behaviour in the school.
My final line of enquiry was about whether pupils make good progress through the school. In 2017, pupils’ attainment at the end of the early years and the end of key stage 1 was below national averages. The progress pupils made through key stage 2 was broadly in line with national averages in reading and writing, and stronger in mathematics.
Pupils now make good progress across all key stages. You track this carefully and are able to show where progress has improved since last year. You realised that there was a need to improve pupils’ progress in reading and writing to match the strong progress pupils made in mathematics in 2017. You focused on comprehension to improve pupils’ reading. You overhauled the way in which writing is taught to ensure that pupils develop a deep understanding of how to write well. Pupils’ reading and writing are now developing securely, and pupils are making good progress in these areas. You agree that there is still some work to do to ensure that teachers always model good practice by consistently pronouncing words and sounds accurately.
Next steps for the school
Leaders and those responsible for governance should ensure that:
The needs of pupils who have SEN and/or disabilities are consistently understood and met across the school
Teachers model good practice by routinely pronouncing words and sounds accurately
Leaders improve communication with parents so that parents’ perceptions of behaviour improve.