Ely St Mary’s CofE Junior School awarded a ‘good’ Ofsted report

Cambridgeshire Arts in Ely Cathedral. Ely St Mary's Year 3 strings project.

Cambridgeshire Arts in Ely Cathedral. Ely St Mary's Year 3 strings project. - Credit: Archant

St Mary’s CofE Junior School in Ely has just had its Ofsted report back and its ‘good’ news.

Lead inspector Fiona Webb praised the school that previously ‘needed improvement’ for having lessons that are “carefully planned” and having a “good balance of support and challenge”.

Rating all areas of the school as ‘good’ Ms Webb compliments headteacher, Rebecca Ireland-Curtis who, she says, “provides focussed and determined leadership. “This has led to considerable improvements to the quality of teaching and pupils’ outcomes”.

Ms Webb praised the school’s improvements in reading, writing and mathematics.

“Attainment was below national standards at the end of key stage 2 in 2016,” she said. “Since then, rapid progress has been made so that in most subjects pupils typically work at a level which is similar to, or better than, the expectations for their age group.

“The school’s capacity for further improvement is good. “Middle teachers have a good understanding of the school’s strengths and areas for development. They have clear plans to bring about change and make further improvements.”

“Pupils like coming to school and behave well in lessons and around the school. They care for each other and are respectful.

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The report adds that “the local governing body has ensured that it has appropriately trained and experienced members.

“Governors provide strong support and challenge to school leaders”

The effectiveness of leadership and management was acknowledged and “the school successfully promotes pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, and British values.

“This is achieved through curriculum, a planned programme of assemblies and through interactive displays. All of these help to prepare pupils well for life in modern Britain.”

The inspector added that “staff knows what to do should they have any concerns about pupils’ safety and welfare.

“The most vulnerable pupils are given a high priority. Record-keeping is effective and the school works well with external agencies to ensure that any concerns are quickly followed up.”

Going forward, says Ofsted, the school needs to improve the teaching of mathematics “so that pupils continue to make rapid progress, and reach at least the expected standard by the end of Year 6”.

Recommendations include ensuring that “the most able pupils are sufficiently challenged in all lessons, especially in English and mathematics, so that they achieve the best that they can”.