Ofsted praises head of East Cambs primary school for winning the ‘support and respects’ of parents and carers in such a short space of time

Head teacher Jane Segust with some of her pupils at The Shade Primary School, Soham. An inspection v

Head teacher Jane Segust with some of her pupils at The Shade Primary School, Soham. An inspection visit by Ofsted has delighted the team of teachers, assistants and volunteers who help run the school. Picture; THE SHADE - Credit: Archant

A visit from Ofsted proved a tonic for new head Jane Segust after beginning her second term at The Shade Primary School at Soham.

“Since you became head in September 2018 you have earned the support and respect of parents and carers because their children love coming to school and are excited about learning,” Ofsted inspector Elizabeth Cornish told her.

“One parent summed up the views of many, saying ‘I have two children in The Shade and I get comments from both of them saying how much they love to go to school…even on the weekends.

“The stories they tell me every night reflect a lot about what they have learned and how much they enjoyed that learning process’”

The inspector said good behaviour was a characteristic of The Shade and “pupils are focused on learning so they behave extremely well in lessons and around the school.”

But it was not only the head that got a glowing report – the inspector described how she saw “teachers and teaching assistants skilfully supporting learners’ choice and allowing them to investigate their own curious questions and interesting ideas by being flexible and appreciative.

“Parents have open access to additional resources and are encouraged to borrow toys, books and games to continue the learning at home”.

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Teaching assistants and volunteers play an important role, said the inspector, and she observed them “making a very noticeable positive impact”.

Ofsted says it hopes the “existing strong practice” continues so that good outcomes can be sustained as the school grows.

The Shade has also been asked to develop further language and communication skills in the early years “so that children excel as they progress through the school”.

Mrs Segust said “I am delighted that Ofsted saw how much our pupils enjoy their lessons and are ‘absolutely committed’ to their learning.

“Our children enjoy a range of rich opportunities because of the skill and hard work of so many adults working at The Shade. The Shade is an exciting and inspiring place to work whether you are an adult or a child.”

She added: “The inspector found a curriculum which is supporting all pupils to make rapid progress from their starting points, with lessons in physical education, humanities and the arts sitting alongside high expectations in English, mathematics and science.

“We are pleased that Ofsted recognised the many strengths of our school.”

The Shade Primary School was opened by the Staploe Education Trust in September 2013. This was the school’s second inspection and the first for its new head teacher, Mrs Jane Segust who started at The Shade in September 2018.