St Andrew’s Primary School in Soham rated ‘good’ by Oftsed - thanks to ‘determined leadership of headteacher’

St Andrew’s Primary School in Soham rated ‘good’ by Oftsed - thanks to ‘determined leadership of hea

St Andrew’s Primary School in Soham rated ‘good’ by Oftsed - thanks to ‘determined leadership of headteacher’. Schoolchildren pictured celebrating National Storytelling Week in February 2016 with Lucy Frazer MP and schools minister Nick Gibb.jpg - Credit: Archant

Headteacher Michael Harrison was praised for his “determined leadership” following an Ofsted inspection of St Andrew’s C of E primary school in Soham that rated it good in all areas.

The strength of leadership, quality of teaching and behaviour of pupils was praised in the inspector’s report.

The report states that since his appointment in September 2016, Mr Harrison’s effective leadership has led the school to improve rapidly.

“The determined leadership of the headteacher has made an enormous contribution to improvements in the school” the report states.

“He is ably assisted by the deputy headteacher and, together, they present a clear plan for the future development of the provision”.

Mr Harrison said: “The school is certainly on an upward trajectory and this serves as a great indicator of how far we have come, however we have every intention of getting even better.”

The report adds that governors are “committed to and ambitious for the school, and had a clear strategic view of its strengths and weaknesses.

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“They bring a relevant range of expertise and knowledge that helps to provide effective challenge and support. They have been instrumental in improving the school”.

The Diocese of Ely Multi-Academy Trust (DEMAT), which runs the school, was commended for its careful monitoring of the school.

“It has brought systematic rigour to the self-evaluation process through the diocesan review visits which challenge the school to continue to make improvements” the report continues.

“The Trust has also provided high-quality support to enable staff and governors to improve the school”.

Teaching is also described as good throughout the school. “Teachers have high expectations and plan exciting lessons that build on pupils’ interests” the report states, “and pupils respond to these expectations and make good progress across the school”.

Inspectors also praised the work of teaching assistants, adding that they had a clear role in lessons and supported pupils with special needs and/or disabilities skilfully.

Pupils are therefore highlighted for their good behaviour around school and in lessons. “Pupils’ behaviour is typically courteous and respectful. They are polite and well-mannered in their dealings with their peers or with adults”.

The report adds that a strong safeguarding culture exists within the school, and that pupils said they felt safe.

To improve further, the school was encouraged to ensure its marking policy is consistently applied, and to ensure that middle leaders take a more strategic role in the leadership of the school.

Andrew Read, chief executive of DEMAT, said: “This report reflects the hard work of the whole school community, and is a credit to the children, school leaders, teachers and wider staff.

“This is a great example of what can be achieved with strong community links, and a single shared purpose.”