By Katya Green and Lizzie Tylee
Staff and pupils at Tadpole Farm CofE Primary Academy are celebrating after inspectors gave the school a ‘Good’ rating.
When Ofsted inspectors visited the school in May, they gave a ‘Good’ rating across the board, highlighting areas such as staff knowing the pupils “extremely well” and identifying how they “provide strong pastoral support” – something that was praised by parents.
After opening in Redhouse in 2014, the school relocated in Tadpole village in September 2015.
Head teacher Jane Leo was delighted with their rating: “Among the aspects that inspectors praised was how well staff knew the families and children. When you are building a school from nothing it’s all about our ethos – and how we believe that service to our community is the core of our school.”
Mrs Leo said the report reflected the school’s own assessment and that it was heartening to see the report pick up on the improvements they had already established. She recognised the need to strengthen middle leadership to take on more responsibility as the school grows in size.
Mrs Leo is looking forward to developing a key stage 2 provision and by 2018 to have their first set of SATs results, increasing from 230 to 350 pupils in the next academic year.
Ofsted mentioned how pupils are making “good progress” in reading, writing and mathematics. Mrs Leo said: “Academically, our children are working at or above the national average. We take an enquiry based learning approach, which means that the pupils are encouraged to become more independent and questioning in their studies.”
Mrs Leo said that not only was academic learning important but that the creative arts are just as vital. The school’s learning ethos enables the children to be enquirers, to investigate and evaluate and to become independent learners. This includes forest school, drama coaching and music such as djembe drumming and introducing ukuleles to next year’s year 5.