Ofsted praise for Newlands

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STAFF and pupils at Newlands Junior School are celebrating this week after being given the thumbs up by Ofsted in their latest report.

The Forest Town school, which caters for children aged 7-11, was given an overall rating of ‘good’ with several outstanding features by inspectors during their two-day visit in September.

Ofsted said the school places a strong emphasis on the promotion of pupils’ self-esteem and confidence, and parents and carers speak highly of the ‘family atmosphere’ in which their children thrive.

Areas rated as good by inspectors included ‘quality of provision’ and ‘leadership and management’.

“The curriculum supports the development of core skills, and there are effective links between subjects to ensure that literacy and numeracy are covered across all subjects,” the report said.

“Pupils enjoy learning Spanish, and participation in out-of-school activities, including a variety of sports, is good.

“Pupils are valued as individuals and the school’s emphasis on raising self-esteem and fostering self-belief allows pupils from all backgrounds to thrive.”

Inspectors highlighted a number of outstanding features including the behaviour of pupils, their attitude towards adopting a healthy lifestyle, and the extent to which children felt safe in the school environment.

Areas for improvement included raising attainment in English and mathematics and providing greater challenge to high-attaining pupils so that more of them reach National Curriculum Level 5 by the end of Year 6.

The report also said that pupils’ cultural awareness could be strengthened but inspectors added that pupils could play a big part in helping school improve further by continuing their excellent behaviour and hard work.

Headteacher Chris Newton said he was delighted with the Ofsted report and praised staff, children, parents and school governors for their ongoing commitment.

“As a school and community we are all very pleased to have our hard work recognised in this report,” he said.