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Shaftesbury Primary School ‘in need of improvement’ says Ofsted

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Shaftesbury Primary School has received a highly critical ‘could do better’ end-of-term report following a two-day visit to the school by Ofsted inspectors in February.

The government’s inspectors have judged the academy school – part of the Southern Academy Trust – as ‘requiring improvement’ after criticising a number of activities including teaching standards and the role of governors and directors.

Lead inspector Mike Brady said the school’s leaders had not raised outcomes in reading and writing high enough with the result that pupils’ standard in English was ‘not good’.

Governors and directors had not held leaders to account strongly enough to raise pupils’ achievement.

‘Leaders have not responded quickly enough to the demands of the new primary school curriculum,’ Mr Brady said.

‘Their expectations of staff and pupils are not high enough. Teachers’ assessment of pupils’ abilities is not consistently accurate across the school. Teachers do not plan in a way that ensures that activities routinely match the needs of the most able pupils in order for them to achieve the highest standards. This includes children in the early years.’

With 416 pupils aged from four to 11, Shaftesbury primary school is larger than average for a primary school with 15 classes.

On the plus side, the inspectors acknowledged that leaders know what needs to be done to improve quickly and praised personal development, behaviour and welfare.

‘Leaders have established a safe environment where pupils are well-behaved, respectful and tolerant of others,’ they said. ‘Many pupils are confident and self-assured.

‘Leaders and staff ensure that pupils’ welfare is a high priority. Vulnerable pupils are nurtured and well cared for,’ the report added.

The report was published on 20 March.

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