Improvements in school ‘driven with vigour’

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STEYNING Primary School has been graded good in all areas by Ofsted.

The school was inspected in October and the report was made public last week.

Head teacher Chris Luckin said: “We were pleased that the Ofsted team completed their inspection by confirming the school’s view that Steyning Primary is a good school.

“Particularly mentioned was the good and outstanding teaching and the rich and varied curriculum that we offer to the children.”

He said he was pleased the report reflected everything the school had said in its own self-assessment.

On paper, the national tests and assessment results at the end of year six did not look as good as they should because the school, in Shooting Field, has a special support centre and that affects the data.

Mr Luckin explained: “The problem with data is that it doesn’t allow for individual schools. There is not enough credence given to the context of the school.

“Being a totally inclusive school, I had to make sure they understood the story behind the statistics. Fortunately, we had a team who listened.”

The Ofsted inspectors acknowledge in the report: “External end-of-year six test raw results also support this positive picture, although not at first sight. Results dipped in 2011 and 2012. There were two principal reasons for this.”

The report notes there was an unusually high proportion of pupils with special educational needs and those joining part-way with through key stage two with low prior attainment during that period.

Mr Luckin was pleased the high quality of teaching was recognised, particularly as the school had made great efforts in recruitment to ensure they chose the best staff for the school.

“You don’t often see the words ‘inspirational teaching’ in an Ofsted report but it is in ours,” he added.

The report concludes: “Senior leaders and governors have driven necessary improvements with vigour and commitment over the past year.”