School lives up to ‘brave’ motto

A PRIMARY school’s “broad and ambitious” curriculum, expert teachers and enthusiastic pupils have been praised by an inspector.

Ofsted visited Stanbridge Primary School in Downend in May and the regulator’s report, published in late June, said it continues to be a ‘good’ school.

Lead inspector James Oldham said pupils “know the school motto, ‘Be brave, not perfect,’ well”.

He said: “They like to be recognised for living up to this motto and for demonstrating the other school values of ‘ambition, creativity and community’.”

The inspector said leaders have high expectations of pupils’ behaviour, and children understand how the rules create a “safe and positive learning environment” and follow them well.

He said: “Parents speak highly of the school. They appreciate the school’s high expectations and the care their children receive.

“Pupils learn a broad and ambitious curriculum. Leaders have a clear vision to prepare pupils for the future by providing a good quality of education.

“Teachers have expert subject knowledge. They present information clearly and have a sharp focus on improving pupils’ vocabulary.”

The inspector highlighted strengths in the teaching of language and reading, assessment and encouraging pupils to think like an expert in each subject, with children talking enthusiastically about the different “states of being” they take on to be authors, historians or engineers.

Provision of clubs and trips at the school, which has 416 pupils aged from four to 11, was also highlighted.

The inspector said that to further improve, the school should ensure the needs of all pupils with special educational needs or disabilities are identified and met to help them follow the curriculum and learn well.

Ofsted’s visit, its first since 2017, took place during Year 6 SATs week at the school, whose head teacher Kirby Littlewood is moving to another school in September after four years in charge.

Acting head teacher David Payne said: “Over the last four years, we have been on an unwavering mission to create a rich curriculum that engages our children and we have been tirelessly developing our teaching practice to ensure we are delivering this curriculum with a deep understanding of how children learn.

“We are proud of the education we deliver and the safe, inclusive and nurturing learning environment we have cultivated.

“The Ofsted inspector spoke extremely highly about our children: they showed their dedication to learning, their compassion for others and eloquently shared their knowledge and understanding.”

Co-chairs of governors Arpana Paterson and Nick Richley said: “Our amazing community of staff, families and children rallied round supportively on our Ofsted days and the inspector was so impressed by the behaviour of our polite children, the lovely comments from parents and the high standard of teaching and learning evident across the school.”