Primary school praised for improvements to achieve ‘good’ standard

A Nottingham primary school has been praised for making ‘significant improvements’.

Dovecote Primary was twice rated as requiring improvement when visited by Ofsted inspectors in 2014 and 2016.

But the education watchdog has found positive changes have been made across the board – with children now making strong progress in their lessons.

Inspectors have now given a judgment of ‘Good’ to the school in Clifton, following an inspection in February.

They said: “Since the last inspection, senior leaders and governors have taken steps to improve all aspects of the school’s work. The positive impact of their actions can be seen in the improved quality of teaching and strong rates of progress in reading, writing and mathematics.”

In particular, the inspectors highlighted:

  • The Head Teacher, supported by senior leaders, has raised expectations for staff and pupils; teachers and support staff feel proud to work at the school
  • Strong relationships between teachers and pupils promote positive attitudes to learning. This has led to improved rates of progress, sustained over time
  • Rates of progress in reading, writing and mathematics at the end of key stage 2 have improved significantly over time. In 2018, progress in mathematics improved to be in line with the national average. Progress in reading was above the national average and, in writing, well above.
  • Leadership and teaching in the early years are good. On entry, children’s skills are often below, or well below, those typical for their age, especially regarding communication and language and personal and social skills. As a result of effective teaching and support, children make good progress and, by the end of the Reception Year, an increasing proportion achieve a good level of development.
  • The school has become more outward-looking. There are effective partnerships with the Nottingham Schools Trust that have brought benefits of support, training and the sharing of good practice

The inspectors added: “The teaching of reading and writing has improved because of a whole-school focus on these subjects over the past two years. The positive impact of this work can be seen in the improved outcomes at the end of key stages 1 and 2, and in the quality of work in pupils’ books. Across a range of subjects, pupils’ books show pride in their work and evidence of teachers’ high expectations.”

Dovecote Primary caters for 434 pupils aged 3-11.

Head Teacher Andrew Jenkins said: “We are delighted that the hard work of staff, pupils, parents and governors has been recognised in this report, and that the school is now judged to be ‘good’ in all areas.

“Great credit goes to those who have supported the school through two Requires Improvement judgements, and have remained positive and determined to return the school to ‘Good’. A real team effort.”

Nick Lee, Director of Education in Nottingham, said: “I’m pleased that inspectors have recognised the hard work being put in by everyone at Dovecote – and I’m pleased to see that this school has now moved from ‘requiring improvement’ to being ‘good’.

“This is down to hard work from staff, pupils and governors. They should all be so proud of their achievement.

“The council is working closely with partners from across the city to ensure that every child can go to a school that is rated as ‘Good’ or better.”

The full report can be read on the Ofsted website.

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