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Inspection Reports 

George Dixon Primary School went through an Ofsted inspection in September 2021 and below you can find a short summary and also a link to view the full report.

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

What is it like to attend our school

  • Pupils are well cared for at this school. Pupils from a range of cultures and backgrounds accept others’ differences. The many pupils who are new to the school, settle quickly. This is because they get the support they need. Pupils enjoy the range of experiences on offer, particularly swimming and violin lessons.

  • Staff and leaders have recently changed the structure of the curriculum...  this enables pupils to build on what they have learned before.

  • Pupils are calm and orderly around the school building. In some lessons, pupils behave well and listen to the teachers. This helps them to learn.

  • Pupils have highly positive relationships with the staff and leaders at the school. They like coming to school and say they feel safe. Most pupils say that bullying does not happen because, ‘staff help to sort out problems straight away’.



The school has the following strengths

  • Leaders, governors and staff want the best for all pupils. They introduced changes after the last inspection to improve the school. For example, a restorative approach to managing pupils’ behaviour has helped reduce the number of incidents of rough behaviour on the playground.

  • Before the pandemic, pupils’ progress across the school in reading, writing and mathematics was improving. Standards in early years and phonics were rising. The numbers reaching the expected standards in reading, writing and mathematics at the end of key stage two were still [...] improving.

  • During the pandemic, leaders focused a lot of their time on supporting families with remote learning and children’s well-being. Even so, leaders continued work on developing the curriculum. Working with external support, leaders have created curriculum goals for most subjects. These are helping teachers to plan more effectively.

  • Plans make clear the knowledge pupils need to know and remember in core subjects. As a result, teachers can carry out checks on what pupils know. This enables them to identify learning gaps and plan the support needed to catch up. This happens regularly in phonics and mathematics. Pupils are starting to catch up in these subjects. Leaders have made this a priority.

  • The mathematics curriculum builds on pupils’ knowledge from lesson to lesson. Subject specialists provide training for staff. Teachers present concepts clearly. This helps pupils to develop their mathematical confidence and understanding.

  • All staff recently completed training to deliver a new phonics programme. It maps out the sequence of sounds and words children need to be able to read. Pupils also have a daily reading lesson to develop their reading confidence, fluency and understanding, and they read books that match the phonic sounds they have learned. However, these strategies are not yet having the desired effect for pupils who struggle to read.

  • Our phonics screening results for this year are 86% which is above the pre-pandemic National Average.

  • Children in early years get a good start to their education. They settle into routines quickly and start learning straight away. Staff prioritise developing children’s language and communication skills. Staff have high expectations and make these very clear to the children. As a result, children’s behaviour and attitudes in the early years helps them to learn and develop.

  • Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) have their needs identified and assessed when they join the school. Staff use a range of approaches to meet pupils’ needs. Pupils with more challenging needs are well supported in ‘The Reef’. As a result of these careful and thoughtful approaches, pupils with SEND are learning the curriculum as well as others.

  • Leaders provide a range of different experiences to support pupils’ personal development. Pupils enjoy trips to the farm, Roman workshops, and visits to the local church. Pupils develop their spirituality through considering questions such as ‘where do I belong?’.

  • Governors know the school well. They ask questions about the information leaders and external partners share with them.

How the school can improve further

  • Some of the approaches to developing pupils’ fluency in reading are not yet having the desired effect. Consequently, some pupils, especially the weaker readers, do not yet have the skills to read fluently and confidently. Leaders at all levels must make sure that strategies implemented help all pupils to read fluently and confidently.

  • The curriculum plans in some subjects do not always focus clearly enough on what teachers want pupils to know, remember and do. As a result, pupils in those subjects experience a disjointed curriculum and struggle to build on what they have learned. Leaders must make sure that all plans clearly identify the knowledge they want pupils to learn and how that knowledge is built on throughout the subject.

  • In a number of subjects, including science and history, teachers do not use assessment to systematically check pupils’ knowledge and understanding. As a result, teachers cannot be sure what knowledge the pupils already have so that they build on this effectively. Leaders must make sure that staff use assessment well to help pupils build on the knowledge they already have.

For a full report please click the link below.

George Dixon Ofsted Report

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