Grove Primary School in Lowestoft is celebrating its first ‘Good’ Ofsted rating in its 28 year history. Executive Headteacher, Mrs Rae Aldous has praised the whole school community ‘for being so supportive and believing in the school’s improvement journey’. Furthermore, the Early Years provision at the school, which is part of The Active Learning Trust, was graded as ‘Outstanding’.
Jonathan Duff, Regional Director for the Department of Education, wrote to Mrs Aldous following the judgement, to congratulate her: “This result is testament to your hard work and that of the school staff, supported by the trust. You should be very proud! Please accept my warmest thanks to you and your team.”
Mrs Aldous said: “I am delighted by the outcome and would like to thank my Senior Leaders, Teachers, Support Staff, Admin Team and Site Team who have worked so hard to achieve this. I would also like to thank The Active Learning Trust, who have guided and supported the school to success. Lastly, a very big thank you and well done to our amazing children who deserve the very best.”
Mrs Aldous added: “The school-to-school partnership we have with Westwood Primary School has been pivotal in ensuring success for both schools. I am looking forward to continuing our school improvement journey and securing further outstanding judgements for both schools.”
The report was very positive and provides a good insight into what it is like to be a pupil at Grove Primary School. In particular, Inspectors noted that: “Pupils are happy and proud to attend Grove Primary. The school is a welcoming community with a strong focus on accepting everyone and celebrating people’s differences.”
“Leaders have high expectations for all pupils. Relationships between staff and pupils are strong. Emotional wellbeing is a shared priority and pupils look after each.”
“Leaders and governors are highly focused on improving the quality of education. The senior leadership team, together with the support of the trust have brought about significant improvements. Leaders have an accurate view of the school’s strengths and what needs to be better.”
“The curriculum has clearly defined aims and is ambitious. Leaders have planned the
curriculum in reading, writing and mathematics effectively based on what pupils need to know and be able to do.”
“Reading is a strength. Teachers have ambitious expectations of pupils and, as a result, pupils secure necessary reading skills quickly. Pupils who are starting to fall behind are given extra support. This is to ensure that they gain the knowledge and skills they need to become confident readers."
“Leaders have created an exceptional provision for the children in early years. Children enjoy highly stimulating activities that meet their needs and help them to secure strong knowledge.”
“Staff work closely with parents to help them effectively support their children at home. Children are well prepared for learning in Year 1.”
“Leaders have created many opportunities to support pupils’ personal development. Pupils value the programme they follow that helps them gain knowledge about how to thrive as global citizens. They understand the need to respect and value others. “
“Leaders ensure that the curriculum meets the needs of pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). Teachers make appropriate adaptations so that pupils with SEND access the full curriculum successfully. Leaders liaise well with the local authority and other agencies. Leaders are working hard to ensure that communication with all parents of pupils with SEND is clear, informative and supportive.”
“Governors and the trust share leaders’ aim to make the school even better. Governors are skilful and carefully evaluate the quality of the school’s provision. They support and challenge leaders effectively.”
Craig D'Cunha, Acting CEO of The Active Learning Trust added: “I would like to congratulate our colleagues at Grove Primary School and those across the Trust who have played a part in achieving this Ofsted grade. We are all very proud of the school community, for the welcoming and positive learning environment they have created.”