18th July 2014
To all Parents,
As Chair of Governors I am writing to update you on the school’s achievements over the 2013/2014 academic year.
We had an Ofsted inspection at the end of January. The inspectors found that pupils achieved well across the school and that pupils made good progress overall. Teaching was consistently good across the school and teachers had good subject knowledge which enabled pupils to make good progress. Pupils behaved well in class, their attitudes to work were very positive, and the inspectors found pupils to be very friendly and welcoming. The curriculum was broad and balanced, and the quality of both music and art was impressive. School leaders and governors had established a culture in which everyone wanted to improve, and the inspectors noted that well-founded plans were in place to show that further improvements will be made. Overall, the achievement of pupils, quality of teaching, behaviour and safety of pupils and leadership and management were all assessed as Good. We know that pupils do not achieve as well in writing as they do in reading and mathematics, and St Andrew’s is not unique in this. However, there will be an increased emphasis on writing in future to compliment the many outstanding features that we all see daily at St Andrews.
In March 2014 we also had our OFSTED follow up inspection by the National Society of Anglican and Methodist Churches. The inspectors judged our school to be OUTSTANDING overall. The inspectors found that the school’s Christian values mean that there is a determination to do the best for every child. They also recognised that pupils enjoy school and achieve well because they are valued and nurtured as individuals.
As we reach the end of the academic year, our SATs results at the end of Key Stage 2 are excellent again. Our Year 6 children achieved 97% in both reading and mathematics and 90% (up from 85% last year) in writing.
Our standards in writing at the end of Key Stage 1 have improved and are above last year’s national average, but the results for reading and maths are slightly down on 2013. We will focus on this because our results improved year on year over the previous 4 years. Our Year 2 children achieved 79% in reading, 83% in writing and 76% in mathematics. Overall, the percentage of children achieving a good level of development at the end of the Foundation Stage went up from 60% in 2013 to 64%, which is well above last year’s national average.
Throughout my time as a Governor and now as Chair of Governors, we have adapted to the many and varied edicts from the Department of Education and Ofsted. The staff and pupils bear these with enthusiasm and fortitude and you will see further developments over the next year in school meals, pupil premiums and sport provision. We are trying to keep support costs down while maximising good practice through cooperation with neighbouring schools via the Oval Cluster. No matter what the changes and pressures swirling around the education agenda in general and St Andrew’s in particular, I remain impressed and humbled by the unstinting dedication and commitment of the teaching staff and my fellow governors. St Andrews is not only a credit to staff, pupils and parents but it is also a beacon of hope for our future as a friendly, tolerant and well-educated society.
I hope you and your children are happy and fulfilled at St Andrews and please let me or the staff know if you have any concerns or suggestions for improvement.
Let us all look forward to an even more rewarding 2014/2015. With very best wishes