Quality of teaching praised

Pupils at Ellingham Primary School.
Pupils at Ellingham Primary School.

One of north Northumberland’s newer primary schools following the reorganisation in the Alnwick Partnership has been rated good by Ofsted.

Ellingham CofE Aided Primary School was previously deemed by the watchdog to require improvement when still a first school.

Among other aspects, the report praised the quality of teaching and leadership.

Headteacher Diane Lakey said: “We are delighted with the outcome of the inspection. It recognises the huge efforts of all staff – teachers, teaching assistants, support staff and volunteers – on a daily basis to create a stimulating learning environment within the caring ethos of a church school.

“Our pupils do well when they are here and are well-prepared for their future learning. After the upheaval arising from the change to two-tier education in Alnwick, it is fantastic to have such a positive endorsement of what we do.”

The report says: ‘Pupils achieve well due to effective teaching. They make good progress in reading, writing and mathematics, with the vast majority of pupils reaching the expected standard. Almost half of all pupils achieve the higher standards in reading and mathematics. This is above that found nationally.

‘Teachers create an excellent climate for learning, with all pupils engaged in their work... Leaders instil in pupils a love of reading. Pupils are avid readers who talk enthusiastically about their favourite characters and authors they particularly enjoy.’

It adds: ‘The headteacher sets a clear vision for the school, which is shared by all staff and governors. Leaders know the school’s strengths and they identify and address any weaknesses promptly. Consequently, the school is improving well.’

The school’s curriculum was applauded as broad and balanced with a heavy accent on enrichment through ‘the many and varied visits and opportunities pupils receive to promote their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development successfully.

‘The interesting curriculum and the many enrichment activities on offer ensure that staff prepare pupils increasingly well for life beyond school in today’s modern Britain.’