School which fought back from brink twice retains good rating

Branton Community Primary School celebrates its Ofsted report.
Branton Community Primary School celebrates its Ofsted report.

A rural primary school in north Northumberland, which has faced closure twice in recent years, has retained its good Ofsted rating.

Branton Community Primary School looked set to close in 2012 and again in 2015-16 during the switch to a two-tier system in the Alnwick Partnership, but is now thriving and secured a good rating following a short inspection at the back end of last year.

Headteacher Zoe Ryan said: “As a school that faced closure not so long ago and one that is vehemently supported by our local community, I feel our report needs celebrating. “

The report says: ‘Pupils thoroughly enjoy coming to school each day and appreciate the broad range of opportunities provided by the varied curriculum that you have embedded.’

It adds: ‘Teachers know each pupil very well and adapt their teaching skilfully to meet pupils’ individual needs. This is exemplified by the good work you do to support pupils who have special educational needs and/or disabilities.’

It also highlights the forest school which ‘further enhances outdoor learning opportunities for the children and broadens the curriculum exceptionally well’.

In terms of next steps for the school, the report says that leaders and those responsible for governance should ensure that teachers’ expectations of pupils remain consistently high and that the actions in the school development plan are improved on, so they are more precise.

An open day and evening is taking place at the school on Wednesday, February 7, starting with a sharing assembly at 10am followed by refreshments and an open afternoon where parents, prospective parents and members of our community are welcome to go in and see a working afternoon in school.

An open evening where parents and prospective parents are welcome to go along and chat to staff and governors takes place between 5.30pm and 6.30pm.