CHILDREN, teachers and governors at Upper Beeding Primary School have had the best possible start to their summer holidays – basking in the warm glow of an ‘outstanding’ verdict by education inspectors.
The school, with 325 pupils, scored top marks in every category following a visit by Ofsted inspectors at the beginning of this month.
Head teacher Becky Linford said the whole school, staff, the leadership, governors and children, were ‘over the moon’ after the education watchdog’s report was published this week, making Upper Beeding Primary one of very few schools in West Sussex to have been rated as ‘outstanding’ under the new, stricter inspection regime.
“We are thrilled that the inspection team recognised the high quality of all aspects of our school team,” said Mrs Linford, adding: “We won’t be resting on our laurels. We will strive to reach higher standards.”
Everyone at the school had ‘excelled themselves’ during the inspection, said Mrs Linford, who has been the head since September, 2010. “The inspectors saw the hard work, enthusiasm and total dedication of the staff, and the pride the children took in their learning – their enthusiasm and confidence really shone through.”
Lead inspector, Robin Gaff, praised the contribution of Upper Beeding’s senior management. “School leaders show high levels of commitment to ensuring that the school is as good as it can be for its pupils. This, together with the head teacher’s unremitting focus on improving the quality of teaching, has resulted in pupils making excellent progress from their starting points, leading to outstanding achievement.”
He added: “Pupils’ cultural development is considerably enhanced by the school’s strong focus on the arts, especially music. Pupils’ excellent behaviour has a highly positive impact on their learning. Their excellent attitudes contribute strongly to their academic achievement.”
Teachers are ‘extremely enthusiastic as well as knowledgeable about the different subjects they teach. They plan lesson activities closely matched to pupils’ abilities and interests’.
Academically, the school scored highly, too. “Pupils throughout the school make excellent progress and achieve extremely well in a large number of subjects, including English and mathematics,” said Mr Gaff.