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New Invention Junior School boasts outstanding Ofsted report

By Heather Large | Willenhall | Ofsted reports | Published:

A junior school is celebrating being top of the class after it was marked outstanding by Ofsted.

Pupils Kielen Smith and Millie Churchill, both aged 11, pictured with headteacher Alan Pearson, right and Councillor Chris Towe as New Invention Junior School celebrate an outstanding Ofsted report

The glowing report means that New Invention Junior School has become the only school of its type to currently have this top grade in the borough of Walsall and one of only a handful across the West Midlands.

Inspectors praised the 'culture of high aspiration' and described pupils attitudes to learning as 'excellent'.

Headteacher Alan Pearson, took over the reins of the school six years ago, when it was rated as ‘satisfactory’ and later moved the school to ‘good’ and now ‘outstanding’.

Improvements made during that time have included raising the standard of teaching and increasing the number of opportunities available to students.

The latter has included offering Brilliant Club, which offers pupils a introduction into university life, and running a trip to Paris for Year 6 pupils to enable them to practise their French skills.

The Ofsted report said: "Leaders work hard to raise pupils’ expectations by encouraging them to take part in a variety of activities. For example, the Brilliant Club encourages children in Year 5 to think about university.

"Visits to Cambridge, Oxford and Nottingham universities help pupils become aware of university life. They have a project to take part in as homework and then are given the chance to graduate at a ceremony at Oxford University."

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The school facilities have also been upgraded including a revamp of the playground and ICT room and the improved layout of the 12 classrooms.

Mr Pearson said: "We are delighted and satisfied that the hard work and dedication of everyone connected with this school has been recognised by Ofsted.

"We think the judgements are thoroughly deserved and we are proud of our unique achievement working in challenging circumstances.

“We could not have completed our transformation to outstanding without the loyal support over the past few years from pupils, parents, staff, governors and our wider community.

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The headteacher, while being delighted with the achievement, stated they still aspire to improve and grow stronger for the children and the community.

He added: “It’s incredible to be the only ‘outstanding’ junior school in the borough of Walsall, moreover I don’t think to my knowledge a junior school has been judged outstanding before in the borough, however we are not about to rest, we need to keep current and respond to constructive feedback.

“It is lovely to be able to celebrate the brilliant things which take place on a daily basis here at New Invention and we now plan to keep on striving to do even more, because that is what our staff would want to do and what our pupils deserve and need to prepare them for their next educational episode.”

Deputy headteacher Richard Bould who joined the school five years ago explained that Ofsted were particularly impressed with both the high educational standards at the school and pupil personal development behaviour and welfare.

He said: “The inspection report points out that the three-year average attainment score for maths was in the top 10 per cent of all schools nationally.

“The inspectors also identified what the parents and school community already know: ‘Pupils have excellent attitudes to learning.

"They take pride in their school, their work and their success. Pupils understand that working hard means listening carefully and doing your best.’

“As a team we are incredibly proud of this achievement and how the school has improved over recent years.”

Councillor Chris Towe, Walsall Council cabinet member for education and skills, said: “I’m delighted the school has achieved Outstanding status.

“I have always believed it was an excellent school and this outcome is well deserved.”

Heather Large

By Heather Large
Special projects reporter - @HeatherL_star

Senior reporter and part of the Express & Star special projects team specialising in education and human interest features.

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