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Ofsted gives school near Stafford overall 'good' rating after improvements

Staff and pupils at a school are celebrating after Ofsted inspectors gave it an improved overall 'good' rating.

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Celebrations at St John's Catholic Primary School in Great Haywood

The latest report said St John’s Catholic Primary School, at Great Haywood, near Stafford, which required improvement three years ago, now had ‘outstanding’ leadership and management.

Following a visit to the School Lane site in September the inspectors found that staff at the school, which is part of The Painsley Catholic Academy, now had a clear vision. A new head Lucy Snaith was appointed just over a year ago.

The report praised the quality of education, pupils' behaviour, personal development and early years provision which were found to be good, and it stated that leadership and management were outstanding.

It stated: "Leaders have prioritised reading. An effective reading programme is in place. This starts in Nursery. Staff have regular training in how to deliver the programme. Pupils have a daily shared read. Staff reward pupils who read regularly with certificates and badges. Pupils are proud to receive these.

"Leaders regularly check how well pupils are learning to read. Most develop into confident, fluent readers. If pupils fall behind, leaders provide pupils with extra help. Despite it being early in the school year, children in Nursery have got off to a good start. Parents say their children have settled in well and enjoy coming to school. Pupils in Nursery and Reception work well together.

"They share toys and are learning to take turns. The development of children’s vocabulary and communication is a key focus in early years. Leaders check if pupils need extra support and when needed seek specialist advice from external agencies, including the educational psychologist. As a result of this careful support, pupils with SEND in all years make good progress.

"Staff have high expectations of pupils’ behaviour. This starts in Reception - lessons run smoothly."

Mrs Snaith said: “This has been a real morale boost for everyone within the school community. Our school is going from strength to strength,with pupil numbers rising, improvements in student attainments and a massive increase in extra-curricular activities and trips.

"We have a lovely, friendly community and I am thankful to each and every member of our school family.”

The school is holding an open morning for prospective parents looking for a place in Nursery or Reception on Tuesday at 9.30am. Parents should book places via the school office on 01889 343106.

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