Alderman Pounder Infant and Nursery School

Name Alderman Pounder Infant and Nursery School
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 08 December 2010
Address Eskdale Drive, Beeston, Nottingham, Nottinghamshire, NG9 5FN
Phone Number 01159252928
Type Academy
Age Range 3-7
Religious Character Does Not Apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 261 (53% boys 47% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 26.5
Academy Sponsor Flying High Trust
Percentage Free School Meals 9.2%
Percentage English is Not First Language 11.9%

Information about the school

Alderman Pounder Infant and Nursery is smaller than most schools. Half of the pupils live close to the school. About 80% are of White British heritage and the remainder are from a very wide range of other ethnic backgrounds. Almost one in ten of the pupils speak English as an additional language and there are currently ten who are at an early stage of learning English. The proportion of pupils known to be eligible for free school meals and the proportion who have special educational needs and/or disabilities are lower than the national average. The headteacher was appointed in September 2010. The school has gained national recognition for its work in several areas, including the Healthy Schools Gold Award and the Activemark award.

Main findings

Alderman Pounder is a good school. The new headteacher is ambitious for the school and determined that the pupils achieve their best. She is ably assisted by two key stage leaders, who together know the school’s strengths and what needs to be improved. Using the school’s accurate self-evaluation information, they have systematically identified the correct priorities and taken effective action to address these. The very positive ethos in the school results from all the staff and the governing body working together to provide well for the pupils. This ensures that the good provision and the pupils’ progress are not only maintained, but also continuously strengthened. The teachers with responsibilities across the school, such as subject leaders, are involved well in helping to check the quality of work in the areas they manage. Consequently, the school is well placed to build on its positive features and has good capacity to improve further. Parents and carers are almost totally unanimous in saying that they are happy with their children’s overall experience at the school, reflecting the school’s outstanding effectiveness in how it engages with them. Their many positive comments are summed up by the parent who wrote ’Alderman Pounder is a wonderful school. My family feels so lucky to have such an amazing nursery and infants close to home. My two boys are very happy here, the staff are all so caring and professional, links between school and home are very strong and school is well managed and always introducing new and innovative ways to enhance the children’s learning experiences.’ The children get off to a good start in the Nursery or Reception classes from starting points that are usually in line with the skills levels and abilities expected for their ages. They achieve well and become confident learners because all of the adults encourage them to be independent and enjoy their learning. The pupils’ attainment in Year 2 is above average and has been consistently so over the last few years. Progress is particularly strong in reading and mathematics. In writing, although many pupils achieve well, too few of the more able pupils make good progress because the work for these pupils is not always sufficiently challenging. Even though there are signs of improvement in the progress of more able pupils in writing, they are still doing less well in this than in reading and mathematics. The teachers do not consistently have sufficiently high expectations of these pupils. The school does not provide enough opportunities for developing and extending writing skills, as well as writing for different purposes, through other subjects of the curriculum. In addition, the school acknowledges there are too few opportunities for the pupils to engage in activities outside the classroom that stimulate them to develop ideas for writing. The school’s provision is of good quality and there are some significant strengths, particularly in care, guidance and support. This is outstanding and results in pupils who enjoy school, behave outstandingly well both in lessons and around the school and feel exceptionally safe. For example, even the youngest children in the Nursery know that they have to walk inside so that they ’do not bump into anyone’. Other children know that only ’good people’ are allowed past the front door. Many have also taken part in road safety instruction as part of the school curriculum. Also, they have an excellent understanding of the need to adopt a healthy lifestyle, reflected in the school’s awards for raising their awareness of the benefits of a healthy diet and regular exercise. The teaching is usually good and often outstanding, though occasionally satisfactory. Sometimes, in their bid to make activities interesting and relevant, the focus on what the pupils are learning gets lost and completing the task becomes more important than learning from it. The teachers use assessment information well in most cases to boost learning. They often question pupils well but sometimes do not demand extended answers in order to develop pupils’ language.