Diamond Hall Infant Academy

Name Diamond Hall Infant Academy
Website http://www.diamondhallinfantacademy.co.uk
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 04 December 2019
Address Well Street, Sunderland, Tyne and Wear, SR4 6JF
Phone Number 01915640222
Type Academy
Age Range 2-7
Religious Character Does Not Apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 324 (54% boys 46% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 18.8
Local Authority Sunderland
Percentage Free School Meals 40.9%
Percentage English is Not First Language 22.5%
Catchment Area Information Available Yes, our catchment area data is FREE


Diamond Hall Infant Academy School continues to be a good school.

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils like their caring, friendly school. They enjoy coming to school. They get along well together. The value of ‘respect others’ feelings’ is everywhere in the school. Pupils behave well in lessons and on the playground. They like to be helpful and kind. Pupils say there is no bullying.

As the school motto claims, ‘I can, you can, we can’ in Diamond Hall Infant Academy. Staff aim high for what children can achieve. The headteacher and her team carefully plan their teaching. Pupils are excited to imagine being an evacuee or solving the mystery of a crashed spaceship. Pupils are very positive about their learning. They like the teachers and other adults who help them. Pupils want to do well. They try hard in lessons.

The headteacher and governors want the absolute best for all pupils. The headteacher listens to the views of staff, parents and carers, and pupils. She has created a school where everyone feels valued. Staff say that leaders always have time to support them. Parents say that staff are ‘friendly, amazing, helpful and approachable.’ Parents are often involved in their child’s learning, including on ‘parent event’ days. Many parents said that they would recommend this school to others.

What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?

Young children learn to read quickly. Trained staff have the skills to teach phonics well. Teachers build pupils’ knowledge in small steps. Where pupils fall behind, adults support them to catch up quickly. Pupils enjoy listening to stories. Pupils were excited in one lesson to guess the next present in their Christmas story. The books pupils read are matched to their reading knowledge. This develops pupils’ confidence and motivation in reading.

Across the curriculum, teachers plan lessons carefully to develop pupils’ knowledge. For example, some Year 2 pupils talked confidently and in some depth about rationing during the Second World War because of what they had learned earlier. Pupils practise what theyalready know in mathematics to deepen their understanding further.

Leaders offer staff high-quality training in all subjects. Subject leaders are knowledgeable. They make a difference in their subjects and support other teachers to understand what needs to be taught. Teachers’ subject knowledge and confidence have developed well. Much work has been done in developing pupils’ history vocabulary. However, leaders are not yet using assessment to find out what pupils already know and can remember.

Pupils are good at reading and mathematics. They are not as confident when writing. Leaders have made this a priority this year. They are aware that pupils need to have greater opportunities to build their vocabulary in some subjects to show their understanding in their writing.

The early years is well led and managed. Children in early years explore and become curious in their learning. Staff make the most of the indoor and outdoor areas to develop children’s knowledge, understanding and skills. Children enjoy the activities that adults plan for them. While playing, children develop their language skills as well as the ability to read and count.

Teachers ensure that they support pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) well. Adults are skilful in giving extra support to ensure that pupils with SEND keep up. As a result, pupils with SEND achieve well. Leaders make sure that all pupils can take part in all the activities on offer, including the many school visits.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Staff know pupils and their families well. This means that they spot any changes in a pupil’s behaviour straight away. All staff understand how to report concerns about pupils’ safety. The designated leaders for safeguarding are quick to follow up any concerns. Leaders ensure that all staff get regular safeguarding training. This helps staff to keep up with the most recent guidance.

Leaders work well with other professionals to ensure that pupils are kept safe. They seek advice and support when they need to. Pupils know how to keep themselves safe in school and when online.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

Leaders should make sure that assessment of the foundation subjects gives a fully accurate picture of how well pupils are achieving in all subjects. . Ensure that staff teach pupils the vocabulary that they need to improve the quality of their writing in all subjects.Background

When we have judged a school to be good we will then normally go into the school about once every four years to confirm that the school remains good. This is called a section 8 inspection of a good school or non-exempt outstanding school. We do not give graded judgements on a section 8 inspection. However, if we find some evidence that the school could now be better than good or that standards may be declining, then the next inspection will be a section 5 inspection. Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the section 8 inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will convert the section 8 inspection to a section 5 inspection immediately.

This is the second section 8 inspection since we judged the predecessor school, Diamond Hall Infant School, to be good in June 2012.