Dorrington Academy


Name Dorrington Academy
Website http://www.dorringtonacademy.co.uk/
Ofsted Inspection Rating Outstanding
Inspection Date 06 November 2019
Address Dorrington Road, Perry Barr, Birmingham, West Midlands, B42 1QR
Phone Number 01214645330
Type Academy
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 649 (53% boys 47% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 20.6
Academy Sponsor Dorrington Academy Trust
Local Authority Birmingham
Percentage Free School Meals 23.6%
Percentage English is Not First Language 46.8%
Persisitent Absence 12.7%
Pupils with SEN Support 11.4%
Catchment Area Information Available Yes, our catchment area data is FREE
Last Distance Offered Information Available No

What is it like to attend this school?

This is an excellent school that pupils love coming to. They read, write and do mathematics every day and by the time they leave, they reach very high standards in these subjects. Alongside these, many other subjects take place. All subjects are planned so pupils learn the right things, in the right order and at the right time.

Leaders have very high expectations that pupils will achieve well. They prepare pupils for life in modern Britain. Lessons provide pupils with practical activities that develop their skills across a wide range of subjects. For example, within the school day, pupils learn how to rock climb using the school’s indoor climbing wall. They make pizza in the school’s outdoor pizza oven and take part in yoga in the school’s yoga studio.

Staff work very hard and teach pupils exceptionally well. They promote positive attitudes. Pupils get on very well with adults and with each other. As a result, behaviour is excellent. Bullying is rare, but if it happens, adults help stop it.

The school puts the mental health and well-being of its staff and pupils first. The school is a calm, welcoming place for all.

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

Leaders ensure that the school provides an excellent standard of education for pupils. Leaders’ drive and passion are clear to see. New staff receive the right amount of support and say that their workload is manageable. Teachers ensure that activities engage and excite pupils. Learning builds on pupils’ previous learning in all subjects.

Children in the Nursery and Reception classes make a superb start. Leaders and staff in early years know the children well. There is a sharp focus on developing children’s speaking and listening skills. Children can learn inside and outside the classroom. Children are eager to learn and are kind to each other.

The teaching of reading starts from the moment pupils join the school. Well-trained staff teach phonics daily. The teaching of reading and other subjects is precise and accurate. Phonics sessions take place in small ability groups and are stimulating and fun. Pupils read often, both at home and at school. They talk with enthusiasm about their favourite books and authors and have a love of reading.

Pupils who have special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) take part in all activities. The special educational needs coordinator has an effective oversight of individual pupils’ needs and ensures that these are met.

Disadvantaged pupils’ needs are well met. They often make better progress than their peers.

Pupils have many opportunities to think deeply and to develop their confidence. This is the case in all subjects. Pupils’ work in books is neat. They take a pride in all they do. Effective assessment identifies what pupils need help with. Extra support for pupils who need it, including disadvantaged pupils, ensures that they keep up and catch up with their peers. The most able children also receive the care and attention they need. Whatever a pupil’s background or abilities, they make excellent progress in their learning.

The school environment is attractive, well organised and full of resources. Pupils are happy to talk about their work that is on display and in their books. They use a wide range of vocabulary to describe their learning to inspectors.

Links between subjects enhance learning. Cooking lessons reinforce learning in science when heating, melting and cooling ingredients. A range of visits bring learning to life. Year 6 pupils visit a local regimental museum, as part of their learning in history.

Pupils’ behaviour is exemplary both in lessons and as they move around school. Pupils are polite and well mannered. A rewards system encourages pupils to be kind and helpful and to treat each other with respect.

Pupils have lots of opportunities to learn about the beliefs and cultures of others. They undertake charity work and get involved with the local community. Pupils report that ‘everyone has a voice’. This is a school where pupils respect each other, their talents are nurtured, and all pupils thrive.

Leaders’ ambition to create an inclusive community school is now a reality. Pupils make exceptional progress in most subjects. This ensures that they are ready for secondary school when they leave.

Safeguarding

The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

All staff know that safeguarding pupils is very important. Leaders train staff so they know what to do if they have concerns about a pupil’s well-being or safety. A high proportion of staff are first-aid trained.

Leaders and governors understand vulnerable pupils’ needs. They support pupils that are under the care of social services in a sensitive way.

Leaders check that staff are suitable before they begin work at the school.

Staff teach pupils to look after themselves in a range of situations. Pupils are knowledgeable about how to keep themselves safe when using the internet and knew whom they could talk to if they were worried about anything.