Giles Brook Primary School

Name Giles Brook Primary School
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 17 November 2011
Phone Number 01908507627
Type Primary
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Does Not Apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 445 (48% boys 52% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 22.7
Local Authority Milton Keynes
Percentage Free School Meals 5.1%
Percentage English is Not First Language 23.1%
Catchment Area Information Available Yes, our catchment area data is FREE

Information about the school

Giles Brook Primary School is larger than the majority of primary schools. The proportion of pupils who are known to be eligible for free school meals is well below the national average. The proportion of pupils who speak English as an additional language is below the national average. The proportion of pupils identified as having special educational needs and/or disabilities, predominantly linked to difficulties in communication, behavioural, emotional or social needs, is below that found nationally. The school has gained Healthy School status. The school is currently led by an interim headteacher who was appointed in September 2011.

Main findings

Giles Brook Primary is a good school. It has a number of outstanding features. It is a caring and supportive school where pupils feel safe and achieve well. Parents and carers speak highly of the positive ethos that the staff have created at the school. They feel they are welcome at the school and greatly value the efforts that staff make in order to ensure their children achieve and enjoy school. The school’s strategic leadership is currently going through a period of transition. The interim headteacher and interim deputy headteacher have a sound overview of the strengths of the school. Since the previous inspection, successful actions have been taken to improve attainment in writing and girls’ achievement in mathematics. However, the use of assessment data to give managers a clearer overview of pupils’ progress still requires development. The governing body has several new members. For example, the Chair and Vice-Chair were elected to their roles in the week preceding this inspection. They are committed to undertake the training required to increase their level of involvement in the work of the school at a strategic level. Currently, they are not sufficiently involved in monitoring and evaluating the impact of school improvement plans. Given these key changes, the school’s capacity to improve is satisfactory. Children make good progress from their starting points in the Reception classes, which are generally in line with typical expectations. By the time pupils reach the end of Key Stage 2, their attainment is above average and achievement is good. Progress is particularly good in English. Listening and speaking skills are well-above average and pupils make confident contributions in lessons. Progress in reading is good and most pupils read fluently and with expression by the time they leave. Progress in writing has improved because school leaders have correctly identified narrative writing as a weakness and have addressed it well. Pupils, particularly boys, make slower progress in mathematics than girls and fewer boys attain the higher levels. This is largely because they are not consistently presented with challenging opportunities to develop advanced skills and to work independently. Early identification and good support for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities ensure they take a full part in all areas of the curriculum and progress in line with their classmates. Teaching is good. Most teachers’ expectations are high and lessons are well planned. The pace in the large majority of lessons is brisk and pupils work with sustained concentration. In lessons, pupils behave well and are responsive to their teachers. One of the major reasons for pupils’ success is their excellent personal development, promoted by the good level of pastoral care the school provides. Pupils say that they feel very safe and that there is always an adult they can turn to if they are troubled. They feel secure inside the school premises as a result of stringent arrangements to monitor those entering the school buildings. Pupils have extremely positive attitudes to learning. In lessons, they are full of enthusiasm, confidence and enjoyment. Excellent behaviour is the norm, because pupils are treated with respect by the staff and feel extremely safe. Attendance is above average. Pupils have a very good awareness of how to lead a healthy lifestyle. This is shown by the high numbers who take part in out-of-school sports and energetic activities in the playground. Spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is outstanding and many parents and carers comment on how effectively it is promoted by the school. Pupils make a good contribution to the school and local community.