Knaresborough St John’s CofE Primary School


Name Knaresborough St John’s CofE Primary School
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 11 October 2010
Address Stockwell Road, Knaresborough, North Yorkshire, HG5 0JN
Phone Number 01423863265
Type Primary
Age Range 4-11
Religious Character Church of England
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 329 (49% boys 51% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 21.1
Percentage Free School Meals 12.5%
Percentage English is Not First Language 3.3%

Information about the school

Most of the pupils at this slightly larger than average size school are White British. The proportion of pupils known to be eligible for a free school meal is below average. The proportion of pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities is above average, although the proportion with a statement of special educational needs is well above average. The proportion of pupils that leave or join the school other than in the Reception classes is higher than average. The school was established in January 2007 as a result of the amalgamation of an infant and junior school. The school has been accredited with a number of awards which include the Inclusion Quality Mark, the Quality Mark from the British Dyslexia Association, Eco-Schools Bronze Award, Activemark, and, it has achieved Healthy School Status.

Main findings

This is a good school. The exceptional way in which each child is cared for and nurtured, for example, reflects the real warmth and care that radiates from everyone. Parents say that they are, `deeply reassured by the caring attitude of staff’, and overwhelmingly agree that their children are kept safe. Rigorous attention is given to making sure that safeguarding arrangements are outstanding. In this very friendly, safe and welcoming setting, pupils develop wonderful personal qualities. They show good attitudes to learning, behave well and are extremely polite, courteous and respectful to adults and to one another. Pupils’ outstanding understanding of healthy lifestyles shows in their eagerness to try out a wonderful range of sporting activities. Their knowledge about how to eat healthy is impressive. Children make good progress in the Early Years Foundation Stage and, after this successful start, continue to learn well until the end of Year 6. Attainment is rising and, by the end of Year 6, is now above average in English and mathematics. In English, however, across the school, attainment in writing lags behind that of reading. The school is already tackling weaknesses in pupils’ writing, and the efforts are starting to pay dividends, particularly between Years 3 and 6. In these year groups there are good opportunities for pupils to practise their writing skills. They are regularly involved in recognising how well they are getting on. Stimulating activities and teachers’ questions that challenge the thinking of pupils of all abilities, especially the more-able pupils, are all contributing to this improving picture. These good practices are not yet firmly embedded in all classes, however, particularly in Years 1 and 2. Leaders and managers work effectively together to drive forward improvement. Their successes are evident in key areas, such as raising attainment in mathematics, improving pupil’s attendance and, more recently, starting to address weaknesses in writing. They have evaluated accurately the school’s overall effectiveness, recognising its many strengths and pinpointing a few remaining weaknesses. This, along with the good improvement since the previous inspection, such as strengthening the quality of care, support and guidance and the effectiveness of the governing body, demonstrates that there is a good capacity to continue to improve. Leaders and managers track and analyse the progress of pupils between Years 3 and 6 regularly, carefully and rigorously. They use this information particularly well to inform their self-evaluation and the school improvement agenda, and to influence their monitoring activities. Leaders acknowledge that their next steps are to extend the rigour of these practices through Years 1 and 2.