St Mary’s Roman Catholic Primary School, Littleborough


Name St Mary’s Roman Catholic Primary School, Littleborough
Website http://www.stmarysrclboro.rochdale.sch.uk/
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 03 October 2011
Address Whitelees Road, Littleborough, Lancashire, OL15 8DU
Phone Number 01706378032
Type Primary
Age Range 3-11
Religious Character Roman Catholic
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 238 (53% boys 47% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 22.5
Local Authority Rochdale
Percentage Free School Meals 7.7%
Percentage English is Not First Language 6.7%

Information about the school

This is a broadly average-sized primary school. Over time, there has been a larger percentage of boys than girls in the school. The proportion of pupils who are known to be eligible for free school meals is below average. The percentage of pupils identified as having special educational needs and/or disabilities is just below that usually found, but has risen since the previous inspection. Most pupils are of White British heritage and there are very few pupils who are at early stages of learning English. St Mary’s is a Numbers Count accredited school, has Healthy School status and holds the Activemark award for its work in physical education. It was the local authority Sports Partnership School of the Year in 2010. There have been several staffing changes since the previous inspection, including the appointment of a new deputy headteacher and the establishment of an extended leadership team. Inspection grades: 1 is outstanding, 2 is good, 3 is satisfactory and 4 is inadequate Please turn to the glossary for a description of the grades and inspection terms

Main findings

This is a good school. Perceptive and principled leadership has ensured that the school has improved well since the previous inspection. Teaching and assessment are better, the curriculum meets the needs and interests of pupils more closely and, as a result, pupils are now making good progress and achieving well in their studies, in both Key Stage 1 and Key Stage 2. Attainment has risen, is now above average by the end of Year 6 and pupils do particularly well in reading. Attainment in numeracy is also higher but lags behind that in literacy, partly because of a lack of problem-solving activities, which lead to insufficient numbers of girls reaching the higher National Curriculum Level 5 in mathematics. The school is ever concerned to gauge its performance accurately and teaching and support staff are directly involved in evaluating progress in all areas of its life. The school, therefore, knows itself well and demonstrates good capacity to sustain its improvement. Provision in the Early Years Foundation Stage has improved since the previous inspection. However, routines and systems in the new unit are still developing and their impact on pupils’ personal and academic development is not fully apparent. Similarly, although there is now an easily-accessible outdoor area, there are insufficient resources to reflect the six areas of learning found indoors. Pupils are proud of their school and of everyone connected with it. Their attendance is consistently high and this demonstrates just how much they enjoy St. Marys. They behave well and are delighted to show visitors their work and to talk about the many extra-curricular activities in which they can take part. They look after each other and, in class, support each other’s learning quite naturally. They speak highly of the good care, guidance and support they get from their teachers and teaching assistants and they say that whenever they are lonely or feeling unhappy, there is always someone there to help them. They have a good understanding of cultures and religions which are different to their own and demonstrate their enviable social conscience by their support for a variety of charities. St Mary’s Roman Catholic Primary School is a school in which the well-being of its pupils is paramount. It strives to raise their aspirations and to encourage them to try their best in everything they undertake. Moreover, parents and carers are very positive in their views of what the school does for their children. In their words, ‘The school continues to improve and innovate. Teachers are dedicated and approachable. Our children feel part of a ‘school family.’