Dear Parents and Carers
At the base of this page you will find the Report from the School’s Ofsted Inspection in December. You will see that Ofsted Inspectors believe the school still requires improvement overall, and I, school leaders, governors and the Local Authority agree. We agree because the quality of teaching is not yet consistently good. Though it is very good in some parts of the school, in other parts, further improvement is needed.
It is clear from reading the reports from the current and previous inspection that your children attend a better school than they did in 2014. It does a lot very well and it continues to improve. The children say they are happy at the school and feel safe.
Brunswick Park Primary School is a Community School funded through Southwark Local Authority. The Authority’s Team of Senior Advisers has been working with school staff to improve the school since the last Inspection and the Local Authority agrees that significant progress has been made over the last two years.
Because of serious concerns from the School and Governors about the way the Inspection was carried out and because we believe that the report contains information that is factually incorrect, a complaint has been made to Ofsted.
Governors and school leaders believe there are the following inaccuracies in the Report:
- The Report states that teachers not usually in the school were deployed during the inspection and that governors were unaware of this.
This is not true. Specialist Leaders of Education from the Tollgate Teaching School Alliance in Newham have been deployed regularly in the school to work with teachers to improve their teaching for the last 2 years. They are currently working in Years 1, 3 and 4 as part of planned support arranged before the Inspection. Governors are aware of this.
- The Report states that leaders do not evaluate standards in the school robustly enough or judge the impact of their actions accurately. It also states that leaders are over-generous about the school’s evaluation and that their evaluation of pupils’ outcomes are not sufficiently accurate to support swift improvement.
The school has been reviewed four times since the last inspection (a review is similar to an inspection), once by the Local Authority, once by an independent external team and twice by Leaders from the Tollgate Teaching School Alliance. In all of these reviews, school leaders’ judgements and evaluations were found to be accurate. During the Ofsted Inspection itself, all school leaders’ judgements about teaching and learning when they watched lessons matched those of the Inspectors exactly.
- The Report states that teachers’ assessment of pupil progress is too generous, particularly for writing.
Teachers from Brunswick work regularly with teachers from other schools and with the Local Authority to check their assessments are accurate. The school’s assessments are found to be accurate consistently, so much so that the systematic way teachers collect their assessments was used in the Summer Term as an example of good practice for other schools.
- It also states that standards in writing are particularly low.
Staff recognise that standards in writing need to improve further, and much work has been done already to bring this about. The school was in line with National Averages for attainment in writing at the end of Key Stage 2 and has out-performed many local schools, placing it in the top third of similar schools nationally in 2016.
- The Report recommends an external review of Governance.
Governors work closely with the Local Authority and attend regular training and development. There is much evidence that they provide robust challenge and hold the School and its leaders to account. The way the school is governed has never caused the Local Authority concern, nor were any concerns about governance raised during the Inspection. We very much welcome the opportunity to have an external review of governance so that we can have an independent assessment of our strengths and any areas where we could improve.
I was very heartened to read the many things the report states the school does well in addition to the specific Good judgements about the Early Years Foundation Stage and Personal Development, Behaviour and Welfare. Every point listed below is an improvement on the last Inspection in 2014:
- The Early Years Foundation Stage has improved and inspectors told us that they had considered awarding it an Outstanding grade;
- Pupils’ behaviour is good; they are polite and well behaved;
- Pupils enjoy their learning and it is enriched beyond the classroom which broadens their understanding of the world;
- Attendance had been a concern since before the year 2000. Significant progress has been made and attendance is now good and in line with the National Average;
- Pupils arrive punctually for school;
- Safeguarding is effective;
- Leaders have created a strong culture of vigilance to safeguard pupils;
- The school engages well with parents, particularly with vulnerable families;
- Leaders work effectively and in close partnership with external agencies;
- The curriculum is broad and balanced;
- The Pupil Premium and Sports Premium are used wisely and effectively;
- Leaders ensure pupils learn about diversity and different religions;
- The school promotes fundamental British values well, including tolerance and respect;
- Equality of opportunity is promoted well through the curriculum;
- Leaders’ work to promote pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is effective;
- Phonics teaching and learning are effective;
- Pupils read with fluency and accuracy and demonstrate understanding of what they have read;
- Progress in reading is improving;
- Mathematics teaching and progress are good across the school;
- Teaching assistants are deployed effectively;
- Reorganisation of Resource Base provision is improving outcomes for these pupils;
- Pupils with special educational needs make similar progress to other pupils;
- Governors know the school well and are committed to school improvement.
The biggest barrier to improving teaching is the current shortage of good teachers who are willing and able to work in Inner London for a sustained period of time. This is a challenge for many schools and we will continue to strive to attract the best staff available to Brunswick Park.
If any of you would like to meet with Governors to discuss the report or any of the issues which it raises then please contact the School Office.