Andreas School

The learning community that develops the thinking skills of all its members.

Andreas School

Andreas School recently took part in an external validation of its school self-review and evaluation (SSRE) process which involved a validation team confirming the judgments the school made about itself across certain areas. Three aspects were looked at in detail in regards to:

Achievement against Prior Attainment

Leadership

Teaching for Learning

Achievement against Prior Attainment

A large majority of pupils who completed the Foundation Stage in 2018 had made five or more jumps in progress in at least 13 of the areas of learning. This means that progress during this stage is ‘very effective’.

Achievement against Prior Attainment is ‘very effective’ in Key Stage 1 and ‘very effective’ in Key Stage 2.

The school’s monitoring shows that in almost all lessons the large majority of pupils acquire and apply skills and make progress in their learning.

The validation team concurs with the school’s judgment that Achievement against Prior Attainment is ‘very effective’ overall.

Leadership

The school, through effective leadership, has successfully developed a learning culture where sharing practice is part of school life. Leaders have enthused and inspired colleagues to research and ‘try out’ new ideas based on their professional reading and development activities.

The School Improvement Plan (SIP) is clearly derived from the school’s rigorous self-evaluation and the areas identified for improvement in recent years have resulted in the gains made in pupils’ attainment and achievement. The school innovates as a result of asking itself the question ‘will it make a difference to pupil learning?’ Innovations include the introduction of Forest Schools.

Leaders work hard to ensure that all pupils are valued and that they make good progress in their learning. The school has a rigorous approach to assessment and tracking of learning progress, and this contributes to the high level of pupil progress. Surveys indicate that pupils feel valued and that this enhances their learning.

The validation team concurs with the school’s judgment that Leadership is ‘very effective’ overall.

Teaching for Learning

The school has embedded the principles of ‘growth mindset’ into the learning culture and it is evident in all classrooms. Teachers and parents informed the validation team how it is impacting positively on learning and pupils gave examples of how and why they use ‘growth mindset’ strategies to improve their learning.

Pupil interviews, lesson observations and reviews of planning indicate that pupils are given opportunities to direct their own learning. Teachers often give pupils opportunities to reflect on their learning

Teachers use assessment information to inform the next steps in pupils’ learning and ensure that this learning is suitably challenging.

The validation team concurs with the school’s judgment that Teaching for Learning is ‘effective’ overall and that the school is on the cusp of being ‘very effective’.

Other Areas Considered

As well as the three specific aspects of the SSRE on which it focused, the validation team also considered other judgments and statements set out in the SSRE. It concurred with many of these judgments, including:

The large majority of pupils can talk about the 6Rs and explain how these help their learning

Surveys show that the large majority of pupils enjoy reading. This was confirmed in the validation team’s discussions with pupils

Attainment is ‘effective’ overall

The analysis from the school’s comprehensive assessment tracking system is used effectively to plan future provision

SIP priorities show that information from tracking is used to inform provision at a whole school level

Assessment for Learning (AfL) is integral to practice in all classrooms where focussed feedback improves pupil learning

Most pupils are able to explore questions and share their reasoned opinions

The Manx context is effectively incorporated into the curriculum

The school actively shares approaches to learning with parents and this is valued and used by the majority of parents

Surveys and comments from parents indicate that the school has effective partnerships in place to support transition into the school and transfer to secondary school

All pupils are involved in risk assessments for outdoor learning and educational visits

Healthy development is nurtured through, for example, e-safety and healthy eating. This also includes helping to develop a healthy mind through initiatives such as Paws B and the introduction of Promoting Alternative Thinking Strategies (PATHS)

In addition, the validation team noted that the school is held in high regard by the community. Pupils are proud of their school and they behave very well.

Conclusion

The SSRE is a clear document that clearly informs the SIP which is explicit about its intended impact on learning. The school knows itself very well and is in a very good position to move forward with its plans for further improvement.

Rachel Ashley

Headteacher

July 2019

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