Rowner school must keep improving, say inspectors

Mayville High School pupils help repair damage to Southsea Model Village    Picture: Habibur Rahman

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IT HAS taken a step up the Ofsted ladder, but inspectors say there is still a long way to go for a Rowner school.

Siskin Infant and Nursery School was deemed inadequate in an inspection in February last year – but a recent inspection graded the school as ‘requires improvement’.

The report said the behaviour and safety of the pupils is good. But inspectors said that pupils don’t achieve well enough, especially in writing.

The report said teachers don’t consistently set high expectations for the quality of pupils’ handwriting and the presentation of their work.

And the school doesn’t have arrangements to set targets for pupils, so they don’t understand what they need to do to reach higher levels of attainment.

Inspectors said the quality of teaching is improving, so pupils are making better progress. And they were praised for their positive attitudes and good behaviour.

Interim headteacher Joy Squibb said: ‘What this inspection has shown us is that we are working in the right direction and we have got the right things in place.

‘I was pleased about the pupils’ positive attitudes to learning. For us that has been a great achievement.

‘Our children love learning. They have got exciting lessons to enjoy.

‘I’m proud of how the community has come together. All the staff work so hard and are so loyal. It’s a team effort for everyone.’

Mrs Squibb added that she wasn’t surprised by any aspects of the report and that all the areas for improvement are already being worked on.

‘All of the areas are in our school improvement plan anyway,’ she said.

‘For us it felt like a positive experience.’

Now, Ofsted has recommended the school focuses on improving pupils’ progress in writing across the school, as well as ensuring greater impact from teachers’ feedback.

‘The big issue for us is getting children excited by writing and writing enough so that we can assess the quality of work and know what they need to do next,’ Mrs Squibb added.

‘We need to give children exciting opportunities to motivate them to want to be writers.

‘I don’t think there are any barriers towards us.

‘We will be good next time around.’

To read the full Ofsted report click here.