Ofsted gives praise to staff for keeping up the good work

(l-r) Bailey Hackett (6), headteacher Janet Hayward and Hollie Smith (7) at ''Riders Infant School, Leigh Park ''''Picture: Allan Hutchings (131654-063)
(l-r) Bailey Hackett (6), headteacher Janet Hayward and Hollie Smith (7) at ''Riders Infant School, Leigh Park ''''Picture: Allan Hutchings (131654-063)

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OFSTED inspectors have praised teachers for keeping standards consistent at a Leigh Park school.

Riders Infant School, in Kingsclere Avenue, has been rated good by inspectors for the second time in a row.

The school was praised for improving children’s learning and helping many who start off with exceptionally low skills.

It always encourages families and carers to get involved in activities and assemblies, and they are regularly kept up to date with a child’s progress.

Medals are also awarded to pupils who read a lot at home.

Assessors said headteacher Janet Hayward has a clear vision and has the support of her staff, who take great pride working there.

They also have a good working relationship with students and help those who are vulnerable.

The school was given good grades across the board in terms of pupils’ achievements, the quality of teaching, behaviour and leadership.

Though the school was awarded the same mark in its last inspection, Mrs Hayward said she felt improvements had been made.

‘In some ways we have improved because the Ofsted inspectors are now saying children’s achievement is greater over time,’ she said.

‘The children are really enthusiastic about their learning.

‘We cater for a lot of students and some come from difficult backgrounds, but they still get really good reading outcomes.

‘It felt like a celebration when the inspectors were here really.

‘It was a really nice experience.

‘We are very happy – in the current climate I thought it would very difficult to possibly have this outcome.’

The school is not yet rated outstanding because inspectors and senior staff agreed pupils need to have clearer set targets.

‘One of the things that was nice was that it was something we thought would be the next step, and they made the same suggestion,’ Mrs Hayward added.

‘We will have target boards so children can really see and know what they are working towards.

‘We strive to be as good as we possible can be but it always has to be in the best interests of the children.’

Mrs Hayward, 60, who is retiring at the end of the term, believes she is leaving it in a strong position.

‘I hope to do some supply teaching,’ she said.

‘I still love to teach.

‘It was really nice to be there for the school for its Ofsted.’