Just 4 years after being judged as ‘inadequate’, the lowest grade, inspectors now acknowledge that leaders at the school ‘demonstrate an absolute belief that all pupils deserve the very best’ and have judged Niton Primary as ‘Good’.
During their visit the inspectors were particularly impressed with the students’ positive attitude towards their learning, commenting: ‘Pupils are eager and enthusiastic participants in lessons, regardless of their abilities or backgrounds’. This is attributed to the teachers who act as positive role models, ensuring that they plan interesting lessons with a sharp focus on developing pupils’ basic literacy skills. In fact, the school is now rated as above the national average for Key Stage 1 and 2 in reading, writing and mathematics.
Executive Headteacher Duncan Mills, who was appointed in September 2014, has commented:
“I am extremely proud of the incredible hard work and achievements of the staff, the children and also for the continued positivity and support of our parents and carers. The community here refused to give up on this school and we have faced our challenges together. A united front of governors, parents, teachers and support staff all determined to deliver the highest standards possible.”
In June 2016, Niton Primary School formed the Cornerstone Federation together with The Bay Church of England Primary School in Sandown with Mr Mills, as the Executive Headteacher, working across both schools.
Leader of the Isle of Wight Council, Dave Stewart is delighted with the result:
“I have always felt that Niton was a good school, even at its lowest point. Duncan and his whole team should be proud of this achievement. It’s a beacon for any school and a shining example of what can be achieved in a relatively short space of time. I made an election commitment to work towards all Island schools achieving a ‘good’ status and we are well on our way. Congratulations Niton Primary School.”
The report highlighted that ‘this relentless drive for improvement is shared by all’ and Chair of Governors, Rev. Ian Lovell paid tribute to all those involved:
“This excellent result was richly deserved and reflects the consistently high standard of commitment and dedicated hard work given so unselfishly by staff under Duncan’s leadership. Governors, parents and all those involved in the life of Niton Primary School are determined that we are going to become an outstanding school over time and we feel that this inspection is a really good signal of the progress that the school has made.”
The Ofsted report has rated the school as ‘good’ in all 5 categories from ‘Effectiveness of leadership and management’ to ‘Outcomes for pupils’. Ofsted are expected to publish the full report on 23rd Ma.
Other notable comments from the full report include:
• Children make a super start to their education in the early years
• Parents overwhelmingly value this drive and commitment to improvement
• Leaders are passionate about pupils’ academic progress as well as ensuring that the school does everything in its power to broaden pupils’ experiences of the wider world
• Governors demonstrate an aspirational vision for the school and have a clear understanding of the school’s strengths and its areas for development
• Pupils feel very safe and cared for
Mr Mills concluded:
“Overall I feel this is a very good day for Niton. I hope that parents in our catchment area and beyond will see Niton Primary as the school of choice for the upcoming year. We would both encourage and welcome their interest”.