Pupils at Fenham primary school are eager to learn and are encouraged to show excellent behaviour while enjoying a wide range of opportunities, says a recent Ofsted report. “Leaders have high expectations for all pupils. They are committed to developing pupils’ character, values and behaviour through the Sacred Heart Goals. Pupils are keen to do well and support each other,” says the inspection report for Sacred Heart Primary.
The school, a member of the Bishop Bewick Catholic Education Trust, has 242 children aged from three to 11 on the roll, and it joined the trust in May 2019.
“Leaders are ambitious, and want all pupils to achieve the best they can. They have designed a curriculum with reading at its heart. This helps pupils to be confident and fluent readers, ready for secondary school,” the inspector notes.
“A love of reading runs through the school. Pupils talk with enthusiasm about their favourite authors and genres. Their choices are often inspired by story time and recommendations from teachers and peers. Leaders work with a charity that celebrates the world of children’s books to select thought-provoking and topical books for pupils to discuss,” the report says.
Maths is also a strength of the school and teachers focus on developing mathematical language and reasoning skills.
Pupils also make positive contributions to the community, giving them the chance to be active citizens. A fundraising day to help a school in Malawi and regular Canny Friday events to help the local food bank were highlighted.
“Leaders develop pupils’ skills and personal qualities beyond the academic curriculum. They encourage pupils to be responsible members of the Sacred Heart family of schools by showing excellent behaviour. Pupils have extremely positive attitudes towards their learning and are attentive in lessons,” the report says.
Children with special education needs and/or disabilities are well supported and staff adapt lessons so they access the same curriculum as their peers.
The inspection saw the school retain its Good status, and was not a grading visit, but reaffirmed the award already made.
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