A “happy” primary school in South Shields has been rated ‘Outstanding’ by the Catholic Schools Inspectorate (CSI).

St Gregory’s Catholic Primary School, which is part of Bishop Chadwick Catholic Education Trust, was inspected by the CSI in June.

Lead inspector Elaine White said in her report: “The quality of relationships at all levels is outstanding and contributes to this being a happy school where Gospel Values are at the centre of school life.

“A powerful sense of community runs through school. Pastoral care and nurture of all pupils are a high priority. The love and care demonstrated for pupils is evidenced through voluntary lunchtime mindfulness sessions, which support wellbeing, are anchored in spirituality, and are linked to Gospel teachings. This high level of pastoral care is appreciated by parents. Parents are overwhelmingly positive about school and very supportive of its work.”

One parent commented: “St Gregory’s is a wonderful school where children are taught to value themselves.”

The report continued saying that “all staff are excellent role models”, “teachers’ high level of subject knowledge leads to pupils demonstrating very good progress in religious education lessons” and “leaders are highly ambitious for St Gregory’s”.

Pupils at the school are “well-engaged and highly articulate about previous and current learning”, “talk confidently” and display “outstanding religious literacy which begins in reception class and continues to develop through to Year 6”.

Prayer and liturgy are the “heartbeat of this school community” with the rhythm of the school day built around regular prayer,

Headteacher Alison Dunne said: “We welcome the positive outcome of our recent CSI inspection, as we believe it reaffirms our school’s mission and all the wonderful work that goes on in school. This really does highlight the dedication of our whole school community.”

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