Olney Infant Academy has won nothing but praise from Ofsted inspectors, who published their report today (Wednesday).
The 215-pupil school, which is part of the Inspiring Futures through Learning (IFtL) multi-academy trust, caters for children aged four to seven years old,
It received the Outstanding grading across all five categories: quality of education, behavior and attitudes, personal development, leadership and management, and early years’ provision.
Ofsted inspectors said that “exceptionally strong leadership at all levels” ensured the school’s success. They highlighted how “teachers create vibrant learning environments, both inside and outside the classroom”, and that highly motivated “pupils tackle learning activities with huge enthusiasm”.
The insepctors were particularly impressed with how the young pupils behaved. They said: “Pupils work and play happily together. Their behavior is exemplary. Should a rare occurrence of unkindness occur, they are confident that their teachers will sort it out. This harmonious community is calm and purposeful. “
And they added: “Pupils’ love of learning stands out as the key feature of this school. Every member of staff facilitates pupils’ natural eagerness to find out about the world and their place in it. Pupils do very well, right from the start. “
Leaders represent the school’s core values with the word ‘CURIOUS’ (‘courage, unique, respect, independence, open minds, understanding and supportive’) and they are embedded into pupils’ experiences. During their time at the school, pupils develop into articulate, caring and self-confident learners, states the report.
Staff expertise was described as “very strong as a result of the effective training leaders provide”, and “teaching inspires pupils in all subjects because staff fully capture pupils’ attention”, it adds.
Staff have consistently high expectations of pupils. Teaching staff are united in their aim to make sure there is no cap on pupils’ achievements. All staff provide hearty praise for every pupil’s success, so pupils are encouraged to do more.
“The highly effective Headteacher and senior team have set an ambitious vision and ensure that pupils experience open-ended and challenging learning. Leaders have developed an aspirational curriculum based on this vision. “
Pupils with special educational needs and / or disabilities (SEND) achieve “exceptionally well” and Early Years’ provision provides an exceptional experience for children to thrive and “develop maturity and personal skills beyond their years”, said the inspectors.
Staff feel well supported and say they love working at the school, states the report.
Headteacher Sarah Armitage said today: “We are absolutely committed to creating a culture of excellence, where every child thrives. Our desire is to ignite passion and excitement and set our children on a journey to be lifelong learners, so for Ofsted to state in the first line of the report that pupils’ love of learning stands out as the key feature of the school makes me incredibly proud.
“It is fantastic to see the report reflect our parents’ delight at what we offer their children and we also have an ambition to open our doors to the wider community, including other schools, to share what we do.”
Sarah Bennett, CEO of IFtL, said: “The report not only reflects the ambition the school has for every single pupil, it absolutely shines through in everything they do.”