Sheffield primary school told to improve standards

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Standards at a Sheffield primary school have slipped and it now requires improvement, inspectors have ruled.

The quality of teaching and achievement by pupils must be improved at Pye Bank Primary School, Burngreave, according to a report by inspectors from education watchdog Ofsted.

But inspectors did find many aspects were on the up and rated the leadership and management, behaviour and safety of pupils and its early years provision as good.

Inspectors visited the school over two days in February and rated the school as ‘requires improvement’ - a fall from its ‘good’ rating in October 2011.

They found there had been many changes in staffing, with inconsistency in pupils’ progress, and the most able children are not given sufficient challenge.

They said not all marking and assessment effectively helps pupils to improve their work and the curriculum is limited in its use of the school’s and community’s diversity as a focus for learning.

The progress of disabled children, those with special educational needs and disadvantaged pupils was also found to be slow.

Inspectors did praise the school’s headteacher, Maureen Andrews, who joined in September, and the management team.

They also said pupils’ behaviour was good and they ‘valued the diversity found within the school, which is a vibrant, happy community where all are respected’.

Martyn Groucutt, lead inspector, said: “The new headteacher has had an immediate and positive impact, gaining the strongest support from staff, pupils and parents.

“The wider leadership team, including governors, has been developed and is effective in supporting positive change, especially in teaching and achievement.”

Mrs Andrews said she believes the school will be ‘outstanding’ within a few years.

She said: “Pye Bank is a wonderful school community to belong to.

“It is a community which thrives on and celebrates its diversity and I have received the warmest welcome from all families and staff.

“Everyone connected with the school, including our wonderful governors, is committed to its success.

“I am thrilled Ofsted has recognised the good behaviour and the commitment to learning of our children, the great start our children receive in foundation stage and the strong direction and vision of all leaders and staff.

“The commitment of the staff and the aspiration of our families and community is at the highest level.

“In partnership we can ensure all Pye Bank children reach their potential and exceed all expectations.

“I am privileged to be the headteacher of such a happy and ambitious school and it is a pleasure to come to school every day.”