Eastbourne infant school 'continues to be good' according to Ofsted

An infant school in Eastbourne has been rated as 'good' in a recent Ofsted report.

Schools are judged on five categories – the quality of education, behaviour and attitudes, personal development, leadership and management, and early years provision.

Parkland Infant School was inspected in December last year and the report was published in February.

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The report says, “Parkland Infant School is a vibrant, caring and happy school where there is a strong sense of community. Pupils and staff feel valued and love coming to school.

Photo from Parkland Infant School

Parents are very supportive of the school. They commented on the warm environment and the friendly staff.”

The school is praised for its 'many extra-curricular activities' which includes sport, science, and animal welfare.

The report says pupils are 'keen to learn', 'behave well' and 'feel safe in school'.

Photo from Parkland Infant School

A 'well-planned and structured approach to reading is in place' which means children 'value books and stories', according to the report.

The school is part of Swale Academies Trust. On this, the report says, “School leaders are supported by a local governing body and a multi-academy trust that are passionate about their roles.

“They recognise the dedication of staff and the speed at which substantial changes have occurred to provide pupils with an exciting learning experience.”

For the most part, the curriculum is praised.

The report says, “In many subjects, such as mathematics, geography and computing, the curriculum is well planned and sequenced. Staff receive high-quality training and support from leaders in the school and across the trust. As a result, the curriculum is well structured and subject knowledge is strong. This helps teachers deliver lively and engaging lessons with confidence. Pupils’ misconceptions are quickly identified and addressed.

“However, occasionally, the work given to pupils is not sufficiently demanding and new knowledge is not integrated into larger ideas. Leaders are aware of where these occasions occur and have a comprehensive approach in place to address these.

“While the curriculum intent is very clear, it is not yet being implemented consistently across all subjects. Sometimes, pupils do not always have opportunities to complete work that is sufficiently demanding.

“Leaders should continue their work to raise the implementation of the curriculum to an exceptional level in all subjects. This would ensure that work is increasingly challenging for all pupils and knowledge is integrated into larger ideas.”

Headteacher Sally Simpson said, “Leaders were thrilled with the inspector's feedback which highlighted that the school was a wonderful place to learn, that all elements of the Parkland Infant Curriculum were ambitious and well established and that the quality of education was strong. The school and the environment were seen to be ‘all about the pupils.’ Everything the staff do is about keeping children safe, ensuring they are happy and enabling them to learn.

"The early years foundation stage (EYFS) and support for children with special educational needs (SEN) pupils were also highly praised along with the schools computing teaching which was seen as going 'beyond the National Curriculum'. Another highlight was that the school was seen by the inspector as 'book happy and text rich' - something that teachers are passionate about.

"The inspector concluded her visit by telling leaders that she felt the school was 'unique' and that what the staff do around developing the whole child was incredible.”

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