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HMIe tell Caithness school to keep up the good work (22/09/09)
In a report published today on Watten Primary, confident pupils, a positive ethos, staff teamwork and partnership with parents and the community were the strengths identified in their June 2009 inspection of the school.
HMIe found pupils enjoyed their learning and benefited from good quality learning experiences. Almost all pupils were motivated and eager to engage in their learning and achieved well across the curriculum. Inspectors reported that staff had high expectations of pupils and encouraged them to do their best and work hard. In recent years, attainment in reading and mathematics had been improving and attainment in writing remained steady. Staff celebrated pupils’ achievements in school and their successes out of school in displays around the school.
Pupils and staff showed respect towards each other and worked well together. Staff had made a positive start to involving pupils in planning their own learning targets. That good practice now needed to be developed across the school. Pupils were positive about taking on responsibilities around the school and expressed their views well through the pupil council. Overall, the school met the needs of pupils well.
Staff worked well together to provide an improving quality of education for the pupils. The headteacher provided strong leadership in taking forward the school’s vision. Staff were keen to contribute to further school improvement. They reflected on their work and had taken steps to share practice to improve learning and teaching across the school. Teachers had made a positive start to developing aspects of the national initiative, ‘Curriculum for Excellence’.
The school consulted parents and kept them well informed about the work of the school. The very active Parent Council supported the school well. The school had positive links with Watten Community Council and was actively involved in the life of the village.
On all of the HMIe measures Watten Primary was evaluated as ‘Good’. In the recommendations for further improvement, agreed with the school and the local authority, the school was encouraged to keep up its good work:
• keep improving the curriculum in line with Curriculum for Excellence;
• continue to raise attainment in writing;
• extend opportunities for children to ne active and independent in their learning; and
• continue to strengthen procedures for monitoring and improving children’s learning experience.
Head teacher Mrs Linsey Mackay said: “I am pleased that HM Inspectors recognised the confidence, motivation and achievement of our pupils, acknowledged the dedication and hard work of all school staff and agreed with the direction we are taking the school in.”