Northgate Primary School

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Self Evaluation

Self-Evaluation of Northgate Primary School – 2016/17

Context: Northgate Primary School is situated in the Northern part of Gt Yarmouth with a roll of 311 in 2016/17 which is planned to increase in 2017/18 to 360 and by 2018/19 to 420 when we fully transition to all through Primary. We are a two form entry primary school and in 2106/17 there were no Year 5 or 6 pupils. Gt Yarmouth is the most economically deprived borough in the East of England and the 4th most deprived Seaside town in the UK (Sept 4th 2017). Nearly 25% of all children in Great Yarmouth live in poverty (HMRC 2012 Child Poverty Statistics) and the number of children open to intervention by

Children’s Services is four times the national average. Statistics collected by Gt Yarmouth Borough Council show that the average weekly income is significantly lower than other boroughs in the East of England and lower than the national average.  Great Yarmouth has the highest number of children in Norfolk being housed in temporary accommodation. The unemployment rate is nearly double the national average. Only

16.9% of adults have a qualification at NVQ Level 4 or above compared with 36.8% nationally.  

  • The school had 2 looked after children in 2016/17
  • The level of entitlement for Free School Meals was 43%.
  • Ethnic mix / EAL children, we currently support 10 languages other than English (23%)
  • SEN – 5 children were in receipt of an Education/Health Care Plan with 5 pending
  • We are a nurturing school and have been re-awarded the Marjorie Boxall Kite Mark.
  • Attendance is not always seen as a high priority with some of our families. We are continuously addressing this using our Parent Support Advisor and Attendance support from NCC.

Outcomes for pupils are Good because of the very low starting points on entry. Pupils enter our Reception classes from a number of pre-school groups, nursery classes or from home. A baseline study of the FSP scores at beginning of autumn 16/17 showed that only 17% of all children were on track to make the Early Learning Goals at the end of the year, 20% of children had identified speaking and listening targets on entry compared with 7% of children who were ahead of their expected levels. There were 15% EAL children who had little or no English. Many children enter Reception without basic self-care skills such as being able to use a toilet, dress themselves or use eating utensils; many have never held a pencil before. Evidence of progress can be seen in the Learning Journeys in Reception and the tracking using EYFS outcomes. By February 2017 the number on track to achieve the ELG had risen to 30% and the number that actually achieved by June 2017 was 47.5%

Outcomes are Good because children rapidly develop knowledge of phonics, fine motor coordination and number skills, enabling them to start Key Stage 1 at an only slightly below average level. Most children make expected progress from the beginning of Year 1 to the end of Year 2, meaning that they have achieved close to the expected standard on entry to Year 3.

Outcomes are Good because children in receipt of the pupil premium make similar or better progress than those not,  children on the SEN register make sustained progress, intervention groups are provided from Reception and sustained into KS1 depending on identified need; high achieving children are identified and supported to work at greater depth within the expected standard.

We provide a Learning Support facility to address the low attaining children in Key Stage 2.

Outcomes are not better because not all groups make substantial and sustained progress relative to their starting points (EAL). Not all children are working within the expected standard at the end of KS1. Owing to the high numbers of SEN and EAL children in Year 1 our Phonics check pass rate was only 69%.

Personal development, behaviour and welfare is Good, children have a positive attitude to learning, they conduct themselves well, behaviour is usually good. Children have respect for themselves and others, they respond well to the school’s behaviour policy, making their own rules and abiding by them. They respond appropriately to a variety of adult role models in school. Replies to questionnaires by parents and pupils demonstrate that they are very happy about safety and behaviour in school. We have achieved the Marjorie Boxall Kite Mark for being a Nurturing School; we have been awarded Investors in Families. Rigorous attendance procedures ensure that this is taken seriously by the majority of parents who engage in the process. Between September 2016 and June 2017 7 Fast Track cases were raised, this is a significant drop from 2015/16 (24 cases), 18 Support Panels have been held which is a decrease of 6 families from 2015/16. Our persistent absence level has remained static since last year using the 90% benchmark. There were 11 fixed term exclusions in 2016/17, the number increased slightly because we accepted a child who was attempting to reintegrate into mainstream school from a behavioural unit nearby. There were no permanent exclusions.

Behaviour and Safety is not better because there are some children who have to be reminded about their responsibilities in managing their own behaviour. There are parents who do not recognise the importance of coming to school every day on time.

The quality of teaching and learning and assessment in school is Good because triangulation of a range of evidence including progress data shows that the majority of teaching in all subjects is good and some is outstanding. Teachers demonstrate high expectations and set challenging tasks for all pupils and ensure that needs are met through continuous assessment, moderation and the provision of intervention activities based on individual need. Children on IEPs have SMART targets which are child friendly and have a real impact on progress. Literacy is taught effectively and through a cross curricular approach ensuring that Reading, Writing and discussion are used effectively to promote progress. Children are encouraged to achieve through a wide range of teaching and differentiation methods, including whole class, small group and individual support. Teaching Assistants are valued as facilitators of learning and their training needs are a high priority in the SIDP.

Work scrutinies are carried out over the year to ensure that progress is consistent; Moderation is undertaken at Cluster and County level.

Teaching and learning is not better because children are no always fully engaged in every lesson. Although extension activities are provided to challenge high achieving children some do not take up the challenge and do not push themselves.

The effectiveness of leadership and management is Good because school leaders have a strong vision for the school and are ambitious, prioritising increased performance in all areas as part of the SIDP. The Governing Body challenge and support; have an overall understanding of the areas for improvement and manage resources to maximise potential. School policies are applied effectively and consistently. Improvements in teaching and learning have been a key priority of the leadership team which has effectively encouraged progress. The curriculum is regularly reviewed and revised in line with the needs of the children and the latest information. It is used to enhance aspirations and develop SMSC. Performance targets are linked to SIDP and training needs are a high priority when setting the budget to maximise the potential of future leaders through CPD, student support and training support staff. Parents are involved in their children’s learning; community links are established and maintained ensuring that the school has a high profile locally. Safeguarding is managed effectively with staff routinely engaging with outside agencies to support and enhance the life chances of our children and families. A strength of the school is the quality of the relationships that develop mutual respect, good behaviour, emotional security and equality of opportunity. The school fosters collaborative links with schools in the cluster and in Norfolk to promote system leadership and further improve middle management.

Leadership and Management is not better because Governors are working further to visit the school regularly and prioritise attendance at regular meetings. Governors are working towards being fully trained in some of the basic procedures, including HT performance management and Pupil Premium outcomes.

The evidence for the above judgements can be found in FFT data, School data, Minutes of Governor meetings including committees, budget commentary, SIDP, Pupil Progress minutes, Performance management notes, Subject monitoring data and reports, work scrutiny, celebration books, EYFS data, school reports, Staff training records, Single Central Record, parent surveys, Head Teacher reports to Governors, School Website, Policies, Curriculum planning, SIP visit reports, Cluster and County moderation, attendance figures, benchmarking, CP and FSP records.

Overall Effectiveness of the school

Northgate Primary School is a GOOD school because our children benefit from high quality learning experiences and good teaching. In the year 2016/17 

Year 2 Standard achieved




Working at Greater Depth (high achieving pupils)




Working at the expected standard for the age




Working towards the expected standard




Working below the expected standard




69% are working at or above the expected standard in Reading, 43% in Writing and 64% in Maths.

We undertook an analysis of children staying in school moving from Year 2 to Year 3: at or above the expected standard in Reading – 75%, Writing – 49% and Maths – 70%.

Year 1 phonics check – 69% of our Year 1 pupils passed the check, a few missed by just one word and when all of these are added the score rises to 75%, it should be noted that in this cohort there are 37% with SEN (34% of the SEN load for the school).

Children who have special educational needs and are supported on an IEP make good progress. Children who are in receipt of FSM achieve in line with those not

A phonic based approach to the teaching of reading ensures that children gain the skills required to establish accuracy, a regular pattern of reading to adults in school ensures fluency. Interventions in place include Sound Discovery and Catch Up; Staff continuously strive for the highest possible achievement in their pupils (termly moderation, collaborative planning and cluster liaison). All teachers successfully met their Performance Management targets and observations of teaching and learning found that teaching over time was good overall. Recent HT performance management comment from the Governors: “we would commend the HT for her continuing commitment and drive for continuous improvement”. The school is Nationally recognised as a Nurturing School through the Marjorie Boxall kite mark, we have achieved Investors in Families (May 2012) and our Reading Café was part of a National study to report on the successful outcomes of this programme for promoting spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. The curriculum recognises our commitment to ensuring the highest quality of learning experience through a rich programme of enrichment opportunities built into every topic.

We rigorously review and assess internal transition to ensure equality of provision and continuous progress.

In spite of the low entry level of children in our school achievement is rapid and sustained with 47.5% achieving GLD although only 10% were on track on entry to Reception.

Absence and persistent absence figures are higher than we would like and we are continually working with our parents to prioritise this. There have been no permanent exclusions this year.

Highly trained and dedicated staff contribute to the overall purposeful atmosphere of the school. Safeguarding and Behaviour policies and principles are rigorously monitored to ensure that effective systems are in place. Staff training is closely linked to the SIDP and opportunities for succession planning built in to our highly effective CPD programme. HT performance management comments from Governors: “The HT is committed to the development of staff which can only enhance the reputation and long term succession planning of the school”.

In Years 3 and 4 we have been trialling some national assessment tests including PIRA and PUMA, Headstart and NFER.

Results are inconclusive and do not match teacher assessments or work scrutinies. We are optimistic that our new Balance Assessment system beginning in 2017/18 will help us to fine-tune assessment in Key Stage 2.

Overall Effectiveness is not better because not all pupils make rapid and sustained progress, not all teaching over time is outstanding, we have a small but persistent number of children who do not attend school every day on time; achievements are below national standards and have been for the past three years, even though progress from starting points is good.