Ofsted Report June 2016
St. Thomas' Catholic Primary School is an outstanding school. (Ofsted 2016)
The headteacher, deputy headteacher and the board of directors work very effectively together. They are ambitious for the pupils and continuously look for ways to make improvements to the quality and breadth of learning.
Pupils at St Thomas’ Primary make rapid progress as they move through the school and achieve highly in all the subjects taught. They are exceptionally well prepared by the time they leave the school to start the next stage of their learning.
Teaching, learning and assessment are at least good and often outstanding. Teachers and teaching assistants work together in a highly effective way to ensure pupils’ progress is rapid.
Adults expect pupils to do well and encourage them to be curious and motivated learners. They are highly skilled in a wide range of teaching strategies and have excellent subject knowledge.
The school works very effectively to support all groups of pupils, including disadvantaged pupils, the most able, and those who have special educational needs and/or disabilities. Personal development is outstandingly well promoted. Pupils feel safe, trusted and respected. They behave exceptionally well and demonstrate high levels of responsibility. As a result, attendance is above the national average.
Reading is taught exceptionally well. The younger pupils quickly gain the skills they need to be able to decode words and take pride in moving on to harder and harder books. Regular practice and access to a range of interesting texts result in older pupils being enthusiastic, confident and fluent readers.
Early years provision is outstanding. Adults have high expectations of what children can achieve and children thrive on this. As a result, they make rapid progress and are very well prepared to start Year 1.
The strong Catholic ethos is exceptionally well balanced with meaningful learning about other faiths and beliefs. This leads to a caring, tolerant and respectful atmosphere in school where everyone is valued for who they are and what they can do.
Section 48 Inspection Report
St. Thomas' Catholic Primary School is an outstanding School (Diocesan Inspection 2016)
Catholic life at St Thomas’ is outstanding and inclusive, with prominence given to the mission statements both of the school and the MAC, and to Catholic values.
Leadership of the Catholic life and collective worship of the school is outstanding, emanating from the vibrant and faith-filled personal example of the headteacher.
Strong and dynamic leadership is evident in all areas of the school. Individuals demonstrate their personal commitment to the faith, and there is a collective drive towards continually moving forward standards in all areas and improving on previous best.
Leadership, outcomes from and provision for religious education is outstanding
Religious Education is strong in school: the subject is very well led by a coordinator who provides outstanding example and support to ensure that teaching is never less than good; from often modest starting points, progress is strong, within and across both key stages; outcomes for pupils at the end of Key Stage 2 are above age-related expectations.
The Catholic life of the school is outstanding, with its motto, “Truth, Courage”, at the centre and many opportunities for all to develop, individually and collectively, their understanding of the Faith and a positive sense of vocation.
Collective worship is a strong feature of the school. It engages all pupils to participate, pray and reflect, which they do with reverence and enthusiasm. It supports and enriches the faith life of all.
Provision for RE is secure and focused, with clear and effective procedures in place for monitoring and evaluating learning and teaching, ensuring impact towards school improvement.
Standards of engagement, progress and attainment for all pupils within years and across key stages are high in RE.
There is strong and dynamic leadership throughout the senior team. Individuals demonstrate their personal commitment to the faith; collectively there is a continual drive towards high standards in all areas and improving on previous best.