‘Special measures’ recommendation for Todmorden primary school

St Joseph's Roman Catholic Primary School, Todmorden.
St Joseph's Roman Catholic Primary School, Todmorden.
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Ofsted has recommended that a Todmorden primary school should be taken into special measures.

The education watchdog inspected St Joseph’s Roman Catholic Primary School, Wellington Road, in October and gave it an overall rating of ‘inadequate’ in its subsequent report.

The report outlined areas of improvement, including the quality of teaching to improve outcomes in maths and reading, developing the curriculum to offer more opportunities to practise and reinforce mathematical skills and enhance learning through challenging activities.

The report also said the behaviour of pupils is inadequate, with pupils failing to follow instructions, adding “at social times, pupils can conduct themselves well, although reported incidents of fighting mean this is not consistently true”.

Attendance is also below average and is not improving over time.

Ofsted did recognise the good progress of pupils and high standards in writing across the school. Inspectors also praised the teaching of writing, which meets pupils’ needs well, and the strong training of teachers.

Calderdale Council and The Diocese of Salford say they will continue to support to the school in their drive to raise standards.

Councillor Megan Swift, Calderdale Council’s cabinet member for children and young people’s services, said: “The needs of the young people in this school are paramount. The council is absolutely committed to help bring about the rapid and sustained improvements needed in all of the areas highlighted by the Ofsted inspection.

“We will continue to work closely with The Diocese of Salford, the school staff and governors to raise standards. We are confident that the school has already begun to address the issues in maths, and a detailed action plan will be implemented swiftly to turn things around across the school.”

Peter Eavers, director of dducation at The Diocese of Salford, added: “The Diocese of Salford and Calderdale Council are working together to provide assistance to the Governing Body and school community and share a strong determination to support the school and its leadership to ensure rapid improvements.”

Jim Livesey, chair of governors at the school, said governors and staff were disappointed with Ofsted’s report.

“Mathematics had already been identified as a priority in the current School Improvement Plan,” he said.

“Actions were in place, well before the Ofsted inspection, to accelerate our pupils’ progress and improve standards of mathematics across school.

“We are committed to helping all pupils achieve their full potential and staff have been working with the White Rose Maths Hub to ensure that this happens rapidly.

“Following the inspection an action plan has been produced, based on the Ofsted targets, from which we are confident that rapid improvements in the school will be achieved.

“This action plan has been supported by the council and the Diocese. We will continue to build on these now and in the future.”