Primary school removed from special measures

Posted on Wednesday 30th November 2022

Improvements at Malpas Church in Wales Primary School has led to Estyn removing it from special measures.

The official inspection body has confirmed that the school has made sufficient progress in relation to the recommendations following the last core inspection

Councillor Jane Mudd, leader of the council, said: “As both a governor and a local member, I’m delighted that the school is out of special measures as I know how hard the head teacher and his staff have worked to make significant improvements.

“They have had the full support of the current governing body as decisions had the best interests of pupils at their heart. Strategies are now in place to continue this upward trajectory that will ensure the pupils receive the best education possible.”

Beccie Morteo, head of education, Monmouth Diocese, said: “On behalf of Bishop Cherry and Monmouth Diocese I would like to congratulate the team at Malpas Church in Wales Primary School and commend the incredible amount of hard work that has taken place over the last few years. We have every confidence that Mr Hills will continue to lead Malpas Church towards a bright and exciting future.”

Councillor Deb Davies, Newport City Council’s cabinet member for education, said: “This is very welcome news and reflects the great work done by Tom since he arrived at the school, the teachers and staff, and the governors.

“They have made great strides and know they will continue to build on the progress so far and continue making the school better and better for the benefit of all the pupils.”

Head teacher Tom Hills, who took up his post in September 2021, said: “We have achieved so much over the last year with the support of the governing body, the Diocese, the local education authority and the Educational Achievement Service, and I’m pleased that the school has now been moved out of special measures.

“I would like to thank the staff for rising to the challenges they were set and getting the school to this point. It marks a significant moment in our journey towards achieving our vision of being a ‘revolutionary and prestigious’ school where our community is engaged and integrated; where our staff are equipped and empowered; and where our wonderful children are known, valued and supported to reach their full potential.”

Bronwen Graham, chair of governors, said: “I and the governing body are thrilled that our most recent ESTYN monitoring visit has recognised the relentless hard work of the whole team at Malpas Church In Wales Primary.

“The ambitions of the senior leadership team to continue this trajectory are matched by a committed governing body who are looking forward to a brighter and innovative future for the school community.

“We would like to thank school families for their continued support and patience on the journey we have been on.”

Following the recent monitoring visit, the inspectors highlighted many positive findings including the following:

  • The school has developed a clear sense of community and identity, rightly focused on improving the provision and outcomes for pupils. 
  • Leaders provide valuable coaching and professional dialogue to staff, to help them to improve their work. The headteacher is not afraid to take difficult decisions to support the school community's relentless drive for improvement. 
  • Staff have continued to work together to improve the learning environment for pupils, both inside and within the school grounds, and the quality of the provision.
  • Leaders have embedded a robust and rigorous monitoring, evaluation and review programme. 
  • As a result of the professional development opportunities, most staff are developing as reflective practitioners who care deeply about the quality of their work and its impact on pupils’ learning. 
  • Governors provide effective strategic leadership to the school. They understand the need to give both support and challenge to leaders through their role as critical friends.
  • Teachers now plan more appropriate and better focused activities to help pupils develop as independent learners.
  • Leaders have strengthened processes to identify and support pupils with additional learning needs across the school.  Teachers are now more confident in providing effective support and provision for pupils with additional needs. 

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