Surrey school where students are ‘excited about learning’ gets 'Good' Ofsted rating

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A Surrey school where children are “excited about learning” has been given a ‘Good’ rating by Ofsted inspectors.

Banstead Infants School, a member of the GLF Schools Multi-Academy Trust, was visited at the end of March 2024, with the results published on Tuesday (May 14).

Inspectors found students were “keen to get the day started when they arrive in school, happily waving to their parents as they join their classmates”.

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The school continues to be ‘good’ and has 219 pupils aged from five to seven. Inspectors found “significant improvements” in teaching reading since the last inspection before the Covid-19 pandemic in September 2018.

Ofsted inspectors found students polite, well-behaved and eager to share their learning. (Credit: Banstead Infant School)Ofsted inspectors found students polite, well-behaved and eager to share their learning. (Credit: Banstead Infant School)
Ofsted inspectors found students polite, well-behaved and eager to share their learning. (Credit: Banstead Infant School)

Children eagerly share their learning with visitors, for instance, one pupil explained that learning mathematics “trains your brain and helps you to remember”, while another said: “The more you write, the more your hand muscles improve, and the neater your writing.”

The report reads: “Pupils are kind to each other and behave exceptionally well throughout the school. They arrive in the morning ready to learn, greet visitors politely and wear their school uniform with pride.”

Banstead Infant School has introduced a “new and ambitious” curriculum and in 2023 the pupils achieved exceptionally well in reading and writing, the report notes. The curriculum has been “carefully designed to reflect current research about how pupils learn well. It is well sequenced and builds on the school’s previous effective curriculum, with an increased focus on deepening pupils’ learning.”

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Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) were “valued members of the school’s happy and inclusive community”, according to the report. It noted that leaders have improved arrangements to support pupils with SEND since the previous inspection; children’s needs were identified in assessments and suitable adaptations were being made as early as possible.

Headteacher Andy Burbidge said: “I am extremely proud of the school and pleased that the inspector recognised the quality of education and wider opportunities we offer our children.” Students also learn skills to help them to navigate the world around them safely, such as first-aid skills, online safety strategies, and how to swim.

However, inspectors found teachers “do not always have the knowledge and confidence needed to respond to pupils’ emerging needs during lessons”. This means that learning slows for those pupils who are finding it hard to grasp what is being taught. The Ofsted report said the school should continue to strengthen this aspect of teaching.

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