Highwood Copse Primary School in Newbury rated Good in first ever Ofsted inspection
A Newbury primary school has been rated Good after its first ever Ofsted inspection.
Highwood Copse Primary School – located on Highwood Copse Way just off the A339 in southern Newbury – had its first inspection since opening in September 2021.
Ofsted inspectors were full of praise for several different aspects of the school, with three of the five different inspection areas being rated as Outstanding.
The inspection report stated: “Pupils thrive at this ambitious school. They build strong relationships and feel happy and safe.
“Staff want all pupils to reach the highest standards. Lessons are engaging.
“The school prioritises implementing the curriculum effectively, which helps all pupils to achieve well.”
Inspectors found Highwood Copse pupils to be well behaved and have good relationships with one another and school staff.
They also described the school’s provision for pupils’ personal development as “exemplary”, praising the school’s decision to teach its pupils about democracy at an early age and implement that knowledge by holding discussions and votes on issues that affect life at school.
Highwood Copse’s extra-curricular opportunities were also highly commended.
The report stated: “Disadvantaged pupils benefit consistently well from extra-curricular opportunities such as playing sports and developing artistic knowledge and skills.
“All pupils learn to play a musical instrument. Pupils talk excitedly about the activities organised for them, such as trips to the farm and to London to visit the Natural History Museum.
“There is a programme of rich experiences that is planned in a systematic and coherent way.”
The early years provision of the school was praised, and inspectors also found that the school “engages well” with “overwhelmingly supportive” parents.
The inspection report contained a quote from one school parent who said: “Staff are great role models and really care.
“Children are treated as individuals and are given the tools to achieve their very best.”
The arrangements for safeguarding at Highwood Copse were labelled as “effective”, and staff, who were said to be “very proud” to work at the school, were also found to be able to effectively adapt the school curriculum for pupils with SEND.
The only criticism of the school was that pupils have some gaps in their knowledge.
The report added: “As a result, pupils are not always able to make links in their learning and achieve as highly as they could.
“The school should develop assessment processes further in efficient and effective ways.”
In response to the school’s positive first report, principal Serraphina Robinson said: “We're delighted that so many of the positive features of our school have been showcased and recognised in the report.
“This is a huge achievement for such a new school, and we're excited to continue to develop and expand our excellence and exceptionality.
“A huge thank you to our whole school community, and particularly to our children, who make Highwood Copse the place that it is.”