Chilton staff, governors, pupils and families at Chilton Primary School in Ramsgate are celebrating after “the best possible Ofsted”.
The school received high praise and a continued good rating under new inspection criteria introduced in January.
Michaela Lewis is Executive Head Teacher of the Viking Academy Trust that includes Chilton, Upton Juniors and Ramsgate Arts Primary.
She explained how the new system works. She said: “Whilst the change has been welcomed by many schools, for those awaiting an ‘outstanding’ rating like Chilton the change is frustrating.
“Inspections are now only one day visits for existing ‘good’ schools such as Chilton. The inspection team gather evidence to ascertain whether the school remains ‘good’ or has shown it has significantly developed further and is currently providing ‘outstanding’ educational provision.
“Chilton Primary School has been given the highest possible accolade that Ofsted is currently allowed to award; the inspector found that practice at the school is so strong that they will visit again within 18 months so that we can receive the ‘outstanding’ grade the children and teachers so rightly deserve.
“I am so proud of how far we have come since the formation of the Viking Academy Trust and I know Chilton, under Mrs Law’s outstanding leadership, will continue to go from strength to strength.”
Mrs Law thanked staff, governors, pupils, families and the school’s Viking Academy Trust partners for “outstanding support, dedication and enthusiasm.”
She said: “We waited a long time for this inspection and so I am thrilled that the determination and commitment of both the staff and the children at Chilton has been rightly praised so highly.
“I am incredibly proud of the work that we do and the school that we have built for our children. Our school is a true community and the Ofsted report has celebrated the success of our Chilton family.
“We will welcome the return of the inspectors and the opportunity to demonstrate even more of our exceptional practice and the way that our school continues to go from strength to strength.”
In her report Ofsted inspector Margaret Coussins praised Mrs Law and the senior leadership team. She wrote: “You work with a relentless determination to instil a culture of high aspirations, expectations and achievement. You successfully motivate and inspire pupils and staff who share your ambition and work hard to live up to the high expectations.”
The report highlighted the fact that “staff, pupils and governors are proud of their school, enjoy working in it and feel valued and respected. Morale is high.”
It also found that “pupils enjoy learning, behave exceptionally well and have a strong voice in the school. They are polite, friendly and articulate and develop as well-rounded individuals.”
The inspector said that during her inspection, pupils in all classes were engrossed in their lessons and happy to explain what they were learning and why.
In a pupil survey, children told Ofsted that the school encourages them to respect people from other backgrounds and to treat everyone equally. They appreciate the opportunities they have to be independent and take on responsibilities.
Ofsted also praised the “strong culture of safeguarding;” and the “wide range of activities offered to their children and the celebration of pupils’ personal development as well as their academic achievement;”
The inspector found a “commitment to developing leaders within the Trust and the school.” She added that “senior phase leaders of learning and middle leaders share aspiration and ambition in the pursuit of excellence.”
She conclude the “focus on the quality of teaching and learning is unwavering.”
The full Ofsted report will be made available on the Chilton school website www.chiltonprimary.co.uk.