TWO York primary schools joined together in a federation have both been ranked “good” by Ofsted under the Government’s tougher inspection regime.
Hob Moor Oaks Special School and Hob Moor Primary School, on Green Lane, Acomb, received parallel inspections with inspectors commenting on their “outstanding partnership” which “makes a significant contribution to pupils’ achievement both in school subjects and in their personal development”.
Both schools were previously rated as good, but new inspection rules make it harder to achieve that level and above.
Inspectors noted that at Hob Moor Oaks “parents agree strongly that their children are well taught and are particularly pleased with their progress in personal development and communication skills”.
At Hob Moor Primary, the inspection team said: “Teachers take great pains to match work closely to pupils’ different needs. This enables pupils to progress at a good rate in lessons.”
Inspectors said Hob Moor Oaks was not yet an “outstanding” school because pupils with severe learning difficulties have in the past not made as much progress as others, and pupils do not always understand what they have read.
Meanwhile at Hob Moor teaching is not yet outstanding because sometimes the pace of lessons slows and teachers miss opportunities to let the most able pupils learn through finding out for themselves.
The schools’ federation status means they have one shared executive head teacher and governing body.
The new federation principal Cath Hindmarch said: “My colleagues should be very proud of both reports. They recognise the hard work and achievements of children, the staff team and governors at Hob Moor Federation. I am delighted to have joined this dedicated team.”
Inspectors said the reasons why Hob Moor Primary was not yet “outstanding” include that in some lessons there is a lack of challenge, especially for most-able pupils, and the development of skills in maths could be promoted better in Early Years.
Coun Janet Looker, cabinet member for education, said it was great news for Hob Moor Oaks, particularly as the current Ofsted framework was the most rigorous yet.
“I was particularly pleased to see the report highlighting that pupils enjoy learning because lessons are interesting and fun and that ‘good, well-organised leadership of teaching means that teaching is consistently good or better in every class’.
“It is a testament to the hard work of all who work in and with the school that pupils at the school are able to achieve even more as a result.”