A YORK school head teacher has said "a real team effort" was the secret to its success after its latest Ofsted report was published.

St Aelred’s Catholic Primary School in Fifth Avenue, Tang Hall, was rated ‘good’ for overall effectiveness in a report published on March 13 following inspection on January 23 and 24 this year.

Head teacher Claire Hughes, who took over at St Aelred’s in April 2023, said: “The report is testament to the hard work and commitment of our dedicated staff team who go above and beyond in their daily roles to support the children.

“We have worked hard to drive forward several key improvements this year, including changes to our curriculum, increasing extracurricular activities and a new behaviour strategy.

“We are delighted to have this work positively encouraged.”


The school was rated good in all five areas of the inspection team’s report.

It said "leaders and those responsible for governance are highly ambitious for the pupils who attend the school" and that "the school has a rigorous and well-planned curriculum for all pupils, including pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND)".

The report added that "leaders take prompt action to ensure the gaps in pupils" knowledge are identified and addressed and methods of assessment is mathematics, history and phonics are well used and effective.

Praise was given by inspectors for the training teachers received in phonics which resulted in pupils receiving consistent language gestures and structures.

Older pupils were said to show "interest in reading through challenges in school and through work with the local library. A love of reading starts in early years, where children enjoy story time and explore key language linked to texts".

Inspectors said rapid progress is evident in the pace of change to strengthen the curriculum and to improve pupils’ behaviour as outlined by Mrs Hughes.York Press: Pupils from St Aelred's Catholic Primary SchoolPupils from St Aelred's Catholic Primary School (Image: Nicholas Postgate Catholic Academy Trust)

However, they added that while the school’s senior leaders lead those changes effectively, leadership roles beyond senior leaders are less well-developed.

Inspectors said "classrooms at St Aelred’s are calm and focused places to learn. Pupils benefit from clear school rules. Their positive attitudes and hard work are rewarded in different ways. School leadership roles such as school councillors and anti-bullying ambassadors are celebrated. Pupils remember their learning beyond the classroom with enthusiasm".

Mrs Hughes added: “Partnership working and links with the community are a critical aspect of school life and this is far reaching, with involvement from stakeholders including governors, parents and carers, and the parish who are all committed to, and invested in, helping our children flourish and grow.”

St Aelred’s Catholic Primary School has 195 pupils on the school roll call across ages three to 11.