Teamwork has driven improvement, says Great Massingham school head

Three cheers from pupils, in front of a recently erected cabin classroom, after achieving a Good Ofsted report.   Back, from left - Emily Yates (COWA Student), Tina Griffin (Teaching assistant), Katherine Heazel [Heazel] (Teacher), Ann Beardall (Head teacher), Sally Frere-Smith (Teacher) and Janice Frost (Teaching assistant)

Three cheers from pupils, in front of a recently erected cabin classroom, after achieving a Good Ofsted report. Back, from left - Emily Yates (COWA Student), Tina Griffin (Teaching assistant), Katherine Heazel [Heazel] (Teacher), Ann Beardall (Head teacher), Sally Frere-Smith (Teacher) and Janice Frost (Teaching assistant)

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A headteacher has hailed “great teamwork” between staff and governors for turning around the fortunes of her village primary school.

Ann Beardall said everyone at Great Massingham Primary School was delighted after education inspectors this week judged it as ‘good’.

The rating comes just 18 months after Ofsted told the Weasenham Road school it required improvement.

Mrs Beardall, who became headteacher in September 2013, said: “We are absolutely thrilled and feel it really validates the hard work we have done over the last 18 months.

“The previous Ofsted in July 2013 picked out some good points and we have built on those good points and continued to so.

“We have always felt that it was a good school and we are very, very proud of the children. The staff and governors have worked as a great team and that’s what has turned it around for us. It really has been a team effort.”

In an Ofsted report, published on Tuesday, lead inspector Richard Blackmore praised Mrs Beardall for improving teaching and creating a “strong, united team”.

“All leaders, including subject leaders and governors, have an accurate view of the school’s strengths and areas for development. They work effectively together to continue to make improvements,” he said. “Leaders have made good use of the appraisal system and training to improve teaching and achievement.”

The report said good teaching is characterised by well-organised, lively and interesting lessons, enabling youngsters to achieve well, and praised children for making good progress in reading, writing and mathematics.

It also said pupils’ behaviour is good because of their positive attitude to their work, and they feel safe in school.

“They display a considerable desire to learn and apply themselves fully to tasks set,” said the report.

In order to improve further, the school has been advised to improve pupils’ attainment and accelerate progress. This can be achieved by ensuring all pupils are sufficiently challenged when carrying out mathematical activities, given opportunities to respond to teachers’ marking comments in their books and able to use spelling, punctuation and grammar more accurately in their writing.