St Michael's
Church of England Primary School

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Our vision is for every child to live an abundant life (John 10.10)

Key priorities for 2020 - 2021

Priority 1:
To improve progress in core subjects (reading, writing and maths) and as a result to sustain good outcomes compared to national.

Priority 2:
To continue to develop pupils life skills through a rich and inclusive curriculum which draws on a range of experiences. 

Priority 3:
At all levels, leaders to work effectively to raise standards in the wider curriculum, with a particular focus on RE, MFL, Computing and Music.

These are only our headlines.  If you would like to read the full school evaluation plan & school improvement plan, please ask a copy from the office.

Leadership & Management

 Vision: The headteacher and leadership team have a clear and ambitious vision of children flourishing in their potential.  It penetrates through every layer of the school so that everyone is working together effectively.

Culture: Leaders and governors have created a culture of ‘be the best you can be’. They regularly evaluate the school’s strengths and reflect on next steps in their strive for excellence.

Ethos: Parents and governors value the small, ‘family’ atmosphere of the school. A caring ethos is tangible in our one form entry school, with a school motto of ‘small enough for everyone to count, but big enough to make a difference’

CPD: Within a culture of non-complacency, high quality training is delivered by the school; staff are also benefiting from training provided by the SDBE.  Agreed teaching policies and procedures are closely tracked and monitored to ensure the teaching practice in the school is consistent, working effectively and making a difference.  As a result, strategies, such as Kagan, are consistent across the school and the children say they enjoy and learn well using these collaborative learning opportunities.

Achievement: Outcomes - above national in all key stages in all subjects.  Progress - Leaders monitor and review individual pupils’ progress, using pupil progress meetings as a platform, to ensure that if any children fall behind, interventions/and or support is put in place to address any gaps in learning.  

Workload: The leaders and governors carefully reflect what is the most efficient and effective way to achieve good outcomes, but keeping the workload mangeable. For example, our expectations of on-the-spot marking, using ‘feedback jotters’ and the colour-coded marking stickers are ‘workload friendly’ and effective.

Parents: Parents appreciate the caring nature of the staff, as a result of staff and management investing significant time to communicate with parents regarding academic, behavioural, social and emotional needs of children. The inclusion manager ensures that as a school we liaise effectively with a range of outside agencies in order to meet the needs of all our pupils.

PPG: Leaders ensure that pupil premium funding for disadvantaged pupils is used effectively, by providing focused support for these children in their learning, social and emotional needs. Leaders and staff know the children very well and continuously check whether their achievement is as good as it can be. The evidence in books show that disadvantaged pupils are making similar rates of progress to their peers with the same starting points. Where they fall behind, targeted support is put in place and closely monitored.

Sports grant: With the help of additional sports funding, the school provides a range of quality sports activities after school.  The children are also given opportunities to participate in competitions against other local schools.

SEN: The Inclusion Manager is highly effective in ensuring that pupils who have special educational needs and/or disabilities are identified, and that appropriate provision is in place to help them to succeed. Leaders pay close attention to securing success for these children in the school. 

Governors know the school well and are committed to their role.
They conduct an annual review of strengths and weaknesses of the school.
Governors are closely involved in the life of the school, speaking with pupils and staff and checking the quality of work in books.
They regularly review the well-being of the staff, including of the headteacher.
Governors review during strategy meetings whether additional funding received by the school is used effectively to support the children.
Governors place a strong emphasis on safeguarding and receive annual training provided by the SDBE.

Well-coordinated, thorough and caring approach to safeguarding has resulted in a strong culture of vigilance, which permeates the school.
The school site is secure and appropriate risk assessments are in place.
Leaders make sure that employment checks are in place and that records are thorough and well maintained.
The safeguarding arrangements are fit for purpose; the DSL training is up to date and the staff all received annual training.
The strong value education in the school underpins the exemplary behaviour and conduct. Our children at St Michael’s clearly demonstrate the school rule of respect when you speak to them.  Being courteous and displaying good manners are the norm.

Quality of Education

Attainment in Key Stage 2 is consistently above national .

Achievement in Key Stage 1 is consistently above national

Rigorous and structured phonics approach embedded in EYFS and KS1 and as a result, achievement in phonics screening in Year 1 is consistently good and above national.

Children in the EYFS make good progress from their starting points and achievement is just above national.

In school data and evidence in books show that disadvantaged pupils and those with SEND throughout the school make good progress from their starting points. This is because highly effective teaching and carefully targeted support ensure that their needs are met.

The quality of work in pupils’ books are of a high standard.  A rigorous spelling scheme is taught across the school and there are high expectations about the quality of presentation and handwriting in books.

St Michael’s prepare our children well for the next stage of their education. This includes transition from Reception to Year 1 and moving on to secondary education.

Formative assessment, in the form of marking is consistent across the school:  ‘On-the-spot marking’ is an opportunity for children to get fast, accurate, specific and timely (F-A-S-T) feedback and to learn from mistakes. Colour coded marking stickers give pupils clear feedback whether they have met the learning intention or whether further learning is needed to secure their knowledge and avoids unnecessary burden on staff. In addition, ‘teacher feedback jotters’ help teachers to give children clear feedback and inform teaching on the following day/days.

Summative assessment three times a year informs teachers and leaders how well pupils have embedded their learning and is used to help make decisions about targeted interventions.  Moderation opportunities across schools support teachers to validate their own judgements.

Pupil progress meetings demonstrate that teaching staff are able to identify and support any pupil who is falling behind and enable them to catch up by targeted support and, if appropriate, implement carefully considered interventions, in liaison with the Inclusion Manager.  Pupil progress meetings play an important role in reflecting on impact of interventions and identifying next steps. 

STM has implemented a bespoke knowledge based curriculum, covering all the statutory subjects as well as the non-statutory subjects (RE and PSHCE) in the national curriculum. The curriculum has a strong knowledge focus and it is designed to develop the children’s subject-specific knowledge, skills and understanding. 

The bespoke curriculum has been designed based on the following principles:

  • To design a curriculum and assessment system where we have time to recognise and value the whole child and support all areas of learning. All children are unique and have different strengths and weaknesses.  We cannot ‘judge the fish on how it climbs the tree.
  • Literacy and Numeracy to continue to be important to give the children choices in their future, but with a renewed focus on vocabulary and problem solving skills.  Structured approaches are embedded to teach Reading, Writing and Maths.
  • Using aspects of our previous curriculum that has been tried and tested and worked well with our children – we chose topics that captured the children’s interests and imagination.
  • Having high aspirations for children and with the notion of ‘knowledge is power’, the curriculum has been designed to be strongly knowledge based, but skills needed to apply the knowledge, incorporated in the learning. 
Lessons across the curriculum are taught well, as teachers have good knowledge of the subjects, which is supported by the bespoke knowledge organisers and school resources. Learning matches the national curriculum objectives and in other subjects the learning matches the learning outlined in knowledge organisers.  Teachers provide adequate time for practise to embed knowledge and skills and have high expectations regarding the presentation in books.
By encouraging children to refer to the knowledge organisers and pop quizzes, children are encouraged to remember the content they have been taught.
Each subject is coherently planned, sequenced and timetabled, designed to equip the children to thrive in an increasingly complex and rapidly changing world. 
A collaborative teaching approach is used consistently across the school (Kagan strategies) and gives the children the opportunity to learn with the help of their peers and in mixed ability groups.

Behaviour & Attitude

Good to be green behaviour system is transparent and effective, and by using amber books, low level disruption is monitored to ensure behaviour issues are dealt with consistently and fairly and do not disrupt day-to-day life of the school. The few pupils, who have behavioural needs, are on a behaviour support plan, overseen by the inclusions manager.  

We have one school rule:  Respect.  We believe being respectful goes hand in hand with being kind.  At St Michael’s everyone in the school community has a right to be respected and therefore we do not tolerate bullying, racist, religious or homophobic comments.  The inclusion manager and deputy share the role of overseeing behaviour and they take immediate action when bullying comes to our attention. The issues are dealt with in a timely manner and using a restorative approach.  Incidents of bullying are recorded and reported to parents.  Repeat offenders/offenders are monitored and follow up work is in put in place as appropriate.

Resilience is one of the core values of the school and children are encouraged to develop a growth mindset.  Learning walks and pupil interviews evidence that pupils have good attitude to learning and are committed to do their best. Pupils enjoy collaborative learning opportunities and these Kagan strategies are embedded in the teaching practice across the school.  As a result children are willingly share their thoughts with their learning partners and offer support and readily listen to advice.

Attendance above national expectations demonstrates that they enjoy coming to school and they are eager to learn.  The school has clear expectations that all pupils should be in school and come to school on time.   The admin manager works closely with parents and the AWO to address any attendance and/or punctuality issues, according to our policies and procedures.

Fixed term and internal exclusions are rare, but used appropriately and recorded on the school system. The inclusion manager or deputy ensures that follow up work is done in all cases where exclusions are put in place.  

The school is a real family community; staff know pupils well as individuals and have built up trusting and warm relationships with them.  The children know they are cared for and staff consistently support and encourage children to be the best they can be. Respectful ethos, underpinned by vision and values, is embedded and fosters a positive and respectful place where children feel safe and cared for. The staff are committed to build a trusting relationship with pupils, where they feel safe and secure and a sense of belonging so that they can talk openly with adults at school about any problems.

As a result of staff investing significant time using the restorative justice approach, the children are able to reflect about their behaviour choices and make amends when they have caused harm.

Personal Development


Spiritual, moral, cultural and social provision is evident in the daily life of the school and weaves through the curriculum, delivered through the ‘Body, Mind and Spirit’ aspect of the curriculum and the collective worship programme. The children at St Michael’s display exemplary behaviour.

Well-being/Mental Health:

The school offers pastoral support where early signs of mental health problems are identified and the inclusion manager ensures that it is referred or addressed as we see fit.

Healthy eating and living a healthy life taught as part of BMS and PE curriculum and good health is promoted with initiatives such as a no sweet and chocolate policy.   Walk a mile to Mayow park is to embed a love for walking, which will help children to keep physically and mentally healthy. Body, Mind and Spirit curriculum (delivered in Let’s Talk) includes teaching children about healthy relationships.
Range of extra-curriculum activities provides support for pupils’ learning and personal development.
Character Development:

The stakeholders are committed to developing strength of character, by living out the vision of ‘enabling children to flourish in their potential’ and embedding the school values such as respect and resilience.   

Children flourish because of rich opportunities that support their personal development.  They are proud to take ownership of extra responsibilities.
The bespoke BMS curriculum includes the teaching of British values.
The Restorative Justice approach, embedded in the behaviour practice, provides the children with the opportunities to become responsible and respectful citizens who reflect about the consequences of their actions.

RHE:  Relationship and Health Education
The school’s 1 school rule of respect, as well as the school’ values underpin the school’s ethos and teaches the children to respect difference in the world they live in.   The RHE curriculum promotes celebrating the things we share in common across cultural, religious and ethnic communities as well as teaching children to respect and appreciate differences. 
BMS & RE curriculum give children the opportunities to engage with beliefs different to their own in considered ways.

*BMS = Body, Mind & Spirit


Careful transition planning, including doing home visits prior to children starting, ensures that children settle in to Reception class very well.
Staff establish children’s starting points early on with baseline assessments of each child’s knowledge and skills.  This information enables staff to plan activities that build on every child’s learning.
Leaders and other staff have a thorough knowledge of the needs of the children in their care.   They are constantly checking what each individual can do so that they provide the right level of support and challenge to help children with their next steps in their learning.
Children take part in adult-led activities each day.  These include phonics and maths sessions and also activities to develop fine and gross motor skills.  Children also have lots of opportunities to initiate their own learning.
Children's progress is carefully tracked from their starting points, which are typically slightly below what is expected for their age - this is believed to be because the provision of the feeder nurseries .
As a result of highly effective teaching and a personalised curriculum, children make good progress from their starting points.
Children behave very well.  They quickly learn the school’s rule of respect and responds well to the good to be green system and the motto of trying your best. 
The environment in Early Years is highly engaging and stimulating inside and out, with a range of writing experiences.  Children are aware of how to work together safely as staff constantly remind them.
The pupil progress meeting is an opportunity to discuss the children’s needs and ensure that any early signs of SEN are identified and interventions are put in place to support all needs.
All safeguarding and welfare arrangements are fit for purpose.