Crawford Primary School in Southwark achieves the Inclusive School Award for the third time.
Inclusive Practice is Embedded
At Crawford Primary School, inclusion is “never an afterthought” and this can be felt wherever you go and whoever you speak to. Inclusive practice is embedded in every aspect of school life including through the curriculum, assessment, pupil voice and parental engagement. The school is based in Camberwell, South London and has been part of the Gypsy Hill Federation since 2011. The school has a high percentage of children with English as an additional language and in March 2013 was judged as “Outstanding” by Ofsted.
A Real Sense of Cohesion
The school is well supported by the Federation and there is a real sense of cohesion in the partnership working across the schools. Several members of staff work across sites, such as the Head of Inclusion and Pupil Empowerment Champion, to ensure there is consistency of procedure, whilst maintaining each school’s individuality. This provides opportunities for effective sharing of best practice, wider CPD opportunities, development of experts in specific fields and a wealth of skills and knowledge. The link governors also have a role across the Federation, ensuring their skills are distributed and utilised to best effect. They recognise that at Crawford Primary School, “Inclusion is a strength and is essential to all conversations”.
The Federation has developed a system of Inclusion Teams in all the schools, which includes a SENCO, Deputy Head for Inclusion and a Family Services Officer, with clear roles and responsibilities, overseen by the Head of Inclusion. The SENCO at Crawford, who is new to post this academic year, is clearly knowledgeable of the wide range of additional needs across the school and the support in place to ensure the best outcomes for all pupils, both emotionally and academically. She is proud to share the impact of the support for individual children, including that for children who are at risk of exclusion. The highly effective partnership working with other professionals and agencies, including the local Pupil Referral Unit, has significantly reduced the rates of exclusions for individuals. She is ably supported by the Deputy Head for Inclusion who demonstrates a passion for enabling all learners. The DHT for Inclusion works strategically to identify the needs, training and support for the school, working with the SENCO to implement the strategy. The excellent partnership working within the team is further enhanced by the Federation, where termly meetings with all school Inclusion Teams ensure key priorities and training requirements are discussed.
Strategic and Proactive
The Head of Inclusion for the Federation is both strategic and proactive, using research based and innovative approaches to develop efficient systems to bring about meaningful change. The school accurately identified that there was low attendance by families with EAL at school events and have responded with targeted coffee mornings delivered in the mother tongue of these minority groups, such as French and Spanish, resulting in engagement of these hard to reach families. Everyone in the Inclusion Team is knowledgeable of the school community and understands the local issues that may create barriers to learning. They are creative, passionate and solution driven.
A Vibrant School Environment
The school’s environment is vibrant and showcases the children’s achievements, through high quality displays of children’s writing, art and weekly photos of those who have demonstrated the school’s values. Each class displays the four new Houses which children across the school belong to and Working Walls.
A Calm Working Atmosphere
A calm working atmosphere was observed throughout the school during a Learning Walk with the Deputy Head of Inclusion and the SENCO, with teachers and teaching assistants ably supporting and children engaged and enjoying their learning. The school provided an opportunity to see highly effective targeted language interventions in action through the Chatterbugs programme with a small group of Reception children and a 1:1 speech and language session overseen by a speech and language therapist. Both sessions were led by highly skilled HLTAs, who used consistent practice and Makaton with the children to reinforce the language skills being used.
Parents Speak Highly of the School
Parents at Crawford Primary could not speak highly enough of the school. They describe the school as having a “feeling of family” and that they “work hand in hand with the school” to achieve the best for their children. Parents feel listened to and that their views are taken on board. They feel that all staff know their children well and gave many examples of how the school had identified additional needs early and ensured that support, including that from other agencies, is quickly actioned and implemented.
A Team of Skilled and Passionate Individuals
The Headteacher is rightly proud of her school. She has developed a strong, cohesive team of skilled and passionate individuals. All the staff spoken to, whether NQT, middle or senior leaders, had a shared understanding of inclusion, a drive for improvement and empowerment of children, and valued research, innovation and training. On the playground and in class, the children were happy and displayed confidence, enjoyment of learning and maturity. The Peer Mediators were impressive in their articulation of their role, demonstrating the school’s values in action and a sense of equality and accountability.
IQM Cluster Group
The school had ample evidence of working with the Cluster of IQM schools and the impact of these meetings to their practice. They are real champions for inclusion at Crawford and have shown commitment to the Centre of Excellence status. They deserve to continue to hold the Inclusion Quality Mark.
Find out more about the IQM Inclusive School Award
If your school is interested in obtaining the IQM Inclusive School Award or you wish to talk to a member of the IQM team please telephone:
028 7127 7857 (9.00 am to 5.00 pm)
or email: firstname.lastname@example.org for further details.
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