Houldsworth Valley Primary School in Suffolk has achieved the Inclusive School Award with Centre of Excellence status.
Leadership is Effective
It was such a pleasure to visit the school and to experience at first hand the fantastic work that is going on at Houldsworth Valley Primary. The school has worked very hard to create such a wonderful environment and the leadership qualities of the Executive Headteacher and members of the Senior Leadership Team have clearly played a major role in creating such a reflective and continually developing school. The school has a distinctive character, spirit and attitude which speaks of its ethos.
All Children Can Achieve and Thrive
The school has managed to create an environment that supports everybody’s wellbeing and learning. This is essentially about respect and includes the assumption that all children have a right to be in the same educational space which does not mean separate classrooms (segregation) or placing children with difficulties in the classroom so long as they can adjust (integration). Instead, there is a flexible and accommodating approach meaning all children can achieve and thrive. Staff are trained in inclusive pedagogy and view it as their role to teach all learners in a diverse classroom. The pupils are all very happy in school and totally engaged in their learning. Their comments about the school and the teachers reflect their love of the school. Staff understand that confidence and self-esteem have a major impact on a child’s ability to learn and they behave in a way that demonstrates their belief that every child has strengths and positive attributes.
Parents Have Faith in the School
It was heart-warming to hear from parents about the faith and confidence they have in the school which is due to the positive relationships that have been created over time between home and school. Parents clearly have trust in the school and the strong leadership who work tirelessly to create an exceptional school environment. They manage to celebrate diversity through recognising potential, increasing participation, overcoming and reducing barriers, and removing stigmatisation. Being a Rights Respecting School has been pivotal to the school’s success and staff are committed to teaching all pupils at Houldsworth Valley Primary School their rights.
Learning is Personalised
There is an extensive range of evidence-based provisions available and the attitude to support is clearly needs-led. Learning is tailored to individual needs and is personalised. The outcome of this is a child-centred approach throughout, evidenced clearly by the SENDCo in the pupil-centred EHCP reviews using a PATH process. Staff are encouraged to use a wide variety of resources in lessons and early intervention is understood as the important first step to developing best practices.
The School Has a Good Reputation
Houldsworth Valley Primary School has a good reputation in the community for providing for all learners regardless of needs. It serves a mixed catchment area in a deprived area and many pupils have difficult lifestyles. In September 2020 the school opened a new specialist unit for Communication and Interaction (Apex) which has capacity for 18 children (and currently has 15 pupils). The proportion of Pupil Premium pupils is currently at 29.3%. 27.78% are free school meals. The proportion of EAL pupils is currently at 29% and the proportion of SEN pupils is currently at 17.28%. Attainment on entry in Reception is generally low and language and vocabulary skills are particularly poor. Mobility across the school is vast. Pupils leave for reasons not associated with the education at Houldsworth Valley including going back to their home country, house swaps and jobs. This presents the school with difficulties, as many pupils have not had consistency throughout their schooling and early intervention has not necessarily been implemented.
The School Continues to Improve
The school seeks to adopt a holistic, flexible and accommodating approach to development and upholds a spirit of collaboration among all members of the school community and the local community. There is a recognition from the school that this is deemed as a continuous process. It is understood that inclusion is not something to be “achieved” – there will always be work to do and there is no room for standing still. It will be exciting to see the school’s progress going forward.
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: email@example.com for further details.
Want more information on the IQM Award? Click here to request your free IQM information pack