Ingol Community Primary School in Lancashire has achieved the Inclusive School Award for the second time.
An Ethos of High Aspirations for All
Ingol Community Primary School continues to be very inclusive. ‘Dream, inspire, achieve,’ is powerfully displayed at the school entrance and underpins the ethos for high aspirations for all pupils. Since the last assessment there have been significant staffing changes and improvements which have further enhanced the school. There are many exciting developments which are the result of hard work and vision from the staff team led by the Headteacher. The Headteacher and Leadership Team have strived to give opportunities and to raise aspirations for all pupils. There are many opportunities for the pupils to see career paths and hear success stories which help them to aim high. The ‘gems’ awards system in school supports the pupils to learn habits which will help them to succeed in life such as resilience and kindness. These qualities are celebrated by both school and home through the Dojo App. An example of this is that during lockdown a pupil showed exceptional kindness by making and giving away fun packs. She wanted other children ‘to smile.’ The packs included items such as pens, colouring books and bubbles and were very well received.
Staff Know Their Pupils Well
All school staff know the pupils well. The Lancashire tracking system is now used throughout the school and results in transparent data which is easily accessible and can pinpoint individual children’s progress as well as groups. The school is using this data in pupil progress meetings and this drives the interventions and next steps for planning. In between the data points there is a fluid approach to class groupings with changes made based on the pupils’ needs. There is also a system to swiftly pick up and address misconceptions, known as ‘the red pen.’ Red pen marking results in specific targeted help during the same day. The SENCo has excellent knowledge and understanding of the needs of the pupils and has seen the positive changes at Ingol Community Primary School. The teachers are now well trained and confident to meet the needs of pupils who need support. The SENCo ensures that pupils are fully involved through ‘one-page profiles’ and engages them in meetings so that they know that ‘everyone is here for them.’ Teachers read the pupils’ ‘one-page profiles’ and learn more about their aspirations and interests. They can use these to plan suitable experiences. One example given, was that through this process it became known that a pupil loved animals and aspired to have a career in farming. This led to opportunities to look after the school rabbit and to be given more responsibility.
The Learning Mentor and staff introduced a new PSHE scheme in September which is having an impact on the areas which are now part of the revised curriculum, for example, the topics were adapted when pupils returned to school following lockdown so that the first subject was ‘health and wellbeing.’ The scheme has a progression of skills and theme days such as exploring mindfulness through reflection and yoga.
Lockdown resulted in initiatives such as allowing the school kitchen to be used to cook meals for families in the local area. During the pandemic, the school has maintained excellent communication with families and provided support wherever possible. As the school already had many strategies in place such as a Food Market and School Meal Vouchers, they could support the wider community. The community radio station broadcasted news about the school in lockdown such as the pupils writing letters to Colonel Tom. This has now been further developed and a school radio station has been housed within the building. Pupils are planning themes such as Remembrance Day and making podcasts to share on the radio on Saturdays and Sundays. This gives the pupils opportunities to work with DJs and producers and to choose music for the radio. Above all, it gives pupils an exciting extra purpose for their work and new horizons.
Reviewing the Curriculum
Over the last two years, the Curriculum Leaders have taken greater ownership of their subjects. They have reviewed the curriculum to ensure that it is meeting the needs of the pupils at Ingol Community Primary School and the National Curriculum. There are now educational visits linked to the curriculum to ensure opportunities to learn in the local area. The visits are made as cost effective as possible for all pupils to ensure equal opportunities and are supported by the school budget. Subject Leaders are now writing annual subject reports and these will be shared with staff and Governors to show the developments and impact of new initiatives, for example, Knowledge Journals.
Reading is a Huge Focus
Reading is a huge focus and many improvements have been made for all pupils to develop their skills at every level. The entrance to the school has a huge display board with photographs of everyone reading and enjoying books which lets visitors know that reading is important at Ingol Community Primary School. The school library is themed and welcoming and reading is promoted across the school. The classrooms all have library areas and attractive spaces where pupils can read for pleasure. Reading books are colour-coded and are easily accessible. Teachers choose a class novel to read aloud and this is very much enjoyed, whilst also introducing new vocabulary.
An Improved Learning Environment
The school now has increased the number of pupils on roll due to its reputation in the community and new local housing. The Governors and school staff have spent significant time ensuring that the school building is of the highest standard and carry out regular health and safety checks. The local community has been able to see the investment in the school buildings which are now spacious, light and well maintained. Recent work has resulted in an improved layout and two new workspaces for group learning, this has made a significant difference for both pupils and adults. This was completed within the school budget and with significant expertise. As one Governor said, ‘In one and a half years the school has jumped 15 years in modernisation.’
Communication is Highly Effective
Families are welcomed at Ingol Community Primary School and communication is highly effective. The school uses many different IT approaches to keep in touch, including Twitter, Facebook and the website. One that is particularly appreciated by parents is DoJo. Parents can easily contact the class teachers and are involved in their child’s learning. As one parent said, ‘I’m in the know!’ Communication is certainly strong at the school and could be summed up by the member of staff who said, ‘We all really care about the children. They come first. They are our number one focus. We are like a little family.’
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.
Want more information on the IQM Award? Click here to request your free IQM information pack.