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Woodford Church of England Primary School & Nursery celebrates glowing Ofsted report


Staff and pupils at Woodford Church of England Primary School & Nursery, part of Nene Education Trust, are excited to be celebrating their latest  Ofsted report. 

Ofsted inspectors visited the school on 11th May 2023 to speak to staff, pupils and parents about the quality of education received at the school. 

The report noted a warm and friendly atmosphere and positive environment at the school and that pupils feel confident and secure in their surroundings. Staff know all the children as individuals and recognised that they can trust the staff to help them deal with any worries they might have. 

The newly-published report also said parents are very pleased with the school. They appreciate the care and support provided for their children and value the hard work of the staff at the school, particularly the new Principal, Mr Lee Donovan, who are all committed to raising aspirations.  

Particular reference was made to the behaviour and attitudes of pupils. They were praised for their calm classrooms which are pleasant places in which to learn. Pupils listen respectfully to their teachers, concentrate on their work and get on well together whilst enjoying time in each other’s company. 

Pupils told inspectors that they felt safe at the school and that they trust staff will help them deal with any worries they might have. One Year 6 pupil summed it perfectly when they told inspectors, ‘I feel safe because everyone will help here. Everyone cares for each other at Woodford.’ 

The report draws attention to the curriculum and numerous opportunities which the school offers to pupils that support the Trust’s developing character ethos. For example, they identified that the school’s chosen phonics programme is followed closely and that phonics is well taught, which in turn promotes an enjoyment for Reading.  

Maths also was also an area for recognition; its delivery impacts the development of pupils’ mathematical language and communication skills in all lessons. Teachers make sure that pupils understand and use precise, technical terms. They referred to the fact that pupils in Years 1 and 2 confidently used the word ‘commutative’ to explain how numbers can be added in any order to find the total.  

Another strong point that was noticed was Wellbeing, including when pupils learn how to take care of their own wellbeing. Pupils told inspectors, ‘You need to think about the things that fill and empty your bucket. The things that cheer you and get you down. Focus on the things that fill it up rather than the things that drain your bucket.’ 

Other highlights include: 

  • The school’s Christian vision of ‘shine among them like stars in the sky’ guides leaders’ ambitions.
  • The school’s Christian ethos is central to pupils’ personal development.
  • With the support of Nene Education Trust, the new principal has made lots of improvements to the curriculum at Woodford. Together, they have ensured that it is ambitious for all pupils.
  • Teachers adapt their lessons so that pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) learn the full curriculum.
  • The majority of pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities, achieve very well. Pupils who require extra help receive it promptly.
  • Pupils understand the importance of equality and inclusion. They are knowledgeable of British values and world faiths.
  • Leaders are considerate of teachers’ workloads. 
  • Staff appreciate the help and support they receive to manage their responsibilities. 
  • Staff are proud to work at the school and they enjoy working with the Principal.

Lee Donovan, Principal at Woodford Church of England Primary School & Nursery, said: 

“I am absolutely thrilled with the comments in this report which reflect how hard all of our community has come together and worked to support our pupils. I want to thank all of our parents and carers for their amazing support, plus I would like to thank every member of staff who has worked towards this incredible outcome. We have the most wonderful pupils at our school, so it is lovely to see them shining bright and working hard towards an education that helps prepare them for the world.” 

Matt Coleman, Director of School Improvement at Nene Education Trust, said: 

“This report may serve as a snapshot of a moment in time at Woodford CE Primary, but we are delighted with what it tells us about the quality of education that the children receive here. Lee and his exceptional team have done a magnificent job here, ensuring that educational excellence is at the heart of all they do. As a close-knit family of schools, we could not be prouder of the whole Woodford community. Well done to all involved!” 

Chris Hill, CEO for Nene Education Trust, said: 

“Small schools like Woodford have so much to offer their communities. This Ofsted report is testament to the hard work that everyone at Woodford and across Nene Education Trust has done to enable the children at the school to get the very best education. We are proud to have Woodford School within our family of schools.” 

End – Nene Education Trust, 23rd June 2023



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