Yewdale Primary School was inspected by Ofsted on 10 & 11 July 2018.  This was the first inspection since the academy was formed and the school joined Cumbria Education Trust in September 2015.

Cumbria Education Trust, the Yewdale staff and its community are delighted that Ofsted rated the school’s overall effectiveness as Good. The inspection looked at five key areas – Effectiveness of leadership and management; Quality of teaching, learning and assessment; Personal development, behaviour, and welfare; Outcomes for pupils and Early Years Provision.  All of the areas were also graded as Good.

Yewdale Primary School’s focus during the last three years has been on improving the quality of provision at the school; the school was in Special Measures prior to transferring to Cumbria Education Trust.

The Ofsted report clearly details that the changes made have strengthened the leadership and teaching, and as a result of improvements to teaching and learning standards have risen, and pupils achieve well.

Ofsted also reports that ‘the headteacher has established a culture that is very firmly focused on pupils’ achievement and welfare’ and that ‘the leadership team has set high expectations for pupils’ behaviour.  Around school, pupils behave well and respect others’.

Ofsted deemed Yewdale’s pupils as ‘cooperative and resilient’ and added that ‘pupils are confident, resilient learners and persevere in their work’.  They also noted that the behaviour of pupils is good and noted that ‘pupils are polite and welcoming and are respectful to others’.

They found that teachers plan support carefully to meet the needs of disadvantaged pupils and pupils who have special educational needs (SEN) and/or disabilities.  They added that ‘Disadvantaged pupils currently in school are making good progress’.  They also praised the work of the leadership of special needs adding that they ‘work well to ensure that the additional support that pupils receive is precisely matched to their needs’.  They also write that pupils report that bullying does not happen.

The support of the Trust and the Local Advisory Board was also commended, with Ofsted adding that ‘the trust, local advisory board and school leaders work very closely to ensure that the school continues to improve.  Through their unified and uncompromising leadership, they have established an inclusive school where all pupils are valued and encouraged to thrive’ adding ‘the members are dedicated, committed and knowledgeable’.

Mr Lakin, Headteacher at Yewdale Primary School and CET’s Director of Primary Education is thrilled with the outcome of the inspection:

“I believe we are moving ever closer to the goal of being an ‘Outstanding’ school and although there is work still to do, we should be encouraged by this extremely positive report.  I would like to thank our amazing staff and pupils who were given the recognition they so rightly deserve in making Yewdale Primary School an exciting place to learn. The support received from the Trust has been a real strength.  The central team, who provide strategic and hands-on support to all CET schools, were pivotal to the school’s success.”

CET’s Chief Executive, Lorrayne Hughes, said:

“I am delighted that Yewdale Primary School has been recognised as the fantastic school that it is.  In three years the school has developed into a thriving learning environment where staff and pupils really can ‘be the best they can be’.”

Joyce Keetley, Chair of the Local Advisory Board, said:

“The outcome of this inspection recognises the relentless focus and hard work by the Trust, the Local Advisory Board, the Headteacher and his staff and I am absolutely delighted that the school has achieved the outcome they so rightly deserve”.

“Yewdale Primary School has a bright future and I know things will only get better as our journey of improvement continues.”