Cecil Gowing Infant School is the caring heart of the community it serves. Pupils love coming to school because they know they are valued and safe and will enjoy learning. The school brings to life its strapline of ‘inspiring imaginations’ because you and senior leaders are passionate about making learning meaningful and fun. The innovative and dynamic outdoor learning sessions involve all pupils in mixed- age groups taking part in a wide range of stimulating activities. These include den building, pond dipping and archery. Younger children mix readily with older pupils and all are fully included. Parents and carers who spoke to me were full of praise for the school’s work and how approachable they find staff. Parents of pupils who have special educational needs (SEN) and/or disabilities said how well their children’s needs were met and how easy they found it to discuss their progress with staff.
Staff know the pupils very well as individuals and carefully track their progress. They ensure that most pupils make strong progress; they act swiftly to support any who are at risk of falling behind. Much has been done to tackle areas to improve raised at the previous inspection. Subject leaders are more involved in monitoring the quality of the provision. Some, such as the leader for early years and the leader for outdoor learning, are an inspiration to their colleagues.
Governors support and challenge the school effectively and hold leaders to account for standards and the way the budget is spent. Governors are dedicated to the school’s work, visit regularly and focus on how well leaders are tackling the school’s priorities for improvement.
Pupils are polite and very well behaved. Their great enjoyment of school is reflected in their above-average attendance. In class they listen well and work hard. Pupils who have SEN and/or disabilities make good progress because they receive support that is tailored well to their individual needs. Additional adults are skilled at giving them the help they need.