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The effectiveness of leadership and management at St Christopher’s CofE Primary Academy is outstanding, according to a church inspection.
The report from SIAMS – the Statutory Inspection of Anglican and Methodist Schools – said the leaders of the school in Red Lodge consistently and confidently articulated and lived out a vision rooted in distinctively Christian values
“Parents and governors are quick to recognise this and point to this as being a major reason for the considerable improvements they have seen in the school since its conversion to an academy at the end of 2016.
The school is now part of DEMAT – the Diocese of Ely Multi-Academy Trust – who the inspector said had provided much valuable advice to the school.
Overall, the inspection rated the distinctiveness and effectiveness of St Christopher’s as a Church of England school as good.
The report said joining DEMAT in 2016, the school was making very rapid progress in all the areas of concern highlighted by the previous school’s last SIAMS and Ofsted reports.
“The school has developed and adopted a new set of distinctively Christian values which underpin almost all elements of school life and are having a major impact upon improvements, especially in behaviour.
“High expectations have led to improvements in teaching and learning which have been noted by staff, parents and governors, as well as improvement consultants and advisors working for DEMAT,” said the inspector’s report.
He added that relationships within the school community were generally very positive, and that parents spoke highly of the school.
The inspection found that the school, through its distinctive Christian character, was good at meeting the needs of all learners.
“The school’s core Christian ethos and values are demonstrated clearly around the school, in communications with parents and on the school’s website,” the report said.
It also praised the impact of collective worship on the school community, adding: “Worship is recognised by all groups in the school community as a crucial way to reinforce and enlarge upon the school’s Christian ethos and values.”
The school was encouraged to deepen pupils’ understanding of and respect for a range of faiths and denominations by widening the variety of visits and visitors to the school.
It was also urged to develop the role of pupils in collective worship, improve their understanding of the worship traditions of the Anglican church by arranging more visits to the cathedral, and to create more opportunities for the development of pupils’ spirituality.
Headteacher Caroline James said: “I feel extremely proud of all that the school has achieved. The report and the success that it highlights is a true reflection of how far the school has come and I am extremely proud to be a part of it. A huge thank you to all staff, pupils and parents involved.