Headteacher says 'good' Ofsted rating a testament to hard work

Astley Primary School headteacher Jen Goakes is looking forward to the new school year. Picture: Ian

Astley Primary School headteacher Jen Goakes is delighted after the school was rated 'good' by Ofsted. - Credit: Ian Burt/Astley Primary School

The headteacher of a Norfolk primary school believes its recent Ofsted rating is a testament to hard work.

Astley Primary School in Briston is celebrating after its Ofsted report from a two-day inspection on November 23 and 24 last year rated the school as ‘good’.

In the report, Ofsted's lead inspector for the visit, Hannah Stoten said: “Astley Primary school is a positive and caring place for pupils to learn.”

Astley received a marking of good in all categories, including, The quality of education, behaviour and attitudes, and personal development.

The 'good' rating is the second highest available, with only 'outstanding' above.

The role of Astley's curriculum leaders was praised as a particular strength, enabling pupils to “flourish” and have a positive impact on learning across all subjects. 

Jen Goakes, headteacher at Astley Primary School

Jen Goakes, headteacher at Astley Primary School. - Credit: Astley Primary School

At the heart of the school is headteacher Jen Goakes, who has been in her role at the school since September 2019.

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"In a framework with high expectations that rightly puts curriculum development at the heart of inspection, the report is an absolute testament to the hard work, commitment and enthusiasm of our team, who have achieved something special in a challenging two years.

"Teamwork is everything, and I am immensely proud of every member of the community, described by inspectors as positive and caring.  

"The support and smiles of our families are incredibly important to us and we were thrilled that communication with families was highlighted as a strength."

Mrs Goakes also thanked their governors, parents and their “wonderful children.”

Astley Primary School. Picture: Matthew Usher.

Astley Primary School. Picture: Matthew Usher.

Rob Martlew, CEO of Synergy Multi-Academy Trust added: “We are delighted with this outcome for Astley Primary.

“The fantastic staff and leadership team are determined to give every child attending the very best opportunities and this report is a celebration of everything that they have achieved so far.”

One area for improvement included in the report was for children to receive a "deeper foundation" of knowledge in certain subjects.

The report states: "In a small number of subjects, the teaching of the curriculum does not enable pupils to secure all the knowledge that is set out in the curriculum plans. Pupils do not have enough opportunities to recall and build on prior learning."

The inspection was the school's first since it was converted into an academy in 2017.