Slade Primary School Ofsted rated ‘Good’ with ‘Outstanding’ features

Staff and pupils at Erdington’s Slade Primary School are celebrating the New Year in style. The popular academy has achieved its “best ever” Ofsted report, with inspectors praising leadership and pastoral care as ‘exceptional’.

The much-improved school, part of the respected Arthur Terry Learning Partnership (ATLP) has been graded as ‘Outstanding’ and ‘Good’ in equal measure across all six areas of inspection, achieving an overall rating of ‘Good’.

Headteacher Helen Hastilow and her leadership team are described as, ‘highly effective and cohesive’, with lead inspector Ann Pritchard writing, ‘This exceptional leadership has led to significant improvements across the school over the last three years.’

Mrs Hastilow, who joined the school three years ago from another ATLP outstanding school, said:

This really is the most fantastic news to start the new year with. I’m overjoyed to receive such a positive report from Ofsted and want to thank staff, pupils, families, governors and our whole learning community for their hard work and dedication – I’m so proud of everybody. This school is indeed exceptional and our progress is second to none. Inspectors saw Slade’s many strengths, including leadership, teaching and learning, and pupil well-being. Our children are ambitious, successful and happy. They love coming to school and we love teaching them!

It’s a joy and an honour to serve this community. The support we receive from our community and from a network of schools, means that we can provide pupils with the highest standard of education and that they will continue to soar!”

Following their visit in December, Ofsted inspectors commented on the school’s continuous support from the Arthur Terry Learning Partnership, a respected multi-academy trust (MAT) of 13 schools and one teaching school. The report observes, ‘The MAT has been instrumental in supporting the school’s development and has embraced the individuality of Slade primary. The trust provides high-quality professional development and guidance, but also checks that leaders implement this support to improve pupils’ outcomes. The MAT and the school’s leadership team form a very strong partnership which further supports the school’s improvement.’

This is the third of ATLP’s Erdington schools to be Ofsted rated as ‘Good’ with ‘Outstanding’ features in the past year. Stockland Green secondary and Brookvale Primary were both judged to have made significant improvements, following visits by inspectors.

Richard Gill, CEO of the ATLP and newly appointed Chair of the Teaching Schools Council (TSC) said:

Congratulations to everybody at Slade and the entire school community. This is such a positive report and testament to the hard work and dedication of so many. Helen is a strong and dynamic leader who has worked closely with her fantastic team and across the wider partnership to ensure that pupils receive excellence in education. We are now in our 10th year of delivering school-to-school support and it is uplifting to see that all of our Erdington academies are going from strength to strength – what a wonderful beginning to 2019!”

Erdington MP Jack Dromey said:

I’m delighted to see that Slade continues to excel. Erdington is rich in community spirit, yet one of the most disadvantaged areas in the country. This school works hard to buck the national trend and Ofsted noted that pupils at Slade receive ‘effective support to help them make better progress’. This school cares about its children and well done to everybody for showing what can be achieved when we work together.”

Report highlights

  • The headteacher has built a highly effective and cohesive leadership team. This exceptional leadership has led to significant improvements across the school over the last three years.
  • The governors and multi-academy trust (MAT) provide leaders with excellent support, but also make sure that leaders are continuing to improve the school further
  • Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) receive excellent support. All staff understand these pupils’ individual learning needs. Staff provide high-quality support to help pupils make strong progress
  • The majority of pupils in school now make strong progress in reading, writing and mathematics from their different starting points
  • The quality of teaching has improved rapidly and is now consistently good or better
  • Pupils’ behaviour is excellent. They are polite and respectful and show a true desire to learn
  • The pastoral care for pupils is exceptional and staff ensure that pupils’ well-being is always a high priority. This helps pupils to have very positive experiences in school
  • The early years provision is of a very high quality. The excellent teaching enables children to make outstanding progress in all areas of the curriculum
  • Leaders have developed a rich and broad curriculum. Pupils show a great interest in the topics they learn about
  • Pupils’ spiritual, moral social and cultural development is a significant strength of the school

A full copy of the report is available at: