Good days at the ‘small school with huge heart’

Happisburgh Primary School has received a good rating in their latest Ofsted report. The school was

Happisburgh Primary School has received a good rating in their latest Ofsted report. The school was described as having a "Hugh Heart" by the inspector. Pictured is head teacher Tina Pestell with some of the school's pupils.Picture: MARK BULLIMORE

It is the 'small school with a huge heart' and a good reason to be proud.

Happy staff and pupils at Happisburgh Church of England Primary are celebrating receiving a glowing Ofsted report.

The school was given a good rating following the inspection which took place at the start of December.

Inspector Julie Winyard gave high marks for its 'caring and nurturing environment' based on a foundation of strong Christian values.

Describing it as the 'small school with a huge heart' she said its fortunes had been 'transformed' in the last 18 months, After a 'particularly challenging' 2014, pupil outcomes were found to be 'much improved' with a strong focus on ensuring that children achieved the best they could.


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The curriculum was praised for being full of exciting and fun activities including Samba drumming and exploring the great outdoors on 'Welly Wednesday'.

The progress made by pupils in local authority care was described as outstanding, 'providing the same opportunities to learn and thrive as every other pupil in the school'.

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Staff members had a good understanding of how to improve the school further. The next steps to be taken included helping pupils achieve higher standards and making greater progress in writing.

More needed to be done to ensure handwriting was neat and work across all years was well presented.

Headteacher Julia Pestell was found to have made a determined and effective start since taking over in a permanent role in April 2014.

Mrs Pestell, who has worked at the school for 10 years, expressed 'delight' with the report which 'represents the hard work of the staff and pupils'.

Mrs Pestell said: 'The report gave very good and fair judgements on where the school is at the moment. This is a small school where the staff know the needs of each individual child.

'What was really lovely was the section in the report that said that pupils looked after by the local authority are well supported - we have a high percentage of children in care for a small school.

'The next step is to be outstanding. We are always trying to move forward and want to be to be a bigger part of village life.'

The school, which has 92 pupils aged from four to 11, opened a new reception and early years classroom in September.

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