The school and nursery were visited by inspectors in February, and the resulting report found a number of strengths along with areas where improvement should be made.
Areas of strength included:
• Articulate, friendly children who are respectful towards each other and proud of their school.
• The staff’s commitment to ensuring children are active. Children enjoy high quality physical education and can access a range of clubs to stay active. They participate in a wide range of sporting events, supporting them to be healthy, and this has increased awareness of positive choices they can make to improve their wellbeing.
• The team work in the nursery. Staff use self-evaluation effectively to identify areas for improvement and strive to provide a caring ethos and positive learning experiences for children in the nursery class.
Areas for improvement included:
• There is a need for stronger strategic leadership and direction to the work of the nursery class and school. Senior leaders and all teachers need to improve approaches to self-evaluation to ensure improvement priorities are based on the needs of the school and lead to improved outcomes for all children. Whole school approaches to monitoring and tracking children’s work should be reviewed.
• The leadership team and staff need to ensure all learners experience high quality learning, teaching and assessment, with appropriate levels of pace and challenge. Approaches to assessment should be updated, embedded in planning, and inform next steps for learners.
• Improve children’s attainment in literacy and numeracy and mathematics.
• Continue to ensure children experience progression and depth across all curricular areas within relevant contexts which take account of the school’s local area and 21st century Scotland.
Immediate action has been taken to address the areas for improvement. The Council’s Education team are working closely with the interim Headteacher to provide support. They are also liaising with Education Scotland who will return to inspect the school and nursery in one year.
Cllr Graham Lindsay, Spokesperson for Education said: “The results of the inspection visit to St Serf’s Primary School do not meet the high standards we expect from all our schools. While there are strengths highlighted by inspectors, there are a number of areas which should be improved. Work has already started on actions to address the recommendations in the inspection report, and Education staff are working closely with the school community and Education Scotland to make the improvements required.”