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Core Curriculum Strengths

Core Curriculum Strengths

The Challenge

The challenge faced by schools to maintain the standards achieved before the Covid19 pandemic is heightened when you know Ofsted are due. Melbourne Primary School rose to this challenge in February 2023 having worked on core aspects of the curriculum, with reading being a particular target to ensure children reached their potential and teachers could offer them the best education.

Kelly Foxton, Headteacher of Melbourne Primary School at the time, said, “Following the pandemic and lockdowns, I realised how vitally important it was to have a strong team of staff at the school, who felt valued and respected, and who would be dedicated to doing their very best for the pupils. I also knew our priority was to focus on promoting core subjects and build on the loss of learning that took place over those two years.”

With Wonder

Kelly, who worked closely with her entire teaching team, credits this achievement to the significant changes they made with the Trust. They looked at every aspect of how reading is taught and learnt and put several systems in place. This included moving away from the traditional carousel approach, introducing a new phonics system, providing rigorous interventions for those falling behind their peers and linking reading material to other areas of the curriculum.

They also started using Wonder’s Trust Reader Programme, designed to set children’s ability at the right level to enable teachers to help them progress.

“For me, reading is the key to learning and to fully accessing all areas of the curriculum,” added Kelly Foxton. “If you can teach it well, right from the start, the children will benefit in so many ways. We worked hard as a team and the new system has paid dividends.”

Jonathan Britton, CEO of the Wonder Learning Partnership, added, “The headteacher and colleagues at Melbourne Primary School have done superbly well. The approach to the teaching of reading has ensured our children have made exceptional progress, with results that put the school in the top 5% nationally. All our children across the Trust can now benefit from this innovative work. Ofsted’s very positive response recognises the hard work of our children, colleagues and parents.”

Melbourne Primary School, a member of the Wonder Learning Partnership was delighted with the report, which highlights the staff’s pride at working at the school, the high expectations they have for their pupils, and the care and support offered to those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND).

Kelly Foxton was Headteacher at Melbourne at the time of the Ofsted inspection in February 2023, and is currently Headteacher of Pocklington Junior School, also a member of the Wonder Learning Partnership.

Ofsted inspectors particularly noted how well maths and reading were taught in the school – how pupils have frequent opportunities to develop their problem-solving skills, how well they concentrate in lessons and how carefully they listen to their teachers.

This coincides with news that the school has moved up to the top five per cent in the country for its 2022 SATs results.

Jonathan Britton, CEO - Case study
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