Improvement's not luck, just hard work
A PRIMARY school in Bedminster which was judged to be failing 14 months ago has been praised after a rapid improvement in standards.
Luckwell Primary School, in Breach Road, has been rated "good" following a visit from Government inspectors Ofsted.
The judgement is a resounding improvement on the "inadequate" rating the school received from inspectors in November 2011.
During their latest visit last month, inspectors found that teaching at the 204-pupil school was good overall and witnessed some outstanding practice. They said the best lessons were well-planned and imaginative.
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In their report, inspectors said SAT results had improved significantly and that behaviour was good, with pupils demonstrating great care to each other and politeness to adults.
Luckwell Primary also earned credit for its strong leadership, which inspectors said had helped the school improve after a period of underachievement.
The school's head teacher Kevin Jones said he wanted to ensure standards were consistently high.
He said: "I'm delighted that inspectors have recognised, under some tough criteria, that Luckwell Primary School can give its pupils a good education.
"We have some excellent teachers and our job now is to ensure that standards are consistently high across all classes."
Alastair Watson, Bristol city councillor in charge of schools, congratulated Luckwell on its turnaround in results.
He said: "Well done to the whole school community at Luckwell. This excellent result proves that with the right focus, determination and leadership a school can turn around results in a relatively short period of time."
Following its inadequate rating from Ofsted in 2011, when inspectors found that children did not make enough academic progress, the school was given one year to turn things around.
The Ofsted team found that although children at age five were at the expected level for their age, too often by the time they took tests at age 11 their results were below average.
Ofsted called for better results in English and maths, improved teaching and a stronger level of challenge from leaders at all levels.
At that point, inspectors acknowledged that new head Mr Jones had already taken action to raise standards and reduce weaknesses.
Despite its inspection rating, Luckwell Primary was the most oversubscribed school in the city last year.
The school received more than five applications for each of its 30 places for children starting last September.
Luckwell Primary is also celebrating being awarded funding for new facilities.
Using National Lottery cash, a new learning room offering space and equipment to help children with their homework will be created at the before and after school club.
The school's council has also successfully bid for £1,000 from the Co-operative Group to build a vegetable garden and start up a Plot to Plate co-operative group. Work will start on the garden in the spring.