Inspectors praise new Bedford primary school with polite and proud pupils

It’s the academy's first Ofsted since opening

By Clare Turner
Wednesday, 4th May 2022, 12:22 pm
Updated Wednesday, 4th May 2022, 12:23 pm

In its first Ofsted inspection since opening in 2017, Great Ouse Primary Academy has been rated ‘good’ in all areas.

The Bedford school – which teaches more than 350 three to 11-years-olds – was praised for its “diverse community” and “ambitious curriculum” and also received the overall rating of ‘good’.

Following two visits in February, inspectors said: “Great Ouse is a friendly and welcoming school. Pupils attend from many different backgrounds. They arrive each day with happy faces and greet staff politely at the school gate. Pupils are proud of their school.”

Pupils at Great Ouse Primary Academy celebrating their Ofsted report

The report added: “As one pupil said, ‘We are a multicultural team showing kindness to each other.’”

And they weren't alone – other year 5 and 6 pupils heaped praise on the school in Seaforth Gardens.

Aniya said: “I think Great Ouse is a fantastic school because all of the staff are caring and respect us.”

While Faris added: “The lessons we learn here are super and I always learn something new from every lesson. I love coming to school.”

The arrangements for safeguarding at the school – which has been a part of the Meridian Trust since September – were reported as effective with staff understanding their role in keeping pupils safe.

Extra-curricular opportunities and trips were also highlighted as a strength.

The Ofsted report noted: “Leaders have established a strong collaborative ethos. Staff are highly positive about how well leaders manage their workload and work-life balance.”

However, inspectors did find some teachers – who are new to their positions – have not monitored and evaluated how well their curriculum plans are working yet.

The report said: “A few teachers do not have the strong subject knowledge they need to deliver all areas of the curriculum effectively.

“Leaders should provide all teachers with the appropriate training needed.”

Mark Woods, Meridian Trust’s chief executive officer, said: “Each and every one of the staff members has gone above and beyond to ensure the school acts as a high-quality learning environment and an immense source of pride for the local community.

"Congratulations to everyone at the school who has played a part in this excellent Ofsted report.”