St Helen's Primary School: School Development Plan 2017-2018

Values that underpin our work:

Excellence - We strive for excellence in every aspect of school life and achievement, tackling disadvantage and inequality with determination and a desire for success.  We relentlessly pursue improvement keeping the highest expectations of all and for all.  We work with professionalism and efficiency and are self-disciplined, resilient and innovative in order to achieve our aims.

Empowerment - With a shared commitment to our vision and aspirations we empower individuals to be the best they can be. We balance ownership with accountability and build on strengths providing opportunities with positivity and optimism.  We encourage trust by delegation and develop energetic, enthusiastic and committed leadership for improvement at all levels.

Engagement - Seeking out partnerships with others we value collaboration, cooperation and inclusion for the benefit of all.  We take responsibility, acting with commitment, care and respect.  We balance support with challenge to seek out the best.  We commit to share,  innovate and celebrate and require reflection and optimism

Where we are at the Start of 2017/18:

  • St Helen’s has very slightly higher than average level of deprivation with 2-3% more children receiving PP than national.  Less children receive support for special educational needs than nationally.  However, St Helen’s has 44% of children with EAL needs - this percentage is increasing and is as high as 90% in reception. The profile of the school is currently changing with more in year arrivals from the Roma community who often arrive with little or no schooling. The school has a new Headteacher in place from January 2017 after the Executive Principal moved away from the Headteacher role at the school (which she had undertaken for approx 5 years).

  • Budget situation is tight at the school and saving have been made in the last year. However an appropriate budget is now in place.

  • St Helen’s recently had a positive visit from the DFE and headline results have made a step forward after a dip in some areas last year.


  • All headline KS2 measures are in line with national average.

  • KS1 and EYFS are in line with national average.

  • General improvement from dip previous year in some headline measures.

Areas for Development:

  • Phonics is slightly below national average (down from last year) and re-takes are well below national average.

  • Combined and writing although in line are still below national averages.

  • PP children achieve significantly less well in the combined measure - this needs to be a key area of focus.

  • There appears to be some variation across year groups which requires further analysis.


Our key priorities for this year have been identified as a result of:

  • The analysis of pupil outcome data from previous years

  • Surveys of the views of our parents, staff and children

  • Input from our local governing body and their strategic plan for the school

  • Locally agreed trust priorities

  • An understanding of the national context and landscape


    1. Improve the oracy of our pupils so that over the year we have maximised opportunities for all pupils to speak aloud to an audience and worked with parents so that children are starting school in 2019 knowing some nursery rhymes

    2. Improving reading comprehension results so that reading is consistently above national standards in Year 2 and Year 6 and all pupils working below the expected level are targeted for additional support.  Improve the specific teaching of phonics across Key Stage 1and LKS2 to ensure that (with the possible exception of SEN and early EAL) all pupils achieve the required standard in the 2018 phonics check and Year 2 phonics re-checks are at least in line with national averages.  

    3. Improve writing outcomes in all years so that standards exceed national expectations with a particular focus and additional provision for all the vulnerable groups including pupil premium funded children who are working below the expected standards

    4. Improve maths progress for all pupils with a particular focus on the pupil premium funded group so that they achieve as well as other pupils and individual targeting for any pupil who is working below the expected standards, aiming for results at least equalling national outcomes and gaps with reading closed.

    5. Raise expectations of achievement across the school - take a step up - ensuring that all pupils, in all year groups, can achieve success against age related expectations with 85% commonly achieving success in lessons (or with immediate follow up) against the learning objective

    6. Improve targeting and provision to ensure we reduce the gap between our Pupil Premium funded pupils, and EAL pupils and the rest of the cohort


    1. Promote research and evidence led practice by encouraging teachers to be involved in research projects, coaching triads, sharing of good practice across the school and trust and ensure that Education Endowment Fund strategies are being used to improve the pace of learning

    2. Ensure that year group expectations are made clear to children through modelled examples, learning walls, high quality feedback and marking, and use of ‘no excuses’ lists (as modelled on Sept 4th PD day)

    3. Ensure that no ceiling is put on learning in any English or Maths lesson through the use of challenges that are open to pupils to choose and higher order questioning and tasks that deepen learning

    4. All staff use data analysis more effectively to target support

    5. Ensure LSA’s are used as effective tools for learning and are engaged in supporting pupils nearly all of the time.


    1. To ensure that all leaders across the school are confident and consistent in the schools approaches to assessment, monitoring of learning and school improvement.

    2. To enable Phase Leaders to upskill their teams by implementing phase focuses staff meetings and through effective peer coaching.

    3. To upskill subject leaders and raise the profile of every area of the curriculum, sharing and gaining skills outside the school.

    4. To share in whole school decision making and problem solving across the school.

    5. Create a productive  and collaborative working relationship with the Governing body.


    1. Embed the value of ‘excellence’ throughout school life ensuring that children are encouraged to be the best they can be

    2. To raise the profile of St.Helen’s Values and citizenship across our community

    3. Ensure the schools policy for behaviour management as adhered to and is consistent across the school

    4. Improve attendance and punctuality across the school, so that it falls in line with or above national average.

    5. Improve our understanding of pupil wellbeing and our impact on a child’s mental health.

MONITORING AND EVALUATION - how we intend to monitor progress made against actions and targets on this plan

This plan is reviewed in November/December, February/March and May/June at Focus Review meetings with the Executive Principal and RAG rated reports are produced for the Local Governing Body end of term meetings.   Judgements are benchmarked against other ASSET schools and through external consultant visits.