'Outstanding' community school celebrates positive inspection

Reporter:

Phil Robinson

A COMMUNITY school in Wrexham is celebrating after receiving a glowing report from government inspectors.

In its latest Estyn inspection, carried out last November, Ysgol Heulfan in Gwersyllt is described as “outstanding” in many areas.

It is said to have “motivational and innovative” teaching in many classes and a “very high quality” of care, support and guidance.

The school is also said to have “Inspirational” leadership and management, and “very effective” provision in Y Canol, its resourced provision unit catering for 27 pupils with severe or profound and multiple learning difficulties.

Ysgol Heulfan opened in 2005 as a result of the amalgamation of Ysgol Bryn Golau and Ysgol y Drindod and has 227 pupils.

Among the areas described by inspectors as “outstanding” are Early Years/Foundation Phase, pupils’ creative and listening skills and the development of their spiritual, moral and social awareness.

In Y Canol, teaching is said to be “consistently outstanding”. Good to outstanding features were identified in over 90 per cdent of the lessons observed.

All pupils are said to succeed regardless of their ability, gender, or social background.

And the inspection report adds: “The curriculum is enriched by an outstanding range of interesting and stimulating experiences, both within the school and off site.

“The leadership of the headteacher is inspirational and is an outstanding feature.

She has the respect and loyalty of staff, governors, parents and pupils alike. She has an extremely clear-sighted vision and direction to improve the quality of education and strategic management of the school.

“The deputy head teacher plays an inspirational and outstanding role as head of the resourced provision, Y Canol. The quality of support and direction given by the governing body is very good.”

Inspectors recommend that the next steps for the school are to further develop pupils’ bilingual skills, provide more challenging tasks for the higher achieving pupils, to improve the consistency and quality of marking across the school and to broaden the moderation process for the core subjects.

Headteacher, Julia Thomas Haigh, said: “We are delighted with the inspection report which could not have been achieved without the dedication and enthusiasm of all concerned.”

Cllr Aled Roberts, leader of Wrexham Council, said: “This is a very impressive report which reflects the efforts put in by staff, governors and children alike.”

See full story in the Leader

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