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Excellence in schools

Our 7 towns are home to some fantastic schools. 99% of the borough’s schools are judged to be good or outstanding by Ofsted, including all of the 27 schools inspected in 2022–23.

Academic outcomes remain well above the national average across all key stages and Stanhope Primary School in Greenford is no exception. A recent Ofsted inspection graded the school for the first time as outstanding in 3 categories, and good in the other 2.

Ofsted’s report noted that children are ‘happy and excited to learn’ and displayed ’exemplary calm and positive behaviour’. Parents and carers also told Ofsted how happy they are with the school, noting that teachers involve them closely in their children’s education. And staff were extremely positive about the support that they receive, including the introduction of a ‘well-being charter’.

‘High ambitions’

Headteacher Hannah Widdison said: “At Stanhope, we have exceptionally high ambitions and standards for all students. Our wonderful staff team go above and beyond to provide our pupils with the best education and enrichment experiences.”

Ofsted highlighted the school’s work on social responsibility and performing arts as real strengths of the school, noting that it “has purposefully intertwined diversity and equality into all areas of the curriculum”. Last July the school was named as an IQM Centre of Excellence for Inclusion, reflecting its efforts on equality, which includes a vending machine full of books on the theme of equality. Every week, a child who has shown a commitment to equality wins a gold token to pick a book of their choice from the machine.

Ofsted also noted that ‘from early years onwards, the school provides pupils with multiple enrichment opportunities.’ It operates a series of arts partnerships, including with drama school LAMDA, the Primary Shakespeare Company, and classical music organisation The Mozartists. These relationships, and an array of extra-curricular clubs and visits, help to ensure that the school’s pupils develop the self-confidence which will propel them to future success.

‘Ni hao’

Another partnership offers the opportunity to learn Chinese. By working with the Confucius Institute at South Bank University, the school runs Mandarin lessons for children from nursery to Year 6. With 900 million native speakers, Mandarin is the most spoken language on earth, and the ability to speak it could one day present the children with great opportunities.

Kat Pietruszka, Stanhope’s deputy headteacher, said: “Immersing our pupils in Mandarin is not just about words; it’s about creating an authentic connection with China and its people. Having 3 native Mandarin teachers makes the connection so much more meaningful for all of our pupils.”

The school’s Year 2 pupils were announced as the winners of a national Chinese Bridge competition, for their excellence achievement in Mandarin speaking. Initiated by the Confucius Institute’s Centre for Language Education and Cooperation, the competition provides a platform for young learners worldwide to showcase their Chinese language proficiency. Last summer, Stanhope pupils competed against 30 other schools around the UK.

Sensory learning

In May 2023, the school opened a brand-new sensory room, designed to support pupils’ development improve wellbeing by stimulating their senses. Equipped with aromatherapy diffusers, calming music, fibre optic lights and a bubble machine, the sensory room helps children learn how to interact mindfully with the world around them, in a safe environment.

young boy in sensory room
Tedwin enjoys the sensory room

The room is for everyone, but it is particularly useful for some children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND). 19% of Stanhope’s students have SEND, compared to a national average of around 13%, and Ofsted found the school has extremely high expectations of them, with access to the same ambitious learning programme as their peers and specialist support where required.

Having achieved Ealing’s Family School Partnership Award last year, the school is now working to achieve the Special Educational Needs and/or Disability Family-School Partnership Award this summer.

Councillor Kamaljit Nagpal, Ealing Council’s cabinet member for a fairer start, said: “I was really impressed when I recently visited Stanhope and am very proud of their achievement in the Chinese Bridge competition. Ensuring that every child in our borough can access the very best education and schooling in life is a top priority for us.”

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