Skip to content ↓

Inclusion Quality Mark

In June 2018, Laurel Lane Primary School were awarded the Inclusion Quality Mark for the third time and were named Inclusion Centre of Excellence. 

Assessor's Review - June 2022

Laurel Lane Primary School is situated in a deprived area of Hillingdon. It is part of the Frays Academy Trust and another one of the Trust’s schools, St Martin’s Church of England Primary School is next door. Two of the Trust’s other schools are in Hillingdon, with two more in Wokingham. Laurel Lane Primary School is a two- form entry school but is facing a falling roll. From Reception to Year 6, 30% are SEND, 48% Pupil Premium and 70% are EAL. The school has a number of Traveller children and because of its proximity to the airport hotels, it has a number of refugees. The school does then have a number of challenges which it accepts and manages with determination and vision.

From the moment I arrived, it was clear that the needs of the pupils are paramount and the expectation is that every child should accomplish something. Staff are encouraged to adapt schemes in order to give the pupils a good learning experience. The emphasis is clearly on enjoyment that will engage pupils and encourage them to be active learners. Enrichment experiences are seen as an essential part of the pupils’ experience. The school does seek support for funding for trips and was able to secure money to support Years 1 and 2 to go to Littlehampton to experience the beach. Years 3 and 4 will be camping overnight on the school field, with tents and equipment loaned by the Scouts and the following day the pupils will be experiencing a range of outdoor activities on the field. Year 6 are going bowling and a three-night residential experience. Some experiences do need family contributions but the school tries to mitigate as much as possible. Another example of how the school tries to support the financial needs of the families is a room in the school which has school shoes donated by Sal’s Shoes. Families can access this when needed.

On my school tour, I was struck by the calmness of each classroom. I observed much activity, for example, teacher led discussion, pupils exploring ideas whilst talking to each other. There was real engagement being shown by the pupils and positive interaction between pupils and adults. I did see some pupils who were finding it difficult to manage situations but they were spoken to calmly and were not further heightened by the reactions of staff. It was clear how the staff know the pupils and know how best to interact with them. I also saw how the staff supported each other when dealing with the pupils.

Great care has been taken to support the pupils by ensuring that each classroom has the same display. There is a maths wall, a writing wall where best sentences are shared, science information, key words for topics and help boxes, recognition boards and visual timetables in the form of Now, Next and After, with some pupils having individual timetables. As well as that, the same widgets are used across the school from the Nursery to Year 6. All of which gives structure and support to the pupils. The impact of colour on the pupils has also been considered with one corridor being painted blue for its calming impact. The building had allowed some heightened pupils to run around corridors so door locks were installed to curtail this. Pupils are then safe when they leave the classrooms. This was clearly explained to me and demonstrates how staff look for practical ways to support the pupils and how they understand individual needs.

The school is lucky enough to have a Nursery provision from the age of 2. This building had initially been created for the Trust to use but is now only used by Laurel Lane. Staff use the facility as well as the local residents. There are different indoor areas that can be used by the different age groups and they all use the outside space which offers a wide range of activities, bikes and climbing. What had been the school’s Nursery is now being developed as a place for sensory support with sensory circuits and it is a quiet place at lunch and playtime for those pupils who do not enjoy being in the playground. This change of use will really enhance the options for support for pupils and again exemplifies how SLT are responsive to pupils’ needs.

The Reception playground is being developed and has different learning opportunities and has a hide for the children to bird watch. Playground equipment is also being replaced to give the pupils a better experience. A path has been created across the school field to give the parents easier access to the school from the houses behind. This makes journeys to school quicker.

I was able to observe some of the interventions taking place, precision teaching, phonics and Zones of Regulation. These highlighted the strength of the relationship between the adults and pupils. The adults know the children well and are able to engage the pupils in the activities. The pupils were relaxed and willing to participate. Staff make use of available space in order to run the interventions. The school also benefits from additional support from the EP, SALT, OT and physio to name a few. On the day of my visit, a worker from Hillingdon’s Traveller Team was working with Year 5. This support was welcomed by the school but their aim is to have that information shared school wide rather than one Year group.

It was evident when speaking to staff how they all share the same vision as the SLT. Children come first. Teachers spoke about how the curriculum is being strengthened by the new maths programme and the emphasis on speaking and echoed what SLT had said about these developments really supporting the pupils. Teachers did say how it had been a challenge when the support staff had been reduced but now could see how TAs were being used more effectively. A strong sense of teamwork came from speaking with the staff. There are clear routes of who to go to for help and everyone is more aware of the needs of the pupils. The excellent work the SENDCo has completed clearly supports this.

Staff described the opportunities they have to extend their own learning through the National College and how they are aware that SLT wants to support their mental health as well as the children’s. Opportunities are there for them from example the Social Team and the Pampering Team and that support is always available from each other. I saw and heard much which underlined the nurture that takes place in the school. TAs told me of their approach to the pupils; talk softly to them, give space, listen to them, respond to what is needed at the time. They also described how the staff support each other and will ‘tag team’ in more challenging situations. Teachers support them and would also swap in when needed. Pupils too show care and support for each other and this was highlighted by staff.

Pupils feel safe in school. They know that there are safe places that they can go to if they need support and acknowledge that adults will help them. One girl, who had arrived new to the school told me how friendly and welcoming the pupils had been to her and how it had made it easier for her to settle in. The pupils are proud of the charity work they have done and how they enjoy the assemblies when they can sing together and light a candle. They see how important it is that the school prayer is for everyone, no matter what their religion might be.

The school is reaching out to the parents, trying to engage them in school life. Class Dojo is well used by parents to communicate with teachers. Messages can be sent to parents and these can be translated which must help those whose English is not their first language. A few parents did attend a recent coffee morning and the school does see the engagement of parents as a very important area for development.

The governors spoke to me about the detailed information they receive from the school leaders which helps to identify areas for development and plans for the implementation of work. They understand the challenges facing the school and fully support its work. The governors value the fact that the staff know every child. I am of the opinion that the school fully meets the standard required by the Inclusion Quality Mark's Inclusive School Award.

I recommend that the school be awarded IQM's Inclusive School Award and be reassessed in 3 years’ time.