Blackthorns Community Primary Academy in Lindfield has received an Outstanding rating from the Office for Standards in Education (Ofsted) following a recent inspection.
This is an uplift from the Good rating received in March 2018 and places the school in the top 19% of UK primary schools rated Outstanding.
Blackthorns Principal, Marianne Brand, said: "This is a wonderful and well-deserved acknowledgement for our whole school community. Our pupils, staff, local board members, parents and carers have worked together with passion and dedication to make this result possible. It has been an honour to lead the academy on this journey to Outstanding.”
This success builds on recent plaudits. Earlier in 2018, Blackthorns was recognised as one of the best performing primary schools in the country, based on data from the Department for Education and Ofsted, analysed by the Schools, Students and Teachers network: Blackthorns pupils’ attainment at the ‘expected’ and ‘higher’ standard at Key Stage 2 in Reading, Writing and Maths is in the top 20% of all schools nationally.
Ofsted praised the school stating: “Pupils thrive at this school because their needs are met extremely well.”
The report concludes “This is an outstanding school” and in relation to the five assessment categories it states:
• Everyone works together resolutely to help pupils achieve their very best. High standards are an expectation, not an aspiration. (Effectiveness of leadership and management)
• Pupils learn very well across the curriculum, attaining highly throughout their time at the school. This prepares them successfully for their future learning. (Quality of teaching, learning and assessment)
• Pupils flourish because of rich opportunities that support their personal development. (Personal development behaviour and welfare)
• Pupils attainment in reading, writing and mathematics is high across the school. (Outcomes for pupils)
• Children thrive in the early years because of the high-quality provision they experience. (Early years provision)
Blackthorns joined the University of Brighton Academies Trust, sponsored by the University of Brighton, in 2015.
The role of the Trust was also commended: “Governance is very effective. The local board and wider trust work very well together to ensure legal duties are met. Their collective rigorous challenge to leaders ensures that standards in the school are high”.
Dr John Smith, Chief Executive, University of Brighton Academies Trust, said: "I whole heartedly congratulate Blackthorns on this Outstanding judgement. It is our aim for all our academies to be rated as Outstanding. This result for Blackthorns, just three years since joining the Trust, is confirmation that we are meeting our ambition to deliver excellent education for the children of Sussex.”