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Annual Statement

Annual Statement for Academic Year 2016/17 (to September 2017)

We believe it is vital to engage with parents, carers and stakeholders in the school. We have chosen to structure our statement using the same headings that Ofsted use in their inspections of schools in order to help you make a direct comparison of our work as a school.


Overall Effectiveness: The Quality and Standards of Education

We are confident that we are a securely good school, a judgement that has been confirmed by our last Ofsted Inspection and by regular visits during the academic year by lead professionals from West Sussex County Council as the ‘Local Authority’ responsible for education.


We are good because we can demonstrate that the quality of teaching, learning and assessment; personal development, behaviour and welfare of the pupils is good or better and ultimately, the outcomes for pupils in Summer 2017 met or in most cases exceeded the equivalent levels averaged across West Sussex and nationally. Locally in Worthing we are a strong performing school, a school of choice, an inclusive school that values all of its pupils equally as individuals.


We have governors aligned to each year group and this guides us, ensuring that the ethos and values of the school are embedded in our curriculum, assemblies and other activities. Included in this is the spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of the pupils and ethos of the school, this work is subject to regular review and challenge, adapting to the needs of the pupils and curriculum.


As a governing body, we work with the school’s senior leadership team and attend the pupils’ school council to listen to their views in order to gain a full picture of the school. We seek to ensure that the work of the pupils across the academic year helps develop their ability to be reflective, to understand and respect other religions, to recognise the difference between right and wrong, and develop the skills they need to participate fully in their local community. We aim for them to become involved in local decision making, recognising the value of where they live, and their contribution and that of others to life in a modern Britain embracing British Values.


Effectiveness of Leadership and Management:

As in every year, the governing body, together with the senior leadership team, has invested significant time in reviewing the working of the school, its structure and school practice and policy to ensure that Vale School has good or better teaching and outcomes. We have also continued to ensure the learning environment is modern, attractive and effective in supporting the teachers as they deliver the curriculum. This ensures that we are ‘hands on’, knowledgeable and in a position to deliver ‘for you and your family’ a school that is ‘good or better’ in all areas of its work.

Audits of the school’s Safeguarding, Financial procedures and Health & Safety processes have again shown that the work of the school is of the highest quality. We work in partnership with a number of local schools to share good practice and where appropriate, jointly commision work or resources to provide best value for money.

Last year we reported to you that we anticipated a Government review of the funding formula for schools, this has happened and whilst it has given some additional financial resources into our school, these will not be fully realised until 2020 and even then the gap between the funding given to a pupil in West Sussex compared with London remains several thousand pounds. Coupled to this, the rise in pay and inflationary costs mean we are facing severe financial challenges now and for the future.


Therefore our message to all parents and carers is stark and simple - We simply cannot sustain what we are currently doing in the same way and parents, carers and staff must be aware that changes will need to be made.   Many activities rely on ‘voluntary contributions’, sadly where these are not met and the cost to the school from our core budget is too great, these trips or activities WILL BE reviewed and/or stopped.  


On a positive note, after 6 years of campaigning, the school secured capital funding in excess of £350,000 for the artificial grass pitch, something that I feel sure you will all agree has added a great all year round resource to the school. This has already had a positive effect on the curriculum and pupils well-being now and we hope for generations to come.

Quality of Teaching, Learning and Assessment:


A continuous programme of internal review and inspection by the school’s leadership team, supported by the governors, coupled with an effective CPD process for all staff, confirms that the quality of teaching in the school is consistently good or better. Teachers all share high expectations. In lesson planning they set challenging targets for themselves and pupils alike.

The new national curriculum is now well embedded in the school across all year groups with clear lesson plans that deepen pupils knowledge and understanding of the curriculum.


The governors are determined that Vale School, through its curriculum plans, will continue to deliver a broad rich and inclusive curriculum for all our pupils, that includes a focus on British Values alongside our Prevent duty; as well as delivering a broad spiritual, moral, social and cultural content. Extra-Curricular opportunities for pupils are strong and well attended.

Personal Development, Behaviour and Welfare:

Academics strongly argue that behaviour in the school is a strong contributor to pupils attitudes to all aspects of their learning. Minor disruption by one pupil can have significant impact across the whole class. The governing body annually reviews the school behaviour principles and behaviour policy. Our principles ensure school agreed routines to encourage good behaviour and that undesirable behaviour is discouraged. There have been no significant incidents of bullying, racist behaviour or safety concerns this year.


Behaviour patterns are also formed by attendance at school and last year the governing body agreed the establishment of an Inclusion Leader post. Their role is to help promote attendance of all pupils, especially those most at risk of absence and lateness. New procedures of ‘closing the school gates’ at 8.50 am have had dramatic improvements in pupils being in school, ready to learn on time and not disrupting their fellow pupils by their late arrival in class. These seemingly small changes are important as their promote self esteem, independence and understanding of the value of being in the right place at the right time, whether in school or in future workplace life. As a governing body we regularly monitor the attendance and lateness figures and ensure that staff target and identify pupils or family groups that need support by the school or sign posting to external agencies.    

Outcomes for Pupils:


Changes caused by the new National Curriculum in September 2014 are well embedded in the school. ‘National Curriculum Assessments’ remain at the end of Key Stage 1 (Year 2) and Keys Stage 2 (Year 6), testing Reading; Spelling, Punctuation and Grammar and Maths. Whilst Writing is still measured by ‘Teacher Assessment’.


We are pleased to report that in the year 2016/17 the levels of attainment and progress of pupils at Vale School continue to buck the National and West Sussex trends and outcomes are good or better.


Further information can be found on:  


Compare School website :-


In our Early Years Foundation Stage 73% of the pupils made a Good Level of Development (GLD) against both a National and West Sussex County average of 71%.


Effectiveness of the Early Years Provision, Quality and Standards:


The Early Years provision continues to provide an effective start to school for pupils. Investment in this area is maintained and through our induction programme, going out and visiting the local nursery/pre-school settings we actively engage with the providers, parents and carers to make an initial assessment of a child’s starting point. Using these assessments staff then set high expectations of children ensuring that they make good or better progress relative to their starting point.

As a school we are seeing changes in society being reflected in the pupils joining us. An increasing number of pupils are requiring more support from our Early Years team to enable them to get ready for the challenges of Year 1. The governing body is determined to ensure that appropriate investment continues to be made in the early years in terms of staff, facilities and resources to ensure that each pupil makes the best of their first year in school and that they are able to achieve at least a good level of development and appreciate an understanding of how to learn, to keep themselves safe, manage risks and develop positive behaviours.