The quality of Jewish learning and spirituality at Alma Primary was inspected by pikuach on 22nd and 23rd of June 2022 under Section 48 of the Education Act, 2005. We were visited by a team of two pikuach inspectors, led by Esther Colman. The inspectors joined lessons, spoke to children, parents, governors and staff and looked at a range of evidence including children’s work. At the end of the inspection the pikuach team concluded that ‘Alma Primary is an outstanding school where pupils display the embodiment of the school’s vision’, where ‘strong teaching promotes purposeful learning and high expectations’ and where children ‘enjoy their Jewish Learning and are very proud of their school’. The inspection report notes that the ‘positive atmosphere established in Jewish Learning lessons, enables pupils to rise to the challenge, contribute their own ideas, whilst listening and learning from their peers’, that spiritual development ‘is woven into the school life, providing opportunities for reflection, and resulting in pupils developing respect for others’ and that ‘All pupils, irrespective of faith participate fully, and feel included in the prayer life of the school’, enabling them to articulate ‘feelings of happiness and gratitude.
In common with Ofsted, pikuach judge schools from Grade 1 (Outstanding) to Grade 4 (Inadequate). The pikuach team graded Alma Primary as a school which is Outstanding, where the quality of Jewish Personal and Spiritual Development, as well as the Leadership and Management of the school are Outstanding and where the Quality of Jewish Education is Good. Following the difficulties of recent years that we have all faced, we are pleased that the pikuach team has seen the exceptional work being done at Alma and have reflected this in their report, which you can read in full here.
Alma Primary has been inspected by Ofsted twice, in May 2019 and June 2015. You can read our most recent inspection letter here.
In our May 2019 inspection we achieved the best outcome we could have hoped for: not only did the Inspector find that Alma continues to be a ‘Good’ school, but also awarded the school the closest equivalent to an ‘Outstanding’ verdict as is possible at this stage in the inspection cycle.
Amongst the many things identified, the inspector noted that in our school children ‘develop a genuine love of learning through a varied, purposeful and highly engaging curriculum’ and that they ‘make connections between subjects, deepening their understanding over time’.
The visit in May was a ‘short’ 1-day Inspection, conducted under Section 8 of the Education Act, in which it isn’t possible for a school to formally be judged as ‘Outstanding.’ However, as the inspector saw evidence that suggested that we might meet the criteria for Outstanding, she has recommended that Alma has a further, two-day inspection. We expect this second inspection, under Section 5 of the Education Act, to take place within the next two years.
Alma is a community in which we are all responsible for its success, so our thanks to all who have supported our school.
Previously, Alma Primary was inspected by Ofsted on the 4th and 5th of June 2015, under Section 5 of the Education Act, and was judged to be a 'Good' school. You can read an executive summary of our Ofsted report here and you can download the full report here.