19th December 2018
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Inspectors praise primary and nursery teaching at Lunnasting

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Lunnasting Primary School and its nursery class have received a very positive report from inspectors who visited in April.

The inspectors praised the enthusiastic and confident children who are proud of their school and eager to learn, the strong community involvement in the life of the school and the purposeful teamwork among staff in supporting school improvement.

They found that the 35 pupils, including 11 in the nursery, feel safe at school and understand the importance of a healthy and active lifestyle.

Nursery pupils help prepare their own healthy snacks: some are starting to write and many can count. They “organise themselves, take turns and share resources well in their play”.

In primary, children are developing skills in assessing their own and others’ work and are actively involved in planning and exercising independence and choice through their learning experiences.

They are developing self-esteem and confidence through new sports and a school concert, and look after the needs of others through fund-raising. By having their own wind turbine they also know about renewable energy.

Staff were found to have high expectations of the pupils leading to a “strong ethos of attainment”, and they manage transitions between nursery and primary and primary and secondary “highly effectively”.

The head teacher, said inspectors, has a “clear sense of direction”, leads improvements effectively and leads by example when teaching her own class.

The “strong and productive links” with parents and the wider community, such as participation in Da Voar Redd Up, and giving help with school activities such as the gardening club, baking and knitting, was welcomed, and the Parent Council was found to be “very supportive”.

The school achieved a rating of “good” in all areas of assessment, which means the school has “important strengths” with some room for improvment. Inspectors recommended that the school continues to develop the Curriculum for Excellence across the school and nursery; improves further approaches to planning and assessment to support progress in learning; raises attainment further in English language and maths by improving approaches to tracking progress, to inform next steps in learning; and review the layout in the nursery as numbers increase.

Inspectors were so confident that the school, with support from the education authority, would be able to make the necessary improvements that no follow-up visits would be made.

Chairwoman of the council’s new education and families committee Betty Fullerton said: “This is a really encouraging report. I was delighted to see the inspectors pick up on the fact that the children are keen to learn in the school and I am so pleased to see the strong community involvement acknowledged. An inspection report like this is testament to the hard work and dedication of our staff, so I would congratulate everyone involved.”

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About Rosalind Griffiths

I am a Shetland Times reporter covering news, including health stories, and features. I have been in Shetland for more than 30 years.

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