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Primary school praised as 'thriving learning community'

Estyn, the inspectorate for education and training in Wales, has found a North Cardiff primary school to be a thriving learning community where pupils feel safe and valued.

Following a recent visit to Whitchurch Primary School, the report highlights the compassionate leadership of the headteacher, supported by two highly effective deputy headteachers, dedicated governors, and an extensive leadership team, has fostered an inclusive ethos that encourages pupils to develop as creative and independent thinkers.

Inspectors noted the school has made significant strides in refining its curriculum, offering a rich array of stimulating learning experiences tailored to individual pupil needs. This has resulted in nearly all pupils, including those with additional learning needs (ALN), engaging positively and making sound progress.

Teachers systematically plan for the progressive development of literacy skills, with most pupils effectively using their reading and writing skills across various subjects. However, the report notes that opportunities for older pupils to develop and apply their reading skills consistently need further enhancement.

The school's inclusive culture is evident in its highly successful provision for pupils with ALN, and the leadership team and dedicated governing body work closely to monitor and evaluate teaching and learning progress.

Headteacher Ann Griffin said: "We are immensely proud of our thriving learning community and the diverse range of enriching experiences we offer. This recognition from Estyn underscores our commitment to fostering a nurturing environment where every student can flourish." 

The report includes two key recommendations to help the school continue its improvement:

  • Improve the attendance of pupils eligible for free school meals.

  • Further develop and refine opportunities to enhance older pupils' reading skills.

In response to the inspection, Whitchurch Primary School will draft an action plan to address these recommendations.

Cardiff Council's Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Education, Cllr Sarah Merry said: "Pupils, parents and staff from Whitchurch Primary school should feel proud of Estyn's report, which is a testament to the hard work, dedication and commitment to providing an outstanding education for all pupils.

At the time of inspection, Whitchurch Primary School had 687 pupils on roll, 12.7% of pupils are eligible for free school meals, 8.7% of pupils identify as having additional learning needs and 9.4% pupils have English as an additional language.

To read the report in full visit Whitchurch Primary School | Estyn (

🏫 Last December, we reported how the school had become the first in Wales to achieve Wales-wide recognition for its work to promote health and wellbeing throughout its school community, at the very highest standard.

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