Port Talbot school celebrate after being praised by inspectors
PUPILS and staff at a Port Talbot infants school are celebrating after being praised by inspectors.
Officials from Estyn found the youngsters at St Joseph's RC Infant School in Aberavon are making good progress in their speaking and listening skills.
A summary showed that the school's current performance was judged as good, with it's prospects for improvement also good.
Headteacher, Julie Beaumont Rees, said: "I am very proud of how hard the children, staff, governors and parents have worked.
"The dedication of the Saint Joseph's Team has been amazing.
"Home, school and parish have worked tirelessly — all are strongly committed to improvement."
Reporting inspector Stephanie Joy James said the school had a warm and caring ethos and good behaviour and teaching were both recognised as strengths of the school.
"Almost without exception, pupils have a very good understanding of the importance of treating one another kindly and with respect," said Ms James.
"Nearly all pupils make good progress in their speaking and listening skills.
"They share ideas sensibly in pair and larger groups and organise themselves well during independent role-play activities.
"Many pupils enjoy adopting the speech patterns of different characters.
"For example, they growls, 'Aye, aye me hearties!' when conducting interviews with applications for a job as a member of a pirate crew."
The inspector added that pupils' reading skills were developing well, with most enjoying listening to stories read aloud by teachers and use good expression when they read themselves.
Following her visit in July she added that good progress was also made in handwriting and spelling skills, with the report also recognising that pupils make a good start in learning Welsh in the nursery.
Nearly all listen and respond appropriately to instructions and enjoy singing Welsh songs.
Older pupils read simple Welsh texts accurately.
Wellbeing, learning experiences and environment were all graded as good by the inspector and the quality of teaching was described as a strength of the school.
The school was recognised as developing spiritual and moral awareness very well, in line with its Catholic teaching.
It promotes pupils' cultural development effectively in lessons, through the annual cultural week and through visits outside the school.
The report also found that care, support and guidance in the school, along with improving quality, partnership working, resource management and improving quality were also good.
Mrs Beaumont Rees added: "I am very pleased that the report highlighted the quality of teaching to be a strength of the school and that our children make good progress.
"Thank you also to my parents, for their support in all that we do.
"We are now looking forward to another exciting year of learning."