Rode Heath: Our Community, Our School
Rode Heath is a small village in the civil parish of Odd Rode, lying within Cheshire East's unitary authority. According to the 2001 census, Rode Heath had a population of 2,150. The village as we know it today actually used to be two villages, Rode Heath and Thurlwood, but since extensive housing developments from the 1960s onwards the two have, for the most part, simply become known as Rode Heath.
The Trent and Mersey Canal (built as the name suggests to link the River Trent to the River Mersey) runs through Rode Heath with two locks, "Lower Thurlwood Lock no 54" and "Upper Thurlwood Lock No 53" lying with the village boundaries.
The school lies in the heart of Rode Heath, within walking distance to the canal, and plays a big part in cementing the strong community feel within the area. The village has: two pubs, a post office and shop, a takeaway, a Young People's Community Centre (the "YPCC"), a village hall, two churches, a bowling club and the village cricket club based in the grounds of Rode Hall. Currently owned by Lady Wilbraham, the Rode Hall gardens are also the venue for the very popular monthly Farmers Market. Village and school life are reported in the monthly village newsletter, "Around Rode Heath and Thurlwood".
Despite a sustained growth spurt, which has seen a 39% increase in pupil numbers since 2007, Rode Heath Primary School is smaller than the average primary school with a current headcount of 208 pupils. Most pupils travel to school from the village, but we also have pupils who come from neighbouring villages, Alsager and further afield into Staffordshire.
Most children attend a pre-school provision prior to starting school. Historically the Reception class intake has come from as many as a dozen different pre-school environments - a reflection of the fact that there has been no pre-school facility centred within Rode Heath itself. In September 2015, Rode Heath Pre-School opened its doors for the first time to children aged 3 to 4 years old. Having a school-led pre-school that can "dovetail' with the main school is a great support to those families whose chidren go on to secure a place at Rode Heath Primary School.
Our Parents and the Wider Community
The school plays a big part in the local community; writing articles each month for the monthly village newsletter, hosting our annual summer fayre, Easter and Harvest assemblies, taking part in community activities such as scarecrow trails and the school band playing at the YPCC's 25th birthday celebrations through to our links with the local historical society.
Parents, friends of the school, governors and senior friends are all also heavily involved in school life and all play a part in planning the future developments and progression of the school.
Parental support is good - not just at home through helping children with reading and other home-based learning, but also within the course of the school week itself. In addition to the great range of fundraising events and activities organised by our Parents Association, many parents and family members choose to volunteer their time to support: classroom-based learning, school administration tasks, day-trips and residential visits, key topic work and curriculum-enrichment activity weeks or even choose to be a "Mystery Reader", much to the delight and pride of our younger children.
Our Pupils and School Code
We are incredibly proud of our pupils. To quote from our most recent Ofsted inspection (see below) they "are considerate and treat adults and each other with respect... behaviour in lessons and around school is exemplary. Pupils have a strong sense of right and wrong because the school promotes their moral development very well. Attendance is above average and improving."
Our school code underpins everything that we expect from our pupils and such objective feedback from Ofsted proves that we actually "walk the talk":
- Be kind, considerate and polite;
- Be respectful and co-operative towards adults;
- Work hard and always do your best;
- Treat your own and other people's belongings with care;
- Keep the school a safe and tidy place;
- Always wear appropriate uniform and footwear.
At its last Ofsted inspection in May 2017, Rode Heath Primary School was judged to be a good school overall with three areas being graded as outstanding. The inspectors noted that
Leaders, including governors, are ambitious for all pupils. The promotion of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) subjects is at the heart of the school’s drive to improve standards.
Leaders have effectively built upon the strengths of the school recognised at the last inspection… ... This continues to be an improving school.
The quality of the teaching across the school is consistency strong. Teachers pour their heart and soul into the planning of imaginative tasks that aim to engage pupils’ interests.
Where teaching is most effective, pupils’ misconceptions are addressed by the class teachers to deepen their understanding and teaching assistants are used well to support pupil’s learning.
The school’s highly successful ‘engineering habits of mind’ project is providing pupils with a broad and balanced curriculum where the achievement of all is effectively promoted. This is enhanced by a range of extra-curricular activities, There is a strong focus on STEM subjects to promote achievement for all pupils.trips and residential visits.
Pupils benefit from a broad curriculum which inspires their curiosity and builds their resilience.
The leadership of provision for pupils who have special education needs and/or disabilities is very effective. Similarly, the arrangements for pupils who are in the care of the local authority are focused upon pupil’s individual needs and removing barriers to their education. The school uses the funding for disadvantaged pupils well. Leaders chart the support that is provided for pupils and evaluates their impact in terms of the progress pupils make.
The school’s work to promote pupils’ personal development and welfare is outstanding.
Pupils feel safe. They have a very good awareness of how to keep themselves safe, including when online, because of the teaching they receive. Pupils feel confident that they can approach staff with any concerns because of excellent relationships between adults and pupils within the school.
From an early stage in their education, pupils are taught about equality. The school hall echoes this work with displays that quote pupils’ own views. Pupils reflect the considered, reflective and open leadership of the headteacher.
The behaviour of pupils is outstanding.
Pupils’ behaviour is outstanding because of their exemplary conduct and their ability to maturely reflect on others’ point of view. There is a strong, unspoken bond of trust and expectation between staff and pupils when it comes to the standard of behaviour in school.
Pupils and parents equally value the education that the school provides.
The early years provision is outstanding.
Excellent leadership in the early years has ensured that the achievement of children has continued to improve. The high aspirations of staff and the quality of instruction that children receive results in high rates of progress in reading, and mathematics. Children’s excellent progress in other aspects of the early years curriculum result in almost all children attaining early learning goals in communication and language skills and in their personal and social development. writing
Pupils are well prepared for the stages in their education because of the standards they achieve and the excellent personal and social development they next . Pupils’ awareness of diversity, equality and British Values are notable outcomes that contribute to their preparation for life in modern Britain. More importantly, pupils are happy at this caring and supportive school. receive
You can access a full copy of the latest Ofsted inspection report for Rode Heath Primary School by clicking the image to the left.
Access the latest data for Rode Heath Primary School in terms of: school performance, characteristics, workforce, finance and Ofsted inspection outcomes.