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 November 2022, Rode Heath Primary School continues to be a good school. There is enough evidence of improved performance to suggest that the school could be judged outstanding if we were to carry out a graded (section 5) inspection now. The school's next inspection will be a graded inspection.
In the words of Ofsted:
What is it like to attend this school?
Pupils at Rode Heath Primary School are proud of their school and love learning. They enter in the morning with a smile on their faces. One parent summed up the views of many when they said, ‘We have a child that is excited and enthusiastic to go to school and this is invaluable.’ Leaders have a clear vision for the school. They have high expectations of every pupil. All pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), live up to leaders’ high expectations of what they can achieve. Pupils progress very well through a carefully designed curriculum. They are very well prepared for the next stages of their education. Leaders expect pupils to behave extremely well at all times. Pupils feel safe in school. If bullying happens, staff act quickly and effectively to stop it. The values of curiosity, fairness, teamwork and resilience encourage pupils to make the right choices in what they say and do. Pupils behave extremely well in lessons and around the school. Leaders provide a wide range of opportunities that broaden pupils’ experiences. Pupils enjoy a range of clubs from sports and choir to computing.
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.