Hillbourne School and Nursery: success down to atmosphere created by staff, parents and pupils

Bournemouth Echo: ATMOSPHERE: Head teacher Ken Taylor with students ATMOSPHERE: Head teacher Ken Taylor with students

CAROLINE Calvert was a pupil at Hillbourne School and Nursery.

She then sent her children there before embarking on a career in the school which has seen her work there for 19 years – so far.

It’s that sort of place.

The warm and relaxing atmosphere makes it easy to see why staff turnover is low and parents are thrilled with the education their children are getting.

Head teacher Ken Taylor is in his sixth year at the Kitchener Crescent school, which currently has 340 pupils.

Due to its location, it has been largely unaffected by the demand for extra primary places in Poole and class sizes remain small, most with less than 25 pupils.

It’s also situated in the most spacious and open grounds I’ve seen in a primary school in this area.

The school has two classes in each year group and just over half move on to Poole High School for their secondary education.

This September, a further 20 per cent will go to the Magna Academy with the remainder split between a number of other schools including the Poole grammar schools and St Edward’s.

Hillbourne was one of the first schools to be inspected under the new, more rigorous Ofsted framework in Autumn 2012 and was graded as good. And Mr Taylor believes its success is down to the atmos-phere created by staff, parents and pupils.

“The staff do all they can to help our children and work really hard to do their best for them,” he said.

“A lot of our staff have been here for many years and that speaks volumes.”

The school has an active parents’ organisation, known as Heart of Hillbourne, which organises fundraising events throughout the year.

There is also an active school council which recently visited Downing Street and the Houses of Parliament.

After-school activities include gymnastics, art, yoga and rap/beatboxing.

Factfile

Hillbourne School and Nursery, Kitchener Crescent, Poole BH17 7HX

Telephone: 01202 692604

Email: office@hillbourne.poole.sch.uk

Aged range: 3 to 11

Mixed

Number of pupils: 340

Ofsted report

Overall rating: Good Inspectors said: “The school’s reputation is good and growing. Achievement is good. The head teacher, senior leaders and governors have improved the quality of teaching and maintained a well-ordered, caring environment.

“The school’s rapid progress in underpinned by much-improved assessment systems.”

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