8.3.23 Lesley Lyon, Chair of Governors

It was a great privilege to spend the day at Mellers with Joy Buttress and Jess Steele looking at phonics and writing across the school. Jess is our school improvement advisor and she specialises in all aspects of English so it was great to have the benefit of her advice and ideas for further improvement.

We observed phonics in F1, F2, Years 1 and 2. As you will remember when we had our inspection we had only just started to develop our new scheme, Little Wandle. The inspectors wanted to see it become more embedded into our work. Mrs Buttress and the team have continued to work tirelessly through staff training, visits to other schools using it and development of resources. I am delighted to say that Mrs Steele observed a significant improvement in the delivery of the scheme. We observed children engaged in their sound making and thoroughly enjoying their learning. It was a joy to watch the excellent work of teachers and teaching assistants building the foundation blocks on the journey of the children to becoming fluent, confident readers.

We also observed writing activities in Years 1,2,4 and 6 and we looked at a range of books from across the school. It was great to see the progress made by children from the lower years up to Year 6. We observed children enjoying writing poetry, plays and stories. The range of vocabulary they were using was impressive as was their understanding and use of poetic devices to enhance their writing.

We also visited the Focus Provision pupils. It was a joy to hear them talking about the book they were studying and writing their own response. It was also wonderful to be in the beautiful new building that is now finished.

Throughout my day I observed children engaged in learning and loving it. The school is looking wonderful, a joyful learning environment which supports children to make fantastic progress. Thank you to Mrs Buttress and the staff for a lovely day.

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