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Keep up to date with all the latest news happening in school at the moment.

  • Willowbank Primary School celebrates ‘good’ Ofsted rating

    Tue 07 Mar 2023 Willowbank Primary School

    Inclusive and nurturing school moves from ‘requires improvement’ to ‘good’ in its latest inspection


    Staff and pupils at a Devon primary school are celebrating the results of its latest inspection by Ofsted. Following its inspection in January, Willowbank Primary School in Cullompton has been judged ‘good’ in all areas.


    Over two days inspectors met with staff, pupils, trustees and a member of the parent council. They also observed lessons and looked at pupils’ work.


    In the report published today, Ofsted noted how much pupils enjoy attending the school, which it described as welcoming and inclusive. Inspectors recognised the strong emphasis the school places on supporting pupils’ social and emotional wellbeing and how this resulted in happy pupils. It highlighted the range of clubs on offer and opportunities for pupils to take on formal roles within the school, and noted pupils’ positive attitude to their learning.


    Inspectors praised the strength of the school leadership and the high expectations leaders have for all pupils, particularly those with special educational needs and/or disabilities. The report also highlighted the school’s well-designed curriculum, particularly in reading and mathematics.


    Sophie Hillson Head of School at Willowbank Primary School said: “I’m extremely proud of the strong team of dedicated and skilled professionals we have built here at Willowbank. Together, we have created a high-quality offer of education that meets the needs of our community and that our pupils and families very much deserve. This report is fantastic outcome for our wonderful pupils and gives well deserved recognition to them and the whole school team.”


    Willowbank Primary joined the First Federation Trust in September 2018. Prior to joining, it had received two consecutive ‘requires improvement’ judgements from Ofsted and was experiencing further challenges. Post academisation, the school embarked on a rapid journey of improvement, successfully implementing rigorous school improvement strategies.


    Membership of the First Federation Trust family gives member schools access to a large support network. The trust provides opportunities for support, development and challenge. It has ensured staff at Willowbank are able to develop their knowledge and skills by providing them with opportunities to undertake various training programmes and courses. In more recent years, Willowbank has in turn been able to offer its support and expertise to other schools.


    Paul Walker Chief Executive of the First Federation Trust said: “This report and the good judgment is testament to the unwavering commitment, hard work and dedication of everyone at Willowbank Primary School. The whole school community can be proud of this achievement and look forward to continued success in the future.


    “Our trust is committed to working together to provide the best possible education for all and it is rewarding to see our ambitions for all pupils reflected in the report.”


    Sophie Hillson added: “I feel so proud of what we have achieved here at Willowbank. We have all worked incredibly hard and it really was an honour to share the results of this work with the inspectors. As described in the report, Willowbank is welcoming and inclusive and we work hard to ensure all pupils know they are cared for, valued and appreciated. One pupil, when speaking to one of the Inspectors about our school said, ‘Everyone is welcome here, we are an open door to anyone.’ For me, as Head of School, creating that belief and environment is one of our greatest successes.


    “It really has been a whole team approach and I would like to thank all of the staff at Willowbank, every one of our pupils and their families, and also the First Federation Trust for their support.”


    Comments from the Ofsted inspectors included:


    ‘Pupils enjoy attending this welcoming and inclusive school. They describe the school as a fun place to be … They talk confidently about the way in which everyone accepts one another for who they are.’


    ‘Pupils are happy and feel safe ... Leaders place a strong emphasis on supporting pupils’ social and emotional well-being. As a result, relationships between staff and pupils are positive.’


    ‘Leaders have high expectations for what all pupils can achieve, particularly those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). Leaders have created a curriculum that is designed well. They have carefully considered what pupils need to know and when they need to know it.’


    Leaders are ambitious for what pupils with SEND can achieve … Staff know pupils well. This is particularly the case for pupils with social and emotional needs who attend the learning hub, known as the ‘Willow Branch’.’


    ‘Leaders and staff have high expectations for pupils’ behaviour and conduct.’


    ‘Pupils have positive attitudes to their learning. They behave well in lessons and during social times.’


  • Owl Class - Coldharbour Mill

    Fri 27 Jan 2023

    Owl Class had a fun-filled day at Coldharbour Mill . They loved experiencing life as a Victorian child with Mr Robson and Annie (chief dyer) - they were all offered a job but were not all keen to accept after they learnt about the working conditions for children!

    The highlight from the tour of the mill was definitely collecting lots of different wool in the different stages of production!

  • School Administrator vacancy

    Thu 12 Jan 2023
  • New starters for September 2023

    Mon 09 Jan 2023


    Is your child starting school in September?


    The last chance to visit Willowbank Primary School before the admissions deadline is Wednesday 11th January 4.30 — 5pm


    Come and see our Reception Unit and meet the Team.

  • Glow in the dark Dodgeball

    Mon 09 Jan 2023
  • Open Days September 2023 Starters

    Wed 23 Nov 2022
  • Glow in the dark Dodgeball

    Wed 09 Nov 2022
    Glow in the dark dodgeball is coming to Willowbank Primary School
    Sporty Stars will be hosting a GLOW IN THE DARK DODGEBALL EVENING on Wednesday 9th November
    This unique experience combines UV and disco lighting, face paint, fluorescent bibs, music and specialised sports equipment. Children will play a range of dodgeball related games in an exciting disco sporting environment, like no other. 
    We recommend children arrive wearing sporty clothing, they will be provided with all the equipment they require including fluorescent bibs and face paint.
    Keystage 1: 5:15pm - 6:15pm 
    Keystage 2: 6:30pm - 7:30pm
    The cost of these sessions are £7 per person, each session will have a limited number of spaces.
  • Meal Time Assistant / Playworker Vacancy

    Fri 21 Oct 2022

    We have an exciting opportunity for someone to join our friendly team as a meal time assistant. Please see our vacancies section for full details.

  • September Starters

    Wed 05 Oct 2022

    Our September starters have settled in well to our Foundation classes. Here they are all looking very smart.

  • Weather warning!

    Mon 18 Jul 2022

    Here are some useful links which you may find helpful during tis speak of unusually hot weather.