Chirnside Primary School gets top marks

Pupils and staff at Chirnside Primary get involved in community projects and recently  raised money for Macmillan Cancer Support by taking part in 'The World's Biggest Coffee Morning'.
Pupils and staff at Chirnside Primary get involved in community projects and recently raised money for Macmillan Cancer Support by taking part in 'The World's Biggest Coffee Morning'.

Chirnside Primary School pupils are well-behaved and taught by dedicated nurturing staff - so says its most recent HM Inspectorate of Education report.

Children were assessed as making good progress in English and maths and having a sound understanding of the benefits of a healthy diet and active lifestyle.

HM Inspector Marie McAdam found the school’s key strengths to be: confident children who are achieving well in physical education, activity and sport; commitment of all staff, teaching and non-teaching, to enriching children’s experiences; the headteacher’s leadership of improving approaches to learning and teaching.

The inspector also found that children, staff and parents work well together to contribute to the local community, with pupils having recently taken part in a special performance to commemorate the Battle of Flodden in its 500th anniversary year.

Chirnside Primary School and Scottish Borders Council agreed with the HMIe the following targets to help further improve the school and nursery class: improve children’s involvement in their learning; increase the pace of implementation of Curriculum for Excellence through developing leadership at all levels; continue to develop approaches to self-evaluation to ensure continuous improvement.

The inspector also recommended that Chirnside continue to build on its curricular links with Berwickshire High School in order to ensure continuity in children’s learning as they move from primary to secondary education.

Headteacher Nick Trussler said: “Overall I am very pleased with the report. I am delighted that inspectors have recognised that our pupils are making good progress with their learning in English language and literacy, mathematics and numeracy.

“This achievement is down to the hard work, skills and high level of commitment given by our staff to meet the needs of our pupils.

“Our school has developed a range of rich learning opportunities for all our pupils, particularly through outdoor learning and our approaches to literacy, numeracy and PE.The inspectors have clarified our thoughts about where we are doing well and have been very supportive in their suggestions and guidance for how we might approach our identified improvement priorities in the future.”

Katrina Reynolds, chair of Chirnside Primary School’s Parent Council, added: “As chairperson of the Parent Council and a mother of pupils at Chirnside, I am delighted with the findings of the inspector’s report. I believe it is fair representation of the school and the quality, commitment and dedication of its staff. I am pleased to see the headteacher praised for his leadership, and the staff for the high level of support and encouragement they give to our children.

“It is a credit to the school that the HMIe recognize the significant role of the physical education specialist and list the confidence PE brings the children as one of the three key strengths.”