Essex school that previously had ‘inadequate’ quality of teaching …

A school in north Essex is celebrating after turning their fortunes around from an "inadequate" to "good" rating in their latest Ofsted inspection. Inspectors visited Stoke-by-Nayland Church of England Primary School, on the Essex/Suffolk border, in September, rating it ‘good’ in each category.

They noted that the school has a ‘calm and harmonious atmosphere’, that pupils are ‘kind and compassionate’ and how they ‘appreciate the wide range of extra-curricular opportunities on offer’. This follows a previous inspection report in January 2022 which was rated inadequate, due to concerns over the quality of teaching and pupils getting distracted and staying off-task.

In the latest Ofsted report, inspectors said: “Pupils strive to be the best that they can be at this small village school. They want to learn and do well. They respond well to staff’s high expectations.”

"There is a strong family feel to the school. Older pupils look after the younger ones.” On the school being inadequate before, inspectors said in their visit this year that “it is a different school to that seen at the last inspection”. They added: "Pupils are happy and engaged in their lessons,” the report continues. “This is because they are learning an ambitious and well-planned curriculum.”

Kelly McGrath, headteacher of the school, said: “We were thrilled to have achieved a good rating from Ofsted. It is brilliant to see that all the hard work which staff and pupils have put in has been recognised. We are very proud of our school and are delighted that Ofsted inspectors were impressed by what they saw.”

Jane Sheat, CEO of the St Edmundsbury and Ipswich Diocesan Multi Academy Trust which runs the school, said: “The trust is a strong collaborative network of 21 church primary schools. I am delighted that Ofsted recognised the progress made at Stoke-by-Nayland and the support provided by the trust.

“Being part of the trust brings benefits for staff and pupils as we share good practice and work together to provide high quality teaching and learning across all our schools.”


  1. ^ Passengers warned 'watch where you sit' after viral TikTok trend shows people urinating on London Underground seats (
  2. ^ Aldi to shut supermarkets across Essex on Christmas Day and Boxing day so staff can spend time with family (