Staff and pupils at a Stevenage school are celebrating after receiving an 'outstanding' Ofsted rating following a recent inspection.

Woolenwick Infant and Nursery School first earned an 'outstanding' rating in 2017, and retained the status during an inspection in September.

It comes at a time when many schools have been downgraded following a change to the inspection framework. Last year, Ofsted said that it had downgraded more than 80 per cent of the previously 'outstanding' schools it had inspected in 2021/22.

Inspectors visited Woolenwick over two days, observing lessons and undertaking a 'deep dive' into the provision of early reading, mathematics, and music.

They concluded that pupils at the school are "happy, caring and well behaved", and "show compassion and kindness".

Inspectors also commended the "patience, kindness and positivity" exuded by staff, as well as their effective teaching strategies.

The curriculum was praised too, as well as the "exciting, inspiring and relevant" ways in which it is implemented.

Usha Dhorajiwala, headteacher of the school, said: “The pupils deserve a special commendation.

"As always, they are excellent ambassadors for the school, demonstrating their excellent learning behaviours and impeccable manners.


"As a token of celebration, the children enjoyed a visit from the ice-cream van! We celebrated with our families at a special coffee morning over tea and cake!”

Steve Aker, chair of governors, added: “This outstanding judgement is the direct result of the excellent and hard work of Team Woolenwick, including volunteers and the governing body.

"Each of them deserves a special commendation. They continue to provide our pupils with the excellent environment to enable them to flourish and make excellent progress.

"They are all deeply committed to the school and your children's learning, and I would like to thank them for their continuous dedication.”