Mr McAra and Ms McGeever, HMI for Education Scotland were in school all day yesterday. They were shown around the school by two pupils who set the tone for the day by their enthusiasm, love and pride for West Mains. The Inspectors spent the rest of the day meeting with groups of staff, parents and partners. They also went to visit different classes to see how pupils engage with learning. A highlight was their meeting with the Pupil Council, who told them about the school and how they love learning. The Inspectors said that they thoroughly enjoyed the day, found it really interesting and appreciated the wide range of experiences we provided for them.
The Inspectors highlighted some key messages. A particular strength of West Mains is the way pupils are interested and focused on exciting learning activities in all classes. Our consistent supportive ethos means that all pupils are given any extra support appropriately, seemlessly and subtly. They emphasized the wide range of approaches we use to effectively support pupils with their learning. They were very positive about the inclusive ethos of the school and the way that we have significantly increased opportunities for real and meaningful inclusion between ourselves and Halfmerke Primary School, whilst still maintaining our own identity.
The Inspectors were impressed with the positive relationships across the school and the open door approach for parents to be involved in their child's learning. They praised the parental engagement evenings/afternoons, coffee mornings and parents' involvement in supporting the school and learning. They have given some ideas for how we can improve this further which we will be building into our approach for the future.
The Inspectors were also enthusiastic about our collaborative working with partners and how we empower them to have positive impact on pupils' learning. The way we have used budgets for staff training to enhance learning experiences and supporting pupils' communication and engagement was also commented on positively.
Well done to all the West Mains Team, especially our amazing pupils who all contributed to this positive affirmation of the work of the school in supporting learning and teaching.
This visit will contribute to an overview of practice across Scotland and influence how Education Scotland and the Scottish Government make decisions for the future of education for our children.