Pupils at a Midlothian school say lessons are not hard enough

School gets weak grading as pupils say lessons need to be harder.
Councillors said the report was disappointing.Councillors said the report was disappointing.
Councillors said the report was disappointing.

Nearly half of primary pupils quizzed by education inspectors said lessons were not hard enough at a struggling Midlothian school.

A report on Sacred Heart RC Primary School, in Penicuik, gave it a grading of weak across its targets revealing that in ‘almost all classes’ the quality of teaching was below standard.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

And it revealed that youngsters who were asked about their classroom experiences said they needed more challenging lessons.

The Education Scotland report said: “In almost all classes, teachers need to improve the quality of teaching to ensure children experience motivating learning and make progress in line with national standards

“About a third of children in the questionnaires say teachers don’t ask them very often about what they want to learn. Almost half of children say their learning is not hard enough.”

The inspectors also criticised classroom lay outs for senior pupils saying: “In the upper stages, staff seat children in rows.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“This does not support children to discuss their learning or work collaboratively with their peers. Overall, children have too few opportunities to be active participants in their learning and in school life.”

A meeting of Midlothian Council’s cabinet this week heard work to tackle the concerns raised in the report on the school, which has 123 pupils in primary classes, was underway.

The council’s education chief operating officer Michelle Strong told councillors: “The inspection outcome is not as positive as we would have liked”

She said the inspectors felt the school needed additional support and more time to make improvements and education services was engaged with the school.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

She said: “An action plan is in place and additional support has been provided to accelerate improvements across the school.”

Councillor Ellen Scott, cabinet member for education, said: “This is a disappointing report.

“It is a lovely school and has been refurbished and looks fantastic and the report says there are enthusiastic, confident and articulate children there so we have all got the ingredients for a really good school and it is just a wee bit disappointing we have not got above the mark.”

A follow up report is expected to be brought back to cabinet for an update in the autumn.