A HAMPSHIRE school has been praised for its "happy ethos" and "positive learning environment" by inspectors.

Orchard Junior School in Dibden Purlieu was given Ofsted's second highest grade of "good" for its all round performance.

The 407-pupil school was praised for its well above average standards in English, maths and science.

Pupils were found to make good progress, including those with specific learning difficulties and those who are gifted and talented.

Teachers, with the support of learning assistants, were complimented for setting tasks that encouraged creative thinking.

The school's assessment and target setting systems were found to be good but staff have recognised that more frequent monitoring, especially in Years 3 and 4, would further help pupils to fulfil their potential.

Inspectors described teaching and learning at the school as "mainly good" with a few outstanding lessons.

They also described the leadership of the experienced head teacher Robert Carson as "a major strength" and praised his deputy and senior staff.

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Mr Carson said: "We were really pleased that Ofsted recognised the things we believe in - the importance of the ethos of the school and the children's behaviour.

"We work hard on making sure that every child is treated as an individual. If you get that part right everything else slots into place."


  • Well above average standards in three core subjects.
  • Good teaching and learning with a few outstanding lessons.
  • Outstanding personal development and well being of pupils.
  • Exemplary pupil behaviour.
  • Excellent spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.
  • Outstanding levels of care.
  • Well balanced school curriculum.
  • Good pupil attendance.
  • Good leadership and management.


  • Offer better support to pupils in Years 3 and 4 who are having literacy and numeracy difficulties.
  • Ensure that pupils who are not making the progress expected are monitored more regularly through assessment tracking systems.