Broadford Primary School, Romford, takes the Primary school of the year award at the prestigious 2017 Tes Schools Awards

Broadford Primary School
Published: Tuesday, 27th June 2017

Broadford Primary School, Romford, has taken both the primary school of the year and the overall school of the year awards at the prestigious 2017 Times Educational Supplement (TES) Schools Awards. The awards, now in their ninth year, recognise outstanding contributions made by education teams and individuals to help students around the country to succeed, both inside and outside the classroom.

The awards recognise the incredible effort education teams put in to give pupils access to an exciting range of educational experiences while also providing the rigour that will allow them to achieve their academic potential.

Broadford Primary School’s commitment to delivering strong results while also offering a varied curriculum with creativity and culture truly won the judges over. Through a programme of “experience entitlement”, the school provides every child with opportunities to visit museums, galleries and sporting events, allowing them to benefit from the cultural experiences they might otherwise not be able to access. 

By setting up book clubs and reading leagues, the school has raised the number of pupils attaining the expected standards for reading. Meanwhile, weekly Friday-afternoon sessions in which pupils spend an hour learning new skills, from knitting to languages, have helped to improve engagement and get pupils excited about coming to school. 

The judges were impressed by the school’s work to support other primaries in the local area. After forming a learning federation with Broadford, the nearby Mead Primary School saw its results improve dramatically, going from being in the bottom 20 per cent to the top 5 per cent between 2015 and 2016. 

The judging panel said: “The submission from Broadford Primary School inspired us because of the wonderful range of experiences children receive. Broadford is clearly a school where every child and teacher is encouraged to do the very best they can within a rich, imaginative environment for learning.” 

The judges’ choice of Broadford as school of the year was unanimous. “The school goes far beyond traditional expectations of education,” they said.

Malcolm Drakes, Executive Head teacher at Broadford Primary School, said: “I can’t express enough how proud I am of the whole school team. Our vision at the Learning Federation is that no child’s future will be limited by their socio-economic background – and the results achieved in both our schools demonstrate what is possible when a clear moral purpose underpins all that you do. Our partnership with Mead reinvigorated the practice at Broadford making this award a truly shared achievement. Across both schools we have worked together to develop a curriculum rich in experiences, use of outdoor spaces and designed to foster pupil resilience and independence. For the TES judging panel to recognise this work is amazing.”

Councillor Robert Benham, Cabinet Member for Children’s services, said: “The Head teacher, Malcolm Drakes, and the entire team at Broadford Primary School, truly deserve this award for their outstanding work. Their creativity, dedication and enthusiasm for education has not only improved the outcomes for the children who attend Broadford, but has also been a massive support for the nearby Mead Primary School as well. Their efforts are truly inspirational.”