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Four city schools recognised for excellence at national awards

Four Swansea schools have been recognised at a national awards ceremony celebrating excellence in education.

St Helen's at Estyn Awards

St Helen's Primary School, Penllergaer Primary School, Pontarddulais Comprehensive School and Cefn Hengoed Community School all took centre stage at the ceremony organised by Estyn, the chief Inspectorate for Education and Training in Wales.

The awards recognised schools and colleges that were judged to be excellent, either on their current performance, their prospects for improving, or both.

Those attending the ceremony heard St Helen's Primary School has excellent provision for pupils' health, care and wellbeing. An outstanding feature is planning to support identified pupils, which results in significant improvements in their attendance, confidence and achievement.

Headteacher Mark Thompson was praised for his very effective leadership and his clear and shared vision that strongly promotes the wellbeing of pupils, achieving high standards and engaging extensively with the local community.

His counterpart at Penllergaer Primary, Jayne Woolcock, along with other senior leaders and governors were mentioned for their priorities for improving standards and provision for pupils.

By identifying Penllergaer's strengths and areas for development they have seen significant progress in several key areas in a relatively short period of time, notably improvements in attendance, reading and mathematics.

Pontarddulais Comprehensive was recognised for offering extremely strong provision for care, support and guidance which has had a significant impact on pupils' standards and wellbeing.

Estyn highlighted the consistently high quality of teaching and the school's innovative professional development programme.

Speaking about Cefn Hengoed Community School, Estyn praised the exceptionally caring and inclusive ethos. The consistently high quality of teaching was noted as an exceptional strength which contributes directly to the outstanding standards achieved by pupils.

Cllr Jen Raynor, Swansea Council's Cabinet Member for Education, said: "These four schools and all associated with them are very deserving of these Estyn Awards and I congratulate them all.

"These leading schools are sharing their good practice with other schools across Swansea helping to raise standards and wellbeing for all our children."

Sue Hollister, headteacher at Cefn Hengoed said: "I am so pleased for our fantastic staff, pupils, their very supportive families and our community that we have been recognised for our excellent judgements.  We continue to work hard at Cefn Hengoed to sustain and build on these standards for the futures of our whole community."

Jan Waldron, headteacher at Pontarddulais Comprehensive, said: "We are delighted that the work of our excellent schools are being celebrated in Wales by Estyn I sincerely hope that this is the start of the recognition of what is good about education in Wales.

"At Pontarddulais the staff, governors, pupils and parents continue to work together as a community to provide the best possible experience for our pupils. Our middle leaders are taking the school forward and are always looking to improve further."

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