Our School

In the context of Notting Hill, Thomas Jones is unique, in that it is the only community school with a single form of entry. One advantage of this is that it frequently feels like a ‘big family’.

Gentle and welcoming, younger pupils know Year 6 well and vice versa. Pupils are made to feel special. In this environment, positive, authentic relationships develop, which in turn support and nurture the well-being of each individual. The Nursery and Reception are our most important cohorts, simply because this is where everything begins. Attending all assemblies and attired immaculately in the same garb as their older peers, they contribute much and are celebrated at every opportunity. Early Years practice is exceptional.

The school’s aggregate attendance is 97%. We appear in the latest edition of the Good School’s Guide in glowing terms. Re-accredited as a ‘World Class School’ in 2022, one of only five primary settings in the country accorded this award, we have been presented with a Royal Borough Excellence Plaque and an Evening Standard London School of the Year trophy. Until last year, the Head was a National Leader of Education, and in 2016 was awarded an OBE for Services to Education. In December 2022 we were, for a tenth consecutive year, identified by The Sunday Times as one of the UK’s ‘Top Schools’. For six years as a Department for Education designated Teaching School, we were frequently visited by educational leaders from around the country and abroad. Our academic results are amongst the highest 2% of schools nationally. Significantly oversubscribed (230+ applications for 30 Reception places in January 2023), there are 150 children on our waiting list. The school has achieved ‘Healthy Living Gold’ status.

The curriculum is richly varied and affords opportunities for each and every pupil to shine.  Our ethos is firmly focused on intellectual challenge and innovation. Rigour and a desire to continually improve are integral. Attention to detail in regard to uniform, demeanour and the use of Standard English are strengths. Aspiration and a climate that ensures pupils are consistently kind and friendly are absolute.

Thomas Jones’ pupils are robust, assertive and articulate. We instil in them an uncompromising set of values. Empathy is a key element. Encouraged to be tenacious, emphasis is placed on beautiful cursive handwriting and the quality of writing per se is second to none by the time pupils depart at the end of Year 6. Our choir, string ensemble and pianists are impressive. In March 2023 the mixed hockey and girls’ football teams were crowned borough champions. The previous year, we won the basketball, and handball championships and Royal Borough swimming gala. Concerts and school plays are of an exacting standard. In recent years we have staged Robert Louis Stephenson’s Treasure Island, Romeo and Juliet, Dylan Thomas’ Under Milk Wood, and The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe. Auditions have already begun for Peter Pan, which will be performed in July 2023.

Selected as an exemplar, we appear in a number of publications. These include ‘Reading by Six, How the Best Schools Do It’ (Ofsted), ‘Building an Outstanding Reading School’ (Oxford University Press), ‘Narrowing the Gap’ (also Oxford University Press) and ‘Closing the Gap’ (Pathways Education). The school featured in the Ofsted promotional film ‘Moving English Forward’, and in 2018, phonics lessons were filmed for professional development purposes. The leadership team have afforded advice to the Department for Education about the development of the National Curriculum. Our views pertaining to deprivation, the Pupil Premium, Early Years Education and in April 2023 the retention and recruitment of staff have also been sought.

At Thomas Jones we understand how important school relationships are for so many children. Experiencing close and personal relationships directly with a trusted adult in an open and accepting school environment can be highly beneficial to any child. In addition, these relationships can offer positive templates for relationship formation in the future. Displays of warmth and affection, admiration of personal qualities and attention to the details of a  child’s presentation are viewed as integral, in ensuring that every child thrives. When staff make an intentional effort to get to know each child,  a sense of belonging and connection to school is fostered within the child—which is a protective factor for them and an integral building block in the foundation of future academic success.

June 2023