A.R.T.S. Education

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About A.R.T.S. Education

Name A.R.T.S. Education
Website http://www.artseducation.co.uk
Ofsted Inspections
Mrs Annmarie Read
Address 167a Ormskirk Road, Rainford, Merseyside, WA11 8HR
Phone Number 07749846945
Phase Independent (special)
Type Other independent special school
Age Range 11-16
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 14 (50% boys 50% girls)
Local Authority Knowsley

What is it like to attend this school?

All pupils at A.R.T.S. Education have experienced disruption to their education prior to attending the school. When these pupils join the school, they do not catch up quickly with their learning across different curriculum subjects. This is because leaders have not provided pupils with a well-designed curriculum. As a result, many pupils have fundamental gaps in their knowledge. Pupils’ achievement is poor.

Leaders have low expectations of what pupils can and should achieve. Leaders have not ensured that pupils are supported well enough to overcome the difficulties that they experience due to their special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND).

Most pupils develop increasingly positive attitudes towards school. However, some pupils do not attend school regularly enough. This further exacerbates the gaps in their learning.

Although the majority of pupils behave well most of the time, some pupils find it more difficult to regulate their own behaviour. The behaviour of these pupils sometimes disturbs the learning of their peers.

Pupils feel happy in school most of the time. They value the time that staff take to get to know them well. Pupils told inspectors that they feel safe in school. Leaders deal with incidents of bullying thoroughly and effectively.

What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?

Leaders have not thought enough about the varied educational experiences of pupils prior to joining the school. For example, leaders have not defined the key knowledge that pupils must learn to address the gaps in their learning. They have not clarified what it is that they want pupils to learn in each subject or the order in which this knowledge should be taught. As a result, pupils’ learning is ad hoc. At key stage 4, pupils do not learn the breadth and depth of subject content that they need to be successful in their GCSE examinations. This means that pupils are not sufficiently well prepared for the next stage of their education, employment or training.

The leaders’ unclear curriculum thinking means that teachers do not know what content to teach and when this should happen. This hinders teachers’ delivery of the curriculum. For example, some teachers design inappropriate learning activities that pupils are unable to access because they do not have the necessary prior knowledge. Other teachers do not check pupils’ understanding well enough. Pupils fall further behind.

Leaders provide staff with useful information about each pupil’s SEND. Leaders also suggest strategies for staff to support pupils to overcome the barriers to their learning. However, leaders do not ensure that teachers use this information consistently well to help pupils with SEND to learn as well as they should.

Typically, most pupils are cooperative in lessons and try hard to complete their classwork, even when they find it difficult. However, leaders have not ensured that teachers implement clear and consistent routines across the school to manage pupils’ behaviour well. As a result, at times, some pupils do not behave appropriately in lessons.

Leaders do not prioritise reading. For instance, there is no reading curriculum in place. Pupils have widely differing reading knowledge. Some pupils are at the early stages of learning to read. Leaders have not ensured that these pupils get the support that they need to catch up quickly. That said, other pupils are fluent and accurate readers. However, leaders do not foster a love of reading in these pupils or support them to access a wide range of texts.

Some pupils spend large chunks of time out of lessons. Other pupils do not attend school at all. Leaders have not taken effective action to address these issues. They do not encourage pupils to stay in lessons, and they have not improved the rates of attendance for pupils who are routinely absent from school.

The school’s programme to promote pupils’ personal development is in its infancy. Pupils benefit from learning about how people might be different to themselves. They learn how important it is that everyone is treated with respect. However, there is no structured programme for careers education. This means that pupils do not have the information that they need to make an informed choice about their next steps to education, training or employment.

The proprietor and other leaders do not have the skills and knowledge required to lead and manage the school. They have not ensured that all of the independent school standards (the standards) are met and they have not implemented some statutory requirements.

Leaders have not met the standards relating to the quality of education. This is because leaders have not ensured that there is a suitable curriculum in place for each subject. Moreover, leaders have not ensured that staff have the required skills or knowledge to design and deliver a high-quality curriculum.

Leaders have not consulted with parents and carers about the school’s policy on relationships and sex education. Furthermore, leaders have not made arrangements to manage any parental requests for their child to be excused from sex education.

Leaders do not ensure that the standards for welfare, health and safety are all met. Some of these unmet standards jeopardise pupils’ and staff’s welfare. Leaders do not have effective systems to identify and manage potential health and safety risks. For example, inspectors found a number of unsafe practices in the kitchen area used by pupils, including the unsafe use of electrical appliances.

Leaders do not carry out appropriate pre-employment checks to reassure themselves that applicants have the required skills and knowledge for the role that they are applying for.Leaders do not provide the required facilities to meet the standards for the school’s premises and accommodation. There is no suitable medical room for pupils to use when they feel unwell. Pupils are not able to access showers or changing facilities. There is no suitable outside play area.

Leaders have ensured that the school complies with schedule 10 of the Equality Act 2010.

Leaders are considerate of staff’s workload and well-being. Staff feel well supported by leaders.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

There is an up-to-date safeguarding policy on the school’s website that sets out the school’s approach to keeping pupils safe. Leaders ensure that staff are familiar with the most recent statutory guidance.

Staff are aware of the particular vulnerabilities that pupils have as a result of their SEND. Leaders keep in regular contact with those pupils not attending school.

Staff pass on any concerns that they have about pupils to the leaders responsible for safeguarding. Leaders respond to these concerns in a timely manner. This ensures that pupils and their families receive appropriate support.

Pupils learn how to keep themselves and others safe at school and when they are online. Pupils learn about safe relationships and the importance of reporting concerns to trusted adults, including when the behaviour of other pupils causes them to feel worried.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and proprietor)

? Leaders do not provide an ambitious and well-ordered curriculum. They have not thought carefully enough about the gaps in pupils’ prior knowledge or what they want pupils to learn while they are at the school. As a result, pupils do not develop the knowledge that they need to achieve well. Leaders must design a curriculum that addresses the gaps in pupils’ knowledge and prepares them well to be successful in their future lives. ? Teachers are not clear enough about what pupils need to learn across a range of subjects, including reading. This prevents teachers from designing learning that enables pupils need to catch up. This means that pupils who already have considerable gaps in their knowledge fall further behind. Leaders should make sure that staff are clear about what pupils need to learn and that staff are supported to deliver the curriculum well. Some pupils struggle to manage their own behaviour in lessons. This disrupts their own learning and that of their peers. Leaders must make sure that staff implement routines consistently well so that pupils behave as well as they should. ? Leaders do not provide a structured programme of careers education. This means that pupils are not able to make informed decisions about their next steps. Leaders must provide an ambitious and well-ordered careers education programme to support pupils in deciding on their next steps to education, training or employment. ? Many pupils’ rates of attendance are poor. These pupils fall further behind as a result. Leaders must support all pupils to attend school regularly. ? The proprietor does not have the knowledge and skills appropriate to their role. Some standards and statutory requirements have not been met. The proprietor must ensure that their own knowledge and skills are secure so that the independent school standards are consistently met and that the school complies with statutory requirements.

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