Aim Habonim

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About Aim Habonim

Name Aim Habonim
Ofsted Inspections
Mr Johnny Goodman
Address 51 Rigby Street, Salford, M7 4NX
Phone Number 01617050020
Phase Independent (special)
Type Other independent special school
Age Range 0-25
Religious Character Jewish
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 88
Local Authority Salford

What is it like to attend this school?

Aim Habonim is a happy place to be. Children in the early years, and pupils and students, are greeted with a smile and a friendly face each day. Pupils benefit from strong relationships with staff and their peers. Adults encourage and reassure pupils at every opportunity. Pupils recognise that staff want the best for them.

Leaders have high expectations of pupils’ learning. This includes children in the early years and students in the sixth form. All pupils experience a relevant curriculum, which is appropriate to their needs. Children, pupils and students are taught by teachers who know them extremely well. Adults are skilled in supporting pupils’ individual learning and developmental needs. This prepares the school’s pupils, all of whom have special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), well for their next steps in their education and adult life.

Leaders expect pupils to behave well. Pupils across the school focus well on their learning. Staff successfully help pupils to learn to regulate their behaviour and manage their emotions.

Pupils said that bullying is extremely rare. If it should happen, pupils know that adults will deal with any issues immediately. Pupils across both school sites feel safe because they are confident that staff will help them if they are worried about anything.

Pupils experience a wide range of therapies appropriate to their needs. Staff go to great lengths to get the right support and help for pupils. For example, staff support pupils to access hydrotherapy.

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

Leaders have made many improvements to the quality of the curriculum for pupils, including children in the early years and students in the sixth form. They have ensured that the curriculum is suitably ambitious. Leaders have also made sure that the curriculum is well designed in most subjects and key stages. Overall, adults skilfully use their information about pupils to design a curriculum that meets pupils’ individual needs.

In the majority of subjects, staff think carefully about the knowledge, skills and understanding that pupils must learn. However, a small number of curriculum areas are less well developed than others, particularly for some pupils in key stages 2 and 3. In these subjects, the order of knowledge teachers want pupils to learn is not as clear as it should be. Despite these minor weaknesses, children in the early years, pupils in key stages 1 to 3 and students in the sixth form achieve well over time.

Teachers are proficient at integrating each aspect of a pupil’s education, health and care plan (EHC plan) into the curriculum. Pupils, including children in the early years and students in the sixth form, engage well in learning, and they are motivated to complete the activities that teachers prepare for them. Teachers explain new ideas clearly and provide pupils with regular opportunities to revisit and recap important information, knowledge and skills. Adults often provide pupils with links to real-life experiences to help to strengthen their understanding.

Teachers skilfully use assessment information to check that pupils have retained new knowledge. They also use this information well to design future learning activities. Teachers are knowledgeable about most subjects. However, in a very small number of subjects, teachers’ subject knowledge is not quite as secure as it should be. Even so, this does not prevent children in the early years, and pupils and students across the school, from learning well.

At the heart of the curriculum is the development of pupils’ speech, communication and language skills. For example, pupils with profound and multiple learning difficulties (PMLD) are skilfully and patiently encouraged to respond to the people and objects around them.

Leaders place a strong emphasis on ensuring that all pupils learn to read well. Pupils read every day. For those children and pupils who need it most, a suitable phonics programme is in place. This is supplemented by high-quality speech and language therapy when appropriate. Teachers are keen to deliver this newly introduced phonics programme, but their confidence and subject knowledge are not as strong as they could be.

Post-16 and post-19 students experience a highly personalised and motivating curriculum. This curriculum leads to appropriate qualifications. It also supports students’ development of personal, social and employability skills. Students are furnished with comprehensive careers education, information, advice and guidance. This includes work experience, weekly placement opportunities and other practical experiences, which are all geared toward developing students’ confidence, resilience and independence skills. Students are well equipped for adult life and the world of work.

Children, pupils and students benefit from staff’s strategies to support behaviour. For example, staff skilfully use body language and visual prompts to divert any unwanted behaviours. Over time, pupils increase their ability to manage their own behaviour. Pupils respond positively to the rewards that they receive for trying their best. Pupils attend school regularly and enjoy a harmonious environment that supports them to learn effectively.

Pupils across the school are given opportunities to develop as citizens through the wider personal development curriculum. For example, pupils raise money for local charities and students help elderly people in a local residential home. However, this personal development curriculum is new and is being refined. Leaders are in the process of adding further subject content to support pupils’ understanding of different cultures and other world religions. They are well on their way with this.

Leaders have effectively implemented the statutory guidance on relationships and sex education and health education.

The building is well maintained, clean and well resourced. There is suitable outdoor space for children in the early years, and pupils and students, to get fresh air at breaktimes. The outdoor space is also suitable for regular physical education lessons.

Leaders have ensured that they adhere to health and safety requirements, including fire regulations and risk assessments. Leaders keep parents and carers well informed about their work to improve the school. Policies, including the school’s safeguarding policy, are available to parents and carers within the school prospectus and upon request. The complaints policy is fully compliant. The school has a suitable plan that describes how pupils with SEND can take part fully in the school’s curriculum.

The proprietor has ensured that all the independent school standards are met. There are systems in place to ensure that leaders are held to account for the quality of education that the school provides. Leaders and the proprietor have made arrangements to meet the requirements of paragraph 3 of schedule 10 of the Equality Act 2010.

Staff are proud to work at the school. They feel that they are well supported by leaders, including in managing their workload.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders and staff are well trained and knowledgeable about keeping pupils safe. The procedures in place to identify and report concerns are well understood by staff.

Staff are strong advocates for all pupils, including those that are particularly vulnerable. Where safeguarding needs are identified, leaders engage very well with external agencies to get timely support for pupils and their families.

Strong partnership working between leaders and parents helps to keep pupils safe. Leaders ensure that pupils learn about different risks in a way that is appropriate for their age and level of cognitive understanding. This is done in a way that is sensitive towards the tenets of their faith.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and proprietor)

? In a small number of subjects, leaders have not considered exactly what pupils should learn and in what order. This hinders some pupils from achieving as highly as they could. Leaders should finalise the curriculum content in these remaining few subjects to ensure that teachers know exactly what knowledge pupils must learn. ? In a small number of subjects, teachers are not as confident as they could be in their subject knowledge. This includes how to teach the newly introduced phonics programme. Sometimes, this prevents teachers from delivering subject content as effectively as they should. As a result, some pupils do not achieve as highly as they could. Leaders should ensure that teachers have the subject-specific training that they require, including how to teach the new phonics programme consistently well.

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