Alfriston School

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About Alfriston School

Name Alfriston School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Jinna Male
Address Penn Road, Knotty Green, Beaconsfield, HP9 2TS
Phone Number 01494673740
Phase Academy (special)
Type Academy special converter
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Girls
Number of Pupils 155
Local Authority Buckinghamshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection


There has been no change to this school's overall judgement of outstanding as a result of this ungraded (section 8) inspection. However, the evidence gathered suggests that the inspection grade might not be as high if a graded (section 5) inspection were carried out now.

The school's next inspection will be a graded inspection.

The headteacher of this school is Jinna Male. This school is part of the Alfriston School Trust.

The school is overseen by a board of governors, chaired by Kalpesh Brahmbhatt.

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils are happy to come to this nurturing school as they feel that staff care about them. They make positive friendships staff insist that pupils treat each other with kindness and respect.

Pupils help each other to make the school a warm and friendly place to be. Student prefects are impressive role models who help pupils understand how they can contribute to the positive ethos the school exudes.

The 'Learning for Living' curriculum helps pupils to be ready for adulthood.

Pupils learn to be resilient when faced with challenging situations, such as presenting their work to the rest of the class. An extensive offer of vocational courses, such as environmental science, provides pupils with real-life experiences in the workplace. Here, pupils grow fruit and vegetables and learn to cook healthy meals together.

Pupils learn to have goals and ambitions for the future. They show great determination to succeed.

The school recognises that pupils do not always experience academic learning that securely builds knowledge over time.

Refinements are being made to address this. The curriculum is also being strengthened in subjects such as geography and history. However, these changes are not yet fully developed, so pupils are not learning in the academic curriculum as well as they potentially could be.

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

Pupils study a wide range of interesting vocational courses at key stage 4 and post-16. Practical experience helps to develop pupils' employability skills, such as cooking or hairdressing. This raises pupils' ambitions.

They learn to recognise the valuable contribution they could make through these employment routes, once they leave school.

Pupils study the same breadth of academic subjects as they would in a mainstream school. While the curriculum clearly sets out the larger ideas that pupils need to learn, it does not clearly break these down into precise knowledge and skills.

As a result, pupils do not always learn in an ordered way. This hinders how well they can connect one idea to the next. For some pupils, this limits how successfully they acquire a deeper understanding of concepts.

Furthermore, the school has not established systems to check how well pupils are remembering more. This means that leaders do not always know if teaching is helping to close gaps in pupils' knowledge. The school recognises this.

It is providing training to ensure that the impact of the curriculum is more effectively checked and considered to help pupils retain the knowledge they need for the next stages of learning.

Staff gain a detailed knowledge of pupils' needs through regular training. This means teaching support is carefully adapted to help all pupils participate in learning while preparing them for adulthood.

In English, for example, pupils regularly give oral presentations of their work. This helps them to feel confident to speak in front of an audience. Those who need additional help to read receive regular, targeted support.

This builds their confidence to read with increasing fluency. A rich offer of therapeutic support helps pupils to work towards their education, health and care plan (EHC plan) targets. This includes specialist support with speech and language and occupational therapy.

The school places a strong emphasis on pupils' wider development. Pupils learn how to take care of their personal and mental health and form positive relationships in an age-appropriate way. Teachers carefully structure lessons to help pupils overcome worries that they may face as they grow into adulthood.

The enrichment programme takes into consideration pupils' many talents and interests. They enjoy playing football together at breaktimes or swimming in the school's indoor pool. Exciting residential trips away from home are designed to help pupils experience independence.

They learn to take care of their personal and health needs.

Students in the post-16 provision attend suitable work experiences to further develop employability skills such as customer service. They regularly revisit and practise the skills they need to be an independent adult later in life.

Opportunities to practise leadership skills as a student leader are abundant. In every year group, pupils receive specialised guidance to help them to make informed decisions about future careers and education.

Pupils behave very well in lessons as teachers clearly communicate high expectations.

Teachers help pupils learn the vocabulary they need to communicate difficult feelings. Pupils receive effective help to manage their frustrations and get back to learning. Those who need support to follow the school rules receive this.

Where needed, the school seeks further expertise to provide the additional help that some pupils need.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• In some parts of the academic curriculum, the important knowledge and skills have not been clearly identified and ordered.

As a result, learning is not always designed in a ways that helps pupils connect key ideas together. The school must continue to review and develop this part of the curriculum so that all pupils acquire the knowledge and skills they need to be prepared for the next stages of learning. ? Checks are not yet consistently being made to consider how well the academic curriculum is being implemented.

This means that leaders are unable to assure themselves that pupils are securing the knowledge that they need. The school must ensure that there are effective systems and processes in place to fully evaluate the impact of the curriculum.


When we have judged a school to be outstanding, we will then normally go into the school about once every four years to confirm that the school remains outstanding.

This is called an ungraded inspection, and it is carried out under section 8 of the Education Act 2005. We do not give graded judgements on an ungraded inspection. However, if we find evidence that a school would now receive a higher or lower grade, then the next inspection will be a graded inspection, which is carried out under section 5 of the Act.

Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the ungraded inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will deem the ungraded inspection a graded inspection immediately.

This is the second ungraded inspection since we judged the school to be outstanding in July 2013.

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