Ashlyns School

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About Ashlyns School

Name Ashlyns School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr James Shapland
Address Chesham Road, Berkhamsted, HP4 3AH
Phone Number 01442863605
Phase Secondary
Type Foundation school
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character None
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1506
Local Authority Hertfordshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils are proud of their school.

They appreciate the teamwork between staff and pupils that helps them reach for the highest levels of success. Pupils benefit from the 'can-do' attitude found across the school.

Pupils live up to the school's high expectations of what they can learn.

They usually approach challenge with determination. In the sixth form, students reach extraordinary levels of learning and achievement that enable them to take very impressive next steps in education or employment. Sixth-form students show a passion for scholarship and debate issues with great maturity.

Pupils behave well in lessons and take responsibility for their lear...ning. They act on teachers' feedback to improve their learning. Pupils value the positive and purposeful atmosphere in which they learn.

Sixth-form students approach their studies with an unwavering focus on high-quality learning and achievement, whether in lessons, study periods or at home.

Pupils feel safe at school. They know that staff are willing and able to help should concerns arise.

Pupils understand how to stay safe at school, at home, online and in the community. Bullying is rare. If it does happen the school deals with it effectively so that it stops and does not continue.

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

The school has an ambitious curriculum for all pupils, including pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) and disadvantaged pupils. The number of pupils entered for the English Baccalaureate was lower than the national average in 2022. However, the school has started to increase the number of pupils studying modern foreign languages.

Leaders have planned the curriculum well to ensure that staff teach the knowledge pupils need to know in a logical order. Teachers use these plans consistently well so that pupils learn what they should. Teachers provide pupils with lots of opportunities to review what they have studied previously.

This helps pupils to remember knowledge over time. Teachers regularly check what pupils remember and understand. They provide timely support when necessary.

In the sixth form, teachers use their strong subject knowledge to deliver the curriculum expertly so that students learn the curriculum exceptionally well. Teachers in the sixth form provide precise feedback to help students address areas they need to improve so that they master the curriculum.

The school identifies the needs of pupils with SEND effectively.

Teachers have the guidance and training they need to support most of these pupils well. However, occasionally, some teachers do not consistently provide help that addresses the exact challenges that some pupils with SEND face. The school has in place the necessary training to help staff adapt their teaching more effectively.

Students with SEND and disadvantaged students in the sixth form do well because teachers provide the support these students need to overcome the specific challenges they face.

The school has a range of successful approaches that help pupils who are at an early stage of reading to improve. Reluctant readers read with confidence and enjoyment.

As a result, these pupils access the curriculum effectively.

Staff and pupils follow the school's behaviour policy. Pupils learn free from disruptions caused by unacceptable behaviour.

While some pupils are occasionally inattentive and not routinely redirected by teachers, this is not commonplace in the school.

The school's personal, social, health and economic education programme helps pupils learn about themselves, their communities and the wider world. Pupils speak knowledgeably about the personal characteristics protected by law and the importance of respecting others' differences.

They also take part in a wide range of clubs and trips that enhance their learning.

Staff in the sixth form teach students the specific skills needed to be successful during and after life in the sixth form. Students receive expert advice to help them shape their career goals.

Sixth-form students readily take up the many opportunities at school to take responsibility for themselves and others. For example, all students serve as assistants in subject departments at school. Students in the sixth form engage with contemporary issues at a high level of sophistication.

They debate fiercely, but with sensitivity, controversial topics in society.

Governors and leaders put pupils' interests first when making decisions. Parents, staff and pupils have confidence in the school.

Nearly all parents who replied to Ofsted's online parent survey, Ofsted Parent View, recorded that they would recommend the school to others. Staff appreciate how leaders care for their well-being and ensure a reasonable work-life balance.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Occasionally, some teachers do not consistently provide some pupils with SEND with the support they need to help them overcome the specific challenges they face. As a result, these pupils do not always learn as well as they could. The school needs to ensure that teachers receive, and act on, the necessary training and guidance to support the specific needs of pupils with SEND.

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