Bedford High School

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About Bedford High School

Name Bedford High School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Paul McCaffery
Address Manchester Road, Leigh, WN7 2LU
Phone Number 01942909009
Phase Secondary
Type Community school
Age Range 11-16
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1081
Local Authority Wigan
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Most pupils enjoy their time at Bedford High School. They value the strong relationships that they have with their teachers and peers. This helps them to feel safe and cared for in school.

Pupils endeavour to live by the school's 'Bedford SPIRIT' virtues. They are tolerant and respectful of differences between themselves and others. As a result, pupils relish being part of a friendly school community.

Pupils respond well to the high expectations that the school has for their achievement. Pupils are keen to attend additional 'strive' support sessions when needed. This helps them, including pupils with special education needs and/or disabilities (SEND), to improve their... study skills and achieve well.

Pupils, including those with SEND, enjoy roles of responsibility in school. For instance, pupils on the junior leadership team support various community events. This develops their communication skills and confidence to work with different people.

Pupils expand their experiences of the wider world through various trips and visits. For example, they enjoy performing at the Royal Albert Hall and at local care homes. Pupils visit a wide range of museums, theatre productions and art galleries.

These opportunities help pupils to understand and appreciate life beyond school.

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

Over time, the school has made considerable improvements to the quality of education. It has worked closely with local education experts to redesign the curriculum.

The school has taken effective actions to improve the take up of the English Baccalaureate suite of subjects at key stage 4. For instance, there has been a marked increase in the number of pupils taking up Spanish in Year 10.

The key knowledge and vocabulary that pupils need to learn is mapped out well for teachers.

Teachers use coaching and collaboration time to share good practice. They use their subject expertise to design effective learning activities. As a result, pupils learn the intended curriculum well.

Most teachers check and identify gaps in pupils' learning effectively. This enables teachers to revisit and address misconceptions. Nonetheless, from time-to-time, some teachers use these assessment strategies less successfully.

This means that a small number of pupils do not have secure prior knowledge when they meet new content.

Staff identify the needs of pupils with SEND accurately. The school invites parents and carers to discuss how they can work in partnership to support these pupils.

External services are used effectively, to ensure that pupils with SEND achieve as well as they should.

The school meticulously identifies pupils who struggle to read. Staff offer swift support so that pupils can become confident and fluent readers.

The school promotes reading well. Pupils use the well-resourced school library regularly. They routinely read a wide range of texts.

This expands pupils' vocabulary and helps them to access the wider curriculum.

In the main, most pupils understand and follow the school routines well. They are keen to succeed and they behave well in class.

Nevertheless, a small number of teachers do not use the behaviour systems consistently well. This means that a small minority of pupils disrupt some lessons. This hinders a few of the pupils from achieving as well as they should.

Pupils learn about a range of ways to keep a healthy body and mind. They know how to keep safe from crimes, toxic relationships and online risks. Pupils enjoy learning about and tasting food from different cultures.

This widens pupils' experiences of different societies.

The school prepares pupils well for their next steps. They receive quality careers information and guidance.

For example, pupils take part in mock interviews, work placements and careers fairs. This means that pupils gain valuable insights into the world of work. Pupils understand the different routes that they can take after Year 11.

They feel well-informed about their career choices.

Parents appreciate the information that they receive from the school's online platforms. This helps them better support pupils with work at home.

Governors understand their roles and responsibilities. They offer constructive challenge and support to the school. The school consults staff when new policies or changes are introduced.

This helps staff to manage their workload well. Staff are proud to work at the school.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• At times, some teachers do not use assessment strategies consistently well. This means that some pupils do not have secure prior learning before they move on to new content. The school should support teachers to identify and address misconceptions quickly before new learning is introduced.

Some teachers do not use the behaviour management systems as well as they should. This means that some lessons are disrupted by a small minority of pupils. The school should ensure that teachers use behaviour systems consistently well to manage pupils' behaviour.

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