Birchwood High School

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About Birchwood High School

Name Birchwood High School
Ofsted Inspections
Principal Mr Sam Griffin
Address Parsonage Lane, Bishop’s Stortford, CM23 5BD
Phone Number 01279655936
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character None
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1418
Local Authority Hertfordshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is a good school School leaders have addressed the areas needing improvement identified at the previous inspection.

The progress that pupils make at key stage 4 has been in line with the national average for the last two years. Leaders are open in evaluating their school and know its strengths and weaknesses well. The quality of teaching, learning and assessment is improving, because leaders have ensured that training and performance-management targets are closely aligned to improvement priorities.

Leaders, including governors, continually evaluate the curriculum to ensure it remains rich and relevant. Disadvantaged pupils in the school now make strong pr...ogress, because leaders have sharpened how they spend pupil premium funding. The personal development and welfare of pupils are outstanding.

Pupils play a key role in contributing to the ongoing improvement. The school's inclusive ethos ensures that diversity is celebrated, and this encourages all pupils to believe they can succeed. Pupils attend well, because they enjoy school.

The sixth form is effective and successful. Students who attend it feel very proud to be part of it. Teachers use skilful questioning and have very high expectations of the presentation and organisation of work.

Teachers promote literacy well, including reading skills. Sometimes, they do not place enough emphasis on pupils mastering subject-specific vocabulary. Pupils conduct themselves well around the school and in lessons.

They do not behave consistently as well with staff who are not their regular teachers. Teaching is less consistently strong in a small minority of subjects, including science. Teachers do not always set homework which embeds or deepens learning.

Information about this school

The school is a larger than the average-sized secondary school. The school uses Reintegration West in Harlow, Rivers Education Support Centre in Hertford, CTP Training Academy in Harlow and Hertford Regional College at Broxbourne to provide alternative provision for a small number of pupils. The proportion of disadvantaged pupils supported by the pupil premium is below the national average.

A large majority of pupils are White British. Almost all pupils speak English as their first language. The proportion of pupils with SEND who have support or an education, health and care plan is broadly in line with the national average.

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