Bristol Cathedral Choir School

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About Bristol Cathedral Choir School

Name Bristol Cathedral Choir School
Ofsted Inspections
Head of School Mr Joseph Thurston
Address College Square, Bristol, BS1 5TS
Phone Number 01173535000
Phase Academy
Type Academy sponsor led
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character Church of England
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1176
Local Authority Bristol, City of
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

The school motto 'gathered together that all may thrive' sits at the heart of the school's moral purpose. The words 'kindness, courage and hope' underpin it. Leaders ensure that every pupil remembers to show 'kindness' and 'courage' in what they do.

The school regards itself as a beacon of 'hope' for the diverse pupil population. Staff strive for every pupil to succeed.

Leaders are diligent in making sure pupils are safe at the school.

This is particularly important because of the school's unique location in the cloisters of Bristol Cathedral and the high proportion of vulnerable pupils. Parents and pupils speak highly of how pupils feel safe despite this..../>
Staff have very high expectations of pupils to which most respond.

The school is a calm and orderly place as a result. Disruption to learning is rare. When it occurs, it is caused by a small number of pupils.

Bullying is uncommon, but if it happens, staff deal with it swiftly.

High-quality music is a central feature in the school. Many leaders and pupils are expert in this field.

They appear at cathedral events and also further afield. The music brings something special to parents and the community.

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

Trustees provide appropriate challenge and support to school leaders.

The headteacher has managed changes to the school effectively. He has made sure that staff's well-being and their curriculum knowledge are paramount. As a result, he leads a harmonious school.

In their relationships with pupils, staff echo the respect and care that the headteacher shows. Pupils are ready for learning and engage well with teachers and other adults.

Leaders have established an ambitious school curriculum from Year 7 to the sixth form.

Subject leaders have thought carefully and productively about what to teach and when. Leaders reflect regularly on what is best for pupils. They understand the importance of teaching pupils the knowledge that is critical to each subject.

As a result, pupils' learning deepens over time. Leaders use assessment wisely without placing unnecessary burdens on staff. The number of pupils in key stage 4 who study the suite of subjects that make up the English Baccalaureate has risen steadily.

The school focuses closely on helping pupils to know specific-subject vocabulary. Teachers encourage pupils to explain their thinking which they do well. When pupils struggle, teachers ask questions skilfully to support pupils' answers.

Many pupils analyse and write in-depth answers. However, some pupils in key stage 3 and 4 do not complete work adequately. Sometimes, teachers and subject leaders do not check pupils' learning thoroughly enough.

This means some pupils continue to produce incomplete and inaccurate work.

Staff work tirelessly to ensure every pupil understands the curriculum. They successfully include pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities and disadvantaged pupils.

Consequently, many pupils enter the sixth form.

Reading for pleasure is a priority in key stage 3. Many pupils choose to read widely.

Many subject leaders have added suitable texts to the curriculum, especially in the sixth form. A small number of pupils find reading difficult when they join the school in Year 7. Leaders provide these pupils with extra support.

This enables them to read fluently.

Sixth-form students are exceptional role models for other pupils in the school. They help Year 11 pupils to study for their GCSEs.

Sixth-form students participate in a wide range of clubs and activities, including music and the Duke of Edinburgh award scheme. They currently edit a school newspaper which they set up themselves.

The school provides pupils with high-quality pastoral support and prepares them well for life in modern Britain.

Pupils display a strong commitment to fundamental British values. They particularly value the rule of law and mutual respect and tolerance in their school. Pupils respect different religions.

The clubs for different faiths develop pupils' understanding beyond their own. The school's music specialism contributes strongly to developing pupils' character and resilience. Pupils learn the importance of regular practice and gain confidence through performance.

They increase their understanding of music of different genres and cultures.

Pupils receive appropriate careers information, education, advice and guidance from Year 7 onwards. The school meets the requirements of the Baker Clause.

Pupils know and understand potential career paths. The school has strong links with local, national and international institutions and companies.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Staff receive regular and up-to-date training. They know how to identify and report concerns about pupils who may be vulnerable. Leaders responsible for safeguarding make sure that external support is provided at the right level to keep pupils safe.

Checks on the suitability of new staff, during the recruitment process, are thorough.

The school has suitable policies in place to raise awareness among staff and parents about the dangers of sexual harassment and online risks. Pupils are aware of safeguarding risks to themselves.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Sometimes, teachers and subject leaders do not check pupils' learning thoroughly enough. As a result, some pupils continue to make errors or do not complete work. Subject leaders need to ensure that checks on learning consistently help pupils to learn more and improve the accuracy of their work.

Also at this postcode
Shine @ Cathedral Primary Cathedral Primary School

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