Cambian Chesham House School

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About Cambian Chesham House School

Name Cambian Chesham House School
Ofsted Inspections
Miss Caroline Sullivan
Address Chesham House, Thrush Drive, BL9 6JD
Phone Number 01617637072
Phase Independent (special)
Type Other independent special school
Age Range 10-18
Religious Character None
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 8 (66.7% boys 33.3% girls)
Local Authority Bury

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils at Chesham House achieve well. This is because staff have high expectations of them and are skilled in meeting pupils’ individual social, emotional and mental health needs. Staff help pupils to engage with their learning and to develop pride in their work.

Pupils who spoke with inspectors said that they enjoy coming to Chesham House. They recognise that their own and other pupils’ behaviour improves over time. They listen in lessons and work hard. Pupils said that bullying does not happen often. Staff resolve any issues that arise. Pupils said that adults in the school treat them fairly. The actions of staff help pupils to feel safe in school.

Pupils’ interests are met by the many enrichment activities made available. For example, staff provide out-of-school activities for pupils, such as dancing, singing and participation in youth organisations. Pupils value the personalised aspect of these activities. They enjoy taking on positions of responsibility, such as supporting charities in the local community. This builds their sense of self-belief and resilience.

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

Leaders have developed a well-structured curriculum. This prepares pupils effectively for the next stage of their education or training. Staff have considered the knowledge that they want pupils to learn and by when. For example, in science and art and design staff have strong subject knowledge and plan work that helps pupils to build their understanding of key ideas and skills over time. However, in a small minority of cases, staff’s subject knowledge is not as well developed. Most staff deliver the curriculum with confidence. However, they have not received subject-specific training. This means that staff do not deepen pupils’ understanding in all subjects.

For most subjects, teachers use assessment information skilfully. This helps staff to identify what pupils already know and can do. However, in some subjects, assessment is not used as effectively to identify and plan for the precise next steps in learning for pupils.

Many pupils have gaps in their reading skills. For this reason, the headteacher has raised the profile of reading in school. Staff are well trained to teach reading. There is a well-resourced reading area where pupils enjoy reading books. Those pupils who spoke with the inspectors said that their work across the curriculum has improved as a result of their improved reading skills.

All pupils at the school have special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). Leaders and teachers are skilled at identifying and understanding the needs of these pupils. Staff know each pupil’s needs and ensure that they can access the suitably ambitious curriculum.

Leaders give careful thought to how the curriculum provides for pupils’ personal development as many pupils have previously had long periods of time out of education. Pupils’ learning is enriched by a range of workshops, and visitors to school. For example, pupils were able to build on their learning in personal, health and social education through a challenging workshop on gender issues and perceptions. Pupils discuss what democracy, tolerance and the rule of law mean to them. They demonstrate a secure understanding of other cultures and religions. Pupils also have a good understanding of keeping healthy. Leaders have carefully introduced the statutory guidance on relationships, sex and health education. Pupils therefore learn about the right to give, withdraw and withhold consent.

Pupils are helped to become more positive about their futures. This is in part due to staff’s high aspirations for them. Careers education, information, advice and guidance is exceptionally strong. This helps pupils to know about the different opportunities that are available to them when they leave the school.

Pupils develop positive attitudes towards their learning. Sometimes disruption occurs in lessons due to pupils’ learning and behaviour needs. However, other pupils are able to complete their work because staff are skilled in dealing with incidents quickly and sensitively.

Leaders work closely with several local authorities. They provide the necessary information in regard to provision for pupils with an education, health and care plan.

Leaders demonstrate the skills and knowledge needed to ensure that the independent school standards are met. They ensure that relevant information is published on the school’s website. This includes the safeguarding policy and contact information for the proprietor body. They also ensure that information available to parents, carers and others is accurate and accessible. For example, the website contains a link to the most recent Ofsted report and school policies.

The proprietor body contributes to the leadership of the school very well. Members have a precise understanding of the school’s strengths, but also where further developments could be made. The proprietor body ensures that the school meets all the independent school standards consistently. For example, premises are well maintained. Classrooms are suitable for use and specialist equipment is available for subjects such as science and computing. The proprietor body has put in place efficient and effective systems for ensuring the welfare, health and safety of pupils. The school also has an accessibility plan that complies with schedule 10 of the Equality Act 2010.

The headteacher has created a climate where all staff feel valued. Leaders are mindful of staff’s workload and well-being and staff appreciate this.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders promote safeguarding through all aspects of their work. They ensure that relevant policies are fit for purpose and that staff follow them. Leaders pursue any concerns and involve experts from beyond the school where necessary. This includes social care, educational welfare and the police.

Staff understand their safeguarding responsibilities. The vigilant care of pupils is evident in their daily work. Staff take prompt action if they identify any potential concerns. This contributes to a strong safeguarding culture.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and proprietor)

? Some staff have not received subject-specific training in all areas of the curriculum. This means that in some subjects pupils are not able to deepen their understanding. Leaders should ensure that staff have the necessary subject-specific knowledge to deliver the full curriculum in all key stages. This will help staff to deliver the curriculum with higher levels of expertise, so that pupils know and remember more. ? In some subjects, assessment information is not used well. This means that pupils do not always build on what they already know. Leaders should ensure that teachers understand how to use assessment information effectively in all subjects. This will help pupils to deepen their knowledge across the curriculum.

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