Cambian Spring Hill


Name Cambian Spring Hill
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 26 June 2017
Address Palace Road, Ripon, North Yorkshire, HG4 3HN
Phone Number 01765603320
Type Independent (special)
Age Range 8-19
Religious Character None
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils Unknown
Local Authority North Yorkshire
Percentage Free School Meals 0%
Pupils with SEN Support 0%
Catchment Area Information Available No
Last Distance Offered Information Available No

Information about this school

Cambian Spring Hill School is an independent residential special school and is situated on extensive grounds on the outskirts of Ripon, North Yorkshire. It is registered for up to 50 pupils (boys and girls) aged between 8 and 19 years. The residential provision was last inspected by Ofsted in March 2017 and was not part of this inspection. There are too few students in the sixth form to report separately on post-16 provision as this would potentially enable the identification of individual students. Pupils who attend the school have an autistic spectrum diagnosis and associated social, emotional or mental health difficulties. Consequently all of the pupils have special educational needs and/or disabilities and have an education, health and care plan. Many pupils have been out of formal schooling prior to attending Cambian Spring Hill School. Some pupils have medical needs and all of them have difficulties in the area of social interaction. Pupils come from a wide geographic area, mainly in the north of England. Eleven local authorities currently place pupils in the school. The majority of pupils are of White British heritage. The school has no religious affiliation. No pupils attend off-site alternative provision. The school was previously a non-maintained special school, known as Spring Hill School, and was owned by Barnardo’s. A new headteacher was appointed in September 2015 and, following registration by the Department for Education in August 2016, the school opened as an independent school under the ownership of the Cambian group. This is its first inspection as an independent school. The school’s aim is for ‘one community, learning and living together, striving for excellence’.

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is a good school The headteacher’s vision has been embraced fully by staff and governors: ‘one community, learning and living together, striving for excellence’. As a result, pupils thrive in this welcoming, caring school. They make often good progress in their learning, from low starting points upon arrival. Staff have risen to the headteacher’s challenge to improve the quality of teaching, which is now good. Teachers use assessment information to plan lessons that usually take account of pupils’ starting points and interests to entice and then sustain them in their learning. There is little difference between the progress of disadvantaged pupils, boys and girls. Occasionally, work set for the most able pupils in English lessons is too easy. Teachers do not challenge pupils’ poor handwriting consistently. Teachers, therapists and learning support assistants work closely together to identify, then meet, pupils’ complex communication, behavioural and emotional needs. As a result, pupils’ behaviour and personal qualities improve well. Their attendance rates rise rapidly. The broad curriculum is enriched by a wide range of outdoor activities, visits and visitors to school. These add to pupils’ engagement in, and enjoyment of, school, following often very unsuccessful previous school experiences. Promotion of equality of opportunity and pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development lie at the heart of the school’s work. Pupils develop the qualities of respect and trust. They value the individual differences of people within school and the wider community successfully. The very small proportion of students in the sixth form achieve well in their chosen options and in the mathematics and English accreditations they take. They move on to their next steps well prepared, not least because of the superb transition arrangements. Leaders and governors ensure that all of the independent school standards are met consistently. They know the school’s strengths and weaknesses well. Resulting improvement plans are checked regularly but there are too few measurable targets to check the full impact of actions on pupils’ progress over time easily. Compliance with regulatory requirements The school meets the requirements of the schedule to the Education (Independent School Standards) Regulations 2014 (‘the independent school standards’) and associated requirements.