Cardinal Wiseman Catholic School

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About Cardinal Wiseman Catholic School

Name Cardinal Wiseman Catholic School
Ofsted Inspections
Mr Matthew Everett
Address Potters Green Road, Coventry, CV2 2AJ
Phone Number 02476617231
Phase Academy
Type Academy sponsor led
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character Roman Catholic
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1357
Local Authority Coventry
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Cardinal Wiseman Catholic School is a happy place to be, where pupils behave well, achieve well and enjoy learning.

Pupils enjoy positive relationships with caring staff. Leaders set high expectations and pupils rise to them.

Pupils are safe and they feel safe here.

They know that there is always an adult they can speak to if they need help. They say that bullying does not happen often, but if it does, staff sort it out quickly. The school has achieved an award for its work to keep pupils safe online.

The school welcomes all pupils. The Catholic life of the school ensures that pupils understand how to treat others with respect and fairness. All faith...s and cultures are celebrated.

Pupils play a key part in this. Members of the school council present assemblies about important themes in society, such as the 'Black Lives Matter' campaign.

Leaders are proud of the school's commitment to inclusion for all, which is reflected in their status as a 'School of Sanctuary'.

Pupils are welcomed here from all over the world. Pupils succeed in gaining the confidence and qualifications that will take them onto their next destination, including university.

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

Cardinal Wiseman Catholic School has been transformed since the last inspection.

Senior leaders have established an ambitious, knowledge-rich curriculum. Leaders want pupils to experience the very best knowledge in each subject. This includes reading challenging texts, such as the works of Homer in English and the philosophical thoughts of Aquinas in religious studies.

Curriculum plans are well structured to support pupils' learning in most subjects. Subject leaders and teachers are passionate about their subject. This enthuses pupils.

In lessons, teachers return to previous topics to check pupils' learning. Pupils say that this helps them to remember more. Pupils achieve well in these subjects.

In a small number of subjects, this is not yet the case. Leaders have plans in place to address this. The curriculum has recently been revised to encourage more pupils to study an even wider range of subjects.

Teachers receive high-quality support and training to develop their practice. Leaders make sure that any new approaches are informed by relevant research. Teachers often share successful strategies and visit other schools to find new ways to meet the needs of their pupils.

Teachers feel well supported by leaders to manage their workload.

Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) access the full curriculum with support from well-trained staff. Leaders have ensured that all staff receive the training they need to support pupils' individual needs, including targeted teaching to address gaps in pupils' reading and mathematics skills.

As a result, pupils with SEND make strong progress.

Leaders prioritise support for pupils' mental health and well-being. This is because some pupils were anxious about returning to school following absences due to COVID-19.

They took time to adjust to school routines. Leaders have put in place effective routines and clear expectations of behaviour. Pupils have responded well to these.

They behave well around school and in lessons. They are respectful and polite to others. A small number of pupils struggle to meet these high expectations.

Knowledgeable staff provide comprehensive support to help pupils improve their behaviour or attendance. Staff support pupils well to make sure they come to school on time and work hard. Despite this, a small number of pupils are still absent from school too often.

Students in the sixth form enjoy stimulating lessons in a range of subjects, including A level and vocational courses. Leaders revise the courses offered in response to students' interests and local employment opportunities. The sixth form is open and accessible to all.

Almost all students go on to university or apprenticeships. The foundation curriculum prepares students well for their next steps. Careers advice and guidance is comprehensive.

Pupils benefit from work experience placements. During the pandemic, this was completed remotely.

The Catholic faith underpins the school's support for pupils' personal development.

Pupils can visit the chapel at breaks and lunchtimes to contemplate and reflect. The 'pupil passport' encourages all pupils to take part in enriching activities, such as sports clubs or performing arts. Staff run popular clubs, including Ye Olde History Club and Latin for Life.

Activities like 'guardian ballers' teach pupils confidence and life skills alongside basketball skills. Staff encourage reluctant pupils to take part. Pupils who would most benefit do not always take up the opportunities offered to them.

Members of the local academy committee (LAC) know the school well. They support leaders and hold them to account for their decisions. They challenge leaders to ensure that any new initiatives are in the best interests of pupils.

Leaders from the Romero multi academy company (MAC) have provided effective support to help the school improve.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Staff are well trained in all aspects of safeguarding, including any new risks in the area.

Leaders work closely with the police and other agencies to ensure that pupils are safe in school, regardless of any risks pupils may face outside school.

All staff know that safeguarding is everyone's responsibility. They report any concerns about pupils promptly.

Safeguarding staff follow up on these concerns and address them quickly. Leaders are not afraid to challenge others, including those in authority and external partners, to keep pupils safe.

Leaders ensure that recruitment checks are completed rigorously when they appoint new staff.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• The school's curriculum is not sufficiently well planned and sequenced in a few subjects. However, leaders have already taken action to plan next year's curriculum and to train staff in how to deliver it. For this reason, the transitional arrangements have been applied.

• Despite encouragement, not all pupils take up the enrichment opportunities on offer. For disadvantaged pupils, this means that they miss out on experiences that could help them to overcome their disadvantages. Leaders should try to ensure that more pupils, particularly disadvantaged pupils, take part in activities that will support their personal development, broaden their horizons and develop the confidence they need to succeed in life.

• A small number of pupils still miss too much school. This affects their learning. Leaders should review the support and challenge provided to families to ensure that the attendance of this small group of pupils continues to improve.

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