City of London Academy (Southwark)

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About City of London Academy (Southwark)

Name City of London Academy (Southwark)
Ofsted Inspections
Principal Michael Baxter
Address 240 Lynton Road, London, SE1 5LA
Phone Number 02073945100
Phase Academy
Type Academy sponsor led
Age Range 11-19
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1577
Local Authority Southwark
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils enjoy school and feel challenged by their learning.

The school's atrium is decorated with the achievements of past pupils. This publicly displays the school's high expectations for all pupils and the school's values of 'ambition, resilience and duty'. Pupils are safe and happy at school.

Pupils value being taught about equality and diversity. Pupils were involved in selecting house names for the school's house system. They chose names to celebrate significant historical figures: Mandela, Parks, Seacole and Hawking.

There are a number of opportunities for pupils to take on leadership responsibilities. Pupil-run societies include the green society and fe...minist society. These provide pupils with a safe space to discuss contemporary issues.

Leaders have created clear behaviour systems that pupils understand. They listen to pupils' views on behaviour. Pupils know what is expected of them both in and outside of lessons.

Behaviour in classes is purposeful. Pupils typically described the school as 'calm'. If bullying occurs, leaders act to resolve any issues.

Typically, pupils feel that they are treated equally and fairly.

The library is at the centre of school. Leaders provide daily opportunities for all pupils in Years 7 to 9 to read.

Pupils enjoy reading a wide range of texts with staff.

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

Leaders ensure that all pupils have access to a broad and balanced curriculum that matches the ambition of the national curriculum. In the sixth form, students choose from a range of courses.

Subject leaders plan their curriculum content carefully so that pupils acquire knowledge and skills over time. For instance, in English, the study of 'Macbeth' at GCSE supports and prepares pupils for the further study of other Shakespearean tragedies if they choose to study English at A level. Leaders provide time for subject teachers to reflect on and improve subject curriculum units of work.

Teachers have strong knowledge of the subjects that they teach.

Teaching supports pupils to remember and build on key knowledge over time. Pupils are routinely encouraged to recall prior learning from the previous lesson or previous term.

Pupils said this was helpful. For instance, in a business studies A-level class, students were encouraged to recall what they had already learned about 'gearing ratio', before applying this existing knowledge to a new case study.

Staff and pupils follow behaviour systems closely, so that pupils' behaviour and attitudes routinely support learning in class.

Teachers routinely check pupils' understanding. For example, in sociology, teachers used questions to check whether pupils had understood new learning about different family types. Teachers use assessment information to inform and adapt their teaching.

For example, in English, teachers identified a pupil's misconceptions about Charles Dickens and were able to rectify them swiftly. Pupils achieve well.

Teachers present new subject material in suitable building blocks.

For instance, in history, teachers encouraged pupils to recap prior knowledge on science and art before using that knowledge to help them to understand new learning about the Renaissance. In the sixth form, students take part in analytical discussion and this helps their learning. However, in Years 7 to 11, opportunities for pupils to participate in academic talk are not as routinely organised, and when they are, pupils are not typically confident about participating.

This can sometimes hinder teachers from knowing what pupils have understood and remembered.

Leaders have established clear processes to identify pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) quickly. Teachers routinely share strategies with each other that support pupils with SEND to access the full curriculum.

Pupils who need support with reading fluency receive appropriate extra help. Pupils read widely and often. In Years 7 to 9, teachers read daily with all pupils.

They choose books that are appropriate to pupils' reading ages and interests.

Leaders offer a wide range of extra-curricular clubs, including baking and chess. Leaders promote pupils' uptake of clubs through communication with parents and carers.

Pupils take part in democratic processes in school, for example voting in the school's elections of student president and sports ambassadors. Throughout the curriculum, pupils have opportunities to consider the lives and perspectives of people who differ from themselves. At all ages, pupils receive appropriate advice and guidance on their next steps.

Pupils appreciate the support they are given.

Governors have a clear understanding of the curriculum priorities of the school. Leaders provide time for teachers to engage in external research projects.

The aim of these projects is to enhance further curriculum developments. Leaders listen to the staff's views on workload. Staff recognise the strategies that leaders have introduced to support well-being.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders know the local area well, and know the contextual safeguarding challenges they face, for example the risks associated with gang involvement. Leaders work closely with external agencies, such as the police, to educate pupils about managing these risks.

Leaders use external mentoring to support pupils in making the right choices.

All staff receive appropriate training. Staff know the key messages around sexual harassment and peer-on-peer abuse that have been covered in recent training.

Teaching around issues such as consent is appropriate to the age and stage of pupils. If pupils need early help, clear systems and structures are in place to facilitate this.

Pupils know how to stay safe online and how the school helps them to be both mentally and physically healthy.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Teachers do not typically encourage pupils to academically discuss the subject matter being taught, particularly in Years 7 to 11. This means that pupils do not routinely have opportunities to grapple with ideas in depth, build confidence in doing so and develop a detailed understanding of key concepts. Leaders should ensure that teachers encourage pupils to discuss academic content with purpose and build their confidence.

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