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Collingwood College continues to be a good school.
What is it like to attend this school?
Pupils receive a good all-round education here. Although the school is large, pupils feel that they are valued as individuals.
Pupils appreciate the broad range of subjects that they can study in the school and sixth form.
Many pupils take advantage of the extensive range of clubs and activities provided outside their regular lessons. This includes many opportunities in science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), such as aviation club and the status racing club. Pupils have numerous opportunities to develop leadership and have their say in how the school is run.
...Most pupils conduct themselves well. They are polite and friendly. Pupils understand the behaviour systems and say that these work most of the time.
Lessons are sometimes interrupted by a minority of pupils, but staff deal quickly with any poor behaviour and bullying.
Pupils feel safe at school. They are very well cared for.
Parents and carers and pupils praise the very high quality of pastoral care that the school provides. One parent's comment reflected those of many in a response to Ofsted Parent View: 'Collingwood is an amazingly supportive school where staff work together to ensure children achieve their best and follow their own personal passions.'
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
The curriculum is ambitious for all pupils.
Pupils study a broad range of academic and vocational subjects. They are well prepared for their future. More pupils are choosing to study modern foreign languages in key stage 4 because the curriculum has improved.
High numbers of pupils continue to study technology subjects in key stage 4 and beyond.
Leaders have considered exactly what pupils should learn and the order in which things are taught. In English, for example, the storyline of 'Macbeth' is taught before the play is studied in greater detail.
In most subjects, leaders have identified the important knowledge that pupils should remember. In a few subjects, this is not as clear, which means that some pupils do not achieve as well as they could.
Staff are enthusiastic about their subjects.
They present information in clear and interesting ways. They use questions to probe how well pupils have understood and check pupils' understanding before moving on. Their teaching helps pupils to remember important ideas and information.
In geography, for instance, pupils remember key concepts such as sustainability and population. Resources are carefully chosen to help pupils organise and structure their work.
Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities receive good support.
Staff know and identify the needs of these pupils well. Staff receive regular training and helpful guidance. They use this information well to adapt lessons so that these pupils keep up with other pupils in their learning.
Additionally, the school's Aspire resource base provides good support for pupils in Year 7 who need extra help with English and mathematics.
Reading is prioritised across the school. Leaders have identified essential vocabulary that pupils need to learn.
The new reading project in Year 7 is helping pupils read more confidently. Leaders plan to extend this project to other year groups. Specialist teaching for the weakest readers helps these pupils develop their reading skills.
However, increased opportunities to strengthen reading across the curriculum are required.
Staff have high expectations of pupils' behaviour. They establish clear routines and boundaries.
Most pupils behave well in class and are enthusiastic about their lessons. Pupils take pride in their work. Personal development days provide pupils with a variety of leadership opportunities.
Leaders have increased the amount of personal, social and health education (PSHE) teaching this year. Most pupils appreciate and value these sessions because they cover relevant topics for their age group.
The sixth form is very successful.
Students achieve well in a broad range of subjects and are well prepared for their next steps. After sixth form, high proportions of students enter further education, employment or training successfully. The new study centre supports students to work independently.
Students appreciate the quality of support provided by teaching and pastoral staff. The weekly seminar programme and the extensive enrichment and extra-curricular programme promote their personal development.
Sixth-form students are fully involved in the life of the school.
They organise many events, such as the sixth-form revue. Many students support younger pupils with their learning.
The school is very well led and is on a journey of continuous improvement.
Parents express high levels of confidence in the school. Staff are overwhelmingly positive about leaders' concern for their workload and well-being. Staff say that leaders act quickly on any concerns that they raise.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.Safeguarding is a strength of the school. All staff share in the responsibility for ensuring that pupils are kept safe.
The members of the large safeguarding team are well known and work well with teachers and pastoral staff to support pupils at risk.
Leaders regularly update staff on local safeguarding issues. Staff at all levels know what to do if they have concerns about pupils.
The designated safeguarding lead keeps meticulous records.
Parents say that their children feel safe at school. Pupils know whom to go to if they need help, and they feel confident that their concerns will be dealt with.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
• In a few subjects, there is a lack of clarity about what essential knowledge pupils are expected to know, remember and be able to apply fluently by the end of key stage 3. Leaders should ensure that curriculum plans in all subjects identify clearly and precisely the essential knowledge that pupils need to know and remember in the long term, in order to access the next steps in their learning. This will help pupils do as well as they should.
• Leaders are aware that many pupils do not read fluently enough and widely enough, either in academic subjects or for pleasure. Strategies to improve reading fluency have been introduced, but are at an early stage. Staff lack the expertise needed to support weak readers successfully in class.
Leaders should ensure that staff have the subject knowledge needed to help pupils to improve their reading. This will ensure that more pupils are able to read confidently in lessons and for pleasure.
When we have judged a school to be good, we will then normally go into the school about once every four years to confirm that the school remains good.
This is called a section 8 inspection of a good or outstanding school, because it is carried out under section 8 of the Education Act 2005. We do not give graded judgements on a section 8 inspection. However, if we find evidence that a school would now receive a higher or lower grade, then the next inspection will be a section 5 inspection.
Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the section 8 inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will deem the section 8 inspection a section 5 inspection immediately.
This is the second section 8 inspection since we judged the school to be good in May 2013.
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