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|Compass Community School North
|Mr Chris hughes
|Long Lea House, 5 Halifax Road, West Yorkshire, HX5 0SH
|Other independent special school
|Number of Pupils
What is it like to attend this school?
Many pupils have experienced disruption to their learning prior to coming to Compass Community North. Since joining the school, the attendance of most pupils improves dramatically. Pupils settle quickly into established routines. Leaders encourage punctuality, smartness and regular attendance through rewards that pupils enjoy earning. This all helps to prepare pupils for their next stage in education and/or employment. Pupils say that they love this school. They willingly shake hands with visitors and make new people feel very welcome.
Pupils are exceptionally well behaved both in lessons and during breaktimes and lunchtimes. They understand and know the behaviour system well. Staff recognise good behaviour, swiftly rewarding pupils when they make the right choice or display positive learning attitudes.
Strong and positive relationships form quickly between pupils and staff. These relationships are based on mutual respect. Pupils feel safe. They are confident to ask for help or let a member of staff know when they have a worry or are not feeling their best. As a result, pupils trust staff and feel valued and important.
Pupils benefit from a range of experiences that leaders carefully plan. Many of these are based on pupils’ personal interests. These range from visits to music studios and football museums to fencing activities. This offer builds pupils’ character and confidence, which shines through. Pupils are proud to show off their talents.
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Leaders and the proprietor have high aspirations for all pupils, not only to achieve academically, but to thrive emotionally. They know individual pupils’ experiences and needs extremely well. This helps them to plan an ambitious and personalised curriculum that meets those needs.
In most subjects, leaders have carefully thought about the knowledge that they want pupils to know before they leave school. Teachers check pupils’ prior knowledge when they join the school to identity gaps in their learning. This enables staff to plan learning for individual pupils. Plans are well-ordered with plenty of opportunities identified for staff to recap and revisit previous learning. Staff continuously assess what pupils know. They adapt lessons to ensure any misconceptions that pupils have are addressed. Pupils talk with pride about what they are currently learning. They recall much of what they have previously learned. As a result, they progress quickly.
Teachers have good subject knowledge. They plan interesting lessons. Staff encourage pupils to always do their best. These nurturing relationships allow pupils to feel confident, which in turn fosters positive attitudes to their learning.
Pupils enjoy reading. There are a range of books available to them. Pupils’ reading knowledge is variable. Some are fluent and accurate readers. Others, who are at the early stages of learning to read, do not receive the support that they need to catch up quickly.
Pupils enjoy their personal, social and health education (PSHE) lessons. They benefit from learning the importance of treating everyone with respect. In addition, pupils have regular opportunities to discuss their plans for their future. Pupils visit career fairs and apprenticeship events. However, the structure of the PSHE programme means that pupils may miss out on important information to make informed choices in the future. This is because pupils learn important content, such as drugs education and knife crime, infrequently. Staff do not revisit this learning. In addition, the school does not check what pupils have remembered from PSHE taught in their previous schools.
Staff quickly recognise when pupils need emotional support. The school and other support staff, such as therapists, alert each other when pupils are finding situations difficult. This enables them to respond quickly in a coordinated way. Pupils respond and benefit from this range of emotional and mental health support.
The governing body and proprietor oversee the work of the school. They ensure that the independent school standards are consistently met. They hold regular meetings and have sufficient oversight of the education on offer, including safeguarding responsibilities, ensuring all processes are followed. The proprietor ensures all duties required by the Equality Act 2010 are met.
Teachers are happy and proud to work at this school. They report that leaders and governors think carefully about their workload and well-being.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and proprietor)
? Leaders have not planned their PSHE programme in a structured way that recaps what has previously been delivered. Pupils who join the school later in key stage 4 may not have learned about crucial information that will help them to make informed decisions about how to stay safe. Leaders should ensure that they check what pupils know in relation to PSHE when they join the school. They should plan and order the PSHE curriculum to address any gaps in what pupils know. This will equip pupils with the skills and knowledge to help them make safe, informed decisions. ? Leaders have not ensured that pupils who struggle to read receive appropriate help. As a result, some pupils fall further behind as they are unable to use phonics knowledge to read unfamiliar words. Leaders should introduce appropriate support for those pupils at the early stages of reading. They should ensure all staff receive training so that they can support pupils to use their phonics knowledge accurately.