Coombe Boys’ School

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About Coombe Boys’ School

Name Coombe Boys’ School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr David Smith
Address College Gardens, Blakes Lane, New Malden, KT3 6NU
Phone Number 02089491537
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character None
Gender Boys
Number of Pupils 964
Local Authority Kingston upon Thames
Highlights from Latest Inspection


Coombe Boys' School continues to be a good school.

The headteacher of this school is David Smith.

This school is part of Coombe Academy Trust, which means other people in the trust also have responsibility for running the school. The trust is run by the chief executive officer, Esther Brooks, and overseen by a board of trustees, chaired by Emma Thomas.

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils at this school have access to a demanding curriculum, and most respond well to these high expectations and achieve well.

Parents and carers say that their children are happy and well looked after. The school has a strong pastoral care system. It places a clear focus on p...upils' mental health and has reliable systems in place to identify and support pupils.

The school provides a broad range of opportunities to develop pupils' character. For example, pupils generously give their time to raise funds for the Royal British Legion, and raise awareness for homelessness through participation in the Sleep Out Challenge. Pupils also get involved in theatre productions and sporting competitions.

Leaders invite speakers into the school who provide insight into a wide variety of views and cultures. The school focuses on pupils' cultural development through the 'five pillars' which provide opportunities for trips, activities, speakers, the house system and social volunteering.

Pupils in the specially resourced provision for those with hearing impairment and speech, language and/or communication needs access the same ambitious curriculum as their peers.

They are given dedicated time to catch up if they fall behind.

In general, pupils behave well and focus on their learning in class. When incidents of bullying occur, the school responds to these effectively.

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

The school offers a broad curriculum that allows pupils' interests to be developed. This includes a choice of modern foreign languages and design and technology rotations of electronics, food science, woodwork and computer aided design and manufacture.

Teachers are well supported through effective professional development and have strong subject knowledge.

Most teachers have an ambitious approach to developing pupils' knowledge. This is evident through well-selected activities that rapidly build up pupils' confidence and skills. Teachers enhance the curriculum by including wider opportunities for trips and visits or arranging visiting speakers.

At times, however, work for some pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), is not sufficiently adapted to allow them to benefit fully from learning opportunities. Additionally, teachers can sometimes move on to new learning without checking that pupils have secured underpinning concepts. On these occasions, gaps can form in pupils' knowledge.

In the sixth form, the school has developed a curriculum that meets the needs of students who wish to study A levels but also for those interested in applied qualifications. All pupils receive careers advice that ensures that the next stage in their education or career is well-planned. For pupils choosing A levels, partnership with another school in the trust ensures that a wide range of subjects is on offer.

Pupils placed in the special educational needs (SEN) unit receive a well-considered curriculum. The school ensures that teaching both before and after scheduled lessons means that these pupils learn the same knowledge and skills as their peers.

Reading has a high profile.

The school focuses on developing a culture of independent reading. Pupils can discuss the books they are reading and the impact these have on them. The school also arranges a weekly 'drop everything and listen' session where pupils actively listen to a book read aloud, and engage in discussion about the stories unfolding.

These deliberate actions are building on leaders' intention to establish a love for reading.

A range of clubs are on offer to meet pupils' interests. This includes a substantial drama and theatre programme that many pupils proudly participate in, leading to community performances at local theatres.

Pupils are introduced to important issues through wider curriculum lessons. They discuss these with maturity. They understand how to keep themselves safe online and demonstrate this with confidence.

The school identifies important current issues such as digital resilience or respectful relationships, and builds a curriculum around these areas. This is extended to the school's five pillars which provide opportunities to volunteer and contribute to wider society, while effectively building the character traits of being ready, respectful and responsible. Pupils respond positively to these opportunities and aspire to the recognition that this provides.

The school has established expectations for pupils' behaviour and teachers consistently emphasise these. In most cases, pupils behave well both in and around the school and demonstrate respect for each other, including pupils in the sixth form. The school manages more serious incidents fairly and with the correct involvement of other agencies when required.

Staff consistently report being well looked after by leaders at the school. Extensive support is available when needed. Teachers, including those in their early stages of their career, describe a network of support available to them to help improve their practice.

The trust has delegated responsibilities to a newly formed local governing body which is being supported with its role in overseeing key areas of the school, including the curriculum and safeguarding.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• In a few subjects, the work provided to pupils who have SEND is sometimes not sufficiently adapted to enable them to access the full curriculum.

When this is the case, these pupils do not learn important knowledge and skills. The school should ensure that teaching is adapted successfully so that pupils with SEND have their needs met in each curriculum area. ? At times, the school does not effectively check that pupils have understood important concepts.

This leads to pupils developing gaps in their knowledge. The school should ensure that pupils have secured key knowledge before moving on to new learning.


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 an ungraded inspection, and it is carried out under section 8 of the Education Act 2005. We do not give graded judgements on an ungraded inspection. However, if we find evidence that a school would now receive a higher or lower grade, then the next inspection will be a graded inspection, which is carried out under section 5 of the Act.

Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the ungraded inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will deem the ungraded inspection a graded inspection immediately.

This is the second ungraded inspection since we judged the school to be good in December 2013.

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