Corbets Tey School

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About Corbets Tey School

Name Corbets Tey School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mrs Emma Allen
Address Harwood Hall Lane, Upminster, RM14 2YQ
Phone Number 01708225888
Phase Special
Type Foundation special school
Age Range 4-19
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 156
Local Authority Havering
Highlights from Latest Inspection


Corbets Tey School continues to be a good school.

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils benefit from the highly expert and deeply caring staff at Corbets Tey School. Pupils are kept safe and feel secure. They are confident, warm, good-humoured and kind to one another.

They enjoy being with their peers and make valuable friendships at school. Pupils typically behave well. They learn how to communicate appropriately.

While it takes longer for some, pupils are respectful and understanding to others.

Staff are ambitious for all pupils. The carefully designed curriculum and specialist support help pupils to achieve well from their different starting points.
Pupils are encouraged to find ways to communicate that work for them. Whether that be by signing, using images, writing, speaking or using electronic devices. Pupils' sensory needs are equally well met through, for example, a specialised swimming and occupational therapy programme.

Pupils participate in a range of enriching experiences that encourage independence and prepare them well for adulthood. These include enterprise projects where they raise money for charity, careers workshops and visits from the police and fire brigade. They learn about important issues such as online safety, consent, personal space and acceptance of others.

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

In each area of learning, the curriculum has been designed to consider the range and changing needs and ages of pupils and students. A bespoke programme is created for each pupil that supports them to reach targets as set out in their education, health and care plans.

Pupils learn a broad curriculum, including, when appropriate, subjects that form the national curriculum.

Emphasis is placed on embedding functional mathematics and literacy. For example, pupils learn to write to prospective employers, budget, cook and shop for ingredients. Pupils are typically well prepared for adulthood as well as the next stage of their education, employment or training.

This includes going on to study accredited courses in the post-16 provision or with other providers. Staff work closely with other settings to enable some students in the sixth form to study subjects with their specialist teachers.

In most areas, the curriculum is well implemented.

This is because staff receive appropriate training in a range of strategies to support pupils to embed and reinforce knowledge. Staff maximise the learning opportunities in each interaction. This supports pupils to make connections and embed their understanding further.

For example, when pupils learn about money, they recap counting and concepts of less and more. Similarly, when cooking, they learn to name, taste and measure the ingredients as well as communicate their likes and dislikes. Assessment is used well to gauge pupils' understanding.

Teachers use these checks to refine and adapt the curriculum and support as needed.

Pupils' communication is prioritised. The curriculum is well sequenced from pupils' individual starting points to help them to express what they want or need.

Building on this foundation, pupils move on to expressing opinions and explaining, justifying and inferring meaning. They also develop confidence in using gesture, images, signs and spoken language to communicate, including when they are uncomfortable or anxious, or need a break.

The reading curriculum is broad.

For pupils not at the stage of formal reading, other communication methods such as using symbols or articulation are practised and embedded. Leaders have identified elements of phonics to support pupils who are ready to learn to read. However, the implementation of the phonics curriculum is not consistently precise.

This is because training has not routinely focused on the phonics curriculum. As a result, pupils accessing this aspect of the curriculum are not sufficiently supported to develop their phonics knowledge with accuracy and fluency.

Behaviour in classrooms and around the school is positive.

This is because the agreed structures and systems are well communicated and implemented consistently. This forms a central part of the school's ethos and communication curriculum. Staff regularly construct activities that enable pupils to communicate with each other and enjoy time together.

Pupils are explicitly taught to respect and accept one another. Staff are alert to changes in routine that might affect pupils' well-being. For example, transitions are carefully managed to reduce anxiety as pupils move on to different settings as part of their next stage of education.

Some pupils have complex medical and emotional needs which can impact on their attendance. A team of highly focused school staff work closely with families and external agencies to support them to overcome these barriers. They carry out this work with understanding, patience and persistence.

As a result, pupils' attendance is improving.

Pupils' wider development, particularly in relation to preparation for adulthood, is well considered. The curriculum is designed to promote a sense of cultural enjoyment as well as equipping pupils to manage their physical and emotional health and safety, including when online.

Leaders ensure pupils experience enrichment opportunities with increasing independence. These include workshops, visits to the theatre, parks and seaside, as well as cookery lessons, shopping trips and work experience.

Staff feel appreciated and valued by leaders.

Many describe the team as 'a close-knit community'. They feel leaders are considerate of their workload and well-being. Those responsible for governance understand the school's strengths and priorities for further development.

They are confident to support and challenge the work of leaders to ensure the school continues to improve.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• The approach taken to phonics is not fully systematic or precise.

This means that pupils who are ready to learn to read using this approach are not consistently well supported to read with increasing accuracy, fluency and confidence. The school should ensure there is sufficient expertise to implement the curriculum consistently.


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 first ungraded inspection since we judged the school to be good in March 2018.

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