Dane Court Grammar School

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About Dane Court Grammar School

Name Dane Court Grammar School
Website http://danecourt.kent.sch.uk/
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Martin Jones
Address Broadstairs Road, Broadstairs, CT10 2RT
Phone Number 01843864941
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character None
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1236
Local Authority Kent
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders have made it their priority to provide a broad and ambitious curriculum for all pupils, regardless of their starting points.

Pupils respond positively to the high expectations that staff have. They know that staff want the best for them, and they value the support their teachers provide.

Pupils describe their school community as open and inclusive.

They enjoy a range of subjects and in many cases, confidently discuss their learning. Skilled teachers support pupils to meet broad and ambitious aims that extend beyond the academic curriculum. Pupils benefit from a range of clubs and extra-curricular activities on offer.

As a result, many pupils ...have experiences of leadership, sporting success and achievement in the arts.

Pupils behave well in lessons and during social times. They feel safe and are proud members of the school.

Most pupils feel that bullying is dealt with effectively. However, a small number of pupils are not as confident.

Parents are positive about the work of staff at the school.

One parent said, 'My child has really thrived in this school in all areas of his life'. Parents recognise the actions that leaders are taking to promote high aspirations throughout the school. Of the pupils who stay at the school for sixth form, most excel.

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

The headteacher, trust leaders and governors demonstrate a strong commitment to improving the life chances of all pupils at the school. Leaders have high expectations of all pupils to work hard and try their best. Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are provided with the support they need to achieve well.

Leaders have also prioritised disadvantaged pupils' access to high-quality education and wider opportunities within school.

Teachers, including those who teach in the sixth form, have excellent subject knowledge. Recent staff training has focused on improving teaching approaches within lessons and this has helped to improve the consistency of teaching across the school.

Leaders have identified ambitious end points for curriculum subjects. However, in mathematics and physical education (PE), it is not yet clear how these have been broken down to clearly identify what pupils are expected to know and remember before they move on to the next steps of their learning journey. In other subjects, leaders are in the process of reviewing the content and sequence of teaching.

For example, in history there are plans to reconsider topics from the national curriculum, that are not currently part of the school's history curriculum, to better prepare pupils for key stage 4 study.

At key stage 4, leaders' ambition that a higher proportion of pupils are entered for the English Baccalaureate is evident. In some subjects, including English, the curriculum plans go far beyond specific content that pupils will later be examined in.

The texts pupils study are carefully selected to teach essential knowledge pupils need to be thoughtful and well-informed citizens.

Students in the sixth form are highly ambitious and are well supported by staff to achieve positive outcomes. There is a strong academic focus and breadth of ambition provided through the International Baccalaureate programme.

High proportions of students leave the sixth form to study at a higher level.

Leaders have implemented detailed plans of what pupils will be taught in personal, social and health education (PSHE). They respond carefully to the context and what pupils demonstrate that they know and remember to ensure the programme of study meets pupils' needs.

The school's values are also carefully woven through these plans. Most pupils feel well informed about careers and their next steps. However, some pupils would like more guidance relating to vocational routes and a broader range of careers.

There is further training in place for staff teaching PSHE to ensure that all pupils feel well supported to engage in sensitive topics and remember what they have been taught.

Pupils' behaviour and attitudes to learning are positive. Pupils, including those in sixth form, know the school's values and rules and they respond well to the behaviour policy.

There are positive relationships between peers and staff and learning is not disrupted by poor behaviour. Some pupils feel that incidents of bullying are not dealt with effectively in school. Where bullying incidents have been recorded, they have been responded to appropriately.

Leaders and those responsible for governance are reflective and use their links with other schools and networks effectively to raise standards for all. Staff feel that leaders consider their workload and well-being. They are confident that leaders will listen to any concerns that they might have.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

There is a whole-school approach to safeguarding. The systems in place for keeping pupils safe are effective.

Staff are kept up to date with regular and specific training. They are alert to possible risks pupils might face and are clear about the appropriate actions to take. More recently a small number of sixth-form students have been trained as mental health ambassadors to provide additional opportunities to support younger pupils.

Leaders follow up on any reported concerns swiftly and effectively. A very small number of written records require further clarity. Leaders work appropriately with external agencies in a timely manner to ensure pupils receive the help they need.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• In some subjects what pupils need to know and remember has not been explicitly identified or sufficiently detailed. This means that some pupils are not achieving as well as they could because curriculum documentation is not clear enough about the key knowledge that pupils are expected to remember. Leaders need to ensure that each curriculum subject is planned and sequenced to include new knowledge and skills that clearly builds on what has been taught before and towards clearly defined end points.

• Some pupils in the school shared concerns about how bullying is dealt with. They are not all confident that staff respond effectively to their concerns. Leaders must evaluate the current approaches they use to communicate important messages to pupils to ensure all pupils that their concerns will be handled appropriately.

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