Edgar Wood Academy

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About Edgar Wood Academy

Name Edgar Wood Academy
Website http://www.edgarwood.org
Ofsted Inspections
Mr Paul Jones
Address Heywood Old Road, Heywood, OL10 2QN
Phone Number 01616769620
Phase Academy
Type Free schools
Age Range 11-16
Religious Character None
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 295
Local Authority Rochdale
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Most pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), feel happy and safe at Edgar Wood Academy. They are well cared for by staff.

The trust and the school have high expectations for pupils' academic achievement. However, some pupils do not achieve as well as they should. This is because, while the curriculum is ambitious, it is not delivered consistently well.

As a result, across a range of subjects pupils' learning is uneven.

The trust has recently worked with the school to put in place a new behaviour policy. Most pupils settle into lessons and follow new classroom routines well.

Nonetheless, the school's new syst...ems for managing pupils' behaviour are not as effective as they should be. At times, some pupils continue to misbehave and do not engage with their learning.

Pupils enjoy taking part in different clubs.

For example, they relish opportunities to learn how to crochet, write short stories and develop their debating skills. Pupils take pride in leading projects that help the community. For instance, they like to write and send cards to local elderly residents and raise money for different charities.

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

The school works closely with the trust to ensure that the curriculum is broad and accessible to all pupils, including those with SEND. In most subjects, the curriculum is carefully designed to identify the key knowledge that pupils should learn and in which order this content should be taught. However, weaknesses in the delivery of the curriculum hinder how well pupils build on their prior knowledge in different subjects.

In some subjects, teachers use their strong subject knowledge to expand pupils' vocabulary. They explain concepts to pupils with clarity and confidence. Typically, pupils achieve well in these subjects.

In other subjects, however, the school has not ensured that teachers have sufficient expertise to deliver the curriculum effectively. For example, the learning activities that teachers select do not enable pupils to acquire a secure body of subject-specific knowledge over time. This means that some pupils do not learn in these subjects as well as they should.

In those subjects where the curriculum is delivered well, teachers use assessment strategies skilfully. Over time, they check pupils' knowledge and adapt the delivery of the curriculum to address pupils' misconceptions effectively. In other subjects, where the delivery of the curriculum is less effective, teachers are not equipped to identify where pupils have gaps in their learning.

Staff use robust systems to identify and respond to the precise needs of pupils with SEND. Nevertheless, the achievement of some pupils with SEND is hampered by weaknesses in some teachers' delivery of the curriculum.

The school identify and support pupils who have gaps in their reading knowledge.

Many of these pupils are reading with increasing confidence and fluency. Pupils are encouraged to read more widely and discuss the books that they have read. This increases their enjoyment of reading and inspires them to read for pleasure.

Most pupils are polite and respectful. However, despite the school's efforts, a small number of pupils persistently display disruptive behaviour. At times, staff do not receive the guidance and strategies that they need to address these behaviour issues effectively.

On occasion, the poor behaviour of a small number of pupils slows down the learning of their peers.

The programme to promote pupils' wider development is strong. Pupils learn about the importance of the fundamental British values.

They understand and respect the different opinions and beliefs that others may hold. Pupils know how to look after themselves when under stress or if they are sad. They enjoy using the school gymnasium to improve their physical fitness.

Pupils visit a range of universities and colleges to learn about future education or employment choices. These experiences help to raise pupils' aspirations.

Members of the local governing body and trustees are at the early stages of improving their work with the school.

At times, they do not have sufficient information to challenge the school as rigorously as they should. In some areas, this has occasionally delayed the actions taken to make improvements. The school and the trust are increasingly mindful of the impact of policy change on staff's workload.

Most staff value the support that they receive and enjoy working at the school.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• In some subjects, the curriculum is not delivered skilfully and effectively.

This means that pupils do not build on their learning as securely as they should in these subjects. This also hinders teachers from identifying and addressing pupils' misconceptions as quickly as they should. The school should ensure that teachers are suitably equipped to design learning that supports pupils to build on what they know already and check that this knowledge is secure.

• A small number of pupils' poor behaviour is not sufficiently addressed. This means that some pupils continue to misbehave and, occasionally, disrupt the learning of others. The school should develop effective behaviour systems that help staff to manage pupils' behaviour consistently well.

• At times, trustees and local governors do not gather enough information to hold the school to account as effectively as they should. This limits the effectiveness of actions taken to tackle weaknesses in the school. Trustees and local governors should work closely with the school so that necessary improvements can be made swiftly and effectively.

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