Epping St Johns Church of England School

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About Epping St Johns Church of England School

Name Epping St Johns Church of England School
Website http://www.eppingstjohnsschool.org/
Ofsted Inspections
Mr Michael Yerosimou
Address Bury Lane, Epping, CM16 5JB
Phone Number 01992573028
Phase Academy
Type Academy sponsor led
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character Church of England
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1015
Local Authority Essex
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils, including those in the sixth form, say there have been considerable improvements at their school. One pupil's comment that 'behaviour now is unrecognisable compared to earlier years' typifies the views of many.

The high expectations of pupils' behaviour and learning are met by pupils.

The agreed behaviour systems are well understood by pupils and most pupils respond very well. Pupils show positive attitudes to learning, especially in the impressive and growing sixth form. There remains a small number of pupils who struggle to meet these raised expectations.

Pupils establish productive working relationships with teachers. In many lessons, pupils concen...trate on their learning. Typically, they enjoy and remember much of what they study.

Pupils develop a mature understanding of the importance of education. They also gain a strong grasp of the breadth of faiths, cultures and relationships in modern society.

Pupils appreciate the work of the safeguarding team, the 'Hive' and the sixth-form pastoral team.

Pupils say that adults work hard to keep them safe. Many pupils say that adults deal firmly with the occasional incidents of bullying. However, a minority of pupils would welcome more ways to report concerns that they may have.

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

Courageous, effective leadership has brought about considerable improvements in the quality of education and care across Years 7 to 13. Leaders have focused on the 'nuts and bolts' of improving pupil behaviour, and developing the curriculum and how it is delivered. Leaders' vision that pupils develop wisdom, courage and high aspirations underpin these changes.

Leaders have set out what pupils should learn. Subject leaders make sure that pupils learn important information in the right order. This work is paying off.

Pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), learn an ambitious curriculum in most subjects.

The curriculum is taught well in many subjects. Having considered how pupils learn best, leaders changed the length and structure of lessons.

From Year 7 to Year 13, most teachers consistently follow the school's lesson format. Pupils, including those in the sixth form, know what to expect in lessons.

Teachers help pupils to make connections between different aspects of past learning.

Teachers introduce new information in manageable chunks. They make sure that pupils are clear on what they need to do. Teachers provide pupils with lots of opportunities to understand and use new facts and methods.

Teachers use assessment well to spot and help pupils who struggle with or misunderstand their work. Pupils, including those with SEND, remember plenty of what they study. There is still work to be done to ensure the curriculum is taught in line with leaders' expectations in a few subjects.

Pupils who are not fluent readers get suitable help to catch up. Additionally, teachers focus on appropriate subject-specific words in each lesson. They help pupils use this vocabulary accurately in their work.

Some teachers are piloting a new subject-specific reading approach. This is having a significant impact in subjects such as modern foreign languages. It is not yet common practice across the curriculum.

Leaders have designed programmes of study that broaden pupils' horizons. Through the curriculum, assemblies and 'drop down days' pupils develop a mature grasp of diversity. They say this helps them better understand and respect people's differences.

The school meets the requirements of the Baker Clause, which requires schools to provide pupils in Years 8 to 13 with information about approved technical education qualifications and apprenticeships. Pupils, including in the sixth form, receive suitable careers advice. Pupils are able to make well-informed decisions about their future.

The pastoral team provides pupils with appropriate support, including in dealing with mental health issues.

With effective support from BMAT (the trust) and governors, leaders improved many aspects of the school's work. Pupils and teachers say school is 'a changed place'.

The impact of the changes is evident in the good quality of education and in the calm, productive atmosphere. Very many pupils understand the importance and benefit of the changes. They say that because there is little disruption it is easier to learn.

Staff use the school's behaviour system well to manage any incidents of poorer behaviour. Incidents that lead to suspensions are falling. Occurrences of bullying are not common.

Pupils know who to turn to if they have a concern. Some pupils would like more avenues through which to report and resolve concerns they have.

Leaders gather, and respond to, the views of pupils, parents and staff.

However, given the scale of the changes and impact of the national pandemic, there is more to be done to win over the hearts and minds of a small number of pupils, parents and staff.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders have put in place robust systems to ensure pupils are safe and cared for.

Through regular questionnaires and focus groups, leaders check that pupils feel safe, and are free from bullying. Pupils are taught about risks they may face, including when working or socialising online.

Staff are alert to their responsibilities for keeping pupils, especially the most vulnerable, safe.

Adults know how to register any concerns they may have about a pupil's well-being. Leaders take appropriate action to support pupils who need additional help.

Governors and the trust check that staff undergo appropriate checks before taking up positions at the school.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Leaders have made considerable improvements to the curriculum. Some changes are new, and in a small number of subjects, teachers are not delivering the curriculum with the same level of consistency as is the case in many subjects. Leaders should continue to give these teachers the support and training so that all subjects are taught consistently well and in line with leaders' expectations.

• Incidents of bullying have fallen. Almost all pupils know who to turn to if they have a worry. A few pupils would like more ways in which to report and resolve concerns they have.

Leaders should review and make suitable amendments to the routes through which pupils can report any worries they have. ? There have been many changes for the better at the school. Leaders have raised expectations and brought about greater consistency in teaching and behaviour management.

Many pupils, parents and staff understand and value the changes, and the reasons for them. A small proportion do not. Leaders should continue to develop their processes for gathering, and making appropriate responses to, stakeholders' views on the leaders' expectations, the changes being made and their impact.

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