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They wear their uniform with pride. Leaders have high expectations of pupils' behaviour. In the main, this ensures a calm and purposeful learning environment for pupils.
Pupils benefit from being part of a diverse and respectful school community. For the most part, staff have fostered positive and trusting relationships with pupils. Pupils told inspectors that there are staff that they can talk to if they have any worries.
Any bullying incidents are taken seriously by leaders and dealt with quickly. This helps pupils to feel safe in school.
Pupils enjoy a range of extra-curricular activities, including debating... and sports.
Pupils participate in the Duke of Edinburgh's Award scheme. Leaders also arrange community events for pupils and their families, such as choir performances and organising collections for a local foodbank.
In the past, pupils did not achieve as well as they should.
Now, due to leaders' raised expectations and a suitable curriculum, pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), are successful learners who know and remember more over time.
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Leaders, including trustees, are ambitious for all pupils. This includes disadvantaged pupils and those pupils with SEND.
Leaders have placed the needs and interests of pupils at the heart of their curriculum thinking.
The Year 11 pupils who left the school in 2022 were unable to benefit fully from leaders' improvements to the curriculum. As a result, some of these pupils did not achieve as well as they should in a small number of subjects.
However, these results do not reflect how well pupils currently at the school are learning. The redesigned curriculum means that pupils achieve well overall.
At key stage 4, pupils can study the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) suite of subjects alongside a range of vocational and creative subjects.
Pupils pursue their interests and progress on to a range of suitable education, employment and training opportunities. An increasing proportion of pupils, including disadvantaged pupils, are choosing to study the EBacc suite of subjects.
Leaders have identified the important knowledge that they want pupils to know and remember.
They have ordered learning carefully to allow pupils to build their knowledge logically over time. Teachers are experts in their subjects and they use their subject knowledge well to devise appropriate learning activities for pupils.In the main, teachers use assessment strategies well to identify any gaps in pupils' learning.
They adapt their delivery of the curriculum to revisit and consolidate those aspects of pupils' learning that are less secure. However, in a few subjects, some teachers do not identify and address pupils' misconceptions effectively enough.
Leaders have strengthened their systems to identify the additional needs of pupils with SEND.
Teachers receive appropriate information about the needs of these pupils. They use this information to adapt how they deliver the curriculum, so that, for the most part, pupils with SEND learn the curriculum well.
Many pupils arrive at the school without the knowledge that they need to read fluently and accurately.
Leaders identify these pupils quickly. They have designed a carefully considered catch-up programme to provide struggling readers with appropriate support. This programme is helping these pupils to learn to read with confidence.
That said, some older pupils, who did not benefit from this support when they joined the school, still find reading difficult. This hampers their progress across the curriculum.
Teachers' consistent application of leaders' behaviour policy means that learning is rarely disrupted by poor behaviour.
Occasionally, a small number of pupils struggle to manage their behaviour. These pupils receive appropriate support to improve their behaviour over time.
Pupils benefit from a carefully thought-out and age-appropriate programme to promote their personal development.
For example, they successfully learn about tolerance, respect, healthy relationships and online safety. Leaders ensure that wider opportunities are open to all. This is helping leaders to tackle disadvantage through the range of extra-curricular provision and visits.
Pupils are positive about the helpful careers education that they receive. They feel supported to make well-informed decisions about their next steps.
Governors and trustees are knowledgeable about the quality of education provided by leaders.
They hold leaders to account effectively for the school's performance. Staff feel respected and valued by leaders. Most staff feel that leaders are mindful of their workload and well-being.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
There is a strong culture of safeguarding across the school. Staff are well trained to identify those pupils who might be at risk of harm.
Staff are vigilant. They understand the procedures that they should follow to record and report any concerns. Leaders respond quickly and appropriately to any safeguarding issues that are reported.
Leaders work closely with external organisations to secure additional support for pupils and their families when required.
Leaders are alert to local safeguarding issues. They are well informed about potential risks to pupils.
They use this information appropriately to support the design of the personal, social, health and economic education curriculum. Pupils are aware of potential risks that they may face online and in the community. They learn how to keep themselves safe.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
• Some teachers do not identify and address pupils' misconceptions or forgotten learning effectively enough in a few subjects. As a result, some pupils do not learn as well as they should. Leaders should ensure that all teachers routinely check that pupils have learned and remembered the important knowledge and address any gaps or misconceptions promptly.
• A small proportion of older pupils do not receive the support that they need to catch up quickly in reading. This prevents these pupils from accessing the full curriculum and achieving as well as they should. Leaders should ensure that these pupils benefit from appropriate support to catch up quickly in reading and access the full curriculum.
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