Highams Park School

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About Highams Park School

Name Highams Park School
Website http://www.highamsparkschool.co.uk
Ofsted Inspections
Principal Nigel Armsby
Address 34 Handsworth Avenue, Highams Park, London, E4 9PJ
Phone Number 02085274051
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character None
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1534
Local Authority Waltham Forest
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

There is a warm and friendly atmosphere at this school. Pupils are well-cared for by dedicated staff who take time to get to know their pupils well. Leaders are ambitious for pupils' learning and pupils have many opportunities to learn from visiting speakers and to hear about a wide range of careers.

Pupils in Years 10 and 12 benefit from an extensive work experience programme. The sixth form is a key strength of the school. Students achieve very well in their sixth form studies and benefit from an extensive range of wider opportunities preparing them well for adulthood and further study.

The recent actions of leaders have led to a noticeable improvement in behaviour.... In lessons, behaviour rarely disrupts learning. Pupils know the rules and, overall, they follow them.

This is helping teachers to deliver the curriculum more effectively.

Pupils are taught how to be good citizens and how to take care of their physical and mental health. They contribute to charities and learn about the work of organisations supporting those in need.

Older pupils are trained to support younger ones with their reading. Many pupils successfully complete their Duke of Edinburgh Award and Sports Leadership Award.

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

The new leadership team have been highly effective in achieving positive changes in behaviour across the school.

Leaders have identified the right actions and have worked at pace. Behaviour in lessons and around the school is typically calm and focused. Pupils are very clear about the rules.

Where pupils do not meet leaders' high expectations for behaviour, prompt and robust action is taken. This has also had a positive impact on staff who welcome and support the new behaviour system. Staff are proud to work here and are very positive about the new leadership.

Relationships between staff and pupils are warm and respectful.

While behaviour rarely disrupts learning, a few pupils are not making as much progress as they should. These pupils do not have the same positive attitudes towards their learning as their peers.

This is not consistently identified and addressed by staff. In the sixth form students approach their work with diligence and commitment.

There is a well-sequenced and ambitious curriculum in place across a broad range of subjects.

The curriculum is equally ambitious for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). This allows pupils a choice of academic, technical and vocational courses, including in the sixth form. Students in the sixth form achieve very well.

They have highly positive attitudes towards their education. This is because teachers set high expectations for students' learning and consistently check they are learning the key knowledge needed. Teachers are precise in ensuring that students apply subject-specific vocabulary appropriately.

Where gaps are identified, these are addressed. Lower down the school, there is not as much consistency across subjects in terms of assessment. In some subjects, the quality of work in pupils' books is variable.

This includes for some pupils with SEND.

In many subjects, pupils build their subject knowledge with increasing complexity over time. For example, in geography, pupils are encouraged to use subject-specific vocabulary when comparing country demographics.

This helps pupils to develop the skills and confidence to 'speak like a geographer'. In citizenship, pupils first learn how young people are protected by the law in relation to child labour. This provides the foundation for learning about the British criminal justice system and the age of criminal responsibility.

This prepares pupils to tackle more complex issues such as youth violence later in their studies.

Reading is a priority across the school. There is a new programme in place to support pupils to read with greater fluency and accuracy.

Progress is carefully checked to ensure that pupils have the support they need. This programme is in the early stages of implementation but the impact so far has been very positive.

The school has a broad and relevant programme of learning and opportunities to support pupils' personal development.

An ambitious curriculum helps pupils to develop the knowledge and skills needed to make safe and responsible choices. This is particularly strong in the sixth form where students have many opportunities to contribute actively to their school and to wider society. This includes taking part in the annual charity walk.

The actions of leaders, with the support of the governing body have led to an improvement in attendance. There is a robust system in place to address poor attendance and leaders demonstrate a strong commitment to providing the support needed to pupils and families to ensure that attendance continues to improve over time.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Sometimes in key stages 3 and 4, teachers do not routinely check that pupils have understood the learning before moving on. This means that errors and misconceptions are missed and that some pupils are not able to make connections in their learning over time. The school should ensure that teachers check pupils' understanding and address any aspects that pupils are finding difficult.

• The quality of work in pupils' books is variable. This is because sometimes expectations for the subject are not clearly set out and insisted upon. This slows progress and means some pupils do not develop the disciplinary rigour they should.

Leaders should ensure that expectations are clearly communicated to pupils and followed up with consistency. ? Leaders have rightly focused their attention on improving behaviour. This has had a positive impact.

However, a small proportion of pupils are disinterested in learning and have poor attitudes to their education. This is not consistently picked up and addressed by staff. Leaders should ensure that staff identify pupils who are not participating in the lesson and provide the support needed to ensure that these pupils engage in the curriculum and gain the confidence to seek help when they need it.

Also at this postcode
Bright Horizons Highams Park Day Nursery and Preschool YMCA Before And After School Club @ Handsworth Primary Handsworth SSS Sports Camp Handsworth Primary School

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