Irlam and Cadishead Academy

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About Irlam and Cadishead Academy

Name Irlam and Cadishead Academy
Ofsted Inspections
Mr Chris Leader
Address Station Road, Irlam, Manchester, M44 5ZR
Phone Number 01615370660
Phase Academy
Type Academy sponsor led
Age Range 11-16
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 682
Local Authority Salford
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils are happy in this tight-knit school community where they benefit from strong pastoral support.

They have strong relationships with staff and feel safe.

The school has high expectations of its pupils. In particular, expectations around behaviour have risen.

Consequently, pupils' attitudes to learning are positive. In lessons, pupils follow the school's routines diligently. Many staff and pupils commented that pupils' behaviour is much improved and that learning is rarely disturbed.

In the past, some pupils did not achieve as well as they should. However, the school now has an ambitious curriculum that is delivered effectively. As a result, curr...ent pupils achieve well in most subjects.

Pupils are respectful. This is typified by the care and respect that they show to each other, their learning and the school building. The school instils self-belief into pupils.

For instance, the weekly 'proud' table encourages pupils to celebrate their work. Moreover, pupils also develop their oracy skills and can articulate why they are proud of their work.

There is a wealth of clubs on offer that cater for a wide range of pupils' interests.

For example, the lunchtime board games club is a hive of activity, with friendly competition between pupils and staff. The carbon research club has an ambitious mission to make the school carbon zero. Many pupils also enjoy the e-sports clubs.

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

Historically, pupils have not achieved well in this school. The published outcomes in 2023 were low. This is due to the legacy of a weaker curriculum.

However, the school has been on a journey of improvement over recent years. Pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) now benefit from a broad and ambitious curriculum. The school has clearly identified the important knowledge that pupils should know and the order in which it should be taught.

This is helping current pupils to achieve well.

Staff development has been a key ingredient to improve the quality of education in the school. Teachers use their subject expertise well to explain learning clearly.

Typically, there is a consistent approach to the delivery of the curriculum.

In some subjects, teachers use assessment methods effectively to check what pupils know. However, in a small number of subjects, teachers do not systematically check whether pupils have understood their learning.

As a result, some pupils have gaps in their knowledge which are not addressed. That said, most pupils make progress in their learning. They know and remember more.

This is evident from the high-quality work that they produce and in how well they talked about their learning.The school now accurately identifies any additional needs that a pupil may have. Staff skilfully adapt learning to meet these pupils' needs.

This helps pupils with SEND to achieve well.

There are a significant number of pupils who struggle with reading. Some of those pupils are supported successfully to improve their reading.

However, there are still too many pupils, particularly those who are at the early stages of reading in key stage 4, who do not receive appropriate support. This hampers them from being able to access the curriculum successfully.

There is a calm atmosphere in the school.

Pupils follow the school rules consistently and they behave well. This academic year, there has been a significant reduction in the number of negative behaviour incidents. Most pupils now attend school regularly.

The school's work with families has secured improvements in attendance for some groups of pupils.

Pupils are successfully prepared for their next steps. The well-thought-out careers provision helps pupils to link subjects with careers.

Pupils' aspirations are high. The school provides many opportunities for pupils' wider development. The carefully considered personal, social, health, economic and citizenship education curriculum helps to grow pupils' understanding of society.

Pupils are accepting of difference. They enjoy visits to different places of worship. Pupils keenly take up positions of responsibility such as student principal, prefects and mentors.

The school has benefited immensely from working closely with the trust. The trustees and governors have an accurate insight into the school. They support the school well and challenge it to be even better.

Staff are overwhelmingly positive about working in the school. They appreciate the planning days which help them to manage their workload effectively.


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, teachers do not use assessment strategies effectively to check how well pupils have learned the curriculum. As a result, some pupils' misconceptions and gaps in knowledge are not addressed. The school should ensure that teachers systematically check whether pupils have learned the intended content so that any gaps in pupils' learning can be addressed.

• Some pupils in Years 9 to 11 who struggle with reading do not receive the help that they need to catch up. This means that some pupils have gaps in their reading knowledge, which prevents them from accessing the curriculum effectively. The school should ensure that pupils who need additional help with reading receive high-quality support to enable them to improve their fluency and confidence.

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