Ivel Valley School & College

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About Ivel Valley School & College

Name Ivel Valley School & College
Website http://www.ivelvalley.beds.sch.uk
Ofsted Inspections
Principal Mr Joe Creswick
Address Hitchmead Road, Biggleswade, SG18 0NL
Phone Number 01767601010
Phase Special
Type Community special school
Age Range 3-19
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 243
Local Authority Central Bedfordshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is a good school.

The headteacher and senior leaders provide strong leadership. Other managers and governors make a good contribution to the leadership of teaching, achievement and school improvement. Pupils behave well and have positive attitudes to learning.

They feel safe in school and there are good procedures for keeping them secure. Achievement is good and most pupils make at least the expected amount of progress. The Early Years Foundation Stage is good.

Children benefit from the facilities they share with the neighbouring nursery school and they make good progress. The sixth form is good. More-able students in the sixth form make outstand...ing progress.

They benefit from excellent opportunities to take part in work-related learning and college courses. This helps them to prepare for the next stage of their lives. Teaching and the curriculum are matched well to pupils' needs and interests.

Having a number of classes located in mainstream schools provides pupils with very good opportunities to socialise with mainstream pupils. The promotion of spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is good. It is not yet an outstanding school because : Teachers do not always give pupils enough opportunity to develop their writing skills.

Marking and approaches to assessment are not consistently good across the school. Assessment in the prime areas of learning (personal, social and emotional development, communication and language and physical development) in the Early Years Foundation Stage and for pupils with profound and multiple learning difficulties does not capture very small steps of progress. Guidance to parents on how to support their children's learning in the Early Years Foundation Stage is not as clear as it could be.

In the sixth form, students with severe learning difficulties and those with profound and multiple learning difficulties have limited opportunities to learn about the world of work.

Information about this school

This is a school for pupils with autistic spectrum disorders, behavioural, social and emotional difficulties, moderate learning difficulties, severe learning difficulties and profound and multiple learning difficulties. All pupils have complex needs and a statement of special educational needs or an education, health and care plan.

The school operates on two main sites, serving the needs of primary and secondary-aged pupils. Additionally, there are five Ivel Valley satellite classes based at local mainstream schools. Children in the Early Years Foundation Stage and most pupils at Key Stage 1 are based at the neighbouring Lawns Nursery.

A class of pupils at Key Stage 2 is based at Langford Lower School and a class of pupils spanning Key Stages 2 and 3 is based at Biggleswade Academy. Two classes, for students at Key Stage 4 and in the sixth form, are based at Stratton Upper School. The proportion of pupils eligible for the pupil premium is a little above average.

(This is government funding for pupils known to be eligible for free school meals or who are looked after by the local authority.) The school employs the equivalent of two full-time teachers who provide outreach support and an autistic spectrum disorders advisory service to mainstream schools on behalf of the local authority. Currently, the teachers are working with four upper schools, nine middle schools and 39 lower schools.

The school works in close partnership with the Children with Disabilities Team, which is based at the Ivel Valley Hub on the primary site. The school manages the Early Years Support Service on behalf of the local authority. A number of students in the sixth form attend Bedford College or North Herts College for part of their time and undertake extended work experience placements for a day each week.

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