Middlewich High School

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About Middlewich High School

Name Middlewich High School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Ms Lydia Naylor
Address King Edward Street, Middlewich, CW10 9BU
Phone Number 01606537670
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 11-16
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 713
Local Authority Cheshire East
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders are ambitious for pupils at Middlewich High School. Pupils respond well to leaders' expectations that they should aspire, believe and belong. In recent years, leaders have considerably improved many aspects of the school.

Pupils and staff spoke positively about the changes that leaders have made.

Leaders have created an increasingly academic culture. Leaders have secured considerable improvements to the quality of education.

Pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) and those in the specially resourced provision for pupils with SEND (specially resourced provision), achieve well.

Pupils feel happy and sa...fe. Most pupils are respectful towards each other and to adults.

Pupils typically have positive attitudes to learning and behave well. However, some pupils do not always choose to behave as well as they should in lessons and around the school. Leaders have successfully established effective systems to improve the behaviour of these pupils.

Pupils explained that leaders do not tolerate bullying or the use of derogatory language. When bullying incidents occur, adults deal with these quickly and effectively. Pupils comment that they can approach staff about any worries or concerns they may have.

Pupils enjoy the range of extra-curricular clubs on offer, to develop their skills, aptitudes and interests. These activities include numerous sports and performance opportunities. For example, during the inspection, pupils were keen to share how much they were looking forward to taking part in the Christmas production.

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

Leaders and those responsible for governance have provided staff with clear direction and a suitably ambitious curriculum so that they can raise pupils' aspirations and achievement. Leaders, together with staff, are committed to providing the best quality of education that they can. Staff are keen to develop and embrace new ideas.

They have access to high-quality training opportunities that are aligned well with leaders' priorities.

Leaders have successfully supported subject leaders and teachers to ensure that the curriculum is well designed. Subject leaders have thought carefully about the key knowledge that pupils should learn and the order in which this content should be taught.

All pupils in key stage 3 study a broad range of subjects. Pupils in key stage 4 can choose from a wide range of academic and vocational courses. An increasing proportion of pupils study the English Baccalaureate suite of subjects.

Teachers, including those staff at the earlier stages of their careers, have strong subject expertise. In many subjects, teachers use their knowledge successfully to help pupils understand key concepts, ideas and skills.

Most teachers use assessment systems effectively to check on pupils' learning.

For the most part, teachers deliver the curriculum consistently well, and pupils achieve highly. However, in a small number of subjects, some teachers are still developing the most effective approaches to delivering some aspects of curriculum content. In these subjects, some pupils learn less well.

Leaders have put in place a whole-school approach to prioritise the teaching of reading. For example, pupils enjoy regular form-time reading from a diverse range of books, authors and themes. Most pupils who need help to improve their reading receive effective support from well-trained staff.

However, a small number of older pupils do not benefit from this support. This hinders how well some of these pupils access the wider curriculum.

Staff identify the additional needs of pupils with SEND quickly and accurately.

Staff use the information provided by leaders to support pupils with SEND effectively. This includes those pupils in the specially resourced provision. Pupils with SEND learn well alongside their peers and access an appropriate curriculum.

Leaders have made considerable improvements to pupils' behaviour. Most pupils focus on their learning and follow teachers' instruction diligently. However, some pupils have not adjusted to leaders' higher expectations of their behaviour.

At times, these pupils disrupt the learning of others.

Leaders have developed a strong personal development curriculum. Pupils have meaningful opportunities to discuss a wide range of issues that are important to them.

Pupils spoke knowledgeably about British values. For example, they are aware of the dangers of extremism and prejudicial behaviours. Leaders provide pupils with advice about age-appropriate relationships, sex and health education.

Pupils talked confidently about the dangers of sexual harassment and abuse.

Pupils have a growing number of enrichment options available to them. These include debating societies, reading clubs, sports, drama and music activities.

Pupils told inspectors that they were excited about their planned ski trip to Austria.

Leaders have ensured that pupils receive suitable and informative careers advice. Pupils are provided with opportunities to meet with local employers and to visit further education and sixth-form colleges in the local area.

Staff appreciate leaders' support for their well-being. They were positive about the steps that leaders take to manage their workload. Staff morale is high.

Governors skilfully support and challenge leaders to improve the quality of education that pupils receive.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

There is a strong culture of safeguarding throughout the school.

Staff are trained well to identify, recognise and respond to the signs that pupils may be at risk of harm. Staff report and follow up any concerns appropriately.

Leaders work closely with a range of external agencies.

They ensure that pupils and their families receive timely help when necessary.

Pupils receive appropriate information about how to look after their well-being. They have a secure understanding of how to keep themselves safe, such as when they are online.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Some pupils do not regulate their own behaviour as well as they should in lessons and during social times. This means that, occasionally, their behaviour disrupts the learning of their peers. Leaders should continue their work with these pupils, to secure ongoing improvements to their behaviour.

• In a very small number of subjects, some teachers are still refining how well they deliver the curriculum. This hinders how well some pupils learn in these subjects. Leaders should ensure that all teachers are equipped to deliver the curriculum consistently well.

• A small number of older pupils do not read as well as they should. This affects how well some of these pupils access the wider curriculum. Leaders should ensure that older pupils benefit fully from leaders' strategies to develop and improve their reading knowledge.

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