Nailsea School

Name Nailsea School
Ofsted Inspection Rating Requires improvement
Address Mizzymead Road, Nailsea, Bristol, BS48 2HN
Phone Number 01275852251
Type Academy
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character Does Not Apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1026 (50.1% boys 49.9% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 16.2
Academy Sponsor Wessex Learning Trust
Local Authority North Somerset
Percentage Free School Meals 10.1%
Percentage English is Not First Language 2.7%
Persistent Absence 13.8%
Pupils with SEN Support 16.4%
Catchment Area Indicator Available Yes
Last Distance Offered Available No
Highlights from Latest Full Inspection (11 March 2020)
There may have been more recent inspections such as monitoring visits or short inspections. For details of all inspections, please view this provider on our map here.

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils are proud of their school. They enjoy their lessons and find staff approachable. Pupils are kind to one another and respect each other’s differences. As a result, there are few incidents of bullying. Pupils feel safe at the school. They are comfortable talking to members of staff when there may be a problem. Pupils say that staff work hard to resolve any issues they may have.

However, the quality of education that pupils receive is not good enough. Consequently, pupils do not learn as well as they should. Too often, sequences of learning are not planned well enough in order to ensure that pupils can learn and remember more. Teachers do not demand enough of pupils so that they achieve their best.Pupils’ behaviour is good in class and at social times. Pupils work diligently and listen carefully to instructions. They respect the school rules and the established routines. Consequently, the school is both calm and productive. Staff trust pupils. Pupils show respect for and make the most of facilities, including specialist science laboratories, an industrial kitchen and a dance studio. Many pupils participate in after-school clubs and play for school sports teams.

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

The headteacher and governors have a clear vision of what they want to achieve for the pupils. However, the quality of education that pupils receive is not good enough. Senior leaders have not had a tight enough focus on checking how well the curriculum is planned and implemented. They have not supported curriculum leaders well enough or held them sharply to account. Leaders and governors know that pupils do not achieve as well as they should and are working with teaching staff to improve this.

In the past, some pupils have not studied the range of subjects that will help them realise the plans they have for their future. In response, leaders have increased the number of subjects that pupils may study in key stage 4. As a result, the majority of pupils now choose to study a modern language and history or geography.

The curriculum is not delivered well enough in many subjects. Pupils learn more in some subjects than others. In some subjects, such as science, teachers’ plans do not match pupils’ abilities well enough. Too often, teachers have given insufficient thought about how pupils build up their knowledge over time. Furthermore, teachers do not always have high expectations of what pupils can achieve. This means that the curriculum goals are not challenging enough, particularly for pupils who have achieved highly at their primary school. As a result, pupils do not make the progress they should and often struggle to remember what they have been taught. Conversely, when curriculum plans are carefully thought out, for example in physical education, pupils’ needs are met well.

Disadvantaged pupils also do not learn as well as they should. Teachers do not give enough thought to meeting the needs of this group of pupils in their plans. Consequently, in some subjects, these pupils fall behind in their learning.

Senior leaders work with the community to create an inclusive school. ‘The Hub’ supports pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). These pupils are frequently taught in small groups by specialist teachers. Pupils appreciate having quieter spaces to go to during breaktimes and lunchtime. They enjoy attending school and most learn well.

Leaders have ensured that a well-thought-out personal, social and health education programme is supporting pupils to help them become good citizens. Leaders further support the curriculum through assemblies, visiting speakers and school trips. In tutor time, pupils enjoy debating key issues, such as climate change and poverty. They also appreciate the good careers support offered by the school.

Many pupils stay on to the sixth form. The sixth form supports students well in their learning and next steps. Many subjects are taught by teachers who have strong subject knowledge and the curriculum is well thought out. These teachers provide challenging tasks with opportunities for discussion and debate. As a result, students achieve well. Furthermore, students appreciate the supervised study. They feel that this and the support of their form tutors makes sure that they stay on track in all aspects of their learning.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

The school keeps pupils safe and has a very knowledgeable safeguarding team. They train staff well to ensure that safeguarding issues are quickly attended to. Most pupils are confident to say when they feel unsafe. Furthermore, safeguarding leaders work well with professionals outside the school. As a result, pupils and parents get the support they need.

Parents, pupils and staff receive regular safeguarding updates. For example, termly bulletins provide useful information on local issues as well as wider safeguarding issues, such as extremism.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

Leaders do not monitor and evaluate the impact of some of their improvement strategies effectively, particularly regarding the curriculum. As a result, leaders and governors do not always know quickly enough what strategies work and what do not. As a result, improvements to the quality of education have been too slow.Leaders need to ensure that strategies are in place to appropriately monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of the curriculum to improve the quality of education. . The curriculum is not demanding enough for its pupils. Staff’s expectations of what pupils can achieve are too low for some pupils, particularly higher attaining pupils. Consequently, these pupils do not achieve as well as they should in many areas. Leaders need to ensure that appropriate strategies are in place to enable pupils to learn more and remember more. . Disadvantaged pupils do not achieve well. Staff know who the disadvantaged pupils in their classes are. However, they are not clear on what needs to happen to effectively support them academically. Consequently, these pupils do not achieve as well as they should. Leaders need to ensure that appropriate strategies are in place to support disadvantaged pupils to make the progress they should.