Painsley Catholic College

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About Painsley Catholic College

Name Painsley Catholic College
Ofsted Inspections
Principal Mrs Rachel Waugh
Address Station Road, Cheadle, Stoke-on-Trent, ST10 1LH
Phone Number 01538493777
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character Roman Catholic
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1310
Local Authority Staffordshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

This is a school where staff have very high academic expectations of all pupils. Younger pupils sometimes find this daunting, but they learn to value the school's rigorous approach to learning as they move through the school. Pupils rise to the school's high expectations.

They make excellent progress in all subjects and achieve high standards. They are exceptionally well prepared for their next steps when they leave the school at the end of Year 11 or Year 13.

Pupils have positive attitudes to learning.

They work hard and are keen to do well. It is rare for learning to be disrupted by inappropriate behaviour. Pupils feel safe in school.

When staff ar...e aware of issues such as bullying, they usually deal with them effectively. However, there is more to be done to ensure that pupils always seek help when they need it.

The school places a strong emphasis on pupils' personal development.

There is a wide range of extra-curricular activities that pupils embrace with enthusiasm. The enrichment programme in the sixth form is especially rich and well planned. Activities help students develop important life and employability skills that they need to fulfil their career aspirations.

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

The school has a well-established, ambitious, academic curriculum for all pupils. Typically, more than 80% of pupils in key stage 4 study the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) group of subjects. This is well above the national figure.

Pupils' learning builds strongly from year to year in all subjects. Consequently, pupils achieve high standards at the end of Year 11. This has been the case for many years.

Standards in the sixth form have improved over recent years. Students now make excellent progress.

Almost all pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities study the same curriculum as their peers.

Staff support them well and their progress exceeds that of other pupils. Disadvantaged pupils also thrive on the exacting standards expected of them.

The school has a rigorous assessment regime.

Regular assessments ensure that teachers know how well pupils are learning. They use this information well to plan future learning and to make changes to the curriculum. Leaders use assessments to provide parents with information about their children's progress.

Parents value this information.

Leaders place great emphasis on developing teachers' expertise. As a result, teachers are experts in their subjects.

They explain new content well. They skilfully provide feedback and extra support for pupils in their classes. Teachers new to the profession are supported extremely well.

They settle into the school quickly. Staff are overwhelmingly positive about working at Painsley. They appreciate the care and support that leaders provide.

Leaders promote reading well. They encourage all pupils to read. Those who find reading difficult are supported to become proficient readers.

In all subjects, teachers insist that pupils use correct vocabulary. In the sixth form, students read demanding academic texts as many prepare for study at university.

The school has clear systems for pastoral care.

Staff care deeply about pupils' welfare. Staff usually deal effectively with issues, such as bullying, when they arise. However, some pupils do not trust the school's staff or systems.

They told inspectors they are reluctant to report issues, fearing the reaction of their peers. Consequently, staff are not always aware of when there are issues that need tackling.

Aspects of the school's work to promote pupils' personal development are highly effective.

High-quality careers advice and guidance are provided throughout the school. This means that pupils make informed choices about future study. In the sixth form, staff support students well, whether they intend to move on to university, an apprenticeship or employment.

Pupils enjoy a wide variety of enrichment opportunities. They take on leadership responsibilities, and they serve the local community. Many pupils play in musical ensembles and take part in regular school shows.

The school's personal, social and health education programme is comprehensive. However, several pupils told inspectors that they would like more information about how to maintain their mental well-being. Leaders were unaware of this feeling among pupils.

Governance is effective. The board of directors and local governing body have clear remits and good lines of communication. Members of both bodies are committed to the school.

They provide good challenge and support to leaders.

Most parents are very happy with the school. However, some are not.

They do not believe that leaders always take effective action when they report issues. Leaders and governors have not engaged as well as they could with the views of these parents. Difficulties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic have contributed to this issue.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders have provided plentiful and well-focused safeguarding training for staff. Consequently, staff are alert to the signs that pupils may need extra support.

They pass on any concerns using the school's systems. Leaders deal appropriately with concerns that are brought to their attention. They involve outside agencies at the right time to ensure that pupils get the support they need.

Most pupils feel safe in school and most parents agree that their children are safe and well cared for.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Some pupils are reluctant to share their views or concerns with staff. Similarly, some parents do not believe that the school listens to them or acts on their concerns.

Consequently, leaders are sometimes unaware of concerns and some pupils and parents lose faith in the school's staff and systems. Governors and leaders should engage more effectively with the views of pupils and parents so that they have an accurate understanding of these stakeholders' concerns. They should then ensure they take effective action to address concerns when appropriate.

Also at this postcode
The Cheadle Academy

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