Priory School

Name Priory School
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Address Hermitage Road, Upper Norwood, London, SE19 3QN
Phone Number 02086538222
Type Special
Age Range 11-19
Religious Character Does Not Apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 132 (71.2% boys 28.8% girls)
Local Authority Croydon
Percentage Free School Meals 48%
Percentage English is Not First Language 44.6%
Persisitent Absence 22.1%
Pupils with SEN Support 2.5%
Catchment Area Indicator Available No
Last Distance Offered Available No
Highlights from Latest Full Inspection (14 November 2013)
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Information about this school

Priory School is a special school that caters for students aged 11 to 19 with severe learning difficulties. Many of the students have associated complex difficulties. 43% of the students have needs that are on the autistic spectrum. All of the students have a statement of special educational needs. The students come from a range of ethnic backgrounds reflecting the composition of the borough. White British students make up approximately a quarter of the school roll and are the largest ethnic group. Most of the other students come from Black Caribbean, African or Asian heritages. Around 45% of the students are known to be eligible for additional funding through the pupil premium grant. The pupil premium is an additional sum of money provided by the government to support students known to be eligible for free school meals, children looked after by the local authority and those from service families; there were none from service families at the time of the inspection. The school is currently housed on two sites. The sixth form has been relocated to a site within walking distance of the provision for Key Stages 3 and 4.

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is a good school. The new headteacher is ambitious for the school and is ably supported by the deputy headteacher in making improvements. Leadership of teaching is rigorous and has led to continuous improvement in its quality since the last inspection. This has led to students enjoying lessons more and making better rates of progress. All groups of students make good progress. They achieve particularly well in developing their social and communication skills. The sixth form is good. Students enjoy a seamless transition from younger classes and are joined by students from other schools. All students continue to make good progress and are well prepared for life beyond school. Students benefit from teaching which is mostly good and sometimes outstanding. A small amount of teaching requires improvement. Students enjoy their learning. They are courteous and behave well in lessons and around the school. Students with behavioural difficulties make continuous progress in developing more acceptable behaviour, as a result of sensitive and skilled support from all staff. The governing body is highly supportive of the school and knows it well. Through support and challenge, it helps improvement in all aspects of the school’s work. It is not yet an outstanding school because: While teaching is good not enough of it is yet outstanding. In some lessons students whose needs are on the autistic spectrum do not take part fully in learning. In some lessons, support staff do not enable all students to become more independent in their learning. Full opportunities to teach literacy and numeracy are not always made in some lessons across the curriculum.