This is an outstanding school Since the last inspection, the headteacher, senior and middle leaders have been relentless in their drive to improve the effectiveness of this outstanding school. Leaders have developed a curriculum which is rich and varied and well organised to meet the needs of pupils with a wide range of starting points. The headteacher's vision and dedication have created a community where there is strong teamwork and a constant ambition to improve.
As a result, there is a culture of high expectations, which is deeply embedded in all aspects of the work of the school. Teaching is consistently strong, and often outstanding, as a result of well-planned l...essons and work which is closely matched to pupils' needs. Teachers' high expectations are matched by pupils' work and pride in achievements.
Pupils' progress is closely checked, and leaders act promptly to ensure that pupils make consistently strong progress. Following a pilot project, leaders have established a sixth form for those students who are not ready to leave school at the end of key stage 4. Students in the sixth form make strong progress and are well prepared for the next step in their education, training or employment.
Since the last inspection, more pupils with complex needs attend the school. In response, leaders have revised the curriculum, the organisation of teaching, learning and assessment, and have supported staff to develop their skills through an extensive programme of continuing professional development. Pupils' behaviour is excellent throughout the school.
Pupils are friendly, kind and courteous to one another, and enjoy respectful relationships with staff and visitors. On the very few occasions when a pupil's behaviour affects their learning, they are quickly helped to return to lessons through the sensitive support of the behaviour and inclusion team. Governors are proud and ambitious for the school and provide strong and effective leadership.
They are well supported by school leaders to understand information about the school's performance and the priorities for development. They analyse information in detail and challenge leaders robustly. Parents and carers have confidence in the headteacher and the staff team.
They describe strong working partnerships with the staff and value the regular feedback about their child's progress. Parents describe the school as 'brilliant' and say that the staff 'go above and beyond'.
Information about this school
Ravenshall School is an all-age special school for children and young people with complex learning difficulties.
Most pupils have additional speech, language and communication difficulties; some pupils have additional needs such as autism. All pupils have an education, health and care plan. Since the last full inspection, the school has opened a sixth form for those pupils who are not ready to move on to continuing education, employment or training.
The proportion of pupils supported through the pupil premium (additional funding for pupils known to be eligible for free school meals and those looked after by the local authority) is much higher than the national average. Although the school provides for pupils aged 5–19 years, most pupils are in the secondary department. A small number of pupils stay at school at the end of key stage 4 and transfer to the school's sixth form.
Boys outnumber girls, and the proportion of pupils from minority ethnic groups and pupils who speak English as an additional language is above the national average. Ravenshall School is a national support school. Staff and governors provide support to other schools in the local authority and the wider region.
The headteacher and two middle leaders are leaders of education. Two governors are national leaders of governance. The school has a wide range of awards and accreditations, including the gold standard for Investors in People, which recognises the quality of its work and commitment to its employees.