Richard Lander School

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About Richard Lander School

Name Richard Lander School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Stephen Mulcahy
Address Higher Besore Road, Truro, TR3 6LT
Phone Number 01872273750
Phase Secondary
Type Community school
Age Range 11-16
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1508
Local Authority Cornwall
Highlights from Latest Inspection


Richard Lander School continues to be a good school.

What is it like to attend this school?

Richard Lander School is a happy and inclusive school. Staff have high expectations of pupils and live out the school's motto of encouraging pupils to 'be the best you can be'. Pupils achieve well.

When they leave school, they are well prepared for their next steps in education or employment.

The school is calm and purposeful. Pupils are proud to attend and say that they feel safe.

Staff and pupils enjoy warm, respectful relationships. Classrooms are positive learning environments. Some incidents of bullying do take place.

However, the school takes swift and effect...ive action to resolve these.

Pupils benefit from an extensive and exciting range of extra-curricular opportunities. As well as creative arts and sports clubs, there are also large numbers of national and international trips every year.

For example, pupils talk passionately about a month spent visiting Uganda and working on building projects to support the development of a partner school. Many pupils demonstrate their teamwork and resilience by being part of the Greenpower Education Trust race-car team or participating in the Duke of Edinburgh's Award scheme. Pupils can take on leadership roles, such as being subject leaders, sports leaders or a head student.

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

The school's curriculum is varied and ambitious. Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) follow the same curriculum as their peers, with small adaptations as appropriate. The school has increased the number of pupils studying a modern foreign language at key stage 4 for the last two academic years.

This means that the school is moving closer to the government ambition for more pupils to study subjects that form part of the English Baccalaureate (EBacc).

The school's area resource base for pupils with SEND is well established. It is a welcoming and nurturing environment.

Staff are aspirational for what pupils can achieve, both academically and socially. Pupils are part of the wider school community, and many attend lessons and tutor groups alongside their peers.

The curriculum is well planned.

Subject leaders ensure that the content matches the aims of the national curriculum and is sequenced logically. Therefore, pupils gain important knowledge and build this over time. Teachers have strong subject knowledge, which allows them to deliver the curriculum successfully.

Assessment during lessons and as part of end-of-unit tests checks what pupils have remembered. However, this information is not always used judiciously to re-teach pupils or to improve the curriculum.

Pupils enjoy learning, and low-level disruption is rare.

If any incidents do occur, staff follow the behaviour policy to ensure that the learning of others is not interrupted. At social times, staff model high expectations around using the dining hall and outside spaces. There are some rare instances of anti-social behaviour.

However, staff act quickly and communicate effectively with parents and carers, so sanctions and additional support are put into place as required.

The personal development curriculum develops the self-confidence of pupils and builds the knowledge they need to keep themselves safe in the community. They learn about positive relationships, including consent, and issues related to substance misuse and online safety.

Pupils demonstrate an understanding of the protected characteristics and what it means to treat people equally. They learn about beliefs and cultures that are different from their own and engage in moral debates on topical issues.

Pupils receive effective careers guidance throughout their time at school.

They participate in work experience, post-16 meetings and visits to colleges to consider the range of options available to them.

Pupils who need additional support with their reading receive the catch-up sessions they require. They are then able to access the wider curriculum successfully.

However, there is not an established culture of reading for all pupils. Many pupils do not read widely beyond the curriculum.

Governors understand and meet their statutory responsibilities.

They check on the well-being of staff, including the headteacher. Staff say that they enjoy working at the school. They feel listened to by leaders, whom they say are approachable and considerate of their workload.

Teachers at the early stages of their career receive appropriate support and guidance.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• In some subjects, assessment is not used well enough to evaluate and improve the impact of the curriculum.

As a result, some pupils have gaps in their knowledge that persist, or they do not develop a deep enough understanding of key concepts. The school should ensure that assessment is used effectively in all subjects. ? The school has not fully developed a culture in which pupils read for pleasure.

As a result, most pupils do not read widely beyond the academic curriculum. The school should ensure that pupils read a rich and diverse range of texts to improve the culture of reading for pleasure.


When we have judged a school to be good, we will then normally go into the school about once every four years to confirm that the school remains good.

This is called an ungraded inspection, and it is carried out under section 8 of the Education Act 2005. We do not give graded judgements on an ungraded inspection. However, if we find evidence that a school would now receive a higher or lower grade, then the next inspection will be a graded inspection, which is carried out under section 5 of the Act.

Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the ungraded inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will deem the ungraded inspection a graded inspection immediately.

This is the second ungraded inspection since we judged the school to be good in March 2015.

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