St Bede’s Roman Catholic High School, Blackburn

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About St Bede’s Roman Catholic High School, Blackburn

Name St Bede’s Roman Catholic High School, Blackburn
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Daniel Milton
Address Green Lane, Blackburn, BB2 4SR
Phone Number 01254202519
Phase Secondary
Type Voluntary aided school
Age Range 11-16
Religious Character Roman Catholic
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1057
Local Authority Blackburn with Darwen
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils enjoy coming to this school. They said that they are happy and that they feel safe. Pupils are respectful of each other and the staff in the school.

Sometimes pupils fall out. However, pupils, parents and carers told inspectors that when bullying does happen, staff deal with it effectively. Pupils know that staff will listen to them if they have any worries or concerns.

Teachers have high expectations of pupils' behaviour. Classrooms and corridors are calm. Most pupils enjoy their learning and participate well in lessons.

Teachers are equally ambitious for all pupils, including those pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND).
In some subjects, the curriculum has not been developed well enough. In these subjects, learning is not in the right order.

As a result, pupils have gaps in their knowledge that are not addressed effectively by staff. When this happens, pupils do not learn effectively as they move through the curriculum.

Pupils enjoy a wide range of enrichment activities.

Leaders ensure that these activities foster pupils' interests and talents. Pupils explained that they particularly enjoy sporting and debating clubs and activities. Pupils learn about alternative technology in the green power racing car club.

There are also opportunities for pupils to take on leadership responsibilities on the school council.

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

Leaders have ensured that all pupils, including those with SEND, have access to a broad and ambitious curriculum. In some subjects, improvements to the curriculum have led to greater enjoyment and success for pupils, for example in modern foreign languages.

As a result, more pupils choose to study a modern foreign language than they did in the past. This means that the proportion of pupils who study the English Baccalaureate suite of subjects has increased considerably over time.

In some subjects, leaders have identified the essential knowledge that pupils must learn.

They have thought carefully about the order in which this knowledge should be taught. This helps pupils to build their learning securely over time. In these subjects, teachers use assessment strategies well to identify any gaps or misconceptions in pupils' learning.

Teachers reshape their teaching effectively to help pupils recap on any learning that they may have missed or forgotten.

In other subjects, leaders have not identified the small building blocks of knowledge that pupils must know and remember. This prevents teachers from designing learning that helps pupils to build their knowledge securely over time.

Teachers are less effective in checking pupils' learning in these subjects. Gaps go unnoticed. As a result, pupils' achievement is uneven overall.

Leaders are ambitious for pupils with SEND. The needs of these pupils are identified quickly and accurately. Leaders have developed individualised learning programmes to ensure that the needs of this group of pupils are being met effectively.

Leaders ensure that teachers receive information and guidance to support pupils with SEND. As a result, these pupils can access the curriculum successfully.

Teachers' subject knowledge is strong.

Leaders provide time for teachers to work together to decide on the best way to teach topics in the curriculum. Most staff use this expertise to deliver the curriculum well. Where the curriculum is well designed, teachers explain difficult ideas well so that pupils deepen their understanding.

Leaders' systems to identify pupils who struggle to read are effective. Well-trained staff support these pupils well so that they can catch up quickly. Pupils are encouraged to read through form time activities and the use of the library.

Pupils are now reading a wider range of books than they did previously.

Around the school, pupils conduct themselves well. They wear their uniform with pride.

Pupils follow school routines diligently and they are punctual to lessons. They said that it is rare that learning is disrupted by poor behaviour.

Leaders have developed a comprehensive programme of study to support pupils' personal development.

These lessons provide pupils with opportunities to discuss a wide range of topical issues. Leaders make suitable use of external experts to talk to pupils about some aspects of their personal development. Pupils spoke knowledgably about British values, the dangers of prejudice and the impact of social media.

Leaders provide pupils with age-appropriate sex, relationships and health education. Leaders also ensure that pupils receive high-quality independent careers advice. Pupils have suitable opportunities to meet with local employers and to visit further education and sixth-form colleges in the local area.

Staff said that they are proud to work at the school. They explained that leaders value them and appreciate the work that they do. Staff said that leaders are mindful of their workload They are happy working here.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders provide regular safeguarding training for staff. Frequent updates keep staff aware of the most recent safeguarding developments, including those in the local area.

Staff know how to spot the signs that a pupil may be at risk of harm. They are prompt in sharing any concerns with leaders.

Leaders have made strong links with local external agencies to ensure that vulnerable pupils and their families get the timely help that they need.

Leaders monitor this support frequently and make appropriate adjustments as the needs of the child change.

Pupils learn how to keep themselves safe through their lessons and well-thought-out assemblies.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• In some subjects, leaders have not identified the essential knowledge that pupils must know and remember.

This prevents teachers from designing learning that helps pupils to build on their knowledge securely over time. Leaders should finalise their curriculum thinking so that teachers know exactly what to teach and when. ? In some subjects, leaders have not ensured that teachers use assessment strategies sufficiently well to identify gaps or misconceptions in pupils' knowledge.

This means that pupils' understanding is not secure. They are unable to build their learning effectively over time. Leaders should ensure that teachers use assessment techniques to help pupils know and remember more over time.

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