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Camden School for Girls is a calm, caring place where pupils aim high. Staff help pupils to develop considerate attitudes and an awareness of the wider world. Leaders are ambitious for all their pupils.
They encourage pupils to live up to the school's motto, 'onwards and upwards'. Pupils are safe and well cared for by staff.
Pupils are attentive and keen to learn.
Bullying is rare. Staff deal with any incidents quickly and effectively. Pupils behave with consistently high levels of respect.
Pupils, including students in the sixth form, are committed to their learning and achieve highly. They persevere when work is difficult. Attendance of all pupils ...is excellent.
Pupils said that they feel valued and show that they value others. They enjoy school and appreciate the diversity of their school community and its heritage. Pupils are proud of their involvement in school life.
For example, sixth-form students like supporting younger pupils with their learning and development.
Leaders provide a range of extra-curricular activities for pupils to choose from. This includes the clubs for current affairs, GCSE Greek, various sports clubs, and the 'eco-committee'.
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Leaders have designed a curriculum that is accessible to all pupils. Pupils study a wide range of subjects, including classics, in Years 7 to 9. Subjects such as languages and history are popular at GCSE.
In the sixth form, students have an ambitious study programme that prepares them well for their next steps.
In many subjects, leaders have carefully considered what they are teaching and why. In English, for example, leaders have selected texts for pupils to read to highlight the origin of the English language.
This is linked to pupils' learning about the history of migration. In a few subjects, particularly in Years 7 to 9, leaders' curriculum planning is not so well thought out. Some lessons are not well sequenced to build up pupils' knowledge over time.
In a few subjects, leaders do not ensure that pupils are taught the full range of subject content as set out in the national curriculum. This means that pupils do not develop the skills and knowledge they need in these subjects. In computing, leaders have limited the time given on the school timetable to this subject.
As a result, staff have not had the opportunity to deepen pupils' understanding.
Teachers have secure knowledge of the subjects they teach. Leaders provide effective support and subject-specific training for all staff.
They provide opportunities for all staff to teach at A level to develop subject expertise. Teachers choose lesson resources and tasks carefully. They guide pupils well in lessons to draw on what they have learned before.
In most subjects, staff regularly check pupils' understanding and pick up on pupils' misconceptions. However, in a few subject areas, staff do not carefully check what pupils have learned. This limits their insight into what pupils know and remember.
As a result, teaching does not routinely address gaps in knowledge or the next steps in pupils' learning.
Staff are well informed about pupils' special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). They provide effective support so that pupils with SEND access the same learning and achieve well.
The library is at the heart of the school and is well used by pupils. Teachers share their love of reading with pupils. Staff support pupils who are at an early stage of reading to become fluent readers.
Pupils' behaviour in lessons is exemplary. They are attentive and listen thoughtfully to one another's views. In some lessons, many pupils are proud to demonstrate their knowledge to the rest of the class.
There is mutual respect between pupils and staff.
Pupils are taught about healthy and unhealthy relationships in an age-appropriate way. Pupils enjoy theology lessons where they explore different world religions and challenge their own beliefs.
Leaders have a structured careers programme in place. They ensure that it meets all aspects of the Baker Clause. Pupils value the opportunity to do work experience in Years 10 and 12.
Pupils said that they feel listened to at school. For example, the school council gathers pupils' views and take forward pupils' suggestions. Pupils take on various responsibilities through their leadership roles.
This includes school health champions who lead on whole-school well-being. Recently, pupils led a successful campaign on promoting mental health.
Leaders and governors listen to staff's views when they consider making changes to the school.
They support staff in managing workload as well as their well-being. Staff said that they appreciate this. Governors implement their equalities duty rigorously and hold leaders to account.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
Leaders have established a strong culture of safeguarding. They perform all necessary pre-recruitment checks on staff.
Leaders ensure that all staff are vigilant and apply their safeguarding training. Staff are well informed about the risks pupils might face and report any concerns. Leaders are quick to follow these up and put appropriate support in place.
Pupils know who to go to if they have any worries. They are confident that staff will support them. They learn to keep safe, including online and in the local community.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
• In some subjects, particularly in Years 7 to 9, leaders have not given careful thought to the essential knowledge and skills that pupils need to know and remember. In computing, teachers do not have sufficient time to teach subject content in depth. This affects pupils' learning and preparation for future study.
Leaders should ensure that the curriculum in all subjects is designed coherently. They should ensure that staff have sufficient time to teach all subjects in sufficient depth. ? Assessment is not used consistently well across the school.
Leaders do not ensure that staff in all subjects routinely and carefully check pupils' understanding. This means that teachers do not always have an accurate picture of what pupils know and remember, and pupils' misunderstandings can be missed. Leaders must ensure that staff use assessment effectively across the school.
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