The Castle School

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About The Castle School

Name The Castle School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr James Lamb
Address Wellington Road, Taunton, TA1 5AU
Phone Number 01823274073
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 11-19
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1199
Local Authority Somerset
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils flourish at The Castle School. Staff care about them and have very high expectations of pupils.

Pupils feel valued as individuals within the school 'family'.

The behaviour of pupils is exemplary. They strive to live in accordance with the school's ethos.

Pupils are courteous and helpful to their peers. The atmosphere is warm, friendly and harmonious.

The school provides pupils with a rich set of experiences.

The multitude of clubs are very well attended. As a result, pupils explore their passions and interests, including long swordsmanship, Doctor Who and basketball. Myriad trips provide a breadth of different opportunities, including... cultural, academic and sporting.

The school ensures that pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) and those who are disadvantaged take part in clubs and trips.

Pupils are proud to represent the school. They aspire to the many leadership positions available to them.

Roles such as house or sports captain and librarian are highly prized. Pupils make a tangible contribution to the life of the school and wider community. For instance, they raise funds for charities and volunteer in the community.

Pupils instigated and led a support group for Ukrainian refugees and a recent event to celebrate different cultures.

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

The curriculum is broad and highly ambitious. The school knows exactly what knowledge pupils need to know and remember.

Leaders ensure that pupils revisit key learning often and can apply what they know. Consequently, pupils remember what they have learned and feel confident to tackle complex ideas or problems.

Teachers have expert knowledge of the subjects that they teach.

They explain new learning clearly so that pupils build on what they already know. Teachers rigorously check pupils understanding. They rapidly identify and close any gaps in pupils' knowledge or skills.

Pupils, including those with SEND or pupils who are disadvantaged, achieve very well.

The school has increased the number of pupils who continue to learn a language at key stage 4. This means that more pupils now continue to study the suite of subjects that make up the English Baccalaureate.

Plans are in place to increase this even further.

The school's approach to reading is highly ambitious. Pupils at an early stage of reading get the precise support they need.

As a result, they quickly develop their accuracy, fluency and comprehension. They then get further support to improve their confidence and enjoyment of reading. The texts pupils read with their tutors broaden their vocabulary and expose them to different genres.

Pupils enjoy reading books in their free time, recommended by staff and by their peers.Pupils want to do well. They work hard in lessons.

Pupils conduct themselves sensibly and are respectful of one another. Learning is rarely interrupted by poor behaviour. Pupils who need to improve their behaviour get support to do so.

The school identifies the underlying causes of any repeated misbehaviour and tackles them. The way that the school develops pupils' characters contributes strongly to the excellent standards of behaviour.

The school provides exceptional personal development.

Pupils learn to be good citizens, and they learn the value of making a positive contribution to society. They know how to challenge attitudes and behaviour that are not acceptable. This is because of the 'not at my school' work that the school has undertaken.

Pupils say that tolerance is not good enough; people deserve respect. Consequently, they celebrate those from different backgrounds. High-quality careers information, advice and guidance prepare pupils well for their next stages in employment, education or training.

The school is highly ambitious for all pupils. Leaders are determined to improve the school even further, and they are mindful of staff workload. Staff get the training they need to continually develop.

The views of pupils, parents and staff are actively sought and acted upon. Governors, trustees, trust and school staff work together closely to ensure rigorous oversight of all aspects of the school's work.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

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