The Chalfonts Community College

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About The Chalfonts Community College

Name The Chalfonts Community College
Ofsted Inspections
Principal Mrs Caroline Whitehead
Address Narcot Lane, Chalfont St Peter, Gerrards Cross, SL9 8TP
Phone Number 01753882032
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character None
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1336
Local Authority Buckinghamshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils are proud that their school is inclusive.

Leaders promote a culture of understanding and acceptance. Pupils from a broad range of backgrounds and cultures are equally welcome here. Their wide range of needs are met successfully.

Recent work to tackle the casual use of homophobic language during social time has been successful. Pupils, empowered by leaders, have made a significant contribution to this work.

Leaders have high expectations for pupils' behaviour.

They act decisively when a small minority do not rise to the challenge. Most pupils conduct themselves well, acting in a kind and thoughtful way. A few are needing more intensive support settle back into school routines after the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

At times, their behaviour makes some of their peers feel unsettled in school. Nevertheless, pupils are safe here. Bullying is dealt with effectively by adults who know pupils well and are sensitive to their needs.

Adults want pupils to be well prepared for a successful future. They ensure that pupils receive a suitably broad education. As a result, most pupils move onto appropriate and ambitious destinations at the end of Year 11 and Year 13.

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

The school's curriculum helps pupils to secure the knowledge and qualifications they need for future success. At the end of Year 11, all pupils secure suitable further education, employment or training. High proportions of sixth-form students take up university places, with a growing number accessing high-quality apprenticeships.

Pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) are supported well. For a small number, minor adaptations to their curriculum help them to access the extra support they need. Consequently, pupils with SEND achieve suitably ambitious outcomes.

Where pupils attend alternative provision, this helps them to re-engage successfully with learning. Refugees arriving from Ukraine are helped to quickly catch up in English and mathematics. This enables them to access the wider curriculum successfully.

Support for sixth-form students who still need to achieve a level 2 qualification in English and mathematics is in place but is less well structured.

The proportion of pupils accessing the English Baccalaureate suite of key stage 4 qualifications is below the government's ambition. Leaders have recently made changes so that key stage 3 learning continues until the end of Year 9.

They feel this will prepare pupils better for following a broad range of academic subjects at key stage 4. As this change is being established, what pupils need to learn during Year 9 is not defined precisely enough in some subjects.

Leaders are working hard to re-establish a culture of high expectations following the disruption caused by the pandemic.

This is improving the atmosphere around the school, although there is more to do. Central to this work is ensuring that staff consider the underlying causes of poor behaviour, rather than just addressing the symptoms. Most pupils behave well, although a small minority sometimes do not.

When incidents occur, leaders address them with suitable rigour.

Pupils benefit from rich opportunities for their spiritual, moral, social and cultural development. They contribute to their local community, such as by fundraising for local food banks and Ukrainian families.

Large numbers participate in the Duke of Edinburgh's Award scheme, developing their self-confidence and understanding of their place in the world. Careers information, education, advice and guidance is coherent and considered, although oversight of it is less clear in the sixth form. Pupils receive useful information about the broad range of post-16 and post-18 options, meeting the requirements of the Baker Clause.

Post-16 work experience is due to recommence this year, following a pause during the pandemic.

Leaders want pupils to live and breathe the school's values of 'commitment, conscientiousness, courtesy and community-minded'. They recognise that some pupils do not consistently translate their learning about relationships and respect into their daily actions.

Leaders use assemblies well to help pupils understand the consequences of their actions. Although an appropriate programme of personal, social and health education is in place, new leaders are ambitious to do much more. Their plans to improve the quality of this part of the curriculum are well considered but are in the early stages of being put into place.

Much has changed since the last inspection, with many leaders, including trustees, quite new in their posts. This change has brought renewed energy to the school's leadership but has been unsettling for some pupils, staff and parents. Leaders have an accurate and shared understanding of the school's current strengths and priorities for improvement.

They know there is much to be done and are tackling relative weaknesses in a timely and sensible way.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders have worked hard to establish a culture of vigilance.

Relevant training gives staff useful knowledge about potential risks to pupils. Consequently, staff are well placed to act swiftly when concerns arise, because pupils' needs and vulnerabilities are well understood. The prompt reporting of concerns enables leaders to provide pupils and their families with timely support that helps keep them safe.

Safeguarding leaders are very new in post. They have ambitious plans to further develop how pupils are taught to stay safe. These plans look set to build on what pupils already learn about safeguarding issues such as healthy relationships and sexual consent.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Curriculum planning is less well developed in Year 9 than it is in other year groups. Consequently, in some subjects, the building blocks of knowledge that equip pupils for key stage 4 are not identified or taught precisely enough. Leaders should review and refine recent changes to the Year 9 curriculum so that it prepares pupils consistently well for their key stage 4 learning.

• Some aspects of personal development are not taught well enough across the whole school. As a result, some pupils do not routinely make positive choices about how to behave towards each other. Leaders should ensure that the taught personal, social and health education programme enhances their existing work to develop a positive culture of behaviour in the school.

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