The Children’s Hospital School

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About The Children’s Hospital School

Name The Children’s Hospital School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Mr Stephen Deadman
Address University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, Leicester Royal Infirmary, Leicester, LE1 5WW
Phone Number 01162298137
Phase Special
Type Foundation special school
Age Range 2-19
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 95
Local Authority Leicester
Highlights from Latest Inspection


The Children's Hospital School continues to be an outstanding school.

What is it like to attend this school?

Pupils receive an exceptional standard of education and care.

The school goes the extra mile to re-engage pupils successfully in learning. Staff show high levels of understanding and empathy towards pupils' social, emotional, and mental health needs.

One parent reflected the views of other parents and carers when they stated: 'My child is thriving here and receives all of the support they need.'

Pupils receive a heart-felt welcome by staff each morning. Pupils look forward to coming to school.

They enjoy their 'uplift' sessions when they get to sh...are books with an adult, work in the garden and bake cakes in the café. Staff skilfully select these activities to enhance pupils' self-esteem and to develop their communication and interaction skills.

Each school site and every learning space has been carefully thought through.

Pupils say that they feel calm, settled and safe. They can be themselves and are free from any harassment or discrimination. Pupils' behaviour and attitudes are exceptional.

Highly trained staff, including a well-resourced therapy team, support pupils to understand their emotions and anxieties. One pupil told inspectors: 'We learn how to accept ourselves and how to understand our feelings.'

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

There are high ambitions for all pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND).

Some pupils have already started accredited courses prior to their arrival at the school. When this happens, the school does everything possible to ensure that pupils continue with their accredited pathways. Many pupils leave with a range of qualifications, including GCSEs.

Staff accurately assess what pupils do and do not know on pupils' first admission to the school. They then use this to design a personalised, broad, and balanced curriculum, carefully. Over time, pupils make striking progress through the curriculum.

This progress is also seen in their engagement in learning, self-esteem, communication and interaction.

The reading curriculum is well designed, ensuring that all pupils receive appropriate challenge and timely support. The school is determined to re-engage pupils in reading.

Specialist drama staff bring stories to life. Staff foster strong relationships with pupils so that everyone enjoys reading quality books together.

Teachers are rigorous in their approach to identifying gaps in pupils' learning.

They use this knowledge skilfully to provide tailored learning opportunities so these gaps in pupils' knowledge are quickly addressed.

The school does all that it can to ensure that pupils are prepared for their next stages of education and employment, including independent living. For example, post-16 students are supported to apply for jobs.

They learn how to budget. The hospital-based provisions work closely with pupils' mainstream schools to mirror learning and ensure that pupils can return back when they are well enough.

The school is exceptionally calm and orderly.

When pupils become anxious or withdrawn, they can play 'fetch the frisbee' and have 'cuddles' with 'Issy' and 'Tally', the two therapy dogs.

The school's approach to improving attendance, including getting pupils back into education quickly, is exemplary. The structure of the school day has been carefully designed to re-engage and enrich pupils' lives beyond the academic curriculum.

As a result, they are keen to attend. Pupils enjoy learning outdoors and playing musical instruments. They engage in 'messy senses', which helps to build their resilience, confidence and trust in others.

Some pupils participate in exhibitions and enjoy overnight stays to London. Pupils' talents are nurtured. For example, girls who enjoy football can take part in a 12-week coaching programme delivered in partnership with a local professional football club.

Through religious education studies, pupils learn about the beliefs of others. Pupils are taught to value and respect other people and consider views that might differ from their own. These opportunities promote pupils' spiritual, moral, social and cultural development.

Highly trained education, health and therapy staff work well together. Research and reflective practice are a common feature of the school's training and development programme. This ensures that all staff provide exceptional support for all pupils.

There is an honest and open culture at the school. Staff appreciate the support and care they receive in relation to their well-being and their workload. The staff who work with the most vulnerable pupils, located on sites in a hospital, benefit from the clinical supervision on offer.

Those responsible for governance understand the school very well. They have ensured that the statutory responsibilities have been fulfilled. The school's improvement is prioritised well.

This includes enhancing the school's mental health provision through the opening of the Magpie site and maintaining an aspirational and inclusive learning environment across the other three sites.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.


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

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 first ungraded inspection since we judged the school to be outstanding in June 2017.

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