The Milton Keynes Academy

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About The Milton Keynes Academy

Name The Milton Keynes Academy
Ofsted Inspections
Mr Gordon Farquhar
Address Fulwoods Drive, Milton Keynes, MK6 5LA
Phone Number 01908341700
Phase Academy
Type Academy sponsor led
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1168
Local Authority Milton Keynes
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders are ambitious for pupils to thrive in school and aspire to a future with no limits.

Pupils learn about the world around them and about future education and employment opportunities. They find visiting speakers and presentations particularly engaging and memorable. The school cultivates close relationships with local businesses and external agencies.

Pupils enjoy having access to a wide range of activities outside of the classroom. There is a new house system, and house events are proving to be popular. These are building new, positive relationships between pupils.

The school also prides itself on celebrating diversity and inclusivity. Pupils recognise... and appreciate this. Staff at the school care passionately about the welfare of pupils.

An orderly whole-school line-up starts the school day and this sets a focused tone and standard of behaviour expected for lessons. However, although most pupils behave well, some pupils' behaviour can disturb the learning for others.

School leaders work hard to resolve bullying issues and are determined to overcome any disputes that exist between pupils.

Pupils feel safe in school. However, a few have some concerns about occasional bullying. They usually, but not always, raise these concerns with an adult in school.

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

School and trust leaders are firm in their belief that every pupil is a potential leader for the future. They have clear priorities, policies and plans that are steadily bringing about improvement. Plans are based on regular and rigorous self-review activities.

With ongoing support from the trust's lead practitioners, the school has good leadership capacity to continue the school's journey of improvement.The behaviour of pupils requires further improvement. Some pupils do not behave well in lessons.

This results in too many pupils being suspended from school and pupils needing to miss learning because of their behaviour. A new behaviour system is starting to significantly reduce disruption to lessons. This means teachers now have much more time to help pupils explore and develop their thinking.

Leaders are determined to build mutually respectful relationships so that, over time, all pupils successfully manage their own behaviour.The curriculum, created by school and trust leaders, is rich with connected knowledge that is designed to engage pupils and prepare them for their next steps in education and employment. Leaders intend that the curriculum includes diverse content that reflects the experiences and backgrounds of as many pupils as possible.

They are starting to increase the diversity of resources, for example in the choice of books studied in English.However, currently there are some weaknesses in the teaching of the curriculum. Although teachers have strong subject knowledge, new concepts are not always consistently explained.

Staff use assessment information to identify topics that need revisiting. However, they do not routinely identify where pupils have gaps in their knowledge or ensure that pupils understand what they know and can remember. In subjects such as science and mathematics, pupils are able to apply suitable methods but cannot always explain these methods work or what they are finding out.

As a result, pupils are not achieving as well as they could.The support for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) is inconsistent. Leaders have recognised this.

They are taking effective action to improve the quality of individual support plans and ensure that they are consistently used in lessons.Pupils are encouraged to read independently for pleasure. Dedicated curriculum time is allocated to reading.

Younger pupils have literacy lessons that strongly support their reading, and all pupils are encouraged to take books home. Intervention strategies provide helpful assistance for pupils who find reading more difficult.Too many pupils do not come to school regularly, meaning they have lost touch with the normal routines of school life.

Staff work hard with pupils and parents to understand and remove any barriers that stop pupils from attending. This has included responding to any negative impact on pupils' attendance and mental health as a result of the disruption caused by COVID-19. Attendance is stronger in the sixth form and is now rising in the rest of the school.

The number of sixth-form students on roll is currently low. Students benefit from good provision and teaching. Knowledgeable teachers plan lessons that are purposeful and productive.

Students are supported in considering ambitious future destinations.Teachers who are early in their careers benefit from comprehensive induction and training and are well supported by teacher mentors. Leaders have also prioritised ensuring that the school's curriculum resources are easy to use, to help reduce the workload for teachers.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Staff reliably report concerns that they have about the safety of pupils. The safeguarding oversight provides staff with several layers of support to ensure any concerns are dealt with.

Leaders take safeguarding actions that are timely and effective. Regular reviews and audits by trust leaders help to maintain strong safeguarding arrangements. Leaders follow statutory recruitment practices to ensure that adults are suitable to work with pupils.

School leaders are alert to risks in the local area and work with local agencies, such as the police, to teach pupils how to stay safe.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• Behaviour is not yet consistently good. As a result, some lessons are disturbed by pupils' behaviour, and some pupils miss out on vital learning because they are suspended from school.

Leaders need to continue to provide training and support for staff so that they can implement the school's new behaviour policy consistently well. They should take effective action to reduce disruption to lessons and the number of suspensions. ? Teachers do not consistently identify and address gaps and misconceptions in pupils' learning.

Consequently, pupils are not building well enough on what they have previously learned. Leaders should ensure that teachers have the expertise to assess and adapt learning across all subjects. ? Pupils with SEND do not always get the consistent support they need.

Staff do not always adapt the curriculum well enough to meet pupils' individual needs. As a result, pupils are not achieving as well as they should. Leaders must provide training for staff so that they know how to adapt their teaching and to implement learning strategies that are more closely matched to pupils' needs.

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