The Palmer Catholic Academy

Name The Palmer Catholic Academy
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 09 October 2012
Address Aldborough Road South, Seven Kings, Ilford, Essex, IG3 8EU
Phone Number 02085903808
Type Academy
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character Roman Catholic
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1145 (56% boys 44% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 17.5
Academy Sponsor The Good Shepherd Catholic Trust
Local Authority Redbridge
Percentage Free School Meals 17.4%
Percentage English is Not First Language 44.8%

Information about this school

The Palmer Catholic Academy converted to become an academy on 1 September 2012. When its predecessor school, The Canon Palmer Catholic School, was last inspected by Ofsted, it was judged to be outstanding overall. The academy is a larger than the average-sized secondary school and 309 students attend the sixth form. The proportion of disabled students and students who have special educational needs is below that found nationally. The proportions of students supported through school action, school action plus or with a statement of special educational needs are all below those found nationally. The proportion of students known to be eligible for additional government funding, known as pupil premium, is in line with that found nationally. The proportion of students who speak English as an additional language is well above that found nationally. Over 80% of students are from minority ethnic groups. The academy exceeds the government’s current floor standards which set the minimum expectations for attainment and progress.

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is a good school. Leaders and managers are resolute in driving improvement forward. The headteacher tells students regularly how important it is for them to prepare well for their future. Teaching is typically good and occasionally outstanding. Most students make at least good progress and some make outstanding progress and get very high GCSE results. Students make outstanding progress in mathematics. They enjoy challenging work in mathematics lessons. Mathematics is a flagship department. It sets high standards for teaching and as a result, students’ learning flourishes. Behaviour is good in lessons and around the academy. Students say it has improved over time. Students feel safe and understand the dangers of cyber bullying. They know how to use the internet safely. Student’s spiritual, moral, social and cultural understanding is well developed. Students respect the diversity of the academy. The governing body has a good understanding of the academy’s strengths and it supports leaders in dealing with weaker teaching. It is not yet an outstanding school because : Teaching in some subjects is of mixed quality and does not enable every student to excel. Some students do not push themselves hard enough during lessons, despite good teaching. The sixth form is good and is not yet outstanding because the progress made by students on the AS-level courses should be stronger.