Toot Hill School

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About Toot Hill School

Name Toot Hill School
Ofsted Inspections
Headteacher Dr Chris Eardley
Address The Banks, Bingham, Nottingham, NG13 8BL
Phone Number 01949875550
Phase Academy
Type Academy converter
Age Range 11-18
Religious Character None
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 1898
Local Authority Nottinghamshire
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders have high aspirations for what pupils can achieve. Pupils benefit from learning a well-organised and ambitious curriculum. They appreciate the support they receive from staff.

The majority of pupils achieve success. They secure appropriate education, training or employment when they leave school.

Most pupils enjoy coming to school and feel safe there.

They appreciate the school's 'Work Hard, Be Kind, Take Pride' culture. They focus well during lessons and produce work of a high quality. The majority of pupils are respectful towards others.

They know that bullying is unacceptable. When staff know about it, they resolve issues quickly.

...>The school's atmosphere is calm and purposeful.

Pupils know how they should behave. Most conduct themselves well. Those who struggle to do so, get close support.

Some pupils say that sanctions for being late or for wearing incorrect uniform are not always reasonable or consistent.

According to pupils, 'there is something for everyone' when it comes to extra-curricular activities. Many pupils take advantage of the numerous opportunities to nurture their talents and try new experiences.

They enjoy leading events such as charity fundraising activities and the 'Pride March'. Sixth-form students value being subject representatives or members of the students' union.

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

The school's curriculum offer is extensive.

Pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), study a wide range of academic and vocational subjects. Sixth-form courses remain available even when only a small number of students opt to study them. More pupils each year choose to learn a modern foreign language at key stage 4.

However, pupils at key stage 3 have only begun to learn computer science recently.

The curriculum in most subjects is well considered and coherent. Pupils with SEND usually study the same curriculum as their peers.

Subject staff work together closely to plan what to teach and when. They organise content carefully so that it builds on what pupils know already.

In most subjects, teachers make effective use of their subject expertise.

They choose appropriate activities to teach pupils new content. They provide regular opportunities for pupils to recall previous information. In mathematics, 'do-it, twist-it, solve-it and mix-it strategies' help embed pupils' learning.

Teachers of history make effective use of 'learning steps' to prompt pupils to remember key information. In modern foreign languages, frequent repetition improves key stage 3 pupils' pronunciation of new vocabulary. Teachers break activities into smaller chunks to help pupils with SEND access the work.

Skilled questioning by teachers secures and deepens pupils' learning. Pupils often check their work for errors or gaps. They improve their responses using teachers' advice.

The curriculum in science is not always implemented effectively. Some teachers do not deliver scientific topics in a logical order. Their expectations of what pupils can achieve in this subject are inconsistent.

Pupils' engagement with tasks varies. This affects the quality and quantity of their written work. Some pupils struggle to remember what they have learned in science.

Leaders are currently implementing their plans to improve this area of the curriculum.

Pupils who need help to improve their reading are well supported. Some also benefit from reading with sixth-form students each week.

A well-developed programme helps these pupils become confident and accurate readers. All pupils read suitably demanding texts in English. There are also regular opportunities for pupils to develop a love of reading across the curriculum.

Pupils and sixth-form students attend school well. Their attendance is close to the high levels achieved before the COVID-19 pandemic. Pupils' behaviour has improved since the pandemic.

Most pupils comply readily with what staff expect of them. However, some pupils are anxious about getting things wrong. They find the behaviour expectations too demanding.

Some parents and carers agree.

The quality of the sixth-form provision is exceptional. Students are committed and aspirational.

The 'dare to know' challenge encourages them to be inquisitive. They confidently discuss topics such as diversity, global issues and age-appropriate ways to stay safe. They feel well supported planning their next steps.

Almost all students further their studies at university or through apprenticeships.

The personal development programme is very comprehensive. Leaders modify the programme to make sure that pupils know about new risks that may cause them potential harm.

The 'PRIDE' initiative develops pupils' character (purpose, responsibility, integrity, determination and empathy). Well-being Wednesdays teach pupils how to look after their physical and mental health. A well-planned careers offer informs pupils' decisions about their futures.

Staff appreciate leaders' support to reduce their workload. They value the many opportunities to develop their professional practice.

Senior and trust leaders are ambitious for the school's pupils.

The local governing body and trustees provide these leaders with rigorous challenge and support. Together, they are well placed to ensure that the school continues to improve.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Most pupils feel safe in school. They know they can use the school's online referral form if they are concerned about talking to someone face to face about a worry.Staff know how to raise a concern about a pupil using the school's new electronic system.

They are alert to possible low-level concerns involving adults. Leaders of safeguarding are very knowledgeable. They understand the multiple vulnerabilities that affect some pupils.

They work closely with external organisations to help these pupils.

Leaders have increased the amount of help available in school to support pupils' mental health needs since the pandemic.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• The science curriculum is not always implemented consistently well.

Teachers do not always follow the planned order of the curriculum. Their pedagogical choices are not always well suited to the intended learning. Their expectations of what pupils can achieve are not sufficiently high.

Some pupils disengage from their learning and produce poor-quality work. They cannot recall essential scientific knowledge. Leaders need to ensure that the science curriculum is followed precisely and implemented consistently well for the benefit of all pupils learning the subject.

• The majority of pupils know how to behave well and comply with the school's rules. However, some pupils are overly anxious about making a mistake and being sanctioned. Others feel that some of the rules are excessive.

These concerns risk limiting pupils' full involvement in school life. Leaders should make sure that pupils understand the reasons for any rules and why they matter. They should help pupils play a positive role in creating the school environment, where all pupils can make a tangible contribution.

• Communication by leaders with parents is sometimes not as effective as it could be. Some parents feel that leaders do not keep them informed well enough about their decisions, for instance in relation to school uniform and procedures to manage pupils' behaviour and attendance. Leaders need to ensure that they keep parents up to date with information about the effective work they are doing to care for and support pupils.

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