Wyvern Academy

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About Wyvern Academy

Name Wyvern Academy
Ofsted Inspections
Mr Peter Seed
Address Eggleston View, Darlington, DL3 9SH
Phone Number 01325351377
Phase Academy
Type Academy sponsor led
Age Range 11-16
Religious Character None
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 453
Local Authority Darlington
Highlights from Latest Inspection

What is it like to attend this school?

Leaders have achieved their ambitious vision of giving this community the school it deserves.

Wyvern Academy is a place where pupils are happy, safe and learn well. Leaders have fostered a culture of celebration and recognition. Pupils' 'wonderful work' is celebrated weekly and pupils are rightly proud of their achievements.

Most pupils are engaged in lessons and keen to learn.

In this small school, staff know pupils well. There are strong and respectful relationships evident throughout school.

Pupils feel that adults care about them. Pupils also explain that school is a welcoming place, where everyone is valued. They do not feel that bullying is a p...roblem.

If it occurs, staff take it seriously and deal with it.

Leaders want pupils to have a wide range of experiences. The extra-curricular offer aims to ensure there is something to appeal to everyone, from digital gaming and 'critter club' to a range of sports and gardening.

Pupils learn about how to take care of their mental health and promote well-being. Leaders have carefully considered how to develop pupils' resilience. Pupils are being prepared to succeed in life.

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

Leaders have clearly focused on improving the quality of education in school. Pupils now have access to a broad and ambitious curriculum. Leaders are committed to providing pupils with an education that sets them up to achieve well in later life.

Pupils have free choice when they select their GCSE options. An increasing number of pupils are choosing to study languages at key stage 4.

Leaders have considered carefully what pupils will learn.

They ensure that pupils are able to build the knowledge they need over time. Across all subjects, leaders have prioritised teaching vocabulary. This work is beginning to have a notable impact on how well pupils can articulate themselves and explain their learning.

Leaders have designed the curriculum so that it is aspirational for all pupils. Disadvantaged pupils and pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) have been at the heart of decision-making around curriculum design. Leaders make sure that teachers have precise and focused information about how best to support pupils with SEND in lessons.

Teachers are using this information effectively so that pupils with SEND achieve well.

Teachers across the school use the same structure to lessons. This ensures that pupils get regular chances to recall their prior learning, and teachers can check what pupils remember.

In most classes, this structure is being used to good effect. In some classes, teachers are not delivering the curriculum as effectively. Occasionally, tasks do not take account of pupils' starting points.

Sometimes, teachers do not routinely recognise where there are gaps in pupils' knowledge.Leaders have thought carefully about how to embed reading through all aspects of school. Pupils read independently every day.

The library has been extensively restocked and is now a thriving space where pupils enjoy reading. Pupils talk with enthusiasm about the books they received from school at Christmas. Pupils who find reading more difficult are supported to help them catch up.

Pupils behave well in lessons and around school. All teachers and pupils understand the expectations around behaviour. The vast majority of pupils meet these expectations.

If pupils do not make the right choices, they are supported by staff to help them do so in the future.

Leaders make sure that the curriculum to promote pupils' personal development is given the same priority as other curriculum subjects. Pupils are given a range of careers information and experiences to help them make the right choices about their futures.

Pupils understand the importance of tolerance and respect. They explain that people treat each other fairly in school. Pupils are confident that difference is respected.

However, pupils' understanding of other faiths is less secure.

Staff are proud and happy to work at this school. They are keen to 'roll up their sleeves' and work hard.

They are committed to leaders' vision of securing the best life chances for pupils in their community. Staff are confident that leaders value their well-being.


The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.

Leaders ensure that safeguarding is a priority in school. There are a large number of staff who are trained to act as safeguarding leads. This means that there is good capacity for leaders to deal with concerns as they arise.

All pupils identify a named teacher as their trusted adult. Pupils are confident that they always have someone to talk to.

Staff are clear that safeguarding is everyone's responsibility.

They are well trained in what signs to look out for. They know how to report any concerns, and frequently do. Safeguarding records show that staff are vigilant to pupils' well-being.

Pupils are taught how to keep themselves safe.

What does the school need to do to improve?

(Information for the school and appropriate authority)

• There is some variability in how well the curriculum is taught. Some teachers do not check systematically what pupils know and understand in lessons.

Some tasks do not take account of pupils' starting points. This makes it more difficult for some pupils to have a secure understanding of curriculum content. Leaders should ensure that teachers check what pupils know and can remember and that teaching is consistently effective across all classes.

• Pupils do not have a secure understanding of different faiths and religions. This means that their understanding of tolerance and respect is not underpinned by knowledge. Leaders should ensure that pupils have sufficient opportunities to develop a secure understanding of different faiths and religions.

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