Ofsted Visit 15th January 2019

I am happy to confirm that following our Ofsted inspection on the above date the school remains “Strongly Good”.

It is four years since our last very strong inspection but the letter sent following the recent Section 8 inspection is glowing.

I would like to thank you as parents and carers for your enthusiastic support of the school as evidenced through the Ofsted questionnaire. Thank you for taking the time to fill this in. The Ofsted letter makes this plain when it says: “Parents and carers and pupils speak highly of the school and nearly all parents who responded to Ofsted’s online questionnaire, Parent View, would recommend the school to other parents”.

The school has now achieved back to back ratings of “Good”, our numbers are rising significantly and our outcomes are good. I was particularly pleased to read the comments covering the relationships between staff and students and their attitudes to learning: “Pupils behave very well at the school. They are kind and respectful towards each other and their teachers. The stimulating and caring ethos in the school enables pupils to make strong progress and achieve well. Pupils’ well-being and personal development, including their mental health, have a high priority and are very well catered for at your school”.

The report then celebrates all of the key functions and elements of the school including all staff and students with a special mention for the strength of the sixth form and the part played by sixth formers in the school. We were also delighted to read that our governors had been recognised as providing …”strong challenge and support to you and other leaders”.

Transition from school is crucial and the letter celebrates that  …” careers advice and education are a strength of the school,” and that …”Leaders have planned a curriculum that prepares pupils effectively for their next steps”.

It is the next steps that I would now like to turn to. The letter rightly comments that as a school, we are not…”complacent, and you are implementing plans to help pupils achieve even greater success.” This can only come with your support and the four part union of staff, students, parents and carers and governors. We have a fantastic opportunity to push our school forward and to build on this strong position. There should be no limit to our ambition and even this last week we have taken students in Key Stage 4 to the careers fair at BMW and another group to Canary Wharf to one of the top 10 law firms in the world and these students will return again in September to continue an ambitious relationship. On top of this in another vital part of our school enrichment a party of key Stage 3 and 4 students have just returned from a joint ski trip to the Alps with King Alfred’s School.

Next Steps

We must not, however, be complacent and our year 11 and 13 students are in the throes of preparing for their exams in the summer which despite the current cold weather will be upon us in no time.

I see the school building on this strong letter and continuing forward with an open mind creating powerful and socially responsible students who will contribute to society both through their modelling as well as the roles they will play.

Finally we are very proud to work with your children and this is a moment, as a community, to celebrate what we all do together.

Best wishes
Chris Harris