Ofsted has given The Radclyffe School its seal of approval by bestowing it the highest possible rating and declaring it an ‘Outstanding School’.
Following a visit by five Inspectors to the school on 19th – 20th November 2015, Ofsted made the following judgements on The Radclyffe School:
The very first line of the report recognises the aspirational culture and the focus on high achievement by everyone at The Radclyffe School:
“The tangible culture of self-improvement, instilled by the inspirational headteacher, motivates both staff and pupils to achieve their very best. The promotion of excellent personal development has as high a priority as the insistence on outstanding achievement” (Ofsted, page 1)
Governors and senior leaders are commended for providing principled leadership based around an aspirational visionwhich has created “an extremely positive culture of improvement through challenge and celebration” (Ofsted, page 3).
The report supports the school’s early entry policy in both English and Maths which is successful in motivating the students and maximizing their achievement. The excellent and highly personalised curriculum is regularly reviewed to meet the needs of individual students.
In describing the quality of teaching, learning and assessment as outstanding the report states that “Leaders and managers with the responsibility for teaching, learning and assessment have been relentless in their drive for excellence” (Ofsted, page 4).
The report recognises the high morale within the school “Everyone is respected, valued and appreciated. Consequently, excellent relationships are fostered between staff and pupils. These contribute to pupils’ outstanding attitudes to their learning.”(Ofsted, page 4).
Ofsted recognises that The Radclyffe School succeeds with all students, including the most able “Pupils from all starting points make excellent progress including the most able. The number of GCSE passes at A* or A grade has doubled over the last three years” (Ofsted, page 5).
Moreover, the report goes on to state that “Teachers’ extremely high expectations of what their pupils can achieve are infectious. Through well-chosen topics and activities, teachers routinely stimulate and interest pupils, giving them a passion and verve for learning. Pupils flourish in a culture of enthusiasm for learning and desire to succeed”. (Ofsted, page 4).
The report says that the school’s work to promote the students’ personal development and welfare is outstanding “Leadership of this aspect of the school’s work is outstanding. It is based on celebrating success, achievements, aspirations, ambition, perseverance and the drive for excellence” (Ofsted, page 5).
Ofsted describe behaviour of the students as excellent and say that they take great pride in their work and in their school “The behaviour of pupils is outstanding. Attendance has risen consistently since 2008……The pupils fully understand the main reward for very regular attendance is high achievement” (Ofsted, page 5).
The report appreciates that despite the vast site, students are punctual to school and to lessons “Pupils say with confidence that behaviour is very good around the school. They move between classes calmly and efficiently…. Relationships between pupils and staff are respectful, warm and appreciative. Pupils’ attitudes to learning are excellent.” (Ofsted, page 5).
Another major aspect of the school is also recognised as a strength “Pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is outstanding and this contributes to the pupils having excellent attitudes to their learning and high ambitions for their futures” (Ofsted, page 1).
The reading culture established within the school is seen as critical to raising literacy levels and improvements in achievement “The school has taken rapid and effective action to improve pupils’ literacy levels. All subjects make valuable contributions to improving pupils’ reading, writing and speaking skills” (Ofsted, page 1).
The school’s unique, and nationally recognised, PLG (Personal Learning Guide) system comes in for special praise “Pupils and parents say that the use of personal learning guides (PLGs) is critical in ensuring pupils feel safe, are well looked after and maintain a constant focus on their studies” (Ofsted, page 3).
The report concludes that at the end of their educational journey at the school the students are fully prepared for the next steps “When pupils leave The Radclyffe School, they are fully prepared for the next steps. They are socially aware, principled, confident and full of enthusiasm” (Ofsted, page 6).
Chair of Governors, Jim Greenwood, said: “At The Radclyffe School our focus has always been on our students achieving their personal best by creating the right climate for them to flourish through excellent teaching and partnership with parents. I am pleased that this Ofsted accolade of outstanding recognises not just what we do but the way we do it”.
Headteacher, Hardial Hayer, added “Following the last inspection we challenged ourselves to be outstanding in all areas. I am delighted for the students, staff, parents and governors that this outstanding judgement from Ofsted has recognised our journey to excellence. Our goal now is to go beyond outstanding through our continued relentless pursuit of personal excellence for everyone. Our journey continues…”
A copy of the full November 2015 Ofsted Report can be found here