Extract from - OFSTED May 2010
Overall effectiveness: how good is the school Grade 2 (Good)
The school's capacity for sustained improvement Grade 2 (Good)
The Kingsway School is a good school that provides students with a caring and secure learning environment and its strongly inclusive ethos permeates every aspect of its work. Under the strong leadership of the very capable headteacher and senior leaders the school has developed some very systematic and rigorous approaches to its work. The impact of these systems is most evident in the above-average attainment of the students and the good progress they make from their starting points, both in academic and personal development, during their time in school. The fact that students with special educational needs achieve as well as, and sometimes better than their peers is characteristic of the school’s inclusive nature. The school’s recently improved system for tracking students’ progress is enabling a sharper focus on students at risk of failure, but the school recognises that information is not yet consistently well used across the school to target support as accurately and quickly as it could.
The school has set in place more rigorous monitoring and evaluation of its performance, leading, for example, to the successful tackling of weaknesses in science identified as an area for improvement in the last inspection. As a Training School, The Kingsway School places great emphasis on promoting the professional development of both teaching and non-teaching staff and improving classroom practice. This has increased the proportion of good or better teaching since the last inspection. In most lessons teachers demonstrate good subject knowledge and have good relationships with their students. Lesson planning is detailed and well structured and the impact of the school’s specialist status in computing is evident in the enhancement of learning through the effective use of new technology. In the minority of merely satisfactory lessons, teachers’ expectations of students are not as high and planning is less well tailored to the needs of individual students.
The staff know their students very well and provide very effective care, guidance and support to students. Work in collaboration with a very wide range of partnerships to support its most vulnerable students is a strength of the school. Parents are particularly grateful for the highly effective transition arrangements for Year 7 students, which helps them to settle quickly into school. One parent’s comment is typical of many who responded to the questionnaire distributed during the inspection: ‘There is brilliant support for both children and parents: my child’s transition from primary school was handled brilliantly.’
Overall attendance is improving although there is a small number of groups that have a very poor record of attendance. Safeguarding is good. Procedures are very robust and all policies are in place and rigorously applied. The school faces a considerable challenge from its location on either side of a major road. Inspectors found that the school was doing its utmost to tackle this issue, within the limitations of its site. The school’s track record of improvement since the last inspection, the accuracy of the school’s self-evaluation and the rigour of its planning for improvement indicate the school’s good capacity for further improvement.
For a full copy of the school's current OFSTED report, please click here