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Orchard Park High School – delighted to be graded Good in all areas in recent Ofsted inspection

Following an Ofsted Inspection in September, Orchard Park High School is delighted to report Ofsted has judged the school to be a Good school.

Following an Ofsted Inspection in September, Orchard Park High School is delighted to report Ofsted has judged the school to be a Good school. All areas have been judged as Good, with inspectors acknowledging that, “The school has improved rapidly over the last two years with students making strong progress over time from their starting points, including in English and mathematics.”

Ciara Warnock, Headteacher, comments: “The Good outcome is a tremendous achievement the whole school community truly deserves. I would like to congratulate all of our students for the way in which they conducted themselves during the Inspection. The inspectors experienced first-hand exemplary behaviour, polite, well-mannered students who take pride in their school.

It has been highlighted that the school now benefits from strong leadership which has impacted positively on student outcomes. “School leaders are aspirational and constantly strive for improvement. Teachers and students share leaders’ high expectations.”

The quality of teaching is good and enables students to make good progress over time. “Teachers are knowledgeable about their subjects and expect students to work hard. Students respond well to this helpful learning environment.” The team also recognises that students work extremely hard and are totally absorbed by high quality teaching. Teachers use a range of resources that engage their interest. Students listen carefully to their teachers and quickly get on with the tasks set.

To support our strong outcomes, leaders have planned the curriculum well to meet students’ needs and interests. Year 9 is a ‘bridging year’ for students, and leaders have ensured that they are well equipped to develop the knowledge and skills required for key stage 4. Students are well supported through a comprehensive enrichment programme which enhances their mathematics and English learning. Students also enjoy choosing from the range of extra-curricular clubs on offer, including rugby, dance and gardening which motivates them in school. This supports the full development of each and every student.

Achievement is good, demonstrated by strong outcomes, particularly for our high achieving students who outperformed all others. We are also thrilled the inspection team recognised the sixth form offer as 'Good'; especially the flexible range of academic and work related courses learners can study to match their aspirations and abilities. “Outcomes in the sixth form have improved rapidly. Students made good progress.” Sixth form students have been commended for being very good role models for younger students and contribute much to school life.

The inspectors were also extremely impressed with the quality of relationships between students and staff, and how well supported students felt.  “All students feel safe and enjoy coming to school.”

Our ethos of care and challenge which pervades all aspects of school life has been demonstrated too by the strength of student voice, which was clearly communicated to the inspection team. This, coupled with the strong extra-curricular offering providing an enriched student experience, reflects our commitment to wanting the very best for our students.

Mrs Warnock added: "This recognition from Ofsted is well deserved. Orchard Park’s journey has been impressive and rapid and all staff at the school have shown great leadership qualities in securing this positive outcome. Parents, staff, students, and governors can be justifiably proud of their school. I would like to thank parents for their continued support and contribution to the school and throughout the Inspection process.

"We are proud to be part of the Greenshaw Learning Trust because we are a school that is ambitious for its students. We believe that there is no ceiling on what anyone can achieve, regardless of their circumstances or background."
The full report can be downloaded here.