Alcester Academy

Name Alcester Academy
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 21 October 2015
Address Gerard Road, Alcester, Warwickshire, B49 6QQ
Phone Number 01789762285
Type Academy
Age Range 11-16
Religious Character Does Not Apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 487 (49% boys 51% girls)
Number of Pupils per Teacher 14.9
Percentage Free School Meals 9.7%
Percentage English is Not First Language 0.6%

Information about this school

The academy is smaller than the average-sized secondary school and the number on roll has fallen in recent years. The very large majority of pupils are White British. The proportion of disabled pupils and those who have special educational needs is average. The proportion of pupils who are disadvantaged and receive support from the pupil premium, which is the additional funding for pupils known to be eligible for free school meals and those in local authority care, is below average. The academy meets the government’s current floor standards, which set the minimum expectations for the attainment and progress of pupils by the end of Year 11. At Key Stage 4, a very small number of pupils follow work-related courses at Stratford-upon-Avon College for four days each week, and a similarly small number attend alternative provision at Hybrid Arts in Leamington Spa for one day each week. A further very small number attend Stratford-upon-Avon College and Heart of Worcestershire College for three days and one day respectively each week, and Wild Goose Rural Training for one day a week. The headteacher was appointed to his post permanently in November 2013. The head of mathematics and the assistant head of mathematics joined the academy in September 2014.

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is a good school. The headteacher has established the highest expectations of both staff and pupils. He has united the academy into a community fully focused on learning. As a result, the quality of teaching and pupils’ achievement are rising. Progress across the academy is good. School information shows that in 2015 pupils’ attainment in GCSE examinations rose sharply. Governors know the academy intimately and are unrelenting in their drive for improvement. They draw on their professional skills to further its progress. The academy provides a wide-ranging programme to develop pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural education which is expertly tailored to their prior understanding. Pupils have an excellent appreciation of what it means to be British. Pupils are unfailingly polite. Their attitudes to learning are entirely constructive, because they understand how the academy helps to prepare them for their future lives. They are very proud of their academy. Leaders and governors check constantly on the effectiveness of all aspects of the academy’s work, and act promptly to address any shortcomings. The school’s work to keep pupils safe, and to teach them how to keep themselves safe, is highly effective. Attendance is high. Lessons typically involve mature discussion in which pupils respect and learn from each other’s views. Teachers develop pupils’ literacy and numeracy skills most effectively. Work is well planned to build on what pupils already know and understand. Teachers provide additional challenge for those who excel, and support any who are at risk of falling behind. Well-planned and varied strategies reflect the academy’s commitment to supporting disadvantaged pupils. As a result, these pupils make good progress and are catching up with other pupils. It is not yet an outstanding school because : Links with primary schools are not strong enough to ensure that pupils in Year 7 build well enough on their previous learning. Improvements in pupils’ progress have not been sustained over time and are not consistently strong in all subjects, especially in Key Stage 3. Teachers’ marking and feedback does not always help pupils to know specifically what they have to do to improve their work.