|Ofsted Inspection Rating||Good|
|Inspection Date||11 June 2019|
|Address||Downham Road, Ely, Cambridgeshire, CB6 2SH|
|Number of Pupils||1086 (52% boys 48% girls)|
|Number of Pupils per Teacher||15.2|
|Academy Sponsor||Cambridge Meridian Academies Trust|
|Percentage Free School Meals||7.8%|
|Percentage English is Not First Language||9.8%|
Information about this school
Ely College is a larger-than-average-sized 11–18 secondary school. The school opened as part of Cambridge Meridian Academies Trust on 1 September 2016. The predecessor school, also named Ely College, was judged to require special measures when it was inspected in February 2015. The board of trustees is responsible for governance of the school, with some powers delegated to a local governing body, known as the academy council. The principal and vice-principals were appointed by the trust. The trust provides support for the school through members of its central team and training and professional development opportunities, including subject-leader networks and support for governors. The trust also regularly monitors the work of leaders and governors. The school works collaboratively with other schools in the trust. The school’s post-16 provision Bishop Laney Sixth Form was established in 2016 in collaboration with the Staploe Education Trust. It is led, managed and staffed by Ely College. It provides post-16 study programmes for Cambridge Area Partnership. The school works in partnership with Norwich City football club to provide the Norwich City regional development college football programme. The very large majority of pupils are of White British heritage. The proportion of disadvantaged pupils is slightly lower than in most secondary schools. The proportion of pupils with SEND is broadly average, including pupils with an education, health and care plan. The school uses alternative provision provided by Cambridge Regional College and West Suffolk College for a small number of pupils. The school also uses Academy 21 and Tutor My Kids for any pupils who require one-to-one or home tuition.
Summary of key findings for parents and pupils
This is a good school Leaders have transformed the school by successfully establishing a culture of high expectations of both staff and pupils. As a result, the quality of education has improved rapidly. Parents, carers and pupils recognise the significant improvements that leaders have made. Leaders have worked relentlessly to improve behaviour, teaching and achievement. Staff share leaders’ ambition and want the best for pupils. Teaching is effective in helping most pupils to make strong progress in many subjects, including English and mathematics. Leaders have carefully constructed a curriculum that supports pupils’ academic and personal development well. An extensive range of extra-curricular activities, a well-planned personal social and health education (PSHE) programme and the PLEDGES system contribute strongly to preparing pupils for life in modern Britain. The Cambridge Meridian Academies Trust (the trust) has been instrumental in securing rapid improvements in the school. School leaders’ work with the trust has contributed to improved teaching, learning and assessment and ensuring that leadership at all levels is strong. Governors have a comprehensive knowledge of the school. They provide appropriate support and challenge, which ensure that school leaders’ actions result in improvements. Adults know pupils well and provide them with the support needed to complete their studies and progress to education, training or employment. The sixth form provision is good. Students typically achieve well on the vocational courses offered. Leaders have re-introduced A-level courses to broaden opportunities for post-16 study in the local area. Disadvantaged pupils have not achieved as well as they should by the end of key stage 4. The progress of disadvantaged pupils currently in the school is improving, because of raised expectations and well-considered support. Pupils’ behaviour is improving and is good. There remains a small number of pupils who do not consistently meet adults’ high expectations of behaviour. Pupils attend regularly. Attendance is above the national average. However, the attendance of disadvantaged pupils is not yet as high as for other pupils in the school.