Newark Orchard School

Name Newark Orchard School
Ofsted Inspection Rating Good
Inspection Date 11 June 2019
Address Appletongate, Newark, Nottinghamshire, NG24 1JR
Phone Number 01636682255
Type Special
Age Range 3-18
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 111 (69% boys 31% girls)
Local Authority Nottinghamshire
Percentage Free School Meals 34.1%
Percentage English is Not First Language 2.7%
Persisitent Absence 21.1%
Pupils with SEN Support 0%
Catchment Area Information Available No
Last Distance Offered Information Available No

Information about this school

Newark Orchard is an all-age special school for pupils with moderate, severe and profound learning difficulties, multi-sensory impairment and challenging behaviour associated with learning difficulties. All pupils attending the school have an education, health and care plan. The school operates on two sites approximately a mile and a half apart. The lower-school site is for pupils aged three to 14 and the upper-school site is for pupils aged 14 to 19. A new school building adjacent to the upper-school site is underway and due to be completed by May 2020, to cater for all staff and pupils on the one site. A large proportion of pupils who join the school, especially at the beginning of key stage 3, have experienced long periods of absence from school prior to attending Newark Orchard. There are currently only two children in the early years. As a result, this key stage has not been reported on separately. Approximately 43% of pupils are disadvantaged pupils. This is well above average. There is a number of children looked after. The majority of pupils are White British and speak English as their first language. The school does not use alternative provision. The school works with schools within both the Newark and Nottinghamshire schools partnerships.

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is a good school The school has improved considerably since the previous inspection. It is now providing a good quality of education for its pupils. The headteacher and the deputy headteachers have high aspirations and expectations for the school. These are shared by staff and pupils. The governing body supports and challenges leaders highly effectively. Governors are determined to ensure that the school continues to improve. Leaders’ sharp analysis of strengths and weaknesses, and the action taken, are resulting in continuous improvement. Safeguarding is central to what the school does. Pupils are taught how to keep themselves safe in and outside school, and online. Relationships between staff and pupils are very good, and promote excellent behaviour and attitudes to learning. The teaching of reading, writing and mathematics is good. Pupils practise their literacy and numeracy skills in different subjects. The curriculum is broad and balanced. It is designed to motivate and engage pupils. As a result, pupils engage enthusiastically in a range of activities, including trips out and residential activities. The 16 to 19 provision in the school is consistently well led and prepares learners and their families for life beyond Newark Orchard. Teaching assistants provide very good support and feedback to the pupils with whom they work. They consistently model positive attitudes to learning. Pupils respond by valuing their work and trying their best. Teaching is good. Teachers know pupils well and plan lessons which meet the wide range of individual needs. However, not all teachers consistently ensure that pupils are challenged with meaningful activities, especially towards the end of a lesson. Leadership across the school at all levels has developed well. However, not all information gathered is, as yet, systematically used to inform whole-school improvement.