Oak Bank School


Name Oak Bank School
Website http://www.oakbank.beds.sch.uk
Ofsted Inspection Rating Outstanding
Inspection Date 26 March 2019
Address Sandy Lane, Leighton Buzzard, Bedfordshire, LU7 3BE
Phone Number 01525374559
Type Academy (special)
Age Range 9-19
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 104 (86% boys 14% girls)
Local Authority Central Bedfordshire
Percentage Free School Meals 44.8%
Percentage English is Not First Language 0%
Persisitent Absence 63.1%
Pupils with SEN Support 0%
Catchment Area Information Available No
Last Distance Offered Information Available No

Information about this school

Oak Bank is a special school which caters for pupils who have social, emotional and mental health difficulties, including associated challenging behaviours. Many have additional special educational needs such as autistic spectrum disorder, attention deficit and hyperactive disorders and speech, language and communication difficulties. Places for pupils are commissioned at the school by several local authorities, Including Central Bedfordshire, Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire, Milton Keynes and Luton. All pupils who are referred to the school have an education, health and care plan. The school has been a stand-alone academy since November 2013. In September 2016, the school added a sixth form and increased the age of pupils taught to 19. This is a growing school. Leaders are admitting up to 10 more pupils in September 2019 and will then provide education for 115 pupils. Most pupils are from White British backgrounds. Most pupils are boys. There are currently 10 girls. The proportion of pupils who have English as an additional language is in the lowest 20%of schools nationally. Pupils arrive at the school at any point in their educational career and can arrive as late as Year 11. Many have had disruptions to their education before attending Oak Bank School. Most have been excluded from their previous school. Some have been school refusers or have attended school rarely. The proportion of disadvantaged pupils is above the national average. The executive headteacher is also executive headteacher of the Academy of Central Bedfordshire. The executive headteacher is a national leader of education. The school makes extensive use of a wide range of external provisions. Providers include Angling for success (A4S), Academy of Central Bedfordshire (ACB), Bryerley Spring Farm, C&G Plastering, Edu Create (EduCr8), Develop, Hockwell Ring, Jam Rock media, Kik Start, Reactiv8, Seeds of Change, Snoosh Performance Gym and Bedford College.

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is an outstanding school Leaders and governors have maintained and built upon the many successes identified in the previous inspection. The quality of education is outstanding and life changing. Governors are highly experienced and effective. They are dedicated to the continued success of pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND). Pupils behave exceptionally well. Many have not had success in their education elsewhere. Pupils rebuild their trust and desire to learn. They flourish, gaining confidence and self-esteem. Adults are highly trained to meet the needs of individuals. Many go above and beyond the expectations of their roles to ensure that pupils attend school and achieve extremely well. Teachers and support staff build positive relationships with pupils. They use information very well to provide pupils with personalised challenge and support across subjects. Pupils make considerable progress from their individual starting points. The curriculum is interesting and wide-ranging. The external provisions pupils attend are thoughtfully matched to their interests. Many local authorities commission places for pupils at the school. There remain more opportunities for leaders to share practice and develop highly effective working relationships. Pupils achieve exceptionally well academically, from often lower-than-expected starting points. They leave school at Year 11 or after sixth form with relevant qualifications and work experience that help them gain employment. Safeguarding practices are effective. Key workers foster highly positive relationships with parents and carers and work closely with them to promote actively pupils’ safety and welfare. Pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural education is carefully considered. Pupils value the education they receive and the opportunities to discuss issues in a relevant way. The system to manage pupils’ behaviour is highly effective. Staff apply the rules and expectations consistently. Rewards are highly sought after and valued by pupils. As a result, most pupils make exceptional personal progress over time. Leaders use a wealth of information to measure the progress pupils make. New systems are in place to consider pupils’ social and emotional progress. The full impact of this work has not yet been realised. Parents value the education and care that their children receive. They know that they often transform children’s lives.