|Name||Ormiston Forge Academy|
|Ofsted Inspection Rating||Good|
|Inspection Date||22 October 2019|
|Address||Wrights Lane, Cradley Heath, West Midlands, B64 6QU|
|Number of Pupils||1497|
|Number of Pupils per Teacher||16.0|
|Academy Sponsor||Ormiston Academies Trust|
|Percentage Free School Meals||23.8%|
|Percentage English is Not First Language||10.4%|
|Pupils with SEN Support||16.9%|
|Catchment Area Information Available||Yes, our catchment area data is FREE|
|Last Distance Offered Information Available||No|
Ormiston Forge Academy continues to be a good school.
What is it like to attend this school?
Ormiston Forge Academy is a very caring school. Pupils told us that they feel happy and safe here as a part of ‘The Forge Family’. Staff know pupils well and have their best interests at heart. Pupils respond by attending regularly and working hard.
All the pupils we spoke to said that behaviour is good, and bullying is rare. If bullying does occur, it is dealt with well by the school.
In class, pupils settle down quickly and get on with their learning. Teachers check if pupils understand their work and are quick to give them help when they need it. This leads to success in most subjects, although achievement in mathematics and languages is not as strong as in other subjects.
Teachers have high expectations. They plan well to make sure that pupils get the most out of lessons. Most teachers make good use of the information they get about how to support pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) in class.
If pupils need additional support, the school’s ‘success centre’ makes sure that they get extra help so that they can catch up quickly. Pupils told us that they had made a lot of improvement because of this support.
What does the school do well and what does it need to do better?
Leaders are ambitious for every pupil and work hard to give them the best possible opportunities. They have carefully reviewed and redesigned the curriculum at all key stages. It is well ordered around key information and concepts for each subject. This helps teachers to plan effectively and ensures that pupils build and retain knowledge.
The design and delivery of the curriculum are consistent across subject areas. However, the full impact of this is still to be achieved in terms of improved outcomes in mathematics and languages. In both of these subjects, standards are lower than in othersubjects.
Spiritual, moral, social and cultural education is given a high priority in the school. It is threaded through different lessons, tutor periods and assemblies and helps pupils to take a responsible interest in the world around them. Behaviour in lessons and around the school is usually calm and orderly.
There are systems in place to support pupils with SEND. Assessment of pupils’ needs is thorough, and staff receive regular training and updates. Teachers receive a ‘one-page profile’ that provides them with information about how to meet pupils’ different needs. The positive impact of these was seen in several lessons. However, some teachers do not use this information well enough to adapt the curriculum for these pupils. This means that they do not do as well as they could.
The number of pupils undertaking the English Baccalaureate (EBacc) qualification is increasing year on year. This is largely a result of the increased uptake of languages, which will see 44% of the current Year 11 complete the EBacc by 2020.
A wide range of additional opportunities are on offer beyond lessons. Even so, currently, many pupils do not get involved in these. Leaders have asked pupils what additional clubs they would enjoy. As a result, chess, Lego, science and community clubs have all been set up and are well attended. Leaders have recently started to check which pupils attend these activities. Nevertheless, they could make better use of this information to make sure that all pupils benefit fully from these opportunities.
Sixth-form students make good progress in most subjects. Lessons are well planned and pupils work with increasing levels of independence. Sixth-form students play a significant part in school life, taking on a range of leadership roles, such as prefects and peer mentors. They also help younger pupils by running sports clubs or reading with them. Students in the sixth form get plenty of advice to help them make the right decisions about further education and career choices.
The Ormiston Trust and school governors work alongside the school to offer appropriate support and challenge. Staff report that they like working at the school. They say they feel valued and that leaders have worked with them to ensure that their workload is manageable.
The arrangements for safeguarding are effective.
Staff are well trained in safeguarding procedures. They know what to do if they think a pupil is at risk. They are well supported by a specialist safeguarding team that ensures that staff are kept up to date with current procedures.
Leaders work closely with a range of different agencies to make sure that vulnerable pupils receive the support they need.
What does the school need to do to improve?
(Information for the school and appropriate authority)
In mathematics and languages, GCSE outcomes have not been as strong as in other subjects in recent years. Leaders have worked hard to redesign these curriculum areas and ensure that they are well taught. They must now ensure that these developments continue to lift standards higher. . Some teachers do not make full use of the information they receive about how to support pupils with SEND. Leaders should ensure that all teachers use the information they have about pupils with SEND to plan lessons effectively. . Until recently, the uptake of additional opportunities has not been monitored. Leaders now keep careful records. They should use this information to check that all pupils are encouraged and feel able to participate in the wide range of extra-curricular activities the school provides.
When we have judged a school to be good, we will then normally go into the school about once every four years to confirm that the school remains good. This is called a section 8 inspection of a good school or non-exempt outstanding school. We do not give graded judgements on a section 8 inspection. However, if we find some evidence that the school could now be better than good or that standards may be declining, then the next inspection will be a section 5 inspection. Usually this is within one to two years of the date of the section 8 inspection. If we have serious concerns about safeguarding, behaviour or the quality of education, we will convert the section 8 inspection to a section 5 inspection immediately.
This is the first section 8 inspection since we judged the school to be good in March 2016.