Oswaldtwistle White Ash School

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Oswaldtwistle White Ash School

Name Oswaldtwistle White Ash School
Website http://www.whiteash.lancs.sch.uk
Ofsted Inspection Rating Outstanding
Inspection Date 13 January 2015
Address Thwaites Road, Oswaldtwistle, Accrington, Lancashire, BB5 4QG
Phone Number 01254235772
Type Special
Age Range 2-11
Religious Character Does not apply
Gender Mixed
Number of Pupils 101 (69% boys 31% girls)
Local Authority Lancashire
Percentage Free School Meals 36%
Percentage English is Not First Language 17.8%
Persisitent Absence 31.2%
Pupils with SEN Support 2%
Catchment Area Information Available No
Last Distance Offered Information Available No

Information about this school

The school provides education for 84 pupils aged between two and 11 years who have a wide range of complex disabilities and special educational needs. All pupils have a statement of special educational needs. There has been a steep rise in pupil numbers since the last inspection. The range of special educational needs includes those with autistic spectrum disorders, moderate learning difficulties, severe, profound and multiple learning difficulties, a few with additional emotional and behavioural difficulties and some with health and medical needs. Over a third of pupils come from minority ethnic backgrounds with a similar percentage speaking English as an additional language. The majority of pupils are of White British heritage. The proportion of pupils supported through the pupil premium is well above average. The pupil premium is additional funding for those pupils who are known to be eligible for free school meals and those looked after by the local authority. The deputy headteacher is a specialist teacher (in profound and multiple learning difficulties) and local leader in education. Two other senior teachers are also specialist teachers, one for autistic spectrum disorders and one for multi-sensory education. There are strong links with Tor View School which is a National Teaching School. The school regularly partakes in meetings with a group of local primary schools about the early years provision.

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is an outstanding school. The outstanding leadership and management of the headteacher and her senior team have led to exceptional improvements since the last inspection so that the school is now outstanding in all areas. There is a very clear vision and sense of direction, shared by all concerned, leading to exceptionally high staff morale. There are high levels of support and appreciation from parents for the work done by the school in support of the pupils. Provision for the early years is outstanding because of outstanding leadership that has led to children making outstanding progress in their early learning goals from very low starting points. A large majority of all groups of pupils make good or outstanding progress from their starting points. Pupils eligible for pupil premium funding make the same levels of progress as their peers. Pupils behave extremely well, especially when they are learning. All staff manage pupils’ behaviour with amazing skill and sensitivity and ensure that pupils are safe and well cared for at all times. The arrangements for spiritual, moral, social and cultural development are strong but less so with regard to life in modern Britain. Teachers and teaching assistants combine tremendously well to ensure that each pupil is able to make good or better progress in their learning, referring closely to carefully designed personal education plans. Leadership and management are exceptional in ensuring that all staff are extremely consistent when following agreed school policies and procedures. There are excellent opportunities for staff to develop professionally through attendance on courses up to masters degree level. Teaching assistants have benefited in particular so that they provide an exceptionally consistent backbone of support for their teacher colleagues. Senior leaders provide outstanding training and support to staff in multi-sensory learning or in the management of pupil behaviour. All leaders, with the strong support of very knowledgeable and effective governors, ensure that teaching and support across the school are never less than good so that all pupils make good or outstanding progress in their learning.