Doncaster's Ridgewood School given glowing report by education watchdog Ofsted

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A Doncaster secondary school has been given a glowing report by education watchdog Ofsted.

Ridgewood School in Scawsby was declared “good” in all inspection areas following the visit shortly before Christmas.

The Barnsley Road school was praised for its overall effectiveness, quality of education, behaviour and attitudes and personal development.

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Inspectors also said sixth-form provision and leadership and management at the school were good.

Doncaster's Ridgewood School was praised as good by education watchdogs.Doncaster's Ridgewood School was praised as good by education watchdogs.
Doncaster's Ridgewood School was praised as good by education watchdogs.

The report said: “Pupils attending Ridgewood School benefit from a good quality of education.

"Pupils behave well and have positive attitudes towards school. They attend regularly.

"Staff and leaders manage pupils’ behaviour well. This is particularly impressive given the cumbersome nature of the school site and the use of many standalone school buildings.

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“Pupils are well prepared for life after school. Their destinations are appropriate and ambitious.

"The support available for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) has improved. However, there remains more to do to ensure pupils who struggle to read fluently benefit from consistent support at the school.

“A wide range of extra-curricular clubs are available. Leaders track attendance at these to help increase the number of pupils who benefit from these opportunities.”

The report added: “Leaders also survey pupils on a regular basis to help understand what is going well and what needs to improve. Appropriate support is offered when pupils raise

concerns linked to bullying and/or feeling safe at school.

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"This is important as some pupils report hearing unkind comments more often than they would like to.”

The inspection team added: “Leaders have improved the curriculum at the school. All pupils access an ambitious curriculum, including pupils with SEND and those identified as disadvantaged.

"The range of subjects available to those attending alternative provision has also broadened since the start of the school year.

"The sixth form is popular. It is well led. An ever-diverse range of subjects are on offer for students.

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"Several sixth-form lessons were visited during the inspection. In all cases, students were benefiting from teachers who were subject experts.

“Students are exceptionally positive about their experiences in the sixth form. They enjoy the school’s wider enrichment opportunities, which include sporting, academic and other activities.

“Pupils with SEND are well catered for. Pupils’ individual needs are identified by leaders of SEND and then shared with staff. Teachers use this information when planning lessons.

“The needs of pupils with SEND are recognised in other ways too. For example, in addition to the school’s well-managed seclusion room, a separate space is available for pupils with SEND. This allows the more vulnerable pupils to reflect on any incidents of poor behaviour in a safe and appropriate environment.

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The report added: “Leaders have an appropriate understanding of safeguarding. As a result, there is an effective culture of safeguarding throughout the school. Leaders keep detailed records when concerns about pupils arise. They work with external agencies, in addition to offering in-school support, to help keep pupils safe.”

The 11-18 school, which has 1,400 pupils on roll is led by principal Andrew Peirson said: “We are delighted to report that we were judged to be good in every category with the Post-16 provision being highlighted as a particular strength of the school.

"This is an excellent result for everyone associated with the school and wider community and is testament to the hard work of staff and students.

“We would like to thank the students for the way in which they represented the school over the two days. Inspectors commented on how polite and engaging all our students were, and how confident they were in speaking about their learning and all of the opportunities that they have here at Ridgewood.

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"We would also like to thank parents and carers for your continued support as the feedback given to inspectors was overwhelmingly positive.

“We look forward to continuing our partnership with students and parents/carers as we continue our drive to make Ridgewood a truly great school.”