Independent school upgraded from inadequate by Ofsted who praised successful work of school leaders and family ethos

A small independent school in Leeds has moved up an Ofsted rating from inadequate to requires improvement.

Wednesday, 13th October 2021, 4:45 am

Inspectors found that senior leaders at New Horizon community school, off Chapeltown Road at Chapel Allerton, had "worked successfully" to improve aspects of the school's work since it was deemed 'inadequate' during an inspection in January 2019.

The girls school which teaches 11 to 16, has just 16 pupils and is now classed as a school which overall 'requires improvement' and meets the standards for independent schools.

Leadership and management and the quality of education were deemed to require improvement, whilst inspectors, who visited the faith school in June, added that behaviour and attitudes and personal development are good.

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The New Horizon independent school in Chapel Allerton.

During the visit to the school it was noted that leaders are beginning to improve the curriculum and have had success in mathematics and history; pupils enjoy using the school library to borrow books, they have a good understanding of British values, democracy and the student council; take part in regular enrichment activities such as visits to theatres, museums and sporting activities; there is a well-planned careers programme and at the end of year 11 almost all pupils continue their education.

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However, in order to improve further, New Horizon's governors need to challenge leaders more to improve the quality of education that pupils get; in a few subjects, such as computing and personal, social, health and economic (PSHE) education, leaders have not developed a sufficiently ambitious curriculum with inconsistencies in how well teachers deliver it as some don't have detailed subject knowledge, so, leaders should ensure teachers receive subject-specific training; leaders should make sure staff are well-trained to support the weakest readers as some pupils do not read with sufficient fluency and confidence and this is hindering progress across the curriculum.

An Ofsted spokesperson said: "Since the previous inspection, senior leaders have worked successfully to improve aspects of the school’s work. As a result, the independent school standards are now fully met. Leaders are beginning to improve the school’s curriculum. However, the quality of education that pupils receive is not yet good."

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