A school for pupils with learning difficulties has been rated ‘good’ by Ofsted and praised for the ‘warm and nurturing relationships between staff and pupils’ that ‘underpin the good quality of teaching.’
Red Gates School in Farnborough Avenue, South Croydon provides education for approximately 138 pupils aged 4-11 with severe learning difficulties, many of whom have autism spectrum disorder. Ofsted found that ‘Safeguarding is effective. Pupils are safe, happy and well cared for’. Also, ‘kind and caring relationships between adults and pupils are evident in all aspects of school life. Pupils feel safe and happy because staff are highly attuned to their needs and interests.’ Their report said that staff are highly skilled at promoting pupils’ well-being and organise learning so pupils benefit from clear routines and know what is expected of them at different times during the school day.
All groups of pupils make good progress at the school, including disadvantaged pupils, and their achievement is strong, Ofsted found. Inspectors noted that children become ‘absorbed in learning’ because staff plan activities that will ‘capture their imagination’. Red Gates was also praised for promoting pupils’ ‘social, moral, spiritual and cultural development’, which means ‘pupils are curious about the world around them’ and ‘achievements instil pupils with a strong sense of accomplishment and belonging.’ Pupils play and learn well together and are keen to support their friends and celebrate each other’s successes.
Ofsted highlighted the positive impact of the new leadership at the school, which they found to have promoted stability among the school community. The report noted the head-teachers’ and senior leaders’ commitment to keeping parents informed.
Interim head-teachers Dr Vivian Hinchcliffe and Helen Norris said: “We’re delighted that Ofsted has recognised the excellent work of our staff, particularly the high quality of teaching and their warm and nurturing relationships with pupils and their families.
“We strive to create a respectful, positive and safe environment at Red Gates, where we care for every pupil’s individual needs and help them to overcome obstacles so that they achieve to their fullest potential. Teachers are truly dedicated to pupils’ learning and to developing activities that will interest them and capture their imagination.
“Together with our senior leadership team, we will continue to work with the entire school community to maintain our high standards and drive improvement.”
“Well done to everyone at Red Gates School for a glowing Ofsted report. With its high standards of teaching and pastoral care, this school is making a really positive difference to all its groups of pupils and their families. These children and young people – and their carers – face real challenges every day of their lives and they deserve to be supported with the very best education.”
Councillor Alisa Flemming, cabinet member for children, young people and learning