Secondary schools report

Thursday 14 November 2013

Last month we looked at the seven  local authority maintained schools and three independent schools  aimed at primary aged children (here).  We now turn to the local secondary sector.

What follows is a brief guide, based on a scroll through the schools' own websites and their Ofsted reports. This is not meant to be definitive, merely illustrative, and aimed at a general reader. Those seeking more comprehensive details about the schools are advised to visit theirs and the Ofsted websites.
As we said in the first part of our schools report, we invite comments on the content of this feature, on the box below, and will publish all relevant, and not defamatory, ones.

 Local authority community secondary school

Forest Gate Community School, Forest Lane
There were 1,020 pupils aged 11 - 16 here at the time of the last full Ofsted inspection in 2009, when the school was judged to be "Good".  An interim report earlier this year confirmed that judgement.

Forest Gate Community School
The school is an average sized comprehensive, with considerably more boys than girls on the roll.  A quarter are from the Bangladeshi community and a third are of Indian or Pakistani origin. A high percentage of the pupils are entitled to free school meals and the school has "a very high proportion identified as having special needs an/or disabilities".  The school has specialised in business and enterprise since 2004.

Although the inspectors' overall judgement of the school was "Good", it was found to be "Outstanding" in two respects, those of the management of teaching and learning and in the moral, spiritual and cultural development of its pupils.
The percentage of children achieving A-C grades in English and Mathematics was above the national average. The recent major rebuild/refurbishment looks very good.

Overall inspection judgment: Good Website:

Locally-controlled academy secondary school

Stratford School, Upton Lane
There are 900 pupils at the comprehensive academy school - 70% boys, 30% girls. For 90% of the pupils English is not the first language and 30% pupils are entitled to free school meals. 

Stratford School Academy, Upton Lane

The school was assesses as "Good" by Ofsted during its last inspection, in 2011.  62% of its pupils achieved 5 A-C's at GCSE (including English and Maths) in 2012, which was exactly the Newham-wide average - both exceeding the national average level of attainment for the first time.

The school does not have a very informative website, a matter which it could address as it seeks a new intake for the next academic year.

Overall inspection judgment: Good Website:

Voluntary aided (Catholic) secondary schools

St Angela's Ursuline Convent, St George's Road
This popular Catholic girls' school had 1394 students at the time of its last Ofsted inspection (2009), when the school was assessed as being "Outstanding". It has had Technology College status since 1995. It is a larger than average secondary school and has a large sixth form - 436 pupils then - which it shares with nearby St Bonaventure's boys catholic school.


St Angela's Ursuline Convent, St George's Road

The majority of the pupils are Catholic and 90% of students are from ethnic minority groups, about a third from black African backgrounds. About a fifth of students are eligible for free school meals and the number of pupils with learning difficulties and disabilities is broadly average.

Ofsted have been very complimentary about St Angela's, describing both the school and its sixth form as being "Outstanding". The "Outstanding" judgement was applied to almost all the criteria examined, including: personal development and well-being, teaching and learning, curriculum and other activities, care guidance and support and leadership and management.

"When students join the school, they start with standards that are average. They make excellent progress, so by the time they leave Year 11, the standards they reach are exceptionally high."

Overall inspection judgement: Outstanding Website

St Bonaventure's RC school, Boleyn Road
This popular Catholic boys' school had 1303 students at the time of its last Ofsted inspection (2009), when the school was assessed as being "Outstanding". The school has held specialist status for technology since 1994, in 2006 it gained a second specialism, for languages and in 2008 for applied learning.  It is a larger than average secondary school and has a large sixth form - 361 pupils then - which it shares with nearby St Angela's girls' school.

St Bonaventure's RC school, Boleyn Road
The school has a higher than average number of pupils entitled to free school meals and just over a a quarter of its students have some form of learning difficulty and or disability, predominantly moderate learning difficulties, or behavioural emotional and social difficulties.

Ofsted said: "St Bonaventure's continues to be an outstanding school ... students enter the school in Year 7 with broadly average levels of attainment. During their time at school, they make outstanding progress, particularly in mathematics.".

Ofsted has applied the description of "Outstanding" to the school's: curriculum, leadership and management and approach to community cohesion. It is judged to have a good sixth form. The vast majority of students progress to higher education
Overall inspection judgement: Outstanding Website

Independent Islamic primary and secondary school

Quwwatul Islam Girls School, Chaucer Road
This is a primary and secondary Muslim day school for girls (aged 4 - 16), which opened in 2003.  There were 282 girls on the roll at the time of its last Ofsted Inspection, in 2010. The school's mission is to:"empower the children with the highest academic standards environment to enable them to make a positive difference to society", to this end it teaches an Islamic as well as National Curriculum subjects.


Quwwatul Islam Girls school, Chaucer Road
 Ofsted inspectors assessed the school as being "Good", having made progress from its previous judgement of being "Satisfactory" in 2007.

The fees are £2,150 p.a. for secondary school students and £1,900 for primary school pupils.

Overall inspection judgment: Good Website

 Independent Islamic secondary school

Azhar Academy, 235a Romford Road
The school was established in 1996, under the management of qualified Islamic scholars, as a secondary girls school aged 11 to 19, at a cost of £2.4 million. The school started its first academic year in September 2003, and at the time of its last Ofsted inspection (February 2012)it had 285 pupils.

Azhar Academy, Romford Road
Admission is by examination and the annual fees are £2,400.

The school received a "Satisfactory" judgement from its 2010 Ofsted inspection.  There were a number of shortcomings recorded, particularly around health and safety issues, which the school has subsequently addressed.  The latest Ofsted assessment (February 2012) is that "the school has made good progress and now meets all regulatory requirements".

Azhar Academy Sixth
 form annexe, Romford Road
It started a Sixth Form college for girls at the Academy from September 2007. It is also in preliminary discussion with the University of East London to start undergraduate courses for Muslim girls at its premises.

Overall inspection judgement: Satisfactory Website

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