School’s outstanding grading by inspector

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A RESIDENTIAL special school for boys with learning difficulties such as Autism has received its sixth outstanding Ofsted grading in as many inspections.

In a report published this month, Swalcliffe Park School was graded as outstanding across all judged areas relating to its residential provision.

An outstanding grading is the highest result available.

Principal Kiran Hingorani said: “We have had a good run of outstanding results and it’s not a bad record!

“Every time we get an outstanding grade it gives us a new surge of energy and self belief and we respond to that.

“We have got a lot of very dedicated staff and a good balance and blend of people within that. Ours is a fantastic job – everyday is very different and there is a lot of unpredictably, but it’s fabulous.

“We have a really strong and diverse school community and it is great to see the progress they make.”

The independent special school provides education and care for up to 57 boys aged from 11-19, 33 of whom reside at the school during term time. All of the boys have a diagnosis of Autism, Asperger’s Syndrome and associated learning difficulties. The school and Swalcliffe Park Trust, which manages the school, has been graded outstanding for its educational and residential provision in five previous consecutive inspections which have taken place since 2008.

In its latest inspection the school was judged to be outstanding overall, but received the same grading in the four sub categories of outcomes for residential pupils, quality of residential provision and care, residential pupils’ safety and leadership and management of the residential provision. Inspectors noted: “This is an ambitious school, keen to embrace new initiatives and take proactive action for the benefit of students’ well-being and learning.

“Students make excellent progress in all aspects of their development. They grow in confidence and attain skills in independence which helps to prepare them for life after school.”

Mr Hingorani said the “cornerstone” of the school’s success was down to their ‘four whys’ structure focusing on communication, independence, self-management and achievement.

He said it would remain central to the school’s ethos and when asked about his targets for the future he said: “We need to keep doing what we are doing but working towards Autism accreditation is very important to us and is something we are looking to achieve. I’d also like us to be seen as a resource for all schools in the locality.”