11th March 2022

Dear All

I’m proud to announce that Westbourne School has achieved a top score of “Excellent” in all 16 categories of education quality for its recent inspection from the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI)

Well done Team Westbourne

our staff, pupils and governors!

Focused Compliance and Educational Quality Inspection Report on Westbourne School, January 2022

Statement to Govs, Parents and Staff from The Headmaster

The report from last month’s inspection has now been proofread by the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) and edited by us for factual accuracy. It is available for you to read on our website (see link below) and I am now able to share the main findings with you.

In all sixteen categories of Educational Quality Inspection (EQI), covering pupils’ personal development and pupils’ academic and other achievements, we have been judged as ‘excellent’. In the Focused Compliance Inspection (FCI) we met five out of eight categories.

The ISI inspects all independent schools in the UK and reports to the Department for Education on school compliance with The Independent School Standards. This is my third full Education Quality Inspection at Westbourne and we have never before achieved judgments as high as this in the educational quality element of the inspection.

I want to thank all staff, pupils, governors and parents involved in the inspection for their commitment, loyalty and outstanding efforts. The inspectors cited many aspects of evidence in order to award us this level of excellence in education, these resonate greatly with our school values of Excellence, Inclusion, Resilience and Respect.

The educational quality element has four ISI gradings from ‘unsatisfactory’ to ‘excellent’ in relation to the pupil’s learning outcomes. Westbourne was awarded ‘excellent’ in all sixteen categories. The key academic findings identified that pupils have:

  • sophisticated listening skills and are highly fluent and articulate when speaking and writing;
  • deep knowledge, skills and understanding across many areas of learning;
  • attitudes to learning which are wholly positive;
  • highly developed study skills; all pupils, including those with SEND, make strong progress over time.

The key personal development findings were that pupils:

  • are highly respectful and inclusive;
  • have deep self- awareness;
  • have a mature and nuanced understanding of moral issues and are passionate advocates for fair play;
  • are highly collaborative, sustaining a strong school culture of mutual support.

In the FCI, standards are classified as met or unmet. We passed five out of the eight categories, with the exception of the Single Central Record for staff (SCR). These issues had no impact on the welfare, health or safety of our children. Westbourne’s pastoral and safeguarding team, its policies, procedures and approach to safeguarding and protecting pupils were praised by inspectors. However, we take these matters very seriously and the three action points raised by ISI, have already been addressed in full since the inspection was undertaken in January 2022.

The first action point refers to the fact that we needed to obtain a second reference for a member of staff, who, after many years of loyal service at Westbourne, had a three-year break, and was then re-hired.

The second action point refers to the SCR and the type of employment check we carry out for different categories of new starters. Although we have always carried out checks for peripatetic (visiting) teachers, these should have included a medical check.

The third action point refers to the overarching management responsibility to ensure that the required standards, in respect of the first two action points, are achieved.

The achievements in this report are significant given the context of the inspection week. Not only did we have the demands of a full inspection, where staff went well beyond normal working hours; we also had two days of music and Key Stage 2  recruitment interviews;  two days of Westbourne and visiting pupils from Year 6 taking scholarship exams, with all the additional assessment and planning this demands; auditors checking our finances; a Year 5 to Year 8 swimming gala; and several staff absent with COVID or undertaking training courses.

I am very appreciative of the hard work colleagues and governors put into helping the inspectors during the process and also over the last few years;  to the pupils for their honest, open remarks made during interviews and in the questionnaires; and also to our parents for playing their part in the positive outcomes of this report.

A heartfelt thank you to all.

See Westbourne’s 2022 ISI report on our website here

 

Statement from The Chair of Governors

We thank ISI for the time they spent at Westbourne inspecting our school. We are proud that the quality of our educational provision achieved excellent status in all sixteen categories. The three ISI action points have already been addressed since the inspection was undertaken in January 2022. We are committed to achieving excellence in all that we do. The Governing Body is enormously grateful to all staff, pupils and parents for the commitment, loyalty, and outstanding support they have shown throughout this process.

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