The leadership team has maintained the good quality of education in the school since the last inspection. Your inclusive approach and attention to pupils’ well-being are held in high regard by pupils, parents, carers and staff. With support from the senior leadership team, you have ensured that the school continues to be a positive learning environment where pupils are well cared for. Governors provide effective support and challenge to the school. A strong sense of pride in the school’s inclusive ethos permeates the whole school community. You and your senior leaders have an accurate view of the school’s current performance. Since the previous inspection, leaders have put in place effective strategies to improve teaching. For example, teachers now use questioning and feedback more consistently to deal with pupils’ misconceptions. The presentation of work in pupils’ books reflects teachers’ high expectations. English, mathematics and humanities subjects have continued to demonstrate strong outcomes. However, you recognise that there is still variation in performance between different subjects, and this remains a key focus for school leaders. Staff morale is high. Middle leaders, who are a strength of the school, demonstrate enthusiasm and ambition to do the very best they can to improve pupils’ outcomes. Teachers who are new to the school speak very highly of the level of support they receive. Similarly, teachers who are new to the profession or in training value their professional development. The vast majority of pupils who met with inspectors said they were well supported in their academic and wider needs. Pupils value greatly the range of extra-curricular opportunities provided for them. For example, they spoke warmly about the drama and music productions. Safeguarding is effective. There is a strong culture of safeguarding in the school. The leadership team has ensured that all safeguarding arrangements are fit for purpose. Records of checks on employees, governors and volunteers are carefully recorded and up to date. Staff are aware of their safeguarding duties and clear about how to follow up any concerns or issues. Governors monitor regularly the school’s safeguarding systems and understand their statutory responsibilities. Staff and governors are fully aware of local risks, and leaders work effectively in partnership with other agencies to mitigate these. Pupils learn how to keep safe from harm and how to manage risks. They value the wide range of activities to support their well-being, particularly assemblies on knife crime and road safety. They spoke positively about the ‘kindness project’, which rewards positive behaviour. Pupils feel listened to and say they know who to talk to if they have a concern. The majority of parents and pupils who completed the online surveys would recommend the school to others. One parent wrote to the inspection team personally to say, ‘Wanstead High School and its staff are doing a very good job on a day-to-day basis to make a difference.’ Inspection findings We first agreed to look at how leaders have ensured that the curriculum promotes strong progress and outcomes for all groups of pupils. This is because of variability in subject examination results for the last two years, and the possibility that some pupils did not take the most appropriate courses. Leaders review the design and implementation of the curriculum regularly to ensure that it meets all pupils’ needs. The curriculum includes a wide range of courses and offers breadth of choice. The school provides effective information, advice and guidance for pupils and parents, with a clear focus on successful progression to the next stage of education, employment or training. Pupils told inspectors that they valued the support from their teachers when deciding what ‘free choice’ GCSE subjects to study in key stage 4. Even so, it is evident that the courses chosen by some pupils in the past contributed to lower grades than should have been expected. Additionally, a lower proportion of pupils than found nationally chose to study a modern foreign language, including some with high prior attainment. Rightly, it remains a school priority to provide accurate information and the best advice to pupils in making course choices. For example, this year, all Year 9 pupils will receive personal careers interviews as part of the guidance process. Another factor which has contributed to variability in performance – as acknowledged by school leaders – was weaker provision in subjects such as media studies, sociology and business. A range of actions have been taken to raise performance in these subject areas as pupils work towards the 2019 GCSE examinations. The school’s assessment information suggests that these actions are beginning to make an impact. We next agreed to evaluate the effectiveness of the school’s strategies for improving provision and outcomes in science. This is because the progress made by pupils in science in the last two years was below that in other subjects. Leaders had identified that outcomes in science needed to be improved and took appropriate actions with regard to staffing and to improve teaching and learning. There is evidence of the impact of these actions in key stage 4 and the sixth form, where the quality of science teaching is stronger. In key stage 3, visits to classrooms and pupils’ work in books show inconsistencies in practice, including in curriculum planning. As a consequence, pupils are not gaining the grounding in science that they need as preparation for GCSE study. Finally, we considered how school leaders have ensured that good-quality teaching meets the needs of all learners, including pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) and the most able pupils. This is because – in the past – pupils with SEND have not made the same progress as other pupils. Additionally, 2018 GCSE outcomes showed a decline in the progress made by pupils who had entered the school with high prior attainment. Inspectors saw strong practice in English and mathematics. Pupils across the range of attainment showed commitment to improving their work in response to teachers’ guidance. Consequently, pupils from all starting points make strong progress in English and mathematics. In a Year 9 mathematics lesson, for example, the most able pupils used subject terminology confidently, applying different methods to solving problems and so deepening their understanding. In a range of subjects, effective use was made of questioning to provide both support and challenge to pupils. This was particularly successful in identifying pupils’ misconceptions and providing the necessary explanation or support to improve pupils’ understanding. For example, in modern foreign language lessons, pupils from different starting points were challenged appropriately by their teachers to think about how to extend their responses. The leadership of pupils with SEND is now stronger than in the past. These pupils are well supported and, as a result, are making improved progress. However, it remains the case that some pupils with high prior attainment are not provided with consistent challenge to enable them to reach their potential. The school’s own assessment information shows that – within a broadly improving picture – their progress is not as strong as that of middle- and lower-attaining pupils.
Wanstead High School Catchment Area
Can I Get My Child Into This School?
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This pupil heat map shows where pupils currently attending the school live.
The concentration of pupils shows likelihood of admission based on distance criteria
Source:All attending pupilsNational School Census Data 2020, ONS
This School Guide heat map has been plotted using official pupil data taken from the last School Census collected by the Department for Education. It is a visualisation of where pupils lived at the time of the annual School Census.
Our heat maps use groups of postcodes, not individual postcodes, and have naturally soft edges. All pupils are included in the mapping (i.e. children with siblings already at the school, high priority pupils and selective and/or religious admissions) but we may have removed statistical ‘outliers’ with more remote postcodes that do not reflect majority admissions.
For some schools, the heat map may be a useful indicator of the catchment area but our heat maps are not the same as catchment area maps. Catchment area maps, published by the school or local authority, are based on geographical admissions criteria and show actual cut-off distances and pre-defined catchment areas for a single admission year.
This information is provided as a guide only. The areas from which pupils are admitted to a school can change from year to year to reflect the number of siblings and pupils admitted under high priority admissions criteria.
3 steps to help parents gather catchment information for a school:
Look at our school catchment area guide for more information on heat maps. They give a useful indicator of the general areas that admit pupils to the school. This visualisation is based on all attending pupils present at the time of the annual School Census.
Use the link to the Local Authority Contact (above) to find catchment area information based on a single admission year. This is very important if you are considering applying to a school.
On each school page, use the link to visit the school website and find information on individual school admissions criteria. Geographical criteria are only applied after pupils have been admitted on higher priority criteria such as Looked After Children, SEN, siblings, etc.
2015 GCSE RESULTSImportant information for parents
Due to number of reforms to GSCE reporting introduced by the government in 2014, such as the exclusion of iGCSE examination results, the official school performance data may not accurately report a school’s full results. For more information, please see About and refer to the section, ‘Why does a school show 0% on its GSCE data dial? In many affected cases, the Average Point Score will also display LOW SCORE as points for iGCSEs and resits are not included.
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