Wigan high school rated as 'good' by education inspectors

Education inspectors have praised a high school where pupils “achieve well” and have a “positive attitude” to learning.

By Gaynor Clarke
Friday, 21st January 2022, 12:30 pm

Ofsted visited St John Fisher RC High School in Beech Hill and found it retained the “good” rating it had previously been given.

It was found to have an “ambitious and well-planned” curriculum and pupils enjoyed the extra-curricular and social events on offer.

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St John Fisher Catholic High School

Lead inspector Dawn Platt wrote in her report: “Pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND), achieve well in this school because staff have high expectations of them.

“Staff plan carefully for pupils’ personal development. This is so that pupils develop the characteristics which will enable them to contribute to an ever-changing modern society.

“Pupils and staff value and respect each other’s differences. Pupils are friendly, polite and courteous. They behave well in lessons and are calm and orderly around school.

“Pupils who spoke with inspectors said that teachers deal with any poor behaviour quickly and effectively.

“Pupils said that they felt safe. They are confident that staff respond well to any bullying that happens.”

The inspectors found all pupils, including those with SEND, studied a “broad range” of subjects at the school.

Leaders could identify the additional needs of pupils with SEND and staff were “well trained” to support these children.

The “skilled” subject leaders had created “well-organised” curriculum plans which were used “effectively” by most teachers, though Ofsted found some teachers did not make sure pupils remembered what they had learned.

Assessment strategies were used to identify any gaps in learning and pupils valued “therapy lessons” which allowed them to correct misconceptions.

Leaders prioritised reading, using a range of strategies to help youngsters become fluent readers, and there was an “extremely well-planned” personal development curriculum.

Careers education across the school was described as “effective”, with pupils learning interview skills, getting support in completing applications for jobs or further education, and attending careers fairs and career curriculum days.

Leaders were found to support the mental health of both staff and pupils, and safeguarding arrangements were “effective”.

The only recommendation made for further improvement was that all staff receive training to help pupils remember important information.

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