Holcombe Grammar School remain a Good School following a recent Ofsted inspection

Ofsted praises Holcombe Grammar School for transforming life chances and its ambition for all pupils

Holcombe Grammar School is thrilled to maintain its ‘Good’ school status, following its recent Ofsted Inspection in March.

The highly complementary report highlighted the school’s dedication to creating a learning community where life chances can be transformed, commenting that “the school’s motto of ‘Transforming Life Chances’ is reflected in all that the school does.” It was noted that “pupils at Holcombe Grammar School are proud to attend their “Rights Respecting” school […] they experience an inclusive, welcoming and supportive environment.”

The inspectors also praised the school’s ambition for all its pupils, the importance placed on ensuring a high-quality curriculum and the purposeful atmosphere in lessons. Furthermore, Ofsted commended the strength of personal development at Holcombe, applauding the wealth of opportunities provided to nurture pupils’ talents and interests and support them to progress onto successful careers.

Other highlights from the report included:

  • Teachers are real experts and weave subject-specific and technical vocabulary skilfully into conversations that they have with pupils
  • The school is developing a culture of reading for pleasure and the newly refurbished library is a welcoming space for pupils to spend their break times and lunch times reading
  • Pupils benefit from studying a wide range of subjects including in the Sixth Form
  • Teaching staff receive the training they need to help pupils and as a result, pupils with SEND access the same curriculum as their peers and achieve well overall 
  • Safeguarding is effective and pupils know who to turn to if they are worried about anything
  • Pupils and staff have seen a marked improvement in standards of behaviour over the last few years
  • The new personal development curriculum is delivered enthusiastically by staff and is valued by pupils. They learn how to be responsible citizens and develop healthy relationships
  • High numbers participate in the Duke of Edinburgh Award school or join Sea Cadets and the school’s arts, drama and music clubs thrive 
  • The school is determined to prepare pupils for the next stages of learning and life
  • Pupils in Sixth Form value the guidance they are given for their next steps. They feel well informed about university courses, apprenticeships and employment and that consequently many go on to top universities and high-profile careers

The only area for improvement referenced by Ofsted was ensuring more consistency in teaching, assessment and resources which the school said it is focused on implementing. It said it is committed to building even further on its strong provision and is confident in the plans it has in place to achieve this.