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What OfSTED Says

Apricot can only be Ofsted inspected via its client schools. These observations about Apricot were made in 2013 and 2017 when a London PRU (where we provide 70 hours/week) had their first and second inspections. They were rated GOOD – with some outstanding features in their first inspection and maintained that grade of GOOD in 2017.

Here's what they said about Apricot:

  • Expectations of academic progress in mathematics and English are the same as those expected in a mainstream school. The majority of pupils achieve this rate of progress. During their second term of attendance, rates of progress for some pupils are accelerated further.

  • Inspectors found that the school has an effective curriculum which enables pupils to progress to the next stage of their education with worthwhile qualifications, including GCSEs. Most pupils successfully return to mainstream schools after two terms at Hawkswood.

  • You have a clear commitment to ensuring that pupils achieve positive outcomes. Pupils make good progress in a range of subjects, including towards formal qualifications such as GCSEs, because they are taught well at the school. Leaders work closely with an online provider to ensure that the curriculum is developed regularly and remains appropriate for pupils. Following their attendance at Hawkswood, most pupils return successfully to mainstream education.

  • Leaders monitor academic progress very closely. However, outcomes for pupils at the unit are looked at holistically. The improvement in their mental health, confidence, well-being and attendance is very clearly evident.

  • You have developed the assessment systems in collaboration with the online provider to ensure that work is pitched at the correct level for individual pupils.

  • The unit is very successful in re-integrating students back into mainstream education. Most remain at the unit for between one to two terms. Most make a year or more of progress in the short time they are here. All groups of students achieve equally well and there are no differences based on gender, ethnicity or type of special educational needs.
  • The quality of teaching is good and enables students to achieve well. Some teaching is outstanding. Students engage very well with the live online teaching. They use the electronic system effectively to feed in their comments and responses to questions, and they readily ask questions.
  • Lessons are planned well and structured carefully so that students build new knowledge securely on previous learning. They are given clear criteria to work towards so that they know what they need to achieve by the end of the lesson.
  • The tasks students are given in lessons are interesting and relevant. They therefore engage students well and actively. Students enjoy collaborating and working with one another and the opportunity to do so is a positive feature of both the online and face-to-face lessons.
  • Teachers question students effectively. In some cases, the quality of questioning is excellent as it probes students’ thinking and poses the kind of questions that clearly reveal the depth of students’ understanding of complex ideas.
  • Students make good progress in English, Mathematics and Science. Their progress is particularly good in mathematics and science. It is better in these two subjects than in English. This is partly because many students begin with better levels in English and have more ground to make up in mathematics and science. Hence, some of the basic mathematics and science skills they lack are picked up rapidly as their learning begins to accelerate. Nonetheless, progress in English is good.
  • Students make good progress in other subjects such as information and communication technology (ICT), History and Religious Studies. Their writing benefits from the good opportunities to write in a variety of ways and for different audiences in different subjects. Most students have good oral skills and express their views and ideas well. Numeracy is also used, where relevant, in different subjects. ICT is used exceptionally well for learning as the majority of subjects are taught through the live online system. Students respond very well to this and enjoy learning in this way.
  • Most work is thoroughly marked. The range of assessments and reports on students’ progress are comprehensive.