OFSTED April 2017 Key Comments: 

  • ‘Pupils shine at this school because they benefit enormously from being part of the ‘St James family’, a supportive and caring community. They are happy and safe in school.
  • ‘The conduct of pupils in this school, the way they interact with each other and adults, is impeccable – in fact, it is the best I have ever seen(Feedback from HMI to School Governors, Local Authority and Diocesan representatives)
  • Pupils readily respond to leaders’ high expectations evident in the ‘SHINE’ ethos. As a result, they ‘Speak politely, Have respect, follow Instructions, Never say never and Engage positively’ in all that they do
  • ‘Pupils work exceptionally well together’
  • ‘Pupils have excellent attitudes to learning, they are curious and want to achieve their best.’
  • ‘Pupils know what it means to be ‘ready to learn’’
  • ‘Pupils’ conduct is exemplary. They show high levels of respect for each other and for their teachers and teaching assistants.
  • ‘Pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development is a strength of the school’
  • ‘The school's work to promote pupils' personal development and welfare is outstanding. Leaders make sure that pupils are cared for exceptionally well’
  • ‘Staff are proud to be a member of staff at this school’
  • ‘Pupils, including the most able, are challenged by their work’
  • ‘Pupils are taught the skills needed to become thoughtful, self-confident citizens, able to express their views and opinions.’
  • ‘Progress overall is much better than that of similar-ability pupils nationally’
  • ‘Key stage 4 outcomes in GCSE examinations demonstrate consistently strong progress over each of the last three years’
  • ‘Parents have highly-positive views of the school and confirm their children are safe and happy at this school. They greatly appreciate the pastoral care and support provided.’
  • ‘Pupils say they feel safe at school, they say there are no bullies and are confident they would be listened to if they shared a concern with a teacher or pastoral leader.’
  • ‘Governors know the strengths of the school and where there are further improvements still to be made.’
  • ‘Pupils enjoy coming to school.’
  • ‘Pupils, including the most able, are challenged by their work because most teachers have high expectations of pupils and plan work which is hard enough for them.’
  • ‘Pupils learn well and make excellent progress because teaching in English, mathematics and most other subjects is consistently good.’
  • ‘Leaders have successfully introduced a more ambitious culture in the school based upon high expectations.’
  • ‘Pupils typically make good progress because teachers have strong subject knowledge, which they use well to plan interesting and challenging work for pupils.’
  • ‘Teaching assistants support pupils well in lessons, including low-ability pupils and those who have special educational needs and/or disabilities, who need extra help.’


At St. James’, we know that the moral development of pupils is at the heart of their learning. In the curriculum, provision is made for pupils to understand the difference between right and wrong. Pupils learn about the law and legal boundaries, and in PHSCE, RE and other subjects they learn about the civil and criminal law and how it applies to British citizens. In particular, pupils are taught about the consequences of their actions, and how they have both rights and responsibilities. Our rewards system prepares pupils for this, by making them both Ready To Learn (RTL) and by equipping them with a good Attitude To Learning (ATL).  In lessons, and in other extra-curricular activities, pupils learn how to listen to and respect other people’s points of view.

Here are some ways in which St. James’ pupils demonstrate their moral development:

There is a comprehensive and well planned PHSE and Citizenship programme that allows all pupils to develop an understanding of right and wrong in their school life and outside of school – through discussions, debates and education to make informed choices

Examples throughout the curriculum of activities where pupils investigate moral and ethical issues, eg. in RE, Science, Geography, History, English

Assembly and form time – discussion of themes and issues

Rewards system and doing the right thing – half-termly awards, Lower School Presentation Evening, Presentation Evening, Year 11 Prom

Whole school Mock General Election (May 2015)

Alton Towers Rewards Trip for pupils who meet the RTL and ATL criteria

Stockport Young Stars Awards

There is a wide range of extra-curricular activities provided to develop pupil understanding of right and wrong eg. visitors and agencies in school; HAE Week; PHSE and Citizenship Day