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.’


The Pastoral Team

  • Assistant Headteacher, Pastoral – Mrs E Keenan
  • Pastoral Managers – Mrs C Chadwick and Mrs A Hutchings
  • Head of year for 7-11
  • Form tutors in each year
  • Pastoral Administrator – Mrs Y Harrop
  • Lay Chaplain – Mrs E Bennett

At St James’ we have two Pastoral Managers who support the work for the Assistant Headteacher Pastoral, and Heads’ of Year. The key role of the Pastoral Manager is to support the learning of pupils in school by dealing with pastoral issues. These include one-to-one support, incident investigation, pupil mentoring, and assisting pupils in overcoming any barriers to learning they may have.

The Pastoral Manager is usually a first point of contact for parents, and is available to discuss any concerns or issues that they may have regarding their son/daughter’s welfare. Our Pastoral team works closely with external agencies such as Social Care and the Child & Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS), and is available to support parents and pupils throughout any referrals that may occur.

The Pastoral Manager also plays a role in motivating pupils to achieve, and reinforcing self-esteem. Our Pastoral Managers will discuss unacceptable behaviour with pupils, and work closely with our Attendance Officer to try and improve poor punctuality and ensure excellent school attendance.


St James' Catholic High School is comittted to Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and applicants for all posts must be willing to undergo child protection screening appropriate to the post, including checks with past employers and the Criminal Records Bureau.