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The headteachers at Trent College, and junior school and nursery, The Elms, have both declared themselves “very pleased” following the publication of the schools’ Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) reports last week.
ISI inspections are effectively OFSTED for the independent schools sector, with The Elms and Trent College meeting all of the 400+ regulations required. ISI does not give a single overarching judgment for a school, but provides headline descriptors against different operational areas, rated against four outcomes.
For its Early Years provision (children aged 0-5 years) The Elms was judged outstanding in three out of four key areas, with ‘outstanding’ being the highest rating, while the rest of The Elms was judged excellent in five out of six key areas with ‘excellent’ being the highest rating. The other two areas were ‘good’.
Trent College’s report speaks in terms of clear praise for the pupils’ achievements, both academically - helped by the “consistently good and increasingly excellent teaching” - and in terms of the “excellent” extra-curricular provision.
Trent College was at least ‘good’ in all of the key areas it was judged on, with many aspects of activity described as ‘excellent’, including outcomes for boarders. The report was also highly praising of pupils’ personal development, finding they have highly developed self-confidence and a strong understanding of right and wrong.
Bill Penty, Head of Trent College, said: “It comes as no surprise to me the inspectors left deeply impressed by the pupils themselves, concluding they are very well cared for, that all aspects of their personal development are of a very high standard indeed and that they are happy in their school.
“I’m particularly pleased with the inspectors’ belief that areas that are currently “good” in terms of outcome, which in itself is pleasing, are moving towards excellence, and found the school is a long way along a journey in the right direction.”
Keith Morrow, Headmaster at The Elms, said: “During the feedback, and in the text of the full report, the inspectors are effusive about the quality of education offered at The Elms to all of our pupils. I am very proud to lead a school with a strong culture of self-improvement and reflective practice.
“Whilst we are naturally delighted to receive such a glowing endorsement of the hard work we have done as a team over the past five years, we will not be resting on our laurels. As always, there are many new initiatives aimed at continual improvement next year.”
The Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) is the body approved by the Department for Education for the purpose of inspecting schools belonging to Independent Schools Council (ISC) Associations and reporting on compliance with independent school regulation.
ISI inspections take place once every six years. The Elms and Trent College welcomed the ISI inspectors to the schools in February 2015. Regular inspection not only ensures parents can have confidence in Independent Schools Council (ISC) schools, but helps schools themselves continue to improve.