Ofsted Inspection March 2024

The school in Cambridge, part of Anglian Learning, maintained its ‘Good’ rating in a glowing Ofsted report where it was praised for its “innovative programmes of study” and “effective” vocational focus.

Inspectors visited The Netherhall School and carried out a non-graded inspection on 5 and 6 March 2024, marking a milestone in its journey since academisation. Ofsted conducts ungraded inspections of all ‘Good’ or ‘Outstanding’ schools every four years to confirm the school maintains its current status.

The report highlighted the school’s dedication to innovation, commending its ‘Integrate’ programme as “innovative” and “well-attended by parents who receive informative guidance on how to support their children”, ensuring that “leaders take care to secure positive relationships within the school community.”

State-of-the-art programmes of study like ‘Integrate’ go beyond the classroom and actively support the community. Complementing a strong academic foundation, the school also offers access to its ‘Hobbs Centre’ and ‘ALVIN’ (Anglian Learning Virtual Integrated Network) which cater to “pupils who need an adapted curriculum” and help them to “make strong progress and achieve the grades they require to follow their chosen pathway”, according to Ofsted inspectors.

Chris Tooley, Headteacher at The Netherhall School, said: “Maintaining our ‘Good’ rating from Ofsted is a tremendous achievement, a testament to the dedication of our entire school community. The achievement affirms our commitment to supporting every pupil through our unique curriculum.

“The Ofsted report’s recognition of our innovative programmes aligns perfectly with our vision, and we’re thrilled to see their positive impact on community engagement, career preparation, and pupil well-being.”

The ‘Hobbs Centre’ offers specialist programmes that allow pupils who cannot access mainstream schooling to pursue GCSE qualifications. Similarly, pupils in Years 9 to 11 facing medical challenges that prevent in-person attendance can access online lessons and remote welfare checks through ‘ALVIN’. These initiatives ensure all pupils, including those with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) can access quality education through “specially resourced provision” and “benefit from the programmes implemented to meet their needs.”

As shown in the report, The Netherhall School equips leaders with skills and strategies that encourage a positive culture, improving pupil behaviour: “Leaders have taken effective action to address inappropriate behaviour”, leading to pupils that “behave well” and “trust adults to keep them safe.” Inspectors noted that as a result, “the number of pupils who receive a suspension has been significantly reduced.”

The secondary school was complimented on its careers education, which offers “regular opportunities to meet employers, apprenticeship providers, colleges and universities” meaning that “pupils can make well-informed decisions about their future.” Before leaving the school to embark on their careers, sixth-form pupils at The Oakes College “have respectful and trusting relationships with staff.” Leaders “prepare them well for a deeper, more independent way of learning” and as a result, they “value their education and the personalised support they receive.”

Pupils with special educational needs and disabilities can access “specially resourced provision” and are “particularly well catered for” by teachers who have “received the training and information they need to adapt teaching effectively”.

Chris continued: “This praise reinforces the importance we place on establishing a strong community based on great relationships. We believe in inspiring our pupils by providing a nurturing environment; meeting the needs of the individual, and creating an inclusive place where all pupils and staff are valued. It is fantastic to see these values radiate throughout the report.”

The Anglian Learning Central team and school leaders were complimented on their leadership and deemed as “highly effective in helping the school to secure [these] key improvements.”

Jonathan Culpin, CEO of Anglian Learning, said: “We are extremely proud of The Netherhall School for continuing its ‘Good’ Ofsted rating. The school community, including its staff, parents, and pupils have worked hard to achieve a fantastic report that truly sang the school’s praises.

“Ofsted’s positive feedback is thoroughly deserved, reflecting the positive impact of our Trust’s support since academisation. This is particularly evident in the development of their innovative programmes and strong leadership, which align perfectly with our mission to positively transform the lives of children and the wellbeing of our wider society.”

A copy of the full Ofsted report can be found below.



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