St Anne's School and Sixth Form college celebrate after "outstanding" Ofsted judgement

Tue, 20 Jul 2021

Staff, children and young people at St Anne's School and Sixth Form College in Welton are celebrating after securing another outstanding Ofsted judgement for the residence.

The three-day inspection took place in June with inspectors saying "the residential special school provides highly effective services that consistently exceed the standards of good" and the "actions of the school contribute to significantly improved outcomes and positive experiences for children and young people".

St Anne's, which was first judged to be outstanding by Ofsted in 2014,  currently has around 160 pupils on its roll who have a range of complex learning and physical disabilities while 49 children aged between eight and 19 able to enjoy short breaks in the attached residential provision.

The residence is an 18-bed unit which allows children to have one or two overnight stays per week, with some able to stay over weekends.

Inspectors looked at three key areas - overall experiences and progress of children and young people, how well children and young people are helped and protected and the effectiveness of leaders and managers, all of which were outstanding.

The report said: "Children enjoy their short breaks in the residence. They develop warm and trusting relationships with staff who they know very well.

"Staff provide consistency and routine for children and this helps them to feel settled and to understand what is going on around them.

"Children and their families place great value on being part of "the residence". Some parents say it is like having another extended family while one child has developed healthy sleep routines at home because of the confidence developed in the residence."

It also highlighted the response of staff during the COVID-19 pandemic and said: "The response of staff to the COVID-19 pandemic has emphasised the safety and well-being of children.

"Although the residence has remained open, social distancing has affected the availability of short breaks for some children. Staff recognise the emotional strain on families of this disruption to their normal routines and offer what support they can.

"However, the immediate well-being of children remains the primary concern for all staff."

Inspectors also said the head of care was an "exceptional leader" and "constantly strives to bring about the best outcomes for children" and acknowledged that the school has been reaccredited with the National Autistic Society meaning the care provided to children is "highly attuned to their needs".

Lesley Davis, headteacher at St Anne's School said: "This excellent report has captured exactly what the residence team is all about.

"The team has an exceptional leader who, through dedication and experience, continually creates and invigorates the opportunities that are offered to all the children and young people who access this outstanding provision.

"I am extremely fortunate to have such an amazing team of staff and I am delighted that all their hard work and achievement has been recognised by Ofsted."

Councillor Victoria Aitken, portfolio holder for children and young people's education, health and well-being at East Riding of Yorkshire Council said: "This is incredibly good news to hear that St Anne's School and Sixth Form College have retained their outstanding judgement.

"To achieve outstanding in all areas takes some doing and I'd like to congratulate head teacher Lesley Davis and her team who give an incredibly welcome service to our families who are often in some of the most challenging situations."

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