Specialist school is ‘outstanding’

Bleasdale School, Silverdale. Photo by David Empson.
Bleasdale School, Silverdale. Photo by David Empson.
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A specialist school for children and young people with profound and multiple learning fifficulties has been once again rated as ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted.

Bleasdale School in Silverdale caters for youngsters aged two to 19, some of which have complex needs, autism and challenging behaviours.

It is a specialist day school which also offers optional residential provision.

Following a recent visit by Ofsted inspectors, the school has maintained its Ofsted outstanding judgement.

Ofsted agree with headteacher Kairen Dexter that the school provides outstanding education and care.

Partnership working is a great strength of the school’s work.

Parents spoken to said that “communication systems are strong” and that they feel valued as partners in the school.

The rating follows a previous inspection in 2012 when it was also rated outstanding.

The Ofsted report said: “The leadership team have maintained the Outstanding quality of education since the last inspection.

“The leadership has inspired staff to believe that education, as well as care, should be at the heart of what they do on behalf of the pupils.”

Inspectors found that teachers and support staff work together extremely well.

They ensure that classrooms are welcoming to pupils. Staff are “wonderfully creative” when using signing, visual and auditory resources in line with agreed school policies.

The transition arrangements from class to class and post-19 are outstanding.

There is always an emphasis on developing pupils’ independence and resilience through an engaging and stimulating curriculum.

The quality of teaching, learning and assessment is monitored very well by senior leaders.

The great majority of pupils make good or better progress in their learning, behaviour, social, personal, speech, communication, physical and sensory

development from very low starting points.

Leaders ensure that there is always an emphasis on high expectations and challenge in the classroom.

By the time they leave the school, all pupils move on successfully to the next stage, for example a college course or supported independent living placements.

Mrs Dexter said she is proud of her school and that it has “amazing pupils and staff”.