phone: 01226 287165
headteacher: Mrs Susan Hayter
195 boys 71%
80 girls 28%
Last updated: June 20, 2014
— Community Special School
- Establishment type
- Community Special School
- Establishment #
- Open date
- Sept. 1, 2001
- OSGB coordinates
- Easting: 433119, Northing: 405329
- GPS coordinates
- Latitude: 53.544, Longitude: -1.5017
- Accepting pupils
- 3—19 years old
- Census date
- Jan. 16, 2014
- Ofsted last inspection
- March 6, 2013
- Region › Const. › Ward
- Yorkshire and the Humber › Barnsley Central › Kingstone
- Urban > 10k - less sparse
- Main specialism
- SEN cognition and learning (Operational)
- Special classes
- Has Special Classes
- Sixth form
- Has a sixth form
- Free school meals %
- Learning provider ref #
- 0.1 miles The Kingstone School S706RB
- 0.1 miles Rockley Mount School S706RG
- 0.5 miles Shawlands Primary School S706JL (279 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Joseph Locke Primary School S706JL (430 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Holy Rood Catholic Primary School S706JL (245 pupils)
- 0.5 miles Horizon Community College S706PD (2035 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Keresforth Primary School S753NU (199 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Holgate School Sports College S706EP
- 0.8 miles St Mary's Church of England Voluntary Aided Primary School, Barnsley S752DF
- 0.8 miles Agnes Road Infant School S701NJ
- 0.8 miles St Mary's Church of England Primary School, Barnsley S752DF (223 pupils)
- 0.9 miles Dodworth Junior School S753JS
- 0.9 miles Hope House School, Barnsley S701AP (78 pupils)
- 0.9 miles Dodworth St John the Baptist CofE (VA) Primary School S753JS
- 0.9 miles Dodworth St John the Baptist CofE Primary Academy S753JS (251 pupils)
- 1 mile Keir Street Junior School S702PA
- 1 mile St Matthew's Infant School S752AW
- 1 mile Worsbrough Common Primary School S704EB (259 pupils)
- 1 mile Worsborough Common Junior School S704EB
- 1 mile Worsborough Common Infant School S704EB
- 1 mile Barnsley College S702YW
- 1 mile Summer Lane Primary School S752BB (325 pupils)
- 1 mile Barnsley Additional Support for Education S701LL
- 1.2 mile Gawber Primary School S752RJ (214 pupils)
Keresforth Hill Road, Barnsley, South Yorkshire, S70 6RG
|Inspection dates||6–7 March 2013|
|Overall effectiveness||This inspection:||Outstanding||1|
|Achievement of pupils||Outstanding||1|
|Quality of teaching||Outstanding||1|
|Behaviour and safety of pupils||Outstanding||1|
|Leadership and management||Outstanding||1|
Summary of key findings for parents and pupils
This is an outstanding school.
| This school has continued to improve |
Students make exceptional progress from
The quality of teaching is at least consistently
The sixth form is outstanding. Students make
markedly since the previous inspection.
Senior leaders and all of the staff share the
highest expectations for students.
their starting points in all areas of their
learning. Their progress in reading, writing
and mathematics is outstanding. Students’
progress in literacy and communication is
good and a significant proportion is
outstanding. Teachers and support staff plan
highly individual activities for each student so
they make exceptional progress.
excellent progress as a result of a varied
curriculum, the high expectations their
teachers have of them and the many
opportunities they are given to develop their
| Students feel safe and secure in this school. |
Parents are key partners in their children’s
Senior leaders and managers, including the
Any difficulties with behaviour are managed
with consummate skill. Staff use their excellent
understanding of each student so that students
develop high levels of independence in relation
to their needs and wishes.
learning and progress. The school creates
many successful opportunities for parents to
share activities in the school and to talk to
staff, so students benefit from consistent
approaches to their development and progress.
governing body, work together effectively so
they can realise their ambitions for their
school. They constantly review their own work.
They look regularly at information that tells
them how well students are doing to make
sure students are making rapid progress.
Information about this inspection
- Inspectors observed 20 lessons, three of which were observed jointly with members of the
senior leadership team.
- Meetings were held with the headteacher, senior leaders and other members of staff, a
representative from the local authority, an external partner, members of the governing body and
groups of students. Inspectors also talked informally to students in lessons and around school.
- Many documents were reviewed including those related to teaching, behaviour and attendance,
safeguarding, students’ progress, the school’s evaluation of its own performance, the school’s
plans for further improvement and performance management for staff.
- An inspector visited a group of older students in the school’s Life Skills Teaching House in
Barnsley town centre, who follow a programme to develop skills for independent living.
- Inspectors also took account of 85 responses from parents to the on-line questionnaire (Parent
|Nell Banfield, Lead inspector||Additional Inspector|
|Maureen Coleman||Additional Inspector|
|Rosemary Eaton||Additional Inspector|
Information about this school
- Greenacre School is a large special school which provides for children and young people with
severe and complex learning difficulties. A number of students have profound and multiple
learning difficulties and many also have additional special educational needs and/or difficulties
including physical and sensory impairments or difficulties on the autistic spectrum.
- The school has an additional provision for 32 children and young people with communication and
interaction difficulties and specific speech and language difficulties, funded by the local
- All students have a statement of special educational needs. They attend the school from across
Barnsley local authority. Some students from neighbouring authorities also attend the school.
- Since the previous inspection, the school has moved into a newly built and re-furbished building.
The number of students on roll has increased substantially and there is significant demand for
places for new students.
- The proportion known to be eligible for the pupil premium (additional funding) is high.
- Most students are of White British heritage.
- There are a small number of children in the Early Years Foundation Stage who are taught
alongside children of pre-compulsory school age.
- A large number of students aged 16 to 19 attend the school’s sixth form, Greenacre College,
which is housed in the same building as the main part of the school. They attend the school’s
Life Skills House in Barnsley town centre for part of the time.
- A small number of students follow courses and/or work experience in construction, car
mechanics and equine care at Barnsley Community Build, Riding for the Disabled and Motor
What does the school need to do to improve further?
- Consolidate the high quality of teaching and learning by ensuring that all teachers:
use their subject knowledge to enthuse and inspire students, energise students’ learning and
increase their engagement in lessons even further
re-shape tasks and activities to build on progress during all lessons so students can make even
more rapid progress.
|The achievement of pupils||is outstanding|
- Students make outstanding progress from their starting points when they arrive at the school.
By the time they leave the school, they are exceptionally well prepared for the future. Most
students reach the challenging targets set for them and some make progress beyond these.
- Progress is consistently high for all groups across all key stages. The youngest children make
rapid progress through imaginative use of learning spaces, skilful support to help them to
communicate and approaches that engage all their senses so they are fully involved in activities.
- Students who are eligible for additional funding through the pupil premium make exceptional
progress as a result of additional and individual teaching and support. Consequently, they are
catching up other groups of students in reading, writing and mathematics.
- The vast majority of students make rapid progress in their reading and writing. All staff work
together to make sure that lots of opportunities are given to recognise sounds and letters, and
to begin to write and form letters to represent sounds. More-able students write sentences and
paragraphs accurately as a result of regular and constant reminders of the function of full stops
and capital letters. On World Book Day, many classes dressed up as characters in their chosen
story and experienced events in the story in imaginative ways. This led to a high level of
enjoyment and understanding of the pleasure of reading.
- Other students show they recognise sounds, symbols and words and are able to select a
particular sound or object or choose their next activity. They show great pleasure in their
- Students’ progress in mathematics, including numeracy, has improved as a result of actions
taken to improve the accuracy in assessing progress and improve the understanding of what
each student needs to be able to do to reach the highest levels.
- All students at every stage in the school make exceptional progress in developing independence
and social skills and this is one of several key strengths of the school. Nothing is done for them if
they can do it for themselves.
- The students in the sixth form make excellent progress through a wide and imaginative
curriculum which includes the core skills of literacy and numeracy, a life-skills programme and a
range of vocational options. They are able to gain qualifications and the majority successfully
move on to employment or further training.
- Students who access the Life Skills house make outstanding progress in learning how to clean,
shop, cook and manage a budget so they can look after themselves and keep themselves safe.
- Those students who attend off-site courses and training for some of their time to follow courses
in construction, horse care or car mechanics are well supported by the school, make excellent
progress and attend well.
|The quality of teaching||is outstanding|
- The majority of students make outstanding progress as a result of teaching that is at least good
and a rapidly increasing proportion of outstanding and inspiring teaching. Teachers plan lessons
that are accurately matched to students’ needs so they make sustained progress in their
- Teachers and teaching assistants work extremely closely together as a team. They use a mix of
each other’s strengths in their joint planning to provide a range of expertise and skill so students
are able to succeed both in their academic learning and in their personal development.
- All opportunities are taken to recognise, repeat and understand key terms. One student
identified one of his strengths for employment as ‘always being on time’ and was supported in
repeating this by pointing at the word, recognising the initial sounds and saying ‘I’m always
- Teachers check students’ learning very effectively at the end of each lesson using a colour coded
system of red (don’t understand), amber (understand it a bit) or green (understand it well).
Students describe what each colour means and choose a colour to assess their progress. Their
assessment is then confirmed or challenged by a member of staff and a final judgement agreed.
Opportunities are sometimes lost to check progress during a lesson which means teaching or
support needs are not always adjusted to consistently maintain the highest expectations.
- Most lessons move quickly and are fun. Students are confident in trying new and more difficult
tasks. A mixed group of early secondary-age students were fascinated to learn about how their
body worked and enjoyed finding out more about the world around them.
- Teachers and teaching assistants use imaginative resources to make learning mean more. A
group of younger children understood more clearly what a zoo was as a result of talking about a
range of soft toys. One child could meet her target by answering a ‘What is it?’ question with
‘little giraffe’. A child returning from a farm visit was fascinated by the baby pigs she had seen
under a lamp and described them with great pleasure and detail to two staff on the school
- Staff use signs and symbols consistently well to support learning and students use
communication aids confidently to maintain their independence.
- Every minute of the school day is used well, from the ‘Good Morning’ and ‘morning work’
sessions at the beginning of the day, in the sensory and physical activities, including singing, in
the lunchtime karaoke sessions, or in the learning areas during lessons. No time is wasted.
- The emphasis the school places on developing numeracy skills is evident in rigorous planning so
every opportunity is taken in all lessons and activities outside the learning areas to reinforce the
use of number skills to work out how much things cost. Some students organise times to offer
eggs from the school’s chickens in return for donations so that the chickens are self sufficient.
- There is a clear ethos of positive encouragement of students so they extend their experiences in
a safe environment, build their confidence to try new activities and strive to learn more.
|The behaviour and safety of pupils||are outstanding|
- Students’ attitudes to learning are excellent. They enjoy coming to school, showed their work to
inspectors with pride and confidence and took inspectors to see photographs of visits outside
school. Their attendance is high and students are only absent when this is unavoidable. Over
time, their belief and confidence in their abilities increases considerably.
- Many students who, because of the complexity of their needs, have difficulties joining in with
others and the school in general, make friends, behave well, and settle down very quickly. Older
students have the confidence to succeed in a work environment, either in school or outside.
- Students take great pride and demonstrate high levels of responsibility in helping other students
and in contributing to events. Older students make items for sale from stalls at a school coffee
afternoon and are working with staff to set up a gift shop. They are keen to compete with
similar shops and are investigating how they can make a profit from this enterprise.
- Students know that any member of staff will help them and say that staff make them think hard
about their learning. A group of older students agreed that ‘you can put your hand up if you
need help with something you find hard’.
- Most students’ behaviour is outstanding. A few students have some difficulty doing this of their
own accord, and any student who cannot manage to stay calm and cooperative are effectively
managed and supported. As a result, the school is a calm, happy and welcoming environment.
- Students feel exceptionally safe and secure. Any occasions when someone is unkind or
disrespectful are quickly resolved. The vast majority of students treat each other with respect
and understand they are all different but of equal importance.
- The school’s arrangements for making sure students are safe are excellent. This includes
extremely effective software that enables all staff to share and record concerns and safety issues
promptly and securely. The broader curriculum ensures students understand how to keep
themselves safe, including when using the internet.
|The leadership and management||are outstanding|
- The school has improved steadily over a number of years, and the rate of improvement has
accelerated since the move to the new and re-furbished building. This is because of the
appointment of high quality leaders, excellent planning and committed professional development
by staff. The learning spaces in the new building are used well to provide flexible learning
opportunities for groups and individuals.
- The headteacher, the governing body and senior and middle leaders have an accurate view of
what works successfully and what needs further improvement. They share an understanding
that high quality teaching and learning is the key to the school’s continued success. They
monitor the quality of teaching and learning rigorously and accurately to identify what remains
to be improved, using this information to provide well chosen and regular professional
- For example, at the previous inspection, the provision for the Early Years Foundation Stage
children and students’ progress across the school were identified for improvement. Since then,
leaders and staff have appointed a number of new leaders and developed a rigorous and
consistent system used at the end of lessons for students to assess their learning. As a result,
the school’s practice in these areas is now exemplary.
- Very effective management of teachers’ performance has been a constant feature of the school,
so all teachers and teaching assistants have clear pathways to increase their knowledge and
understanding of how to meet the students’ different and complex needs. Performance is closely
matched to promotion and pay progression.
- The curriculum has been significantly improved to offer a wider choice of useful accreditation
and an excellent choice of high quality vocational courses, including drama, construction, hair
and beauty and catering. The school is planning to extend choice still further by offering courses
in media studies.
- The school plans events and experiences carefully to ensure that students understand that other
families might live in ways that are different from their own and realise the consequences of key
events in the past. The school held an assembly where students thought about the Holocaust
and reflected, in dim light with a single candle, which helped them to remember what happened
to many people at that time.
- Safeguarding arrangements are exemplary. The school has recently added an excellent software
system to their procedures so that any concerns can be recorded and acted on promptly. The
safety of the small number of students who attend courses off-site is monitored carefully and all
reasonable steps are taken to check the systems for safeguarding within the provisions they
attend. Staff are well trained and vigilant in ensuring that all students are safe.
- Links with parents are very strong. One parent described all the school staff as ‘very special
people’. In the event of concerns being raised by parents, the school takes appropriate steps to
discuss and resolve these openly and helpfully.
- The local authority and health trust provide a wide range of specialist services so that the needs
of students, including those in the school’s additional provision, are very well met. An external
partner supports the school well in confirming the areas for improvement identified by the school
and in making clear plans to improve further.
- The governance of the school:
The governing body has an excellent understanding of the work of the school, based on
regular reports from the headteacher and other senior leaders, from visits to the school and
discussions with staff and parents. The governing body makes difficult decisions so teachers’
promotions and pay relate directly to the effectiveness of their work, based on a range of
evidence. They keep a close check on the school’s finances, always considering the effects of
any expenditure on the learning of students. This ensures that the pupil premium funding has
been spent wisely, so that most of the students known to be eligible are making better than
What inspection judgements mean
|Grade 1||Outstanding||An outstanding school is highly effective in delivering outcomes |
that provide exceptionally well for all its pupils’ needs. This ensures
that pupils are very well equipped for the next stage of their
education, training or employment.
|Grade 2||Good||A good school is effective in delivering outcomes that provide well |
for all its pupils’ needs. Pupils are well prepared for the next stage
of their education, training or employment.
|Grade 3||Requires |
|A school that requires improvement is not yet a good school, but it |
is not inadequate. This school will receive a full inspection within
24 months from the date of this inspection.
|Grade 4||Inadequate||A school that requires special measures is one where the school is |
failing to give its pupils an acceptable standard of education and
the school’s leaders, managers or governors have not
demonstrated that they have the capacity to secure the necessary
improvement in the school. This school will receive regular
monitoring by Ofsted inspectors.
A school that has serious weaknesses is inadequate overall and
requires significant improvement but leadership and management
are judged to be Grade 3 or better. This school will receive regular
monitoring by Ofsted inspectors.
|Unique reference number||133394|
This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.
|Type of school||Special|
|School category||Community special|
|Age range of pupils||3–19|
|Gender of pupils||Mixed|
|Gender of pupils in the sixth form||Mixed|
|Number of pupils on the school roll||268|
|Of which, number on roll in sixth form||56|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Date of previous school inspection||5 November 2009|
|Telephone number||01226 287165|
|Fax number||01226 295328|