School etc

Grindon Hall Christian School Closed - academy free school Aug. 13, 2012

see new Grindon Hall Christian School

Grindon Hall Christian School
Tyne and Wear

phone: 0191 *** ***

headteacher: Mr C J Gray

school holidays: via Sunderland council

— Other Independent School

Religious character
Establishment type
Other Independent School
Establishment #
Open date
Feb. 17, 1958
Close date
Aug. 13, 2012
Reason closed
Academy Free School
OSGB coordinates
Easting: 436236, Northing: 555833
GPS coordinates
Latitude: 54.896, Longitude: -1.4365
Accepting pupils
3—18 years old
Region › Const. › Ward
North East › Washington and Sunderland West › St Anne's
Urban > 10k - less sparse
Admissions policy
Sixth form
Has a sixth form
Learning provider ref #

rooms to rent in Sunderland

Schools nearby

  1. Grindon Hall Christian School SR48PG (540 pupils)
  2. 0.3 miles Pennywell Nursery School SR49AX (102 pupils)
  3. 0.3 miles Broadway Junior School SR48NW (255 pupils)
  4. 0.3 miles St Cuthbert's Roman Catholic Voluntary Aided Primary School SR48HP (252 pupils)
  5. 0.3 miles Pennywell School SR49BA
  6. 0.3 miles Academy 360 SR49BA (801 pupils)
  7. 0.4 miles St Anne's Roman Catholic Voluntary Aided Primary School SR49AA (230 pupils)
  8. 0.6 miles Havelock Community Primary School SR40DA
  9. 0.6 miles Quarry View Junior School SR40HB
  10. 0.6 miles Quarry View Infant School SR40HB
  11. 0.6 miles Sandhill View School SR34EN (820 pupils)
  12. 0.6 miles Quarry View Primary School SR40HB
  13. 0.6 miles Highfield Community Primary School SR40DA (396 pupils)
  14. 0.7 miles Grindon Infant School SR49QN (213 pupils)
  15. 0.7 miles North View School SR40HB (65 pupils)
  16. 0.7 miles Springwell Dene School SR34EE
  17. 0.7 miles Springwell Dene School SR34EE (58 pupils)
  18. 0.7 miles North View School SR40HB
  19. 0.8 miles South Hylton Primary School SR40LS (262 pupils)
  20. 0.8 miles Sunningdale School SR34HA (82 pupils)
  21. 0.9 miles Thorney Close Primary School SR34BB (266 pupils)
  22. 1 mile Barnes Junior School SR47QF (289 pupils)
  23. 1.1 mile Barnes Infant School SR47QF (334 pupils)
  24. 1.1 mile Hasting Hill Primary School SR34LY

List of schools in Sunderland

For use from September 2008

Grindon Hall Christian


Independent School

Inspection report

DCSF Registration Number 394/6010
Unique Reference Number 108875
URN for registered childcare EY245607
Inspection number 331317
Inspection dates 11–12 March 2009
Reporting inspector

Christine Inkster HMI

This inspection of the school was carried out under section 162A of the Education Act 2002, as
This document may be reproduced in whole or
in part for non-commercial educational purposes,
provided that the information quoted is reproduced
without adaptation and the source and date of
publication are stated.
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T 08456 404040

© Crown Copyright 2009

Inspection Report: Grindon Hall Christian School, 11–12 March 2009


Purpose and scope of the inspection

This inspection was carried out by Ofsted under Section 162A of the Education Act
2002, as amended, the purpose of which is to advise the Secretary of State for
Children, Schools and Families about the school’s suitability for continued registration
as an independent school.

Information about the school

Grindon Hall Christian School was established in 1988 on Christian principles, a vision
and ethos that it retains today. It is a non-selective, co-educational independent day
school for girls and boys aged 3 – 18 years situated on the outskirts of Sunderland.
There are 317 pupils currently on roll of whom 11 are part-time. There are
approximately 13% of pupils with learning difficulties and/or disabilities, including a
small proportion with a statement of special educational need. There are a small
number of pupils with Asperger’s Syndrome. The school was last inspected in
December 2005 and the most recent inspection of Early Years Foundation Stage
provision was in July 2008. The school’s vision is to ‘

reflect the love of God to
children through education’.

Evaluation of the school

Grindon Hall Christian School is a good school that is successful in fulfilling its aims.
The quality of education including teaching, assessment and the curriculum are
good. As a result, pupils make good progress in their learning. Pupils’ spiritual,
moral, social and cultural development is outstanding because of the high quality of
pastoral care they receive. The welfare, health and safety of pupils are good and the
school meets all but one of the regulations. Provision in the Early Years Foundation
Stage is good enabling children to achieve well. Their personal development is
outstanding. The school has addressed the areas for improvement identified in the
last inspection.

Quality of education

The quality of the curriculum is good in the Early Years Foundation Stage and
throughout the school, where all areas of experience are included. It enables pupils
to make good progress in their learning. There has been good improvement in the
primary curriculum since the last inspection. It is broad and balanced and meets the
needs of pupils well. It is well planned and this ensures that pupils’ skills and
knowledge are systematically built upon and developed as they move through the
key stages. There are good opportunities for pupils to develop their literacy,
numeracy and information and communication technology skills in other subjects of
the curriculum. In the senior school and sixth form, the curriculum is academic and

Inspection Report: Grindon Hall Christian School, 11–12 March 2009


geared towards pupils gaining examination accreditation in a variety of subjects.
Information and communication technology is used effectively in most subjects to
develop skills and to enhance learning for the majority of pupils, although some say
they would like opportunities to develop more advanced skills. Careers guidance has
improved well. Work with Connexions from Year 9 through to the sixth form helps
pupils to make the right choices. Good advice is also provided to help pupils make
applications for university.
Across the school, personal, social, health and citizenship education is systematically
taught. Good support is provided for pupils with learning difficulties and/or
disabilities. Music is a great strength. Approximately one third of pupils play a
musical instrument and there are choirs, rock bands, an orchestra and fiddle bands.
The school provides well for a variety of sports such as gymnastics and rugby and
pupils have achieved great success in regional and national competitions. Educational
visits, although limited, are linked well to areas of study and provide pupils with
relevant, practical first hand experiences. There are many after school clubs for
younger pupils, but there are fewer activities for older pupils and some say they
would welcome opportunities to engage in a wider range of sports.
Teaching and assessment are good throughout the school. In the best lessons,
teachers combine high expectations and an understanding of each pupil’s needs,
with consistent support and encouragement. Teachers have very good subject
knowledge which helps them to make lessons challenging and interesting. The pace
of learning is brisk and pupils are encouraged to learn things for themselves. The
teachers’ questioning is also effective so that pupils have to think carefully and apply
previously learnt skills to new tasks. Pupils’ behaviour is exemplary in lessons and
they have very good relationships with staff, often sharing good humour. In the
primary section of the school, the development of pupils’ reading and speaking and
listening skills are a strength. From an early age, children are encouraged to explain
their ideas and they are confident in speaking in front of an audience. As a result,
the majority of pupils are very articulate and contribute to discussions with
confidence. Pupils are well motivated. However, although good teaching is also
evident in the secondary section of the school, it is not consistent. In some lessons,
pupils are passive recipients rather than active participants. Not all of these lessons
are planned well enough to challenge pupils who are more able.
The school has a good range of assessment procedures which are used on a termly
basis and inform the detailed annual reports to parents. The primary section of the
school uses assessment information carefully to set challenging targets and check
pupils’ progress. An effective tracking system is in place which is used well to plan
the next steps in each pupil’s learning, so that they build upon their skills and
knowledge progressively as they move through the school. However, in the
secondary phase, some teachers’ assessments are not always as rigorous as they
could be to ensure higher attaining pupils maximise their potential. Results are not
routinely collated by managers and the tracking of pupils’ progress is not rigorous

Inspection Report: Grindon Hall Christian School, 11–12 March 2009


enough. The school is, therefore, currently reviewing assessment procedures to
ensure a more rigorous and unified system of assessment.
Pupils make good progress throughout the school. Pupils entering the Nursery
represent a full range of abilities, but overall these are broadly typical of children of
their age. They achieve well so that standards attained by recent cohorts of pupils
are above average by the time they reach Year 6. In the secondary phase, good
teaching enables a large majority of pupils to gain results in GCSE and A level
examinations each year which are above average. Given that several pupils enter the
school from the beginning of their secondary education this represents good
progress from pupils’ individual starting points. Most pupils move on to their
destination of choice in further or higher education.

Spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of the pupils

Pupils’ personal development, including their spiritual, moral, social and cultural
development, is outstanding throughout the school. Prayer, self-reliance,
thoughtfulness and respect for others are held to be important aspects of school life.
Pupils say that the ‘school is like a big family where each person looks after the
other’. Pupils grow in confidence and develop great self-esteem. They enjoy coming
to school and are strong advocates of what it has to offer. Their behaviour is
outstanding in lessons and around the school. They are polite and courteous and are
keen to talk about their work and life at the school. Attendance rates are high.
Pupils contribute to the life of the school by, for example, looking after younger
pupils and those with learning difficulties and/or disabilities. However, they say they
would like to have more opportunities to put forward their collective ideas and
suggestions. They contribute to wider communities by engaging in a variety of
activities abroad such as ‘

Bee keeping in Malawi’

and voluntary community service to

projects at home such as those organised by the ‘

Coastal and Countryside Rangers’


The school promotes pupil’s understanding of those from different racial and cultural
backgrounds through assemblies and several academic subjects. Personal, social,
health and citizenship lessons encourage pupils to consider social and moral issues,
for example human rights and responses to crime. Pupils also gain an understanding
of parliament, the courts and other public institutions by visits to them, and by
visitors coming into school. Pupils’ success in examinations and their careful
preparation for university admission give them an excellent preparation for future
study and employment.

Welfare, health and safety of the pupils

Good provision is made for pupils’ welfare, health and safety throughout the school.
Staff know pupils well and cater very effectively for their individual needs.
Relationships between staff and pupils are very good. Pupils say bullying is rare, but
are sure that it will be dealt with promptly and appropriately should it occur. They
are encouraged to eat healthily and there are appropriate opportunities to participate

Inspection Report: Grindon Hall Christian School, 11–12 March 2009


in sports and physical education. The school has a wide range of policies in place.
However, the teacher designated for child protection and other staff have not yet
undertaken up-to-date training. The school reacted promptly and has booked
appropriate training. Appropriate risk assessments are carried out in all areas of
school life; risk assessments for educational visits and fire risk assessments are in
place. Accidents and incidents are properly recorded. The school fulfils its duties with
regard to the Disability Discrimination Act 2002.

Suitability of the proprietor and staff

Effective safeguards are in place to ensure that pupils do not encounter unsuitable
adults. Checks with the Criminal Records Bureau have been completed for those in
regular contact with pupils and are kept on a single central record.

School’s premises and accommodation

The school has appropriate accommodation to meet the needs of pupils. There are
an appropriate number of classrooms, science laboratories and a central hall used for
music, drama and assemblies. The computer suite provides well for learning
information and communication technology skills and for research in other subjects.
A separate library is available for use by both pupils and staff. The primary section of
the school is housed in a separate building.
Outside, a suitable hard-surfaced area and extensive grassed areas are used well for
outdoor physical education lessons, sporting events and playtimes. Early Years
Foundation Stage pupils and those in Year 1 are taught in modular buildings and
there is a separate outdoor learning area.

Provision of information for parents, carers and others

The school provides parents, carers and others with a good range of information
through the school prospectus, an attractive website and regular newsletters. A
significant number of parents and carers responded to the pre-inspection
questionnaire and of these, the majority are pleased with most aspects of the
school’s work. However, a significant number of pupils and parents indicated that
they would like the school to organise more educational visits. Although the school
are willing to arrange further visits, these had not been planned previously because
the school were concerned about the extra costs this would incur for parents.

Procedures for handling complaints

The school has a complaints policy and set of procedures, which meet all of the
regulations. The school has taken steps to ensure that parents are aware of these.

Inspection Report: Grindon Hall Christian School, 11–12 March 2009


Effectiveness of the Early Years Foundation Stage

Children settle quickly into the Early Years Foundation Stage because of the good
induction procedures in place and the good curriculum offered. They make good
progress from their individual starting points because of the good quality teaching
provided for them. Children’s learning and development are good. They participate
enthusiastically in a wide range of interesting and stimulating activities which meet
their individual needs well, including those outdoors. A strength of the provision is
the way in which staff respond to the interests of children and there is a good
balance of adult-led and child-led activities. Reading is taught particularly well
because there are good systems in place. There are very good opportunities for
children to develop their skills in speaking and listening through role play and
children also make good progress in their mathematical development. Children are
very confident because of the excellent care and support provided for them. They
clearly trust adults and have excellent relationships with them, often sharing good
humour. They cooperate well with each other and are learning to take turns.
Children from different backgrounds and cultures work and play extremely well
together. Consequently, their personal development is outstanding. Provision for the
welfare of pupils is good. Staff are extremely vigilant, provide strong support and
have appropriate records, policies and procedures in place to ensure that children
are safe. The leadership of the Early Years Foundation Stage is good, as is the
overall effectiveness of the provision.

Compliance with regulatory requirements

The school meets all of the Education (Independent School Standards) (England)
Regulations 2003 as amended (“the Regulations”), with the exception of those listed
The school does not meet all requirements in respect of provision for pupils’ welfare,
health and safety (standard 3) and must:

  • Ensure that the child protection officer and all staff receive appropriate
    training in child protection and comply with the safer recruitment policy as
    required by DCFS guidance
Safeguarding children and safer recruitment in

(2007) (paragraph 3(2)(b))

What the school could do to improve further

While not required by regulations, the school might wish to consider the following
points for development:

  • Ensure there is a more rigorous, streamlined assessment system in the
    secondary part of the school to ensure this informs practice in the classrooms.
    Inspection Report: Grindon Hall Christian School, 11–12 March 2009


  • Develop pupils’ ability to be independent learners who take initiative and
    responsibility in the learning process.
    Inspection Report: Grindon Hall Christian School, 11–12 March 2009


Inspection Judgement Recording Form





The quality of education

Overall quality of education

How well the curriculum and other activities meet the range of needs and interests
of pupils

How effective teaching and assessment are in meeting the full range of pupils’ needs

How well pupils make progress in their learning

Pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development

Quality of provision for pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development

The behaviour of pupils

Welfare, health and safety of pupils

The overall welfare, health and safety of pupils

The quality of the Early Years Foundation Stage provision

How effectively are children in the Early Years Foundation Stage helped to learn and

How well do children achieve in the Early Years Foundation Stage relative to their
starting points and capabilities?

How good are the personal development and well-being of children in the Early
Years Foundation Stage?

What is the quality of welfare, health and safety of children in the Early Years
Foundation Stage?

How effectively is the provision in the Early Years Foundation Stage led and

What is the overall effectiveness of the Early Years Foundation Stage including,
where relevant, the quality of childcare?

Inspection Report: Grindon Hall Christian School, 11–12 March 2009


School details

Name of school

Grindon Hall Christian School

DCSF number 394/6010
Unique reference number 108875
EY URN (for registered childcare only) EY245607
Type of school Co-educational
Status Independent
Date school opened 1988
Age range of pupils 3-18
Gender of pupils MI
Number on roll (full-time pupils) Boys: 151 Girls: 155 Total: 306
Number on roll (part-time pupils) Boys: 4 Girls: 7 Total: 11
Number of pupils with a statement of
special educational need

Boys: 3 Girls: 2 Total: 5

Annual fees (day pupils) £ 5995 (maximum)
Address of school Nookside

Tyne and Wear

Telephone number 0191 5344444
Fax number 0191 5344111
Email address reveal email: i…
Principal Mr C Gray
Proprietor North East Christian Schools Limited
Reporting inspector Christine Inkster HMI
Dates of inspection 11–12 March 2009

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