School etc

Newman Catholic College

Newman Catholic College
Harlesden Road

phone: 020 89653947

headteacher: Mr Danny Coyle


school holidays: via Brent council

586 pupils aged 11—19y boys gender
1012 pupils capacity: 57% full

585 boys 100%


Last updated: June 18, 2014

Secondary — Voluntary Aided School

Education phase
Religious character
Roman Catholic
Establishment type
Voluntary Aided School
Establishment #
OSGB coordinates
Easting: 522218, Northing: 183549
GPS coordinates
Latitude: 51.538, Longitude: -0.23919
Accepting pupils
11—19 years old
Census date
Jan. 16, 2014
Ofsted last inspection
Sept. 21, 2011
Archdiocese of Westminster
Region › Const. › Ward
London › Brent Central › Kensal Green
Urban > 10k - less sparse
Admissions policy
Main specialism
Maths and Computing (Operational)
Sixth form
Has a sixth form
Free school meals %
Learning provider ref #

rooms to rent in Brent

Schools nearby

  1. 0.2 miles Willesden High School NW103ST
  2. 0.2 miles Capital City Academy NW103ST (1194 pupils)
  3. 0.3 miles Furness Primary School NW105YT (532 pupils)
  4. 0.3 miles John Keble CofE Primary School NW104DR (452 pupils)
  5. 0.3 miles Convent of Jesus and Mary Language College NW104EP
  6. 0.3 miles Furness Junior School NW105YT
  7. 0.3 miles Furness Infant School NW105YT
  8. 0.3 miles Scott House School NW104SD
  9. 0.3 miles Maple Walk School NW104EB (191 pupils)
  10. 0.3 miles Convent of Jesus and Mary Language College NW104EP (1006 pupils)
  11. 0.4 miles Kenmont Primary School NW106AL (233 pupils)
  12. 0.4 miles Donnington Primary School NW103TL (240 pupils)
  13. 0.4 miles Newfield Primary School NW103UD (451 pupils)
  14. 0.4 miles Scott House School NW104UE
  15. 0.5 miles College Green School and Services NW103PH (99 pupils)
  16. 0.6 miles Leopold Primary School NW109UR (458 pupils)
  17. 0.6 miles TCS Primary (Special Needs) School NW108AH
  18. 0.7 miles Curzon Crescent Nursery School NW109SD (84 pupils)
  19. 0.7 miles Harlesden Primary School NW108UT (235 pupils)
  20. 0.7 miles Princess Frederica CofE Primary School NW105TP (445 pupils)
  21. 0.7 miles St Joseph's Roman Catholic Primary School NW109LS (502 pupils)
  22. 0.7 miles Hopewell Special School (Willesden) NW102SG
  23. 0.8 miles St Andrew and St Francis CofE Primary School NW25PE (466 pupils)
  24. 0.8 miles St Mary Magdalen Catholic Junior School NW25BB (355 pupils)

List of schools in Brent

Age group 11–19
Inspection date(s) 21–22 September 2011
Inspection number 376592

Newman Catholic College

Inspection report

Unique Reference Number 101564
Local Authority Brent
Inspection number 376592
Inspection dates 21–22 September 2011
Report ing inspector Christine Raeside HMI

This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.

Type of school Comprehensive
School category Foundation
Age range of pupils 11–19
Gender of pupils Boys
Gender of pupils in the sixth form Boys
Nu mber of pupils on the school roll 517
Of which, number on roll in the sixth form 57
Appropriate authority The governing body
Chair Mrs Teresa Outred
Principal Mr Richard Kolka
Date of prev ious school inspection 6–7 May 2009
School address Harlesden Road
NW10 3RN
Telephone number 020 8965 3947
Fax number 020 8965 3430
Email address reveal email: off…


This inspection was carried out by one of Her Majesty’s Inspectors and three
additional inspectors. The inspection team observed 39 lessons taught by 34
teachers, six of which were jointly observed with senior leaders. Inspectors observed

the college’s work and looked closely at its analysis of students’ progress and

attainment. Meetings were held with groups of students, the Chair of the Governing
Body, staff, community partners and local authority officers. Inspectors also
scrutinised the college development plan, policies, reports from the School
Improvement Partner and records of school improvement work. They considered
responses to questionnaires from 70 parents and carers, 99 students and 17 staff.
The inspection team reviewed many aspects of the college’s work. It looked in detail
at a number of key areas.

  • The effectiveness and sustainability of strategies to raise attainment and
    improve rates of progress for all students and the capacity to sustain an upward
    trend of improvement.
  • The effectiveness of strategies to secure high attendance across all groups of
  • The quality of teaching and how well staff use assessment information to
    ensure that lessons meet the needs of all students.
  • The quality and reliability of the college’s self-evaluation and the capacity of
    leaders at all levels to drive improvement in provision and outcomes.

Information about the school

Newman Catholic College is a smaller than average boys’ school. The great majority
of students are from minority ethnic backgrounds and over half speak English as an
additional language. The proportion of students with special educational needs
and/or disabilities is higher than the national average; a slightly lower than average
proportion of pupils have a statement of special educational needs. The proportion of
students known to be eligible for free school meals is higher than average. There is a
much higher than usual turnover of students joining and leaving the college
throughout the school year. The college holds specialist status in mathematics and
computing and the Investor in People award.

Inspection judgements

Overall effectiveness: how good is the school? 2
The school’s capacity for sustained improvement 2

Main findings

The renewed and revitalised Newman Catholic College is growing in numbers and in
strength. It provides a good quality of education. The boys who belong to this close
community appreciate the good teaching and excellent guidance they receive and
take pride in their work. Groups of students from a diverse range of ethnic and
cultural backgrounds work together harmoniously within the exceptionally caring
Catholic ethos. The social, moral, cultural and spiritual aspects of learning are very
well developed, and underpinned by the values of the UNICEF Rights Respecting
School initiative. The principal and senior leaders have effectively communicated the

college’s aim to become an institution in which ‘everyone counts, everyone
contributes, everyone succeeds’. These principles permeate students’ attitudes to

The college achieves this cohesion within a highly mobile local community. When
boys enter the college, whether at the conventional times or not, they are quickly
assessed and supported in their learning. This includes the high proportion who
speak English as an additional language. Many arrive with no previous qualifications
or with very low prior attainment in the core areas of English and mathematics.
Attainment by the end of Year 11 remains low overall, but it is improving strongly
because progress is good overall, and exceptional for some students.
The well-designed curriculum and judicious use of partnerships extend and enliven
the learning experience. Boys’ achievement is improving because they are carefully

guided onto appropriate pathways. They benefit from a wide range of intervention

and support, such as Saturday English classes for those still developing their use of
language. Systems of assessment have been improved and refined since the last
inspection. Students know their levels, grades and targets and are generally able to
explain how to improve their work.
The sixth form, still within the early stages of its development, is growing and
becoming an established feature of the college. Boys who stay on to study sixth form
courses also benefit from outstanding care and support. Some have tried courses

elsewhere but returned because they felt they were ‘just a number’ and because

they missed the Newman ethos. The outstanding contribution to the college and
wider community made by sixth form students is exemplified by the boys who won a
prestigious award for community service then chose to spend their prize money on a
cultural visit for the whole group.

Teaching is good overall, and some is outstanding. In the best lessons, the college’s
wealth of assessment information is used to plan lessons and refine tasks so that
they are sharply focused on the learning needs of groups and individuals. However,
this aspect of good teaching is inconsistent. Lessons which are no more than
satisfactory are often so because planning lacks precision. Learning intentions are
not well communicated to the students and the lesson, as a result, lacks pace and
challenge. Although targeted and focused questioning is promoting excellent
progress in some lessons, it is not sufficiently widespread. Ambitious and appropriate
plans and training opportunities are in place to secure a greater proportion of good
and outstanding teaching. The impact of these can be seen in the most successful
lessons, but the effectiveness of middle leaders in securing teaching that is
consistently at least good is variable.
Overall improvements are the result of concerted and determined efforts to establish
the college under its new name and within a new era of success. Governors and

senior leaders have a clear understanding of the college’s strengths and how they

wish it to develop further. As a result, the capacity for sustained improvement is

What does the school need to do to improve further?

  • Further increase the proportion of good and outstanding teaching in order to
    drive up attainment and secure excellent progress in every lesson, by
    ensuring that teachers focus their lesson planning sharply on learning
    intentions and tailor activities to meet the needs of all students
    making the use of sharply focused, challenging and developmental
    questioning a feature of all lessons
    raising the level of challenge and pace in every lesson to match that of the
    ensuring that strengths in the use of assessment to check and promote
    progress become a consistent feature of all lessons.
  • Ensure that leaders at all levels rigorously monitor and evaluate the quality of
    teaching and learning and the impact of professional development so that best
    practice becomes consistent practice.
    Students enjoy school, show positive attitudes to learning and talk enthusiastically
    about their work. They are keen to do well and enjoy keeping track of how they are
    performing against their targets. In class, they show concentration and respond to
    good teaching with thoughtful and enthusiastic responses. These highly positive
    attitudes to learning support good achievement, including for those with special
    educational needs and/or disabilities. Since the last inspection, there has been a
    sharp rise in the proportion of students achieving five or more GCSE grades at grade
    C or higher, bringing this measure closer to the national average. Boys who spend
    their entire secondary education at Newman make at least good progress overall,
    with sustained high levels of progress over time in the core subjects of English and
    mathematics. Potentially vulnerable groups, such as those eligible for free school
    meals or those with special educational needs and/or disabilities, often exceed
    expectations. Others who arrive at different points during their school career also
    achieve well; for some who are also acquiring English as an additional language,
    progress is rapid.
    Students behave well and show respect for adults and for one another. They feel
    extremely safe at college. They say that they know whom to go to with any concerns
    and are confident that these will be addressed effectively. Student leaders adopt
    roles that support good behaviour; some are members of the anti-bullying council.
    Parents and carers agree that the college keeps students safe and that behaviour is
    well managed. Throughout the inspection, the boys reinforced this view with their
    polite, courteous and welcoming attitudes.
    Pride in the college community is strongly in evidence. Students enjoy getting
    involved in college developments, contributing, for example, to new uniform designs
    and environmental improvements. The active school council is involved in evaluating
    learning, conducting observation walks with senior staff and responding to surveys
    about preferred learning styles. Student leaders patrol breaktimes, ensuring safe use
    of the all-weather pitch. Sixth formers provide reading support to younger boys.
    Students collaborate effectively and use information and communication technology
    with confidence. They know what they have to do to succeed and value the advice
    and support that they receive for each new step in their education. Attendance is
    average overall and improving. Almost every boy leaving Newman successfully
    continues on to further education, work or training.
Outcomes for individuals and groups of pupils 2

These are the grades for pupils’ outcomes

Pupils’ achievement and the extent to which they enjoy their learning
Taking into account:
Pupils’ attainment
The quality of pupils’ learning and their progress
The quality of learning for pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities
and their progress



The extent to which pupils feel safe 2
Pupils’ behaviour 2
The extent to which pupils adopt healthy lifesty les 2
The extent to which pupils contribute to the school and wider community 1
The extent to which pupils develop workplace and other skills that will 2


The grades for attainment and attendance are: 1 is high; 2 is above average; 3 is broadly average;

and 4 is low

contribute to their future economic well-being
Taking into account:
Pupils’ attendance
The extent of pupils’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural development 1

How effective is the provision?

In the best lessons, the excellent relationships between students and staff are the
foundation for sustained challenge and high expectations. No time is wasted. ‘Hands

up’ is not allowed, because every boy knows that he may be expected at any

moment to answer a question. Teachers are explicit from the outset about what
knowledge or skills will be established or consolidated; students are able to explain
clearly what and how they have learned. Assessment informs the planning of suitable
tasks, but is also an integral feature of the learning. In an English lesson, boys

showed insight in explaining the moral questions at the heart of Shakespeare’s

Macbeth. By the end, they could also reflect on their own responses in the light of
examination criteria and assess how well they had done. Where lessons are only
satisfactory, the pace of learning is slower. Good relationships still prevail, but there
is insufficient challenge and boys are given too much time to complete tasks. The
finely targeted continuous assessment methods that drive learning in the best
lessons are not in evidence.

The curriculum is carefully tailored and adapted to maximise every student’s chance

of success. A wide range of qualifications ensures that different levels of ability are
catered for. Students value the opportunity to take examinations in their heritage
languages and this provides a rich seam of additional success. The specialism
underpins the curriculum, for example through the early start to GCSE courses for
more-able boys in science and mathematics, or the science and engineering projects
run in conjunction with the local Education Business Partnership. Curriculum
extension and enhancement are imaginative and build on excellent partnership work,
such as the Kickz initiative, run by a premier league football club and designed to
engage young people through sport. The ‘into university’ initiative has increased
numbers staying on to pursue sixth form courses and the ‘all star’ programme targets
the most able to help them achieve top grades.
The broad and balanced curriculum, carefully guided choices and exceptional focus
on individual care all combine to support good achievement for all. The Damascus
centre, for example, focuses effectively on turning back those who have embarked
on a path of poor behaviour. There are striking examples of students whose personal
circumstances have become very challenging, but who, through college support,
have remained focused on their education and gone on to thrive as individuals.

These are the grades for the quality of provision

The quality of teaching 2
Taking into account:
The use of assessment to support learning
The extent to which the curriculum meets pupils’ needs, including, where
relevant, through partnerships
The effectiveness of care, guidance and support 1

How effective are leadership and management?

The senior team is evolving and strengthening to meet the demands of each new

phase of the college’s development. Highly effective partnerships play a part:

recruitment through the Future Leaders programme is enabling continuity of
expertise during changes in personnel. A higher education partnership provides
critical support and challenge, and leadership consultancy from a prestigious sixth
form college has helped to develop a more robust governing body.
College evaluation is thorough and senior leaders accurately judged progress in
lessons alongside inspectors. The implementation of an innovative programme of
professional development towards outstanding teaching and learning is underway,
although its impact is yet to be fully realised.
The governing body is fully involved in setting the strategic direction of the college.
Governors ensure the safety of students and staff through the rigorous application of
effective child protection and safeguarding policies. They support college leaders in
actively seeking ways to improve their engagement with all groups of parents and
carers. Parents and carers receive regular communication from the college in the
form of newsletters, the website and reports on their boys’ achievements. Special
academic evenings, targeted at the needs and interests of different community
groups, have been particularly successful. Equality of opportunity is central to the
college’s vision. The performance of different groups is monitored closely and any
gaps quickly identified so that action can be taken to close them. Students have a
strong understanding of the contribution they make to cohesion in the school and
wider community. This is greatly enhanced by their first-hand understanding of
cultural diversity. Mutual respect and understanding permeate the school and are
celebrated through the community-wide Cultural Diversity Day.

These are the grades for leadership and management

The effectiveness of leadership and management in embedding ambit ion and
driv ing improve ment
Taking into account:
The leadership and management of teaching and learning


The effectiveness of the governing body in challenging and support ing the
school so that weaknesses are tackled decisively and statutory responsibilities
The effectiveness of the school’s engagement with parents and carers 2
The effectiveness of partnerships in promoting learning and well-being 1
The effectiveness with which the school promotes equality of opportunity and
tackles discrimination
The effectiveness of safeguarding procedures 2
The effectiveness with which the school promotes community cohesion 1
The effectiveness with which the school deploys resources to achieve value for

Sixth form

The growing sixth form is a significant factor in the future of Newman Catholic
College. From modest starting numbers, recruitment and retention are increasing
rapidly, building on successful outcomes. Relative to their starting points, sixth form
students make good progress. All of those who completed courses in Year 13 last
year went on to university. Teaching is good and enhanced by a skills exchange and
development programme with a high-achieving college. Students sum up their sixth
form as ‘motivational’ and dedicated to their achievement. They are eager to remain
involved in the college and wider community. They take advantage of a wide range
of opportunities, including the Duke of Edinburgh’s Award, fundraising for CAFOD
and literacy support for younger students. They describe the sixth form as having

‘zero tolerance’ of any form of unfairness or discrimination. They are mature and

reflective when discussing issues of culture and faith. This was exemplified by one
student describing the impact a ‘three faiths forum’ had had on his thinking and how
struck he was by the commonalities between different religious texts and moral
Leadership of the sixth form has recently changed but continuity has been assured
by effective oversight from a senior leader. The new curriculum leader is passionately
committed to further success and development. She energetically pursues
experiences and activities that will widen horizons and raise expectations for
Newman students. These have included residential visits to a prestigious university
and a graduate associate scheme, which brings the academic experiences of a range
of London universities into the sixth form and provides return ‘taster’ visits.

These are the grades for the sixth form

Overall effectiveness of the sixth form
Taking into account:
Outcomes for students in the sixth form
The quality of provision in the sixth form
Leadership and management of the sixth form



Views of parents and carers

A lower than average proportion of parents and carers responded to the inspection
questionnaire, but there was strong support for the college amongst those who did.
The very large majority agreed that their son enjoys college, that the teaching is
good and that behaviour is well managed. Most agreed that the college makes sure
that boys are well prepared for the future, but in lower numbers than for other
questions. The inspection team found the college’s work in preparing students for the
future to be good, with almost all boys progressing to work, training or further and
higher education.

Responses from parents and carers to Ofsted’s questionnaire

Ofsted invited all the registered parents and carers of pupils registered at Newman Catholic College to
complete a questionnaire about their views of the school.
In the questionnaire, parents and carers were asked to record how strongly they agreed with 13
statements about the school.
The inspection team received 74 completed questionnaires by the end of the on-site inspection. In
total, there are 517 pupils registered at the school.
The table above summarises the responses that parents and carers made to each statement. The
percentages indicate the proportion of parents and carers giving that response out of the total number
of completed questionnaires. Where one or more parents and carers chose not to answer a particular
question, the percentages will not add up to 100%.

Statements Strongly
Agree Disagree disagree
Total % Total % Total % Total %
My child enjoys school 36 49 33 45 2 3 2 3
The school keeps my child
32 43 35 47 2 3 1 1
The school informs me about
my child’s progress
41 55 27 36 4 5 0 0
My child is making enough
progress at this school
28 38 41 55 2 3 1 1
The teaching is good at this
32 43 38 51 2 3 0 0
The school helps me to
support my child’s learning
29 39 36 49 4 5 1 1
The school helps my child to
have a healthy lifestyle
31 42 35 47 5 7 0 0
The school makes sure that
my child is well prepared for
the future (for example
changing year group,
changing school, and for
children who are finishing
school, entering further or
higher education, or entering
32 43 29 39 0 0 1 1
The school meets my child’s
particular needs
28 38 39 53 3 4 0 0
The school deals effectively
with unacceptable behaviour
36 49 31 42 4 5 0 0
The school takes account of
my suggestions and
26 35 39 53 3 4 0 0
The school is led and
managed effectively
28 38 41 55 2 3 0 0
Overall, I am happy with my
child’s experience at this
36 49 32 43 3 4 0 0


What inspection judgements mean

Grade Judgement Description
Grade 1 Outstanding These features are highly effective. An outstanding
school provides exceptionally well for all its pupils’ needs.
Grade 2 Good These are very positive features of a school. A school
that is good is serving its pupils well.
Grade 3 Satisfactory These features are of reasonable quality. A satisfactory
school is providing adequately for its pupils.
Grade 4 Inadequate These features are not of an acceptable standard. An
inadequate school needs to make significant
improvement in order to meet the needs of its pupils.
Ofsted inspectors will make further visits until it

Overall effectiveness of schools

Overall effectiveness judgement (percentage of schools)
Type of school Outstanding Good Satisfactory Inadequate
Nursery schools 43 47 10 0
Primary schools 6 46 42 6
14 36 41 9
Sixth forms 15 42 41 3
Special schools 30 48 19 3
Pupil referral
14 50 31 5
All schools 10 44 39 6

New school inspection arrangements were introduced on 1 September 2009. This means that
inspectors now make some additional judgements that were not made previously.
The data in the table above are for the period 1 September 2010 to 08 April 2011 and are consistent
with the latest published official statistics about maintained school inspection outcomes (see
The sample of schools inspected during 2010/11 was not representative of all schools nationally, as
weaker schools are inspected more frequently than good or outstanding schools.
Percentages are rounded and do not always add exactly to 100.
Sixth form figures reflect the judgements made for the overall effectiveness of the sixth form in

secondary schools, special schools and pupil referral units.

Common terminology used by inspectors

Achievement: the progress and success of a pupil in their

learning, development or training.

Attainment: the standard of the pupils’ work shown by test and

examination results and in lessons.

Capacity to improve: the proven ability of the school to continue

improving. Inspectors base this judgement on what
the school has accomplished so far and on the
quality of its systems to maintain improvement.

Leadership and management: the contribution of all the staff with responsibilities,

not just the headteacher, to identifying priorities,
directing and motivating staff and running the

Learning: how well pupils acquire knowledge, develop their

understanding, learn and practise skills and are
developing their competence as learners.

Overall effectiveness: inspectors form a judgement on a school’s overall

effectiveness based on the findings from their
inspection of the school. The following judgements,
in particular, influence what the overall
effectiveness judgement will be.

  • The school’s capacity for sustained
  • Outcomes for individuals and groups of
  • The quality of teaching.
  • The extent to which the curriculum meets
    pupils’ needs, including, where relevant,
    through partnerships.
  • The effectiveness of care, guidance and

Progress: the rate at which pupils are learning in lessons and

over longer periods of time. It is often measured

by comparing the pupils’ attainment at the end of a

key stage with their attainment when they started.

23 September 2011
Dear Students

Inspection of Newman Catholic College, London NW10 3RN

Thank you for the very warm welcome you gave us when we inspected your college
recently and for taking time to talk to us so enthusiastically about the college and
your learning. You are clearly very proud of your achievements and of the changes
and improvements to the college, in which you have played a major part. We agree
that your college provides a good standard of education. You achieve well because
you are so well cared for and effectively guided and supported in your chosen
More of you have opted to stay on into the sixth form this year, clearly appreciating
the high expectations and excellent guidance that continue there. You demonstrate a
very mature attitude to your college and many of you, throughout all years, want to
give something back by taking on one of many responsibilities, such as school
leaders, sports coordinators, or reading mentors. One of your teachers said that the
college was determined to produce young men who are academically successful, but

also ‘large-hearted’. We can see the success of this in your attitudes and actions.
We were extremely impressed with the great respect you show for one another’s

different cultural backgrounds. Your college provides excellent opportunities for you

to reflect on other people’s experiences. You told us that behaviour has improved a

great deal over the past few years and we found that it is good. In some lessons, it
was outstanding because you were highly motivated and took responsibility for your
own learning. Teaching is good and at its best when teachers challenge you and
build your aspirations by demanding more from you. Examination results are getting
better. We think they can improve further and that even more of you can make
outstanding progress at Newman. We have asked the principal and senior leaders to
make sure that all lessons are equally fast-paced and challenging and that teachers
plan activities to meet your individual needs and test your learning with sharply
focused questions. We have also asked them to ensure that all lessons are regularly
as good as the ones where these things already happen. You can help by getting
fully involved in every lesson and working hard to meet or exceed your target
Yours sincerely
Christine Raeside
Her Majesty's Inspector


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