Northfleet Technology College
phone: 01474 533802
headteacher: Mrs Jane Partridge
989 pupils capacity: 96% full
940 boys 99%
10 girls 1%
Last updated: June 19, 2014
Secondary — Foundation School
- Education phase
- Establishment type
- Foundation School
- Establishment #
- OSGB coordinates
- Easting: 563003, Northing: 173050
- GPS coordinates
- Latitude: 51.433, Longitude: 0.34356
- Accepting pupils
- 11—18 years old
- Census date
- Jan. 16, 2014
- Ofsted last inspection
- Oct. 24, 2012
- Region › Const. › Ward
- South East › Gravesham › Northfleet South
- Urban > 10k - less sparse
- Admissions policy
- Main specialism
- Technology (Operational)
- Sixth form
- Has a sixth form
- Free school meals %
- Trust school
- Is supported by a Trust
- Learning provider ref #
- 0.3 miles Northfleet School for Girls DA118AQ (951 pupils)
- 0.4 miles Dover Road Community Primary School DA110RB
- 0.4 miles St Botolph's Church of England Voluntary Aided Primary School DA119PL (271 pupils)
- 0.4 miles Dover Road County Junior School DA110RB
- 0.4 miles Dover Road County Infant School DA110RB
- 0.4 miles Copperfield Academy DA110RB (485 pupils)
- 0.5 miles St Joseph's Catholic Primary School, Northfleet DA119QZ (243 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Cecil Road Primary and Nursery School DA117BT (470 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Painters Ash Primary School DA118EL (401 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Rosherville Church of England Primary School DA119JQ (130 pupils)
- 0.6 miles Rosherville Church of England Primary School DA119JQ
- 0.7 miles Northfleet Nursery School DA119JS (90 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Shears Green Infant School DA117JF (361 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Shears Green Junior School DA117JB (474 pupils)
- 0.7 miles Mayfield Grammar School, Gravesend DA110JE
- 0.7 miles Mayfield Grammar School, Gravesend DA110JE (979 pupils)
- 0.8 miles Saint George's Church of England School DA117LS
- 0.8 miles Saint George's Church of England School DA117LS (986 pupils)
- 1 mile Lawn Primary School DA119HB (215 pupils)
- 1 mile Bronte School DA110HN (129 pupils)
- 1.1 mile Wrotham Road Primary School DA110QF (448 pupils)
- 1.1 mile Wrotham Road County Primary School DA110QF
- 1.1 mile Dartford and Gravesham DA110AT
- 1.4 mile Whitehill Junior School DA125HN
- Colyer Road, Gravesend, Kent, DA11 8BG
|Inspection dates||24–25 October 2012|
|Overall effectiveness||This inspection:||Good||2|
|Achievement of pupils||Good||2|
|Quality of teaching||Good||2|
|Behaviour and safety of pupils||Good||2|
|Leadership and management||Good||2|
Summary of key findings for parents and pupils
This is a good school.
It is not yet an outstanding school because
| The sixth form is good. Students make good |
Students behave well because of the very
Students’ attainment has improved well since
the last inspection so that their performance
in external examinations is close to the
national average. No matter what their
starting points are, students make at least
good progress in their learning.
progress and almost all continue with their
education because the courses which they
follow have been tailored well to meet their
positive relationships across all of the school
community. They are polite and considerate
to adults and each other and feel very safe at
school. Attendance is above average.
| A good start has been made in settling into a |
Teaching and learning are typically good. Staff
The school is very well led. School leaders,
new building. Students say this has helped
improve their achievement and behaviour. One
student commented that ‘this school opens
doors’, referring to his increased opportunities
have high expectations for students’
achievements and ensure that lessons give
enjoyment and reward to students. A good
curriculum engages and interests students
including the governing body, are rigorous in
improving the school overall. Staff agree that
the school is going in the right direction and
they work well together to put the vision into
| Although there is much good and some |
outstanding teaching, a few lessons are less
effective because teachers do not always take
enough account of the needs of different
students or check students’ progress through
| While students’ speaking and reading skills are |
improving well, there are not enough
opportunities for students to improve their
writing across all their subjects.
Information about this inspection
- Inspectors visited 35 lessons or part lessons, of which six were joint observations carried out
with senior leaders. In addition, an inspector visited several lessons with a middle leader to
monitor pupils’ literacy skills. Inspectors spent time around the school site at break and lunch
times, talking informally to students.
- Meetings were held with senior and middle leaders, groups of students from each key stage, and
representatives from the governing body and the local authority.
Inspectors also reviewed school improvement documentation, achievement information, records
relating to behaviour and attendance, and looked at samples of students’ work. The school’s
record of safeguarding checks on staff was also scrutinised.
- The inspection team considered 41 responses to the on-line questionnaire (Parent View). They
also took account of the views of staff, including those expressed in 72 responses to the staff
|Hugh Betterton, Lead inspector||Additional Inspector|
|Jennifer Barker||Additional Inspector|
|Helen Hutchings||Additional Inspector|
|David Webster||Additional Inspector|
Information about this school
- This is an average-sized, non-selective secondary school in an area where some students are
selected for grammar school places. It has specialist technology status.
- Sixth form provision is made in partnership with other local schools under the umbrella of the
Gravesham 14−19 consortium.
- The school meets the current government’s floor target which sets minimum expectations for
students’ attainment and progress.
- The school has recently undergone an extensive rebuilding programme and moved into a new
building in September 2010.
- The proportions of students who receive support at school action plus, or who have a statement
of educational needs, is well above average. The proportion of students known to be eligible for
support through the pupil premium grant (additional government funding to support students in
local authority care or who are eligible for free school meals) is above the national average.
- Most students are from White British backgrounds, although small numbers are drawn from a
range of other heritages, with very few at the early stages of learning English as another
What does the school need to do to improve further?
- Improve teaching by:
making sure that learning accurately takes account of students’ achievement in earlier lessons
reinforcing students’ writing skills by making sure that students regularly make a written
record of their discussions in group work
checking students’ understanding of new learning during the lessons so that tasks can be
adapted, where necessary, or learning moved on more quickly.
|The achievement of pupils||is good|
Students enter the school with starting points that are below national averages, particularly in
their numeracy, reading and writing skills. Many have a range of complex emotional and social
needs. Because of students’ keen desire to learn, and good teaching, almost all students make
- Since the previous inspection, students’ attainment has risen rapidly and the proportion of
students gaining five or more good GCSE grades has increased faster than nationally. The school
achieved its best ever GCSE results in 2012, and these provisional results are close to the
Lesson observations show that disabled students and those with special educational needs
achieve well as a result of well-targeted support and carefully- designed interventions from well
trained staff. Leaders have a clear strategy for the support allocated to students eligible for the
pupil premium so they overcome barriers in their learning. As a result, their progress, as measured
by average point scores at GCSE level, is accelerating faster than other students, and there is no
significant difference in their attainment.
The early entry to examinations is used effectively to motivate students by enabling them to
achieve success at an early stage. Care is taken to make sure that students achieve the grades
expected of them through carefully increasing support for them to study effectively. Students
achieve well in the courses offered as part of alternative provision.
In lessons, students achieve well and enjoy learning. In the best lessons, they make very good
progress because they develop a deep understanding of what they are learning. In a Year 10
English lesson, students wrote detailed responses to themes from
. A well-
structured discussion about the role of women was skilfully linked to a writing task where
students justified their opinions and made rapid progress editing their writing using laptop
Students develop their reading well throughout the school, and many show a great enjoyment of
reading. Those students who have difficulty with their reading are quickly identified and given the
extra help they need. Students’ writing skills are more variable and some younger students do not
always present their work carefully or complete all their written tasks.
- Students joining the sixth form have generally lower attainment than other students following the
same courses nationally. They achieve well because of effective teaching and their own
commitment to doing the best they can. Most achieve pass grades in academic courses.
Performance in the wide range of vocational courses is above average.
|The quality of teaching||is good|
Teaching is good and there are examples of outstanding practice, including in the sixth form.
Students respond well to teachers’ high expectations of what students can achieve. For example,
in a Year 8 physical education lesson, students made outstanding progress in developing their
attack and defence skills in handball due to the very high expectations of the teacher, clear
planning, and highly effective checking of understanding and progress. Students successfully used
correct vocabulary to analyse their own and others’ work.
- Teachers have good subject knowledge, and use this to explain new work clearly and in a lively
way which interests students. They have good relationships with their classes. They successfully
use praise and encouragement to boost students’ self-confidence and to motivate students to try
hard. In many lessons, teachers use questioning well to check students’ progress and intervene
where necessary. One student spoke of ‘teachers doing all they can to help us improve’, giving up
their time for the benefit of students, from running revision classes to providing individual help.
The use of information technology is effectively improving students’ independent learning skills
which students use to improve their understanding of different topics.
In many vocational lessons, teachers include practical examples of how workplace skills are
important, for example following safety rules in workshops and the need for punctuality to work,
linking them directly to business and industry needs.
- Occasionally, tasks in lessons are too easy for some students, with all expected to tackle similar
work, which slows the pace of learning for some.
- Reading, speaking and listening are taught well in specialist English lessons and in other subjects.
However, the development of students’ writing is not planned systematically across the
curriculum. For example, students are not always guided to develop longer pieces of writing, and
some spelling mistakes are missed in teachers’ marking.
|The behaviour and safety of pupils||are good|
- Staff, parents and carers and students, including in the sixth form, are definite that the standards
of behaviour throughout the school are good. Students’ attitudes to learning are very positive in
nearly all lessons.
- Students are punctual, have very good manners, and behave well to create a safe, orderly school
environment shown in good-natured relationships. Because students are proud of the new
building this has had an upbeat impact on behaviour.
- Students’ attendance is above average. Prompt action to support students in attending school
regularly has led to a significant reduction in the numbers who are persistently absent. Some
students who had previously not attended regularly have been encouraged by the better
surroundings and their attendance has increased.
- Students have a good awareness of different forms of bullying through the emphasis given to it
in Year 7 GLAS (Great Learners Are Successful) lessons, assemblies, and community time
sessions. They take steps to tackle it when it occurs, including reporting it to adults, and are
confident that it is dealt with. They have a very good understanding of how to stay safe,
including when using the internet. Instances of bullying and inappropriate use of racist or
homophobic language are infrequent.
|The leadership and management||are good|
- A very effective transition into the new school buildings has ensured that almost all aspects of the
school’s work have improved since the previous inspection. The headteacher and her senior
leaders have high aspirations for students, so planning and development concentrate on actions
to promote confidence, self-belief and achievement. Teamwork is strong across the school
because of a shared sense of direction and purpose.
School leaders check progress rigorously, systematically covering all aspects of the school’s work.
This information is used well to plan further developments. Improving teaching further is a high
priority for them. Observations of teaching by senior and middle leaders, alongside analyses of
their impact on students’ progress, lead to the good quality feedback and further training given to
staff about how to improve. However, occasionally, subject leaders’ monitoring focuses too much
on the teaching methods used and does not look closely enough at what students have learnt.
- The school has used support from the local authority effectively. Advice and guidance have been
targeted well to improve teaching.
- The curriculum is very well planned to meet students’ needs. For example, students spoke of how
the Great Learners Are Successful curriculum in Years 7 and 8 has made them more independent
in their learning. The curriculum for older students, including in the sixth form, enables them to
follow a good range of academic and vocational courses, and its effectiveness is reflected in the
better results achieved. In addition, a small number of students benefit from a range of well-
chosen off-site provision which has led them directly into further education or employment. Very
few students leave school without progressing directly into further education, training or
- The school’s technology specialism has a significant impact on learning, particularly through the
practically based courses such as engineering, and improves attainment for a growing number of
students. The widespread, well-planned use of information technology also promotes students’
progress very effectively.
- Leaders and managers are making good use of pupil premium funding, which is having a
positive impact on raising standards. For example, the effective use of additional staffing to
support several students in Years 9 to 11 has boosted their performance and means that they
are meeting, and some are exceeding, the challenging targets set for them in English and
- The development of students’ spiritual, moral, social and cultural understanding is securely
mapped into subject teaching and through assemblies and tutor times, so students emerge as
very well-rounded young people. Procedures for safeguarding students meet current government
requirements and there are robust arrangements in place for checking staff and other adults.
- The governance of the school:
The governing body has changed its procedures to make it more efficient. Governors have
undertaken training to ensure that they can interpret data about students’ attainment and
progress accurately and their understanding of how their work impacts on the school is
improving. Consequently, they have a good understanding of the school’s strengths and areas for
further development. Governors ask searching questions of senior and middle leaders about how
they are improving the quality of teaching. They ensure that key policies are in place, are
reviewed regularly and meet requirements in crucial areas such as safeguarding and the
promotion of equal opportunities. They monitor finances closely to ensure resources are used
effectively to achieve value for money. This includes ensuring that how well teachers are paid
aligns closely with students’ achievement and the quality of teaching.
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.
|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.
|Unique reference number||118928|
This inspection of the school was carried out under section 5 of the Education Act 2005.
|Type of school||Secondary|
|Age range of pupils||11–19|
|Gender of pupils||Boys|
|Gender of pupils in the sixth form||Mixed|
|Number of pupils on the school roll||975|
|Of which, number on roll in sixth form||175|
|Appropriate authority||The governing body|
|Date of previous school inspection||25–26 February 2010|
|Telephone number||01474 533802|
|Fax number||01474 536122|