School etc

Nova Hreod Closed - academy converter Dec. 31, 2013

see new Nova Hreod Academy

Nova Hreod
Akers Way

phone: 01793 *** ***

headteacher: Mrs Julie Tridgell

reveal email: serv…


school holidays: via Swindon council

Secondary — Community School

Education phase
Establishment type
Community School
Establishment #
Close date
Dec. 31, 2013
Reason closed
Academy Converter
OSGB coordinates
Easting: 413422, Northing: 186735
GPS coordinates
Latitude: 51.579, Longitude: -1.8077
Accepting pupils
11—16 years old
Ofsted last inspection
Jan. 29, 2013
Region › Const. › Ward
South West › North Swindon › Rodbourne Cheney
Urban > 10k - less sparse
Admissions policy
Main specialism
Science (Operational)
and Maths and Computing (Operational)
Private Finance Initiative
Part of PFI
Investor in People
Committed IiP Status
Learning provider ref #

rooms to rent in Swindon

Schools nearby

  1. Nova Hreod Academy SN22NQ (960 pupils)
  2. 0.2 miles Moredon Junior School SN22NQ
  3. 0.2 miles Moredon Infants' School SN22NQ
  4. 0.2 miles Moredon Primary School SN22JG
  5. 0.2 miles Moredon Primary School SN22JG (447 pupils)
  6. 0.5 miles Rodbourne Cheney Primary School SN253BN
  7. 0.5 miles Whitecroft Education Trust SN22NP
  8. 0.5 miles Rodbourne Cheney Primary School SN253BN (256 pupils)
  9. 0.7 miles Haydon Wick Primary School SN251HT (270 pupils)
  10. 0.7 miles St Mary's Catholic Primary School SN21PE
  11. 0.7 miles St Mary's Catholic Primary School SN21PE (309 pupils)
  12. 0.7 miles Haydon Wick Primary School SN251HT
  13. 0.8 miles Greenmeadow Primary School SN253LW (262 pupils)
  14. 0.8 miles Oakley Court School SN251PT
  15. 0.8 miles Ferndale Primary School SN21NX (396 pupils)
  16. 0.9 miles Even Swindon Primary School SN22UJ (514 pupils)
  17. 0.9 miles Even Swindon Infant School SN22ER
  18. 0.9 miles Ferndale Junior School SN21NX
  19. 0.9 miles Ferndale Infant School SN21HL
  20. 0.9 miles Pinehurst Junior School SN21JR
  21. 0.9 miles Pinehurst Infants' School SN21JR
  22. 0.9 miles Haydonleigh Primary School SN251JP (446 pupils)
  23. 0.9 miles Swindon Academy SN21JR (1776 pupils)
  24. 1.1 mile Swindon College SN21DY

List of schools in Swindon

School report

Nova Hreod

Akers Way, Moredon, Swindon, SN2 2NQ

Inspection dates 29–30 January 2013
Overall effectiveness This inspection: Requires improvement 3
Previous inspection: Satisfactory 3
Achievement of pupils Requires improvement 3
Quality of teaching Requires improvement 3
Behaviour and safety of pupils Requires improvement 3
Leadership and management Good 2

Summary of key findings for parents and pupils

This is a school that requires improvement. It is not good because
The school has the following strengths

Too few students who completed examination
Although the quality of teaching has
Improvements in teaching have not had
courses in Year 11 did not make consistently
good progress across a range of subjects.
improved, a small number of teachers do not
deliver lessons where students are sufficiently
challenged to make progress.
sufficient time to ensure all students are
making consistently good progress.
A very small minority of students do not fully
The attendance of some groups of students,
engage in their lessons and behave in a way
that does not meet the high expectations of
the school. This is not always picked up quickly
including disabled, and those with special
educational needs and those supported by
pupil premium, is below that of their peers.
All leaders, including governors, clearly
Current achievement in lessons is mainly
Teaching is good or better in many lessons
understand that there remains work to be
done, to ensure current improvements are
maintained and built on. The Principal has a
clear strategic vision that is driven with
passion and determination.
good. Students are on track to make much
better progress in external examination
results than in previous years.
and is ensuring students make rapid
The majority of students behave well. They
The school proactively promotes student
are polite and respectful of themselves, each
other, staff and visitors.
safety, through robust safeguarding systems
and anti bullying work.

Information about this inspection

  • The inspection team observed parts of 41 lessons, 15 of which were joint observations with
    members of the senior leadership team.
  • Inspectors observed other aspects of the school day including an assembly, tutor time, students’
    behaviour at break and lunchtime, and their arrival to school.
  • Meetings were held with groups of students, members of the governing body, a representative
    of the local authority and school staff, including middle and senior leaders.
  • Inspectors took account of the 33 responses to the online parent questionnaire (Parent View).
    They also considered the views of 60 staff who completed the Ofsted questionnaire.
  • They observed the work of the school, looking at a wide range of documentation, including
    minutes, performance management, self-evaluation, records of the monitoring of student
    learning, attendance and behaviour, and the quality of teaching. The school development plan
    and safeguarding documents were studied.

Inspection team

Kevin Harrison, Lead inspector Additional inspector
Justine Hocking Additional inspector
Svetlana Bajic-Raymond Additional inspector
Glenn Mayoh Additional inspector

Full report

Information about this school

  • Nova Hreod is a larger-than-average-sized secondary school.
  • Two new Vice-Principals joined the school in January 2013.
  • Most students are from White British heritage, with a small number of students from other
    minority ethnic groups. Almost all speak English as their first language.
  • The proportion of students eligible for the pupil premium, which provides additional funding for
    children in the care of the local authority, students known to be eligible for free school meals
    and students from service families, is above the national average.
  • The proportion of students with special educational needs supported at school action is above
    the national average. The proportion of students at school action plus and with a statement of
    special educational needs is also above the national average.
  • Some students attend courses off-site at Swindon College and the Oakfield project.
  • The school meets the government’s current floor standards, which set the minimum expectations
    for students’ attainment and progress.
  • The school is currently planning to convert to an academy.

What does the school need to do to improve further?

  • Raise achievement by making sure that all teaching is at least good by: ensuring all teachers
    plan and deliver lessons that take into account what all groups of students can do and how they
    best learn, to ensure they make progress.
  • Improve teaching further by ensuring all teaching is at least good by:
    eliminating any inadequate teaching
    ensuring that lessons are thoroughly planned, enabling all groups of learners to make good
    progress from their starting point
    exploiting opportunities to develop students’ communication and numeracy skills across the
    whole curriculum
    providing clear, regular feedback to students on their progress, with precise guidance on how
    to further improve
    addressing any poor behaviour in lessons quickly and not allowing it to disrupt the learning of
    other students.
  • Improve attendance further by working with families whose children are not attending school as
    well as they should be, particularly those who have a special educational need and those in
    receipt of pupil premium funding.

Inspection judgements

The achievement of pupils requires improvement
  • Achievement requires improvement because examination results have not been sufficiently high
    enough across a range of subjects, including English and mathematics.
  • Students join the school with average standards. The number of students gaining five or more
    GCSE higher grades continues to rise, but is below the national average.
  • The 2012 results show an improvement from 2011, but rates of progress for too many students
    are not good enough.
  • However, this is the fifth year of a rising trend of results.
  • There has been a strong improvement in the number of students achieving the highest possible
    grades, but this still remains below the national average.
  • The school’s detailed monitoring clearly shows that current Year 11 students are making good
    progress and are on target to build on the improved results seen in 2012. Further improvements
    in student achievement can be seen throughout the entire school.
  • Student achievement is accelerating as the quality of teaching improves. There are examples of
    this across the entire curriculum, but it is not yet sufficiently embedded to reverse the period of
    weaker teaching in the past.
  • A few students are educated off-site. They achieve as well as other students, doing particularly
    well in their specialist subjects.
  • The progress of students with special educational needs has been uneven. In 2012, students
    with a statement of special educational needs made better overall progress than those students
    supported through school action and school action plus.
  • The average point scores achieved by students who receive the pupil premium are improving
    and the gap in their achievement is closing from that of other students. Between 2011 and
    2012, the gap reduced overall, including in English, and more so in mathematics.
The quality of teaching requires improvement
  • Teaching over a sustained period of time has not led to good achievement. It is however,
    improving with a growing proportion of lessons that are good or better where students make
    rapid progress.
  • Despite much improvement in teaching, there remains some inconsistency between lessons.
  • There remains teaching that requires improvement or which in a minority of lessons is
    sometimes inadequate. In these weaker lessons, the needs of individual students are not
    planned for appropriately. Not enough account of is taken of what they already know and
    understand, so progress is too slow.
  • Nearly all teachers clearly explain what they expect the students to learn, checking
    understanding and the progress throughout the lesson.
  • Many lessons are well planned and taught where the teacher uses their strong subject
    knowledge to enthuse the students about their learning, setting the work at just the right level
    for them to make good progress. However, sometimes work is set which is too easy or too
    hard, so progress is too slow.
  • In the best lessons, teachers skilfully question students, probing and challenging to extend their
    understanding. This is not consistent practice; in the weaker lessons, questioning is too general
    and only involves a few students.
  • The pace of learning is too slow in some lessons, particularly when students spend a long time
    just listening to teachers without any checking of understanding or becoming actively involved in
    the learning.
  • In the best lessons opportunities to develop students’ numeracy and communication skills are
    exploited, but too often missed in the lessons that require improvement.
  • Ongoing verbal feedback is a strength of many lessons, ensuring students know how well they
    are doing. While there are some examples of excellent marking with clear advice on how to
    improve, it is not consistently so, with variance both within and across subject areas.
  • Students know their levels and target grades but are too frequently unsure of exactly what they
    need to do to improve their work. This is further exaggerated when books have not been
    marked thoroughly or frequently enough.
  • Teaching assistants are appropriately used and provide effective support to students with special
    educational needs so they can effectively learn alongside their peers.
  • Learning mentors funded through the pupil premium grant work with targeted students to assist
    them to raise their educational achievement. Current tracking shows that these students are
    now making better progress, in line with their peers, including in mathematics and English.
The behaviour and safety of pupils require improvement
  • Most students behave well, making Nova a welcoming, friendly place. A very small number of
    students behave inappropriately.
  • Students told inspectors that, while behaviour has improved overall, in lessons, behaviour largely
    depends on the teacher and the quality of teaching, and inspection findings support these views.
    In some weaker lessons, students’ poor behaviour is not picked up quickly enough.
  • A new behaviour system was introduced in September. This encourages students to be ‘green
    learners’, which means they are actively involved in their learning. Those students who are not,
    receive an ‘amber’ warning. This gives students the opportunity to address their actions, and to
    become fully involved in their learning again, and so return to being a ‘green learner’. This has
    had a positive impact, and is being applied with more consistency. Students clearly understand
    the process and most actively adopt the appropriate behaviour.
  • There has been a reduction in the number of incidents which result in students ‘turning red’ and
    being removed from lessons.
  • This has also seen the already low fixed-term exclusions reduce even further.
  • The school closely monitors attendance, which is improving overall and is in line with the
    national average. Some groups, including disabled students and those with special educational
    needs, and some pupil premium students, are not attending as well as they should be with the
    result that they are not achieving to their full potential.
  • Students state that bullying is rare. When it does occur, it is swiftly dealt with by the school.
    They have a clear understanding of different types of bullying, particularly cyber-bullying.
  • The attendance and behaviour of students who are taught off-site is carefully monitored, so
    enabling these students to make progress in their social development and learning.
  • Students feel safe and well supported in school and feel well prepared to ensure they can keep
    themselves safe beyond school.
  • Many students show high moral and social concerns and actively raise funds for national and
    local charities, including collecting food for the Swindon food bank.
  • Students are respectful of themselves, friends, staff and visitors regardless of their background.
    The school has links with schools in France, Spain, Germany and South Africa.
The leadership and management are good
  • All key leaders consistently communicate high expectations and ambition. Teaching is improving
    and this is having an impact on student achievement in lessons.
  • The Principal demonstrates an energetic, determined and relentless approach to raise standards.
    She is well supported by other senior and middle leaders.
  • There is a shared determination and excellent capacity to continue to make further
  • All leaders clearly understand how to further support and hold staff to account to ensure all
    students make good progress.
  • The school has a thorough approach to self-evaluation, which has enabled detailed and effective
    planning to improve teaching, and this is having an impact on raising student achievement.
    Improvement areas are accurately identified and underpin actions which are embraced by all
    senior and middle leaders and shared by other staff.
  • Teaching is monitored with precision and focuses on the impact it is having on student
    achievement. Performance management is used effectively to both support and challenge all
    staff. There is a rigorous approach to addressing staff who are not meeting the required
    standards in the classroom. As a result, the quality of teaching is improving.
  • The monitoring of students’ progress is robust. This ensures that any barriers to learning faced
    by any group of students can be removed, so they do not face discrimination and make
  • Pupil premium funding is carefully targeted. Examples include providing students in Key Stage 4
    with revision material in each of their examination subjects, and all pupil premium students in
    Years 8 and 9 have an intensive careers interview to raise aspirations.
  • Staff, particularly teachers, are continually developed through a wide range of training and
    support both within and beyond the school. Teachers work well together, coaching each other
    to develop and refine best practice so that it can be shared across the whole school. As a result,
    teaching is improving.
  • Teachers feel supported by the leaders of the school to make further improvements to their
    teaching; this is highly valued.
  • The curriculum is well planned. All Year 10 now study the English Baccalaureate subjects,
    including a modern foreign language. While this has slightly limited student choice, it provides a
    firm foundation for future study and employment. There remains strong links with Swindon
    College and the Oakfield project where some students can access vocational courses, which
    maintains their interest in education and provides clear opportunities for future employment.
  • Students are welcoming and open to the views of others, regardless of their background or
    culture, and whether they are students, staff or visitors. This is effectively supported through
    the well-organised tutor time, and visits with good opportunities for personal reflection.
  • The house system encourages students to be fully involved in a wide range of activities,
    including fundraising for local and national charities, so preparing students to be responsible
    citizens. There are a wide range of opportunities for students to develop their artistic and
    cultural development through visits and events such as ‘Nova’s Got Talent’ and the inter-house
  • The local authority provides effective support across a range of priorities which has contributed
    to the improvements in teaching. The Principal works with other local authority heads sharing
    best practice and is currently vice-chair of Swindon Association of Secondary Headteachers.
  • The school’s arrangements for safeguarding students are strong and fully meet all statutory
  • The governance of the school:
    The governing body has a clear vision of where the school needs to be. It is accurately
    informed and knows the school’s strengths and key areas for development well. Governors
    effectively use their wide range of expertise to challenge the Principal on all aspects of
    leadership and management to ensure the improvements to teaching and student
    achievement are maintained and further built on.
    The governing body skilfully manages the school’s finances and has a clear understanding of
    how the allocation of pupil premium funding is spent, ensuring it is appropriately targeted and
    its impact evaluated. Through the training they have received, governors clearly understand
    information provided on student outcomes, and the results of performance management.
    Governors are aware of the progression in salaries following performance management and
    how weaker teaching is being addressed and improved.

What inspection judgements mean


Grade Judgement Description
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.

School details

Unique reference number 126465
Local authority Swindon
Inspection number 402398

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

Type of school Secondary
School category Community
Age range of pupils 11–16
Gender of pupils Mixed
Number of pupils on the school roll 1,053
Appropriate authority The governing body
Chair Pat Porter
Headteacher Julie Tridgell
Date of previous school inspection 14–15 October 2009
Telephone number 01793 528800
Fax number 01793 430394
Email address reveal email: adm…


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