Prior Park College and The Paragon have again been rated ‘Excellent’ following ISI inspections in September 2017. The new Educational Quality Inspections (EQI) report focuses on two main areas: the quality of pupils’ academic and other achievements and the quality of pupils’ personal development. The two Prior Park Schools are among the first schools judged according to the ISI’s revised framework for inspection and to be awarded the highest category ‘excellent’ in both areas is an outstanding achievement.

Key findings from the report for Prior Park College highlight the rapid progress pupils make in their learning “and as a consequence they have outstanding achievements within and beyond the classroom.” It also notes the “great enthusiasm” demonstrated by the pupils, how “exceptionally well” students work together with their teachers and “pupils enjoy a great deal of success in academic exams.” The inspectors recognised many areas of excellence across the College, stating the “success in a wide range of pursuits such as art and design, music and sports reflects the extensive range of talents possessed by pupils.”

The Paragon report stated that “pupils’ attitudes to learning are exemplary” and “from their earliest days in the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS), pupils of all ages and abilities make excellent progress overall”. The inspectors also found that The Paragon “fully meets its aim to cultivate a love of learning” and that pupils are “confident communicators. They speak eloquently, listen attentively, and write creative and factual reports expressively.”It is not only in the areas of academic and co-curricular activities that the two Prior Park Schools score highly. The inspectors were equally impressed at their level of pastoral care. For the College, inspectors stated, “Pupils understand what is needed to keep themselves healthy both physically and mentally and have a strong sense of well-being” and that, “Pupils are excellent citizens within their own community and have developed the capabilities to make wider contributions to the wider world.”

The inspection at The Paragon determined that “pupils’ self-confidence is fostered through the very positive atmosphere of mutual respect between themselves and the adults in the school” and that their “social development is excellent. They work together extremely well and display considerable social maturity.”

Prior Park Schools’ Principal, James Murphy-O’Connor, is pleased with both reports findings, “I am delighted with the judgements made as they genuinely reflect the aims and values of Prior Park Schools. The reports were hugely complimentary about our schools and I look forward to working with colleagues and Governors to build on this success as we enter the next phase of our schools’ development.”

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