King’s College is celebrating the result of its recent full inspection. The school was judged to be “excellent” in both the achievement and the personal development of its pupils – the highest possible rating under the current inspection framework. This judgment places King’s College at the forefront of independent schools in the region and amongst the best in the UK.
The full, integrated inspection first looked at regulatory requirements, and found the school to be compliant. The inspectors went on to look at the quality of the education provided, gathering information from pupil and parent surveys, exam results, scrutiny of pupils’ work, interviews with staff and pupils and lesson observations.
The Headmaster, Richard Biggs, commented on the report: “The inspectors were with us for a few days only but seem to have done an excellent job of getting under the skin of our school, and were clearly very impressed by all they saw. My colleagues, our parents, our pupils and I know this is a very special place. Our boys and girls excel in a wide range of studies and activities while maintaining a grounded, cheerful approach to all they do. They develop, surrounded by our stunningly lovely campus and supported by first-rate teaching and facilities, into resourceful, resilient, curious, creative, polite young adults who go on to thrive at university and beyond. I am absolutely delighted that the value and distinctive character of our education has been recognised in the report.”
The inspectors were particularly impressed by the King’s College pupils and by the school’s atmosphere of calmness and purpose.
Inspectors also praised the standards of teaching and learning at King’s. They said that pupils showed high levels of knowledge, skills and understanding, excellent communication skills, high ability levels in mathematics and excellent study skills. Inspectors were impressed by the academic success of pupils beyond the examined curriculum, in national essay competitions and mathematics challenges, for example, and by the high levels of success enjoyed by individuals and teams in sport, music, drama, art and outdoor pursuits.
The Academic Deputy Head, Jonty Lawford, commented: “I am particularly pleased that the excellent progress we have made in breathing energy and a real sense of academic curiosity and scholarship into lessons and the work of our pupils has been recognised. The report specifically mentions that pupils appreciate both the careful support and the intellectual inspiration they get from teachers.”
The school’s boarding provision was also singled out for praise. All King’s pupils, both day and boarding, belong to boarding houses. The report comments: “Day pupils and boarders spoke very positively about their experiences within their houses, saying that the houses have a family feel to them.”
The school’s encouragement of pupils to reflect on the non-material aspects of life was highlighted in the report: “The Chapel is deeply valued; pupils spoke of the importance of the atmosphere of quiet respect and thoughtfulness”.
A final word from Richard Biggs: “I could not be happier. The extraordinary qualities of this school, its teachers and its wonderful pupils have been properly recognised and rightfully praised. We will not rest on our laurels and we will continue to maintain the very highest standards in everything we do, but it is a great source of reassurance and pride to have this outstanding report under our belts. I congratulate my colleagues and the boys and girls of this school most warmly indeed.”