Ofsted Report 2022
Our leadership team has been praised for their “determined and resilient” approach to running the school, despite the challenges presented by the pandemic, in our first Ofsted report.
Inspectors visited Aureus in March, and have just published their findings.
Planned improvements to the school were disrupted by COVID-19, the report noted, but despite this, our leaders and our colleagues at GLF Schools, were complimented on having “a clear understanding of what needs to be improved” and “implementing these changes, so that children have the knowledge and skills they need to succeed.”
School performance data
What data has been published?
The data published today includes the following:
For secondary schools:
- Our school/college’s Progress 8 figure (the relative progress of our students in eight subjects, compared to students with similar levels of attainment at the end of primary school).
- Our school/college’s Attainment 8 figure (the raw score achieved by our students in the same eight subjects).
- The percentage of our students who entered the Ebacc (a government measure which means students took all of English, maths, sciences, a language, and history or geography GCSE).
- Our school/college’s Ebacc average point score (our students’ average score in the same Ebacc subjects).
- The overall figure for how many of our students entered GCSEs.
- How many of our students stay in education or employment after Year 11.
- The percentage of our students achieving a grade 5 or higher in both English and maths GCSEs.
What’s different this year?
The Government has made a number of changes to the website where they display school and college results (www.find-school-performance-data.service.gov.uk ). These include:
- changing the name of the website from ‘Compare school and college performance’ to ‘Find and check the performance of schools and colleges in England’
- removing the table of all schools’ national performance
- removing the ability for users to create their own tables of selected schools and colleges
- removing the red / amber / green ratings on school performance measures
All of this is designed to discourage users from making direct comparisons between schools and colleges this year or comparing this year’s data to previous years’.
Why can’t be compared this year?
The Government, and the schools’ inspectorate Ofsted, acknowledge that the impact of the pandemic was not the same across all schools and colleges. Even within a local area or town, the impact of the pandemic was very different.Therefore, they are clear that data can only tell us so much and should be used as the basis for a conversation rather than being used to directly compare one school or college with another.
How were the results arrived at last year?
In 2020 and 2021, exams were cancelled due to the pandemic, and grades were based on teacher assessments (with exam boards ensuring consistency). This different form of assessment led to grades, overall, being higher in 2020 and 2021 than they were in pre-pandemic years, when students sat exams. Last summer saw the first return of exams since 2019, albeit with significant adaptations to recognise that students’ learning had been significantly affected by the pandemic. Nationally, it was determined that grades would, overall, fall roughly halfway between 2019 and 2021. This would enable grades to gradually move back to pre-pandemic levels, while still being as fair as possible to students taking exams in 2022.The national data that we are compared to reflects this and is higher than in pre-pandemic years.
What is the context of our results?
As we have communicated throughout the past three years, the pandemic context of our school has changed over time. When considering our results, it is worth keeping the following information in mind:
- Nationally all students spent time learning at home during 2019/20, 2020/21, however due to continuous covid cases last autumn / winter numerous students in Year 11 had to isolate or often had repeated isolation having to access digital lessons in their GCSE year.
- School had to send year groups back to remote learning in 2021/22, on a rota basis, due to covid related staffing absences and although Year 11 were in school they did not have uninterrupted teaching. Some schools nationally were less impacted by teacher absence.
How will our results be used?
The publication of results does not directly impact students at all. Students already received their own GCSE, A level and VTQ results in August. These results will be used by the government and by Ofsted if we have an inspection, with the context in which they were achieved taken into account.
How do our results compare to local schools?
As explained above, the ability to rank schools is no longer available, as the government is clear that schools cannot be compared this year. One of the measures included in the government website mentioned above is our Progress 8 figure, which is a relative measure based on students’ progress from primary school in eight subjects. A score of 0 means the school adds an average amount of progress to students. A score between 0 and 1 means the school adds an above average amount of progress to students. A score between 0 and -1 means the school adds a below average amount of progress to students. You will also be able to look at the local authority average for all the key measures, but not be able to directly compare schools.
I would like to take this opportunity to say how delighted we were to welcome back some Aureus Alumni to our Post-16 Information. We have already heard great things from their first term at College and will be celebrating their successes at our Year 12 Awards Evening on Monday 21st November when we will hand out certificates for prize winners in each subject.
GCSE Results 2023
Our staff and students were celebrating after the Class of 2023 achieved some outstanding GCSE results, with 42 per cent gaining Grades 9 to 4 and 4 per cent Grades 9 to 7.
A fifth of all English results (20 per cent) at our school were graded between 9 and 7, along with over a quarter (27 per cent) of all Biology grades.
This year also saw our first Dance GCSE students, with 14 per cent attaining Grades 9 to 7.
The students were only the second year to take GCSEs at Aureus, which is a member of the GLF Schools Multi-Academy Trust.
High achievers included Malhar V, who said: "I'm really pleased to have received 9s in Maths and the Sciences. I prepared for my exams by doing lots of practice papers and I would advise other students to start revision early. I'm aiming to go to Oxford University."
Among the school’s other high fliers were Olivia S and Alice S.
“I'm really pleased with my results,” said Olivia, who is going to Henley College to do A Levels. “I started revising early. The time goes by so quickly so I would advise others to start way earlier than you plan to."
“I used flash cards and then nearer the time I used practice papers to help prepare and they helped me get used to the format of the exam."
Alice will go onto Didcot Sixth Form to study Maths, Biology and Chemistry. She said:
"I'm very happy with my results, especially the 9 in Art. I revised by going through all the textbooks and making notes, and then practice papers too.”
Our Headteacher at the time, Julie Hunter said:
“Aureus School is proud of the Class of 2023. This group of students had Year 7 as their only interrupted secondary school experience and have taken every opportunity to develop both their academic and wider skills. There are many successes today, from students with seven-plus Grade 8/9s at GCSE moving on to study A Levels at Didcot Sixth Form, to others achieving the necessary qualifications they need to access apprenticeships, and others off to performing arts schools. We wish our second exam cohort well, and we look forward to meeting them again as Aureus Alumni."