NACE Award report

Below is a summary of some of the strengths that NACE recognised in QE's provision:

Assessor’s Report

Following portfolio and audit day assessment

School: Queen Elizabeth School, Dorset Summary of Strengths:

Portfolio scrutiny, interview and work samples

The well-developed leadership structure, led by the Headteacher with the Deputy Headteacher directly line-managing the Co-ordinator for the High and Advance Provision Programme and a nominated ‘rep’ in every faculty area, ensures provision is core to the school focus on Teaching and Learning and all teachers are aware they are accountable for provision within the classroom.

It is clear that a philosophy, culture and ethos of high aspiration is growing and inspiring the students to set their sights high. This is reflected in both the school mission statement "High Quality, High Expectations, High Standards" and prospectus which states "The highest quality of teaching and learning is provided to all students meeting individual needs and interests" and continues in the same vein that staff have "the highest expectations of all students and are committed to ensuring that every student has the opportunity to achieve their full potential".

High aspirations for provision and accountability are well planned, based on meticulous auditing of existing provision; there are clear links to both the School Development Plan and Self Evaluation, resulting in increased challenge for all learners being understood and acknowledged by all staff.

The school regularly celebrates achievements from academic success to sporting, art, music and drama. Displays in public spaces are aimed at celebrating success and providing examples of the highest quality annotated work.

The High and Advance Programme policy provides a good basis for staff to develop their understanding of what constitutes the best provision for the ‘ablest’ learners. This is then backed and supported by a bespoke staff High Performance Handbook and department audits and policies which ensure identification and provision is appropriately shaped to suit the learning in each faculty/subject area.

There are clear links between the High and Advance Performance Policy and other school policies, including the Teaching and Learning Policy, which states clearly that "Teaching and Learning is at the heart of all we do in the school" and "Every learner in our community has the right to achieve their very best and exceed expectations", therefore securely underpinning high quality provision. Schemes of work have integral support for able learners. All faculties/ departments have striven to ensure able learners are provided with alternative work to challenge them from the outset, many planning from the top down; a mantra upheld by the SLT.

The school have worked hard to develop their identification process, ensuring it is robust, transparent and on-going. It has been personalised to Queen Elizabeth School by both the staff and students, including the latter asking for the change of name from Able, Gifted and Talented to High and Advance Performance, which they personally felt dispelled the elitist tag often linked to such identification. It is clear that each subject area regularly discusses identified students against agreed subject criteria but equally opens department opportunities to other students who show prowess. Students are made aware of the importance the school places on students identified as more able and really value being selected to be part of the programme.