22 April 2024

High praise from Ofsted for Exeter House Special School in Salisbury

Exeter House Special School retains its ‘Good’ rating following an ungraded inspection from Ofsted.

After visiting Exeter House Special School on Monday 14th and Tuesday 15th June, Ofsted said, “Pupils arrive at school full of joy and anticipation for the day ahead” and that “every pupil is seen as individual and unique in this school.”

Ofsted said school leaders have “put much time, effort and resources into equipping staff to teach the curriculum in ways that precisely meet pupils’ needs”.

Ofsted further complimented the efforts of the school to prepare pupils in the longer term to move on to future training courses or employment. “All through their school experience, staff focus on what pupils need to have to make informed choices about what to do when they leave school. This focus starts in the early years and in the complex needs class. It continues through to the vocational centre. Here, the curriculum is intensely focused on preparing students for independent living and the world of employment.”

Headteacher Matt Sambrook said he was delighted with the outcome of the inspection. He said: “This is a tremendous affirmation of the hard work and fabulous teamwork at Exeter House Special School. I am incredibly proud of the pupils and our staff.”

Mr Sambrook was pleased to see inspectors comment on the “well-planned set of experiences takes pupils beyond the classroom”. He said, “From strong links with Riding for the Disabled, to swimming and hydrotherapy, our own Forest School and a number of after-school activities, at Exeter House, we provide a range of activities to extend and enrich our pupil’s learning.”

This was an ungraded inspection by Ofsted under section 8 of the Education Act 2005. Mr Sambrook added, “we are determined that when an Ofsted team returns for a graded inspection in a couple of years, we will achieve that top grade.”

Exeter House Special School caters for approximately 175 young people between the ages of 4 and 19 with Profound and Multiple Learning Disabilities, Severe Learning Disabilities or Complex Needs.

The main school is based on Somerset Road, with a Vocational Centre for older pupils in Salisbury city centre, and Resource Bases at St Marks Church of England Junior School and Wyndham Park Infant School.

Ian Hewitt, Chair of Governors and father of a pupil at the school, is also celebrating the school’s achievement, said “I am thrilled with the outcome of this inspection, but not surprised.

“Any visitor to this wonderful school is immediately struck by the quality of experience provided for the children here. We are delighted to share our good practices with other special schools across the south west of England.”

Written by
Andy Munns
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Written by Andy Munns