St Mary’s celebrates first-class ISI inspection report
St Mary’s School, Cambridge, has received the highest grade of ‘excellent’ in its recent ISI (Independent Schools Inspectorate) inspection – with strong parent and student feedback further cementing its first-class education status.
All independent schools in England are registered with the Department for Education (DfE) and are regulated directly by the Secretary of State for Education. The ISI is appointed by the DfE to scrutinise independent schools in England and inspectors visited St Mary’s in May 2022 to conduct a thorough evaluation.
St Mary’s was deemed to ‘pass’ its compliance inspection and achieved the top grade of ‘excellent’ in both aspects of the Education Quality Inspection, which cover ‘The quality of the pupils’ academic and other achievements’ and ‘The quality of the pupils’ personal development’.
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The school also achieved an outstanding overall 98% parental satisfaction rate.
When reporting on academic and other achievements, inspectors noted that: ‘Almost all pupils achieve places at the most selective universities, conservatoires and art colleges in a range of disciplines, including those with the highest entry criteria.’ In addition, inspectors said that: ‘Pupils make strong progress across the range of subjects’ and are: ‘highly successful in their achievements beyond the classroom in a range of activities encompassing different interests’. Further observations included that: ‘Pupils display mature levels of understanding across the curriculum’, with the quality of teaching praised as ‘ambitious, stimulating and well-matched to their needs'.
With regards to pupils’ personal development, inspectors commended the school, noting that: ‘As pupils move through the school, their confidence increases, nurtured by excellent welfare and pastoral support’. The report comments that ‘Pupils form highly positive relationships with each other and with staff and they develop good leadership skills’ with students feeling ‘ready and well prepared for the next stage of their lives.’
Charlotte Avery, Headmistress at St Mary’s School, said:
“We are extremely pleased with our recent ISI inspection results, which further illustrates our determination to deliver a first-class education to our pupils. A source of particular pleasure was that the inspectors really ‘got’ our school and our mission. Given the disruption to education caused by the global pandemic, discussions about lost learning and lost generations - and the huge efforts we have made to ensure that this is not the case for St Mary’s - it is gratifying that the inspectors have judged the academic attainment of pupils of all abilities to be excellent. Sending our students off well-educated and equipped for the next stage of their lives is my most profound service and duty as Headmistress.”
Listen to Charlotte Avery's response to the report:
The Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) is the agency responsible for the inspection of schools whose Heads are members of one of ISI’s member associations in England.
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ISI is a Government approved inspectorate, and the quality of its service is monitored by Ofsted on behalf of the DfE. Inspection is for the benefit of pupils and seeks to improve the quality and effectiveness of their education and welfare. Boarding schools are inspected more frequently than day schools. The headline judgments apply one of the ISI descriptors ‘excellent’, ‘good’, ‘sound’ or ‘unsatisfactory’.