Independent day school near Harpenden achieves ‘excellent’ rating
PUBLISHED: 11:51 04 March 2019 | UPDATED: 12:01 04 March 2019
Staff and pupils at an independent school near Harpenden are celebrating after achieving an ‘excellent’ inspection rating.
Beechwood Park, a day and flexi-boarding school in Markyate, received an ‘excellent’ rating in all categories from the Independent Schools’ Inspectorate (ISI).
The school caters for boys and girls aged three to 13, and inspectors reported that pupils “demonstrate excellent knowledge in a wide variety of subject areas”.
The inspectors also said pupils “show rapid development of skills and knowledge because of their excellent attitudes to learning and strong personal skills, which allow them to be engaged learners,” and praised pupils for their “extremely high” levels of self-knowledge.
Inspectors found that pupils consistently gained places at their first choice of selective secondary schools, and many achieve scholarships.
Pupils were particularly praised for their linguistic skills in both English and French. The report stated: “Even the youngest pupils use basic French words seamlessly in general conversation.”
Inspectors praised pupils’ behaviour and personal development, saying pupils are respectful of each other and have a strong sense of right and wrong.
According to the inspection report, older pupils said “Teachers don’t focus on mistakes. They help us answer questions so we get things right,” and pupils are equipped to deal with situations where perseverance is required and do not give up.
While the school was highly praised overall, inspectors said: “In the context of the excellent outcomes, the school might wish to enhance pupils’ achievement further by ensuring all teaching engages the pupils as creative and active learners.”
Headmaster Edward Balfour said: “The excellence described in this report provides affirmation of the success of our unique and child-centred mission to nurture, engage and inspire all of our pupils – as the Inspectors commented,’ there is no ceiling on what the children can achieve’.
“I would like to thank the outstanding staff at Beechwood Park whose work and commitment have culminated in this immensely successful outcome.”