Ofsted Inspection Report Summary – March 2014
St Albans Tutors offers each student a high level of individual support for their personal development and academic achievement. Students are very pleased with the support and education provided.
Teachers have high-level subject knowledge and very high expectations of students to participate and learn. An adult atmosphere prevails where students’ understanding is continually checked and extended by fast, deep questioning and reference to what they need to do to gain good examination grades. Such teaching motivates students, who participate enthusiastically.
Students achieve well in both GCSE and A levels. Last year, all 28 students in the upper sixth achieved a University place.
Over the four types of A level courses studied, nearly half the grades gained last year were A* to B, and three quarters were in the A* to C range. These typical results are better than national averages. Students do particularly well when studying A-level re-take courses. Last year all results were within the A* to C range, and two thirds were A* to B which far exceed national results.
GCSE students of all abilities and needs achieve well from their starting points in all subjects, including English and mathematics.
The curriculum is extremely flexible. It allows students to choose from a very wide range of subjects, examination boards and course-lengths to suit their particular needs.
Students’ behaviour is outstanding and the school is a safe, happy place. Students are very motivated to learn and enjoy the high-level work that is expected of them.
Students say that they have achieved much better at St Albans Tutors than they thought they could have due to the ‘amazing teachers’, small groups and personal attention.
Students’ behaviour and personal development are outstanding. Throughout the school, students are calm, courteous, friendly and helpful to one another and adults. Their behaviour and attitudes to learning are excellent and they participate fully in lessons. They enjoy the adult debate and high-level work that is expected of them.
St Albans Tutors rightly prides itself on the amount and success of the personal support it offers students. Many students said that this was of real importance to them, for example, that they received ‘amazing individual support’ and that it was ‘hugely beneficial’
Instances of bullying, racism, rudeness or challenging behaviour are almost unheard of at St Albans Tutors. Students from different cultural backgrounds mix happily together socially and in class, regardless of their background or the school they attended previously.
The proprietor and co-principal, strongly supported by the staff, are clear that they want St Albans Tutors to provide high quality education that paves the way to university. They have successfully established a culture of support, high expectations for academic achievement and effort, but one that is relaxed in other ways.