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Shrewsbury special school told it needs to improve

Shrewsbury | News | Published:

A school where pupils had previously turned up for lessons armed with knives and a BB gun is still performing below par, according to government inspectors.

Cruckton Hall School, near Shrewsbury, is a special school providing teaching for boys with Asperger's syndrome and social communication difficulties.

Many pupils also have other diagnoses of special educational needs, such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

Inspectors from Ofsted visited the school in October and found that it did not meet all of the independent school standards.

A previous visit in 2015 ruled that the school was inadequate.

They found that appropriate safeguarding policies were not in place and actions to reduce identified risks to pupils were not taken in the residential part of the school.

In a report released this week inspectors said: "Leaders agree that improvements are needed to ensure the safeguarding practice in the residential part of the school is as strong as in the educational part of the school.

"Leaders agree that more comprehensive advice for the residential care staff would provide better support to promote improved decision-making."

They also reported that the pupil's internet usage was not monitored rigorously, despite assurances that it would be and added that the school failed to ensure the welfare of pupils at the school.

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They said: "The proprietor must ensure that arrangements have regard to the national minimum standards for residential special schools and must ensure that persons with leadership and management responsibilities at the school demonstrate good skills and knowledge appropriate to their role.

"The proprietor must also ensure that leaders and managers fulfil their responsibilities effectively so that the independent school standards and the national minimum standards for residential special schools are met consistently."

Standards were met in other areas including handovers, training and updates and supervision.

The school has 36 pupils aged between eight and 19 years old. Annual fees for day pupils are £91,945 and annual fees for boarders are between £120,156 and £183,150.

The school is owned by the Kisimul Group, which owns two other similar schools in England.

The group employs a number of company managers for different aspects of their schools' work, such as for health and safety, safeguarding and education.

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