School Inspections

‘Outstanding’ Gad’s Hill School celebrates after inspection

Gad’s Hill School was inspected by the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI), under a new inspection framework, and was very proud to hear terms such as ‘excellent’ and ‘outstanding’ being used in the 2012 inspection report.

The glowing inspection results came in the same year that Gad’s Hill School was named as the country’s top independent by the BBC, The Times, The Daily Telegraph and in the Government’s School League Tables, as well as eighth best school overall when including state schools.

Inspectors who visited the school said the quality of leadership and management at the school – which is led by Headmaster Mr David Craggs – is excellent.

The assessors from the Independent Schools Inspectorate also said in their report that “the quality of teaching is good with some excellent features” and that pupils’ overall achievement was ‘good’.

The inspection also found that the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) at the school provides good quality education and care, and the quality of its leadership – run by Head of Kindergarten and Junior School, Ms Fiona McPherson – is outstanding.

Commenting on the report, Headmaster David Craggs said: “Our academic achievements have been consistently good over the past ten years, especially in traditional core subjects such as Maths, English, Science, French and IT.

“Thanks to positive reports from the likes of ISI inspectors, we are able to further validate the fact that Gad’s Hill School is a top-quality institution, providing first-class education for our pupils. This has put us in a very strong position for future success and growth.

“Our staff work so tremendously hard to make life at school enriching for pupils, ensuring they leave ready to face whatever challenges may lie ahead, and this latest report is testament to this.

“All our plaudits are a credit to every single member of the Gad’s community, not only staff, but pupils, parents and their families too.”

The ISI inspects schools according to a standard framework for inspection which it has laid down for the purposes of ensuring that standards are maintained and that the school complies with relevant legal requirements. The framework has been agreed with the DCSF and they have recognised the ISI as the body responsible for the regular inspection of Independent schools in England.

The main summary of findings from the report were:

Whole School

  • Quality of Teaching – Good, sometimes excellent
  • Children’s Achievement  – Good
  • Quality of Pupil’s Personal Development – Excellent
  • Accommodation – Fit For Purpose
  • Links with Parents – Excellent
  • Leadership and Management – Excellent
  • Governance  – Excellent

The school has no major weaknesses.

Recommendations are:

  • Better provision for Personal Social Health Education (PSHE) in Key Stage 4
  • Increased support for Special Educational Needs (SEN) pupils in the classroom

Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS)

  • Effectiveness – Good, with outstanding
  • Leadership – Outstanding
  • Communication with Parents – Excellent
  • Quality of provision – Good


  • To facilitate good practice consistently for all EYFS children

The full report is available to download here and also by visiting