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Excellent school inspection sees John Lyon achieve highest possible outcome

Both academic achievement and personal development have been praised in an excellent school inspection for John Lyon.

In the report published in January 2020, the team of five school inspectors rewarded the school with a coveted ‘double Excellent’ in both key areas of educational quality:

  • The quality of the pupils’ academic and other achievements is excellent
  • The quality of the pupils’ personal development is excellent

During the three-day inspection by the Independent Schools Inspectorate in November 2019, John Lyon was also found to be fully compliant with all regulations concerning quality of education, spiritual, moral, social and cultural development, welfare and health and safety, suitability of staff, school premises, provision of information to parents, handling of complaints, and quality of leadership and management.

John Lyon Head, Miss Katherine Haynes said: “Receiving an excellent school inspection and specifically achieving ‘Excellent’ in both areas educational quality is highly significant for John Lyon. Inspectors are thorough in looking at all areas of School life and the bar to achieve this top rating is set very high, even more so than when John Lyon received its ‘double Excellent’ rating at the previous inspection in 2010.

“Success at inspection is a team effort, and I am appreciative of all our pupils, teachers and support staff who work hard both in what they do individually and for the school as a whole, not just for the three days of inspection but on every single School day of the year. I am also extremely grateful to all our parents who are key partners in making sure the School is a success.

“We enter 2020 very proud of what our School has achieved, and looking ahead to the next chapter of our progress.”


The excellent school inspection report details several specific areas of quality seen by inspectors during their visit.

  • The overall quality of pupils’ knowledge, skills and understanding is excellent.
  • Pupils make excellent progress in developing their knowledge and understanding because teachers use clear and probing questions which elicit clarity and consolidation.
  • Pupils speak highly efficiently and effectively about complex subjects.
  • Pupils show a strong aptitude for reading and write effectively for a wide range of purposes.
  • Pupils demonstrate and excellent grasp of numeracy as they confidently apply their numerical knowledge in mathematics and in other subjects.
  • Pupils display very good study skills.
  • Pupils also achieve highly in sport as a result of the school’s ‘Sport for All’ philosophy, promoting participation and increasing access.
  • Pupils show extremely positive attitudes to learning.
  • Pupils participate eagerly, work collaboratively, debate, discuss and support each other.
  • All pupils demonstrate high levels of self-confidence, self-esteem and self-awareness.
  • Bespoke school events and careers guidance enable pupils to make informed choices. They speak knowledgeably about their plans for university or their choice of career pathway.
  • Pupils recognise and appreciate that staff have high expectations and allow them sufficient independence to develop self-control and self-motivation.
  • Pupils show an excellent level of spiritual understanding.
  • Pupils are well-behaved, demonstrating a keen understanding of the difference between right and wrong.
  • Pupils demonstrate and excellent ability to work together.
  • Pupils contribute to very good effect to the school and local community and have a significant impact on the wider community through the service aspect of the co-curricular programme.
  • Pupils in Year 7 were overwhelmingly positive about the support provided by the senior prefects in the first few weeks of September.
  • The school community transcends cultural difference and exudes and ethos of inclusivity through natural acceptance.
  • A very large majority of pupils felt that the school encourages them to respect and tolerate other people, and comment that diversity is the essence of the school.
  • Pupils have an excellent comprehension of how to stay safe.
  • Pupils readily described the benefits of physical health and what the school does to encourage it.