The Headmistress of Benenden School has said she is “immensely proud” after inspectors declared the School to be ‘Excellent’ across the board – the highest rating possible.
In its latest Educational Quality Inspection by the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI), Benenden was given the highest ‘Excellent’ rating in both areas of assessment: the quality of pupils’ academic and other achievements, and the quality of the pupils’ personal development.
Headmistress Samantha Price said: “I am immensely proud of the staff, pupils and parents for this marvellous inspection outcome, which is a ringing endorsement of the entire Benenden community.
“I was particularly pleased by the inspectors’ observations of how articulate, confident, positive and kind the girls are. This is something we have known for a long time but to hear it ratified by the inspectors is incredibly satisfying.”
Inspectors praised the pupils’ contributions and achievements in all areas of school life, noting that Benenden girls:
- Achieve high standards across the school
- Show sophisticated study skills and readiness to collaborate
- Are extremely articulate communicators, both inside and outside the classroom
- Enjoy excellent levels of success in a wide variety of co-curricular activities
- Demonstrate very positive attitudes to learning among pupils of all ages and abilities
- Are extremely confident and show a high degree of self-awareness
- Develop strong individual characteristics, which are fostered by the school’s aim to provide a Complete Education
- Demonstrate respect and kindness to others in their daily lives, benefiting from a caring and supportive atmosphere in boarding
- Show a strong awareness of other cultures and of the world beyond the school
- Are very well prepared for the next stage of their lives, supported by the school’s excellent pastoral programme.
A team of eight inspectors were in the School across three days in February, inspecting all aspects of Benenden’s provision, including lessons, boarding houses and co-curricular activities.
All independent schools are inspected on a regular basis and a full inspection is carried out every six years. The last time Benenden had a whole school inspection was in February 2013, so this latest inspection had been expected.
Technically there were two inspections carried out together. The first looked at the School’s Regulatory Compliance, where there is no rating per se: a school either complies with the various standards or it does not. Benenden is pleased to confirm that ISI found it to be compliant in all areas.
The second was an Educational Quality Inspection, which assesses pupils’ achievements across a range of areas.