Rainworth specialist school rated ‘Outstanding'

A specialist school in Rainworth has been found to be outstanding by education inspectors.

By Danielle Andrews
Friday, 1st November 2019, 11:25 am
Principal Jenny McConnell with staff and pupils
Principal Jenny McConnell with staff and pupils

Dawn House School, run by the children’s charity, I CAN, provides day and residential education, therapy and care for 70 young people, aged between seven and 19, from across the East Midlands.

The school provides a 'caring but challenging education' for children and young people aged 5-19 years with a severe or complex communication difficulty or Asperger’s Syndrome.

Inspectors from education watchdog Ofsted have rated the effectiveness of leaders and managers at school 'outstanding', and found the overall experiences and progress of children and young people to be 'good'.

The key findings from the inspection highlighted the renovation of the house, which 'provides a comfortable, modern and homely residential provision'.

The report states: "Children were central in the redevelopment, helping to design the layout and choosing furnishings for the house and their rooms.

"This contributes to the fact that children have a genuine feeling of being at home while staying at school.

The glowing report further praises staff, stating: "One child developed an interest in horticulture, so staff have provided the child with a garden area and support to develop this interest further.

"Staff take proactive action to prevent situations deteriorating or becoming unmanageable.

And head teacher Jenny McConnell is praised for her leadership.

The report adds:"The headteacher leads the school exceptionally well. She is aspirational and has a strong vision for the residential provision. She is highly valued and respected by staff.

"The staff team is very stable because there have been no changes to the team for a considerable period. This means the children benefit from very consistent care."

Jenny McConnell, Dawn House School’s Principal said: “We are pleased that Ofsted have judged our residential service provision as good without outstanding features.

"All the staff at Dawn House School have worked extremely hard to ensure that all students, especially those who require a residential placement, have a good experience and that we are able to meet their needs.

" As a school we continue to strive to develop our offer to students to ensure that they are able to fulfil their full potential.”

I CAN is a London-based charity which helps children develop the speech and language skills, so they are not left behind.