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Middlewich High School

Excellence in Learning – Achievement for All

Achievement & Progress


Raising Standards

Quality First Teaching

There is an expectation of consistently high standards of quality first teaching to drive progress and attainment for all students in all subjects, including SEND, disadvantaged and vulnerable students. As such there are clear expectations that all staff have full awareness of groups of students in all classes, such as disadvantaged students, so that effective quality first teaching can be in place to ensure no gaps exist in attainment and progress. There are clear minimum expectations for each class and there is an insistence that these expectations are met consistently:

  • Specific seating/working groups plan, with clear rationale for disadvantaged (for every room including ICT, practical classes etc.)
  • Book proud
  • Marking effective, misconceptions identified and explored (SPG included)
  • Probing questions for students in every lesson to check knowledge & understanding
  • Insistence on work completion (of a high quality) and exemplary Attitude to Learning
  • Active participants, with focus on disadvantaged in every lesson
  • Clear learning objectives and explicit success criteria
  • Be positive role models

Progress Tracking Programme

Students are allocated thresholds or target GCSE grades in all subject areas to provide an indication of their potential level of achievement by the end of Key Stage Four. Subject teachers are expected to provide data on progress relative to thresholds/target grades every learning cycle in the following format:

• Current working grade (KS4 only - based on professional judgement and performance in all assessments/classwork/homework)

• Current progress (KS3 only – see assessment information)

The progress data, generated for data drops, is held centrally on school databases in SISRA and in SIMS. The Information & Data Manager is responsible for maintaining the school databases and supporting staff analysis of this data where required.

All staff are expected to use Learning Maps in each subject to support progress. These should be completed as part of the marking & assessment process and updated regularly during a unit of work. These inform students, parents and staff about what a student can or cannot do, and allows staff to plan appropriate intervention during a unit of work.

The Senior Leadership team will review progress data with Heads of Department/Subject at regular Raising Standards meetings in each learning cycle. Heads of Department/Subject are expected to moderate department data and student work prior to completion of each data drop.






Effective intervention will enable our students to make progress towards their targets, whether these are academic or personal development-based.

The Student Services team will assess students’ needs and provide appropriate intervention, which may include in-class support or input from a Head of Year. External agencies may also provide support such as CAMHS or School Health.

Departments have developed a range of successful intervention strategies and these will be shared through Raising Standards meetings and staff INSET. It is recognised that there are three ‘waves’ of intervention:

  • Wave 1: Quality First teaching in classes
  • Wave 2: targeted intervention support programs
  • Wave 3: increasingly individualised programs

Wave 1: Quality First Teaching - as subject staff regularly use progress data to inform their planning, the learning and progress of students should develop and improve. Quality First teaching takes into account students’ prior learning and achievement. All departments are expected to use specific intervention (therapy) lessons/sessions within each SOW to provide targeted specific intervention and support during a unit of work. The SEND Code of Practice has an expectation that subject staff are aware of any additional needs and provide appropriate support and differentiation to ensure progress. Equally, Pupil Premium and/or disadvantaged students must also be identified and supported in class. Student profiles have been created for SEND students and are updated regularly. Staff must refer to these to ensure they are aware of any barriers to learning and suggested support strategies. Effective use of Learning Maps should support the progress of all students in a class.

Wave 2: At department meetings, HODs must identify students who are under-achieving and ensure that appropriate quality first teaching takes place in the classroom, including revisiting and retrieval practice. Additional support may be put in place where appropriate, including developing study & revision skills, homework clubs, one-to-one mentoring, extension activities, controlled assessment catch-up sessions & Easter School.

Departments have introduced regular subject booster sessions, including lesson six for GCSE English and Maths. Departments also hold targeted revision sessions during the approach to the GCSE exams. Immediately prior to each GCSE exam, Heads of Department/subject are expected to conduct an ‘Exam Warm-up’ session with their students to focus on key exam techniques and knowledge & understanding to demonstrate.

Wave 3: This is likely to target students identified with individual needs that limit progress; and may include personalised timetables, tutorial support, behaviour support, alternative curriculum, support from external agencies and numeracy & literacy intervention. The Student Services team will lead this intervention.

Engaging Parents

Engaging parents in the learning and progress of their children is key to raising achievement. Parental support of learning at home as well as learning in school has a huge impact on achievement. Parental engagement is more than parental involvement, which can include a range of school-based activities. Parental engagement involves:

  • Supporting parents to help their children learn
  • Personalising the provision for parents as learners
  • Effective reporting
  • Enhanced pastoral care

Subject staff and form tutors should make regular contact with parents to celebrate success as well as to report concerns. Parental engagement is positively influenced by the level of their child’s attainment. This should include an opportunity for parents to review achievement in assessments and see the feedback provided to students including teacher evaluations and student reviews of their own progress.

Learning Maps are to be used in all exercise books or folders, to clearly track progress during the year. These will inform parents of student progress. These have replaced the previous annual reports, and will supplement the interim progress reports after each data drop.

One of the key occasions when parental engagement is required is during the Pathways selection process in Year 9. As such, parents are invited to attend a Pathways Information evening, to provide information and guidance about the guided choices available and the specific subjects on offer. This includes advice about post-16 options too.

At the start of Year 10 and 11, parents are invited to attend a GCSE Study Skills Support evening where a variety of speakers and sessions will be provided to support parents as their children begin their GCSE courses. This will include aspirational sessions from higher education as well as practical advice about supporting learning at home.

Parents of targeted Year 11 students will be invited to attend ‘Supporting Success’ interviews, during the school year, where academic feedback and practical advice will be provided.

Each year group will have a targeted Progress Evening, where parents will receive feedback on their child’s progress. The Year 9-11 progress evenings will also provide post-16 information through the attendance of our partner colleges and apprenticeship providers.

During the academic year, parents will be able and encouraged to access their child’s progress data through the parental portal. This will be updated after every data drop. The process will be explained to parents at the start of the year via written communication.

Years 7-9 will complete core assessments each year in the key subjects English, Maths and Science.

Year 10-11 will complete key assessment periods, in the form of either internal school exams or trial exams. The results of these will be included within the related data drops. In addition, the results of the Year 11 trial exams will be delivered to students through a mock GCSE results assembly, where students will receive a mock GCSE results certificate based on their trial exam performance.

Reporting to parents

An Open Evening is arranged each year when prospective students' parents are invited to tour the school and see it at work. In addition, Open Mornings are held annually to allow parents to see the ‘school in action’. A meeting is held in early July for parents of each year's new intake of students from Primary Schools to introduce them to the School and to the members of staff who will be particularly responsible for Year 7 students.

Apart from being invited into school for these meetings, parents are always welcomed into the school and encouraged to contact the school whenever they feel concerned. If teachers are concerned about any issues concerning the progress or behaviour of students in their groups, then they are encouraged to seek parental involvement at an early stage. In these instances, the appropriate Head of Department, Form Tutor or Head of Year should be consulted as necessary. Parents and other members of staff should also be involved when there are things to celebrate.

Parents are always welcomed in school and are encouraged to contact school with any concerns or positive feedback – appointments with staff must be made through Reception. The first point of contact should be the form tutor. They will involve other staff, such as the Student Services team or subject teachers as required. Year 7 parents are invited to attend a Year 7 Review evening with tutors in late September to review their child’s first few weeks at Middlewich High School. This provides an opportunity for parents, tutors and students to discuss any issues of concerns as well as provide feedback.


Year on year we strive to improve the mentoring system for students in our school. Targeted students and their parents are invited to attend Supporting Success Interviews with senior staff in September and March.

In addition, our Safeguarding Staff can offer personalised support to targeted students