Charedi boarding school pupils ‘not fully prepared for life in modern Britain’
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Charedi boarding school pupils ‘not fully prepared for life in modern Britain’

Gateshead Jewish Boarding School “requires improvement” because it fails to meet standards relating to teaching of personal, social and health education (PSHE.)

Orthodox Jewish teens crossing the road in Gateshead
Orthodox Jewish teens crossing the road in Gateshead

Students at an Orthodox boarding school in Gateshead are “not fully prepared for life in modern Britain”, according to a report by Ofsted.

Gateshead Jewish Boarding School “requires improvement” because it fails to meet standards relating to teaching of personal, social and health education (PSHE.)

According to the school inspectorate’s report this week, following a November visit, “there are policies and learning plans in place for PSHE and relationships and sex education (RSE)”, but this does not include educating about all “protected characteristics”. Protected characteristics relate to someone’s identity, such as gender, sexual orientation, religion or marital status.

The all-boys school, which has 119 pupils aged 10-16, has the provision for PSHE “woven throughout the Kodesh (Jewish studies) and secular curriculums” according to the report, and students “learn about themselves and the world in which they live”.

However, while “pupils respect people who are different to them and know about other cultures and faiths”, Ofsted said they “are not.. taught about all of the protected characteristics as defined in the Equality Act 2010”. It added: “This means they are not fully prepared for life in modern Britain.”

The report said the school’s safeguarding arrangements were “effective” and ranks pupils’ ‘behaviour and attitudes’ as “outstanding.” It praised the school’s “ambitious curriculum”, the quality of education and personal development as ‘good’,  and said staff “support pupils with special educational needs and/or disabilities well”.

But Ofsted said the school’s leadership “requires improvement”, and teachers “do not get much professional development or time to discuss their practice with other teachers”.

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