The National School Categorisation System was introduced in September 2014. The system evaluates and assesses schools and places them in a support category using the following information: a range of outcome indicators provided by Welsh Government; robust self-evaluation by the school of its capacity to improve in relation to leadership and learning and teaching; and assessment of the school’s self-evaluation by challenge advisers in the regional consortia, agreed with the local authority.
In 2017, Llanidloes High School was placed in the highest green category with leadership capacity given the highest ‘A’ rating. Below are the Welsh Government criteria concerning leadership, learning and teaching to support the highest judgement being awarded in the area of leadership capacity:-
- Leaders and staff have developed a shared vision and there is a very clear strategy that has improved outcomes for nearly all learners.
- Leaders demonstrate a very strong capacity to plan and implement change and sustain improvement successfully in nearly all respects. They engage all staff and other partners very effectively in the change process.
- Self-evaluation is accurate, robust, systematic and well established. Self-evaluation is highly effective in contributing to improving standards, learning and teaching.
- Leaders and staff are highly effective in their analysis and use of the available performance data and evidence about the quality of learning and teaching and pupils’ work to identify strengths and set improvement priorities.
- Leaders and staff have a relentless focus on raising standards. Targets reflect high expectations for the future achievement of all pupils and these are met consistently.
- The school has a very good track record in raising the achievement of nearly all pupils, including vulnerable learners, over at least a three-year period.
- Improvement planning at all levels is highly effective in addressing the areas in need of most improvement. Action, including the use of resources, has led to sustained improvement in outcomes in key indicators for nearly all pupils, including those eligible for free school meals and other vulnerable groups.
- The school has a very strong track record in implementing successfully national and local priorities to improve standards and the quality of learning and teaching.
- Leaders and staff work very successfully with schools and other partners to enhance significantly their own and others’ capacity to bring about improvement.
- Governors have a very good understanding of the school’s strengths and areas for improvement and are highly effective in supporting and challenging the school’s performance.
- Leaders and staff have well-defined roles and responsibilities, and exhibit high professional standards.
- The school’s leaders and governors give a high priority to developing the workforce: performance management and professional development are highly successful in improving pupils’ progress, classroom practice and dealing with underperformance.
- The quality of teaching across the school and the impact on nearly all pupils’ learning and progress is consistently good and often excellent.
- All staff have a shared understanding of the characteristics of excellent and good teaching and demonstrate these in classroom practice.
- Processes to lead, identify, validate and share effective practice achieve continuous improvement in the quality of learning and teaching across the school as a whole.
- Processes to track pupils’ progress, identify needs and provide support are robust and effective in nearly all cases.
- Teacher assessment is consistent and accurate.