Barrhead High lands top inspection report

School's achievement puts it alongside the best ever achieved in Scotland

Barrhead High inspection report

Published: 23 January 2024

Barrhead High School, in East Renfrewshire, has been praised after an inspection report put it alongside the best ever achieved in Scotland.

Inspectors scrutinised four areas of work during the week-long visit, with the school achieving two 'excellent' evaluations and two as 'very good' - a feat only ever achieved by a handful of schools.

The quality of 'ensuring wellbeing, equality and inclusion' and 'leadership of change' were both recognised as being sector-leading, whilst 'raising attainment and achievement' and 'learning, teaching and assessment' were evaluated as very good.

Head Teacher Fiona Johnston's outstanding leadership was singled out for high praise, due to the culture which has been created within the school, with all staff and pupils taking pride in leading change and improving attainment.

Other areas of highlight included the school's very strong use of digital technology to motivate pupils and the school's outstanding approach to seeking and acting upon the views of young people, which has resulted in a "strong sense of belonging and high levels of motivation".

In addition, the school's approach taken to working with partners to support and plan for young people's health and wellbeing, and the staff's focus on using data to ensure all pupils are supported to achieve their very best were also highly commended.

Head Teacher Fiona Johnston said: 'It is an absolute privilege to be Head Teacher of Barrhead High School and I am incredibly proud of all our young people. This excellent inspection report is the result of hard work from all our staff, families, partners and wider school community who are dedicated to raising the bar for everyone at our school. I was delighted that the inclusive and ambitious ethos of our school was recognised as a key strength, as well as the commitment of all the staff who regularly go above and beyond to make a difference for our young people. We always strive to provide the very best education for all our learners, with a strong focus on the skills they will need for later life. Our approach to preparing young people for employment involves a wide range of partners, and it is extremely pleasing to see this recognised by Education Scotland. It is an exciting time to be leading Barrhead High and I am confident that all our stakeholders are committed to driving forward continued improvement in the years ahead.'

As recognition for the positive report, the council's Education Committee will be asked to accredit the school for its achievements. If agreed by councillors at the meeting on February 1, this would mean that the council would not carry out any formal quality assurance activities in Barrhead High School for a period of three years.

Councillor Andrew Anderson, Convener for Education, Equalities, Culture and Leisure, said: 'This is an outstanding inspection report for Barrhead High and I'm delighted for everyone at the school. To achieve two excellent evaluations makes this the joint best secondary inspection report ever achieved in Scotland, which is a phenomenal achievement. We continue to see excellent practice across all our schools, and the sector-leading learning demonstrated within Barrhead High will be shared across the area to the benefit of all. This is another demonstration that our approach to providing all our pupils with a wide range of excellent experiences throughout their educational journey plays a massive part in developing and improving our already high-achieving schools.'

Barrhead High School has a roll of 616 and has a number of famous former pupils, including former Scotland manager Alex McLeish, as well as acclaimed actors Douglas Henshall and Gregor Fisher.

Last modified on 8 February 2024