Inspections & Awards
Each of our schools is inspected every three years, following UK Ofsted British Schools Overseas (BSO) standards.
All three schools are judged to be ‘Outstanding’, the highest possible grade.
This outcome bears witness to the dedication, skill, care and quality of our staff, and speaks volumes about the abilities and learning of our students.
Inspection Reports & Summaries
- Infant School Inspection Report, February 2018
- Junior School Inspection Report, February 2016
- Senior School Inspection Report, September 2017
Tanglin Trust Infant School is an outstanding school. It provides an outstanding quality of education for all of its pupils and meets all the requirements for British Schools Overseas.
The following are key extracts from the Infant School Inspection Report 2018. Please download the report to view it in its entirety.
Early Years Foundation Stage
In the Early Years, the curriculum is planned carefully and provides outstanding opportunities for children to become fully involved in their own learning through play and exploration. Children are encouraged to think creatively and critically, and there is an excellent balance of teacher-directed and child-chosen activities. Very strong leadership fosters vibrancy in all aspects of learning in both Nursery and Reception, and leads to outstanding progress in all areas. Children’s interest is captured as soon as they enter their classrooms.
Attainment and progress in English are outstanding. Children enter Nursery with skills in language and communication typical for their age. By the end of Reception, the proportion of children reaching and exceeding the early learning goals in reading and writing is well above average. In Key Stage 1, pupils make outstanding progress in English and attainment is particularly high in reading. By Year 2, pupils are able to write for different purposes and audiences; for example, diaries, letters and story writing. Pupils’ descriptive writing is strong. Cursive writing is a consistent strength across the school.
Attainment and progress in mathematics are outstanding. Children make outstanding progress so that, by the end of Reception, they reach standards that are well above average. There is strong focus on stimulating children’s curiosity about numbers, learning through play, and using mathematical language effectively. Outstanding progress continues throughout Key Stage 1 and, by the end of Year 2, pupils’ mathematical skills become increasingly secure, and pupils become very proficient in using and applying these skills. There is an increasingly strong emphasis on investigation and problem solving.
Pupils’ attainment and progress are outstanding as they develop their awareness and understanding of the world around them. From their first days in Nursery, children are presented with exciting objects and challenges and are very well prepared to build upon their understanding and skills as they move up through the school. Key Stage 1 sees the progressive growth of young scientists and, by the end of Year 2, attainment is high. Lessons place an appropriate emphasis upon the scientific skills of enquiry, testing, observation and conclusion.
In other subjects, pupils make equally strong progress and achieve similarly high standards. Year 1 pupils develop increasingly useful Mandarin vocabulary through repetitive rhymes and simple songs. In their physical education programme, Year 2 pupils develop confidence and agility when using the climbing wall. Children in the early years grasp key skills of balance and physical control as they work on the ‘perceptual motor programme’ with specialist equipment. In their music development, children learn to blend voices with percussion, and build on their self-assurance, by performing both in class and at a local children’s home. In their art, they are learning about processes and techniques at an unusually early stage.
The quality of education provided by the school
A rich and diverse curriculum provides outstanding learning across the school. Leaders are relentless in their ambition to offer pupils not only the breadth but also depth in their learning. As a result, stimulating opportunities are built into daily lessons for all pupils. Creative and meticulous curriculum planning inspires pupils’ curiosity and develops deeper thinking at every opportunity. The integrated provision for information technology encourages pupils to extend their learning through the use of tablet computers and applications. Experiences are considerably enriched by a wide range of vibrant learning opportunities beyond the classroom. The curriculum provides a wealth of opportunities for pupils to take on responsibilities to shape the direction of their school, and a comprehensive programme of personal, social, health and citizenship education equips pupils with strong understanding of how to stay healthy and safe. The quality of teaching, learning and assessment is outstanding and is the driving force behind pupils’ impressive and strong record of achievement.
The spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of the pupils
Pupils’ spiritual, moral, social, and cultural development is outstanding. Pupils thrive in Tanglin, becoming highly confident, independent and caring learners. High levels of enjoyment abound in all lessons and pupils exude excitement in their learning. Pupils relate extremely well to each other and collaboration is a strong feature of work and play. They relish the opportunity to take on a broad range of responsibilities and make significant contribution to school life. Pupils have a strong sense of moral duty due to their respect for the dignity of all individuals and groups of people, and speak passionately about charity work. The curriculum develops pupils’ cultural and spiritual understanding very well.
The welfare, health, and safety of the pupils
Arrangements to promote the welfare, health and security of pupils are outstanding in their scope and effectiveness and pupils rightly feel safe and very well cared for. Relationships between staff and pupils are very strong and productive. New pupils settle quickly in the friendly and cooperative atmosphere and quickly gain in confidence through the mutual support of peers. The positive reinforcement received from teachers helps develop their self-esteem, maturity and sense of personal worth.
The provision of information for parents
Provision of information for parents, carers, and others is outstanding. The school uses a number of efficient channels of communication to keep parents informed, including a comprehensive and regularly updated website, with detailed information about the Infant School; a Parent Portal for access to restricted and confidential information; and social media and messaging feeds. Parents receive regular reports and updates about their child’s progress, both formally and informally. As a result, parents feel part of the school community and say that the school works very well in partnership with parents to help their child’s education.
Leadership and management of the school
Leadership and management at all levels are outstanding and result in outstanding outcomes in all areas. The head teacher and senior leaders set very high standards and are committed to excellence in all areas. This commitment to excellence permeates the school and is widely shared, and leadership at all levels, including in the early years, is outstanding. Governance is excellent, sets the strategic direction for the whole school and provides excellent support and challenge for the headteacher.
Tanglin Trust Junior School is an outstanding school. It provides an excellent quality of education for all its pupils and meets the standards for British Schools Overseas. The vast majority of pupils start the school with attainment which is above the standards expected for their age.
Standards in English
Pupils’ attainment is exceptionally high and progress in English is outstanding. From typically above average starting points in the development of their basic skills, pupils in Year 3 make rapid progress. Most listen carefully, speak clearly, and use an increasing range of high quality vocabulary. For example, a recently hatched but missing dragon was described as, ’a vile, bloodthirsty, and fearsome beast’. Pupils make excellent progress in reading because the regular teaching of phonics helps to ensure that all pupils’ basic reading skills are firmly established. This also provides a secure platform for the development of writing skills which are well above those expected for their age.
Standards in Mathematics
Pupils’ attainment is exceptionally high and progress in mathematics is outstanding. By the end of Year 6, the overwhelming majority of pupils reach standards that are significantly higher than those expected of pupils of the same age in England. Standards, by the end of Year 6, have risen significantly every year since the last inspection. Pupils’ work is characterised by their conceptual understanding and the ability to recall and apply knowledge. In lessons, pupils confidently tackle the challenges set; they are given time to talk through their learning and to learn by their mistakes.
A strength through the school is the way in which pupils use their mathematical and number skills to help them in other subjects across the curriculum. Pupils in Year 5, for example, use what they know of measuring mass and angles to predict and evaluate the impact of a meteor strike, as part of their space topic in science. They use flour trays and balls of modeling clay of different sizes and weights to replicate the possible impact of such a strike. They cooperate well and carefully measure and interpret the results to determine potentially where to site a space station on a distant planet. The pupils are assured users of mathematics, confident to take risks, using trial and error methods, persevering in seeking solutions and ‘thinking harder’.
Standards in Science
Pupils’ attainment is exceptionally high and progress in science is also outstanding. Since the last inspection, standards have risen year on year. All pupils make at least expected progress and a very large majority make considerably better-than-expected progress. The most able pupils also achieve exceptionally well. Pupils are very effective in harnessing their natural curiosity and developing skills of enquiry. For example, pupils in Year 3 use their highly tuned skills of scientific enquiry when testing egg shells to explore the impact that various fizzy drinks, fruit juice, and water may have on tooth decay.
Pupils also use their excellent subject knowledge, building upon prior learning in other subjects such as mathematics and computing, to ensure tests are robust, fair, accurately measured, and recorded. Pupils respond very positively to the support and guidance provided by members of staff. Pupils consider questions thoughtfully before giving a well-considered and reasoned answer. Pupils also understand the concept that different skills are needed by different people for different investigations. This was clear, for example, when Year 6 pupils were exploring the forensics of fibre analysis in their crime-scene investigations work. The lead detective understood her role was very different from that of the criminal profiler and so needed to establish different hypotheses and different lines of enquiry.
Standards across the curriculum
The school meets the requirements for this standard. The quality of the curriculum is outstanding. It is vibrant, rich, and exciting. Detailed schemes of work follow the English National Curriculum and pupils are exceptionally well prepared for the next stage in their education or to enter or re-enter the English education system. The school is successful in delivering a curriculum that inspires and motivates pupils who say they ‘really enjoy everything Tanglin provides for us’.
The curriculum also reflects very well the school’s international setting and celebrates diversity; pupils say they appreciate topics, such as ‘Incredible India’ and ‘Rise of Modern Singapore’. In addition, themed topics are used well and often include a whole school focus, such as the one on entrepreneurship. The school regularly reviews provision and takes into account the views of parents and pupils. This has resulted, for example, in Mandarin Chinese being taught as a foreign language for all pupils and the introduction of mother tongue lessons. The curriculum provides exceptionally well for pupils who speak English as an additional language.
The curriculum is outstanding in all respects. It provides exceptional breadth and balance, which enables pupils to excel academically and personally. They engage fully in the school’s extended range of learning activities and develop excellent attitudes to learning through adoption of the Learner Profiles and engagement with the Our World curriculum. The former promotes reflection and development of learning behaviours and the latter provides access to extended learning opportunities, which enable pupils to succeed. The curriculum and its associated methods of assessment prepare pupils very well for transfer to British schools or other leading international schools.
Teaching and Learning
The quality of teaching and assessment is outstanding. Carefully recruited teachers have access to high quality professional development, accurate and skillful monitoring, and feedback. Consequently, the quality and consistency of teaching are extraordinarily high. Across all subjects, teaching promotes pupils’ learning and personal development exceptionally well. This is seen in the work in pupils’ books, the varied examples of completed work and the records of their progress. As a result, all pupils make outstanding progress and achieve high standards in every subject. Pupils make rapid progress because teachers have a highly secure knowledge of the subjects they teach and an excellent understanding of how children learn. They make effective use of a wide variety of resources to create a highly stimulating learning environment and are ably supported by highly trained teaching and learning assistants. Teachers use an extensive range of strategies to deliver carefully planned, imaginative, and relevant lessons. Pupils meet teachers’ high expectations of behaviour and this lays the foundation for their exemplary attitudes and mature conduct.
Spiritual, Moral, Social, and Cultural Development
The school meets the requirements of this standard. The spiritual, moral, social, and cultural development of pupils is outstanding. As a result, pupils thrive in a supportive, safe environment which develops confident and collaborative learners who are resilient and not afraid to take risks. Pupils’ attendance is above average and they are punctual and well prepared for their lessons. All members of the Tanglin Junior School community model, through the high quality of relationships and interactions, a keen understanding of the principles they wish to promote; for example, tolerance and respect.
School values are reinforced through assemblies, posters, and displays. On arrival in school, everyone is greeted by the ‘Faces Wall’ where the faces of all pupils, and every member of staff are displayed, with the flag of their choice painted on their face, to represent the country with which they are associated. This is just one of many examples where school leaders have developed a climate within which all can grow and flourish, respect others, and be respected. This is evident in the way pupils conduct themselves in lessons, listening to each other’s views, taking turns in a debate, working as a team, and collaborating. Leaders also promote a teaching style which promotes and values pupils’ questions and gives time for reflection so as to develop curiosity in learning. In one lesson, there was a whoop of delight when pupils were told they were going to be set another challenge. Spontaneous applause for the classmate who succeeded in this challenge showed a real passion for learning.
Welfare, Health, and Safety
The safety and security of pupils is of the highest priority. Arrangements for child protection and safeguarding match current requirements in the United Kingdom and the requirements of Singapore. In the event of concerns for a pupil’s welfare, all staff know what to do and to whom they must speak. Safety arrangements meet local requirements. Regular drills ensure that staff and pupils know the procedures to be followed during evacuation of the buildings and lockdown. Evacuations are completed speedily and efficiently. Security for visits outside the school has a high profile and risk assessments are integral parts of the planning of all visits. An admissions’ register and an attendance register are kept up to date; both conform to local regulatory requirements.
Leadership and Management
The leadership and management of the school are outstanding in every regard. The highly effective headteacher, together with the deputy headteacher and assistant headteacher, have a vision for excellence and passion to deliver the highest possible standards. The school’s self-evaluation is robust and accurate. As a result, the plans for future improvements are focused on the correct priorities. Senior leaders have dynamically led this school from strength to considerable strength, since the last inspection. There is a clear expectation that everything that is done should be done outstandingly well because the pupils deserve nothing less. There is excellent capacity and determination to improve still further. The headteacher is also skilled at developing the potential of leaders at all levels, as well as in making highly successful key appointments.
The findings of the British Schools Overseas (BSO) inspection confirmed Tanglin’s Senior School status as an outstanding school, which is the highest possible grading. The following are extracts from the main findings of the report:
“The school is tremendously successful in achieving exceptional, world class, high standards, improving year on year, but without losing their focus on the well-being and all-round development of their students. This commitment to excellence and the very positive school ethos is reflected in all stakeholders. These include the highly professional, competent and enthusiastic staff who are excellent role models and always go the ‘extra mile’ for their students to the parents who are highly satisfied. Additionally, the students who have superb attitudes to learning, high levels of motivation, independence, confidence and engagement in all that they do, aspire to ‘be the best they can be’. It is no coincidence that a culture of ‘having a go’ and ‘cool to be clever’ is prevalent in this exceptional group of students.”
“As an inclusive school, Tanglin promotes equality, tackles discrimination and embraces diversity, which contributes to the extremely caring atmosphere wherein students are happy and highly successful.”
Our Infant School is the first school in Asia to be awarded the Early Years Quality Mark and the Primary (Infant) Quality Mark. It has also been awarded the Primary Science Gold Quality Mark.
As our Infant School and Junior School are members of the Independent Association of Prep Schools (IAPS), an association for headteachers of leading prep schools throughout the world, they have been awarded the prestigious kite mark of quality.
The Junior School has also been awarded the Historical Association Silver Quality Mark, the Geographical Association Gold Quality Mark, Primary Science Gold Quality Mark, Bronze award for Rights Respecting Schools and the British Council International School Award.
Our Senior School received the Pearson Centre of Excellence Award in recognition of our students who have achieved the Outstanding Pearson Learners Award through quality teaching and learning experience.