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, January 2015
- Junior School Inspection Report, February 2016
- Senior School Inspection Report, September 2017
Tanglin Infants is an outstanding school, which provides an excellent British-style education, while maintaining an awareness and appreciation of its cultural setting in Singapore. Leadership and management are outstanding and have an excellent view of the school’s strengths and areas to develop. This underpins the school’s outstanding capacity for improvement.
Early Years Foundation Stage
Children in the Early Years make excellent progress towards achieving the Early Learning Goals from starting points that are broadly typical. By the end of the Early Years, most children are exceeding the expected standards in the majority of learning areas. They are especially successful in improving their ability to communicate well and develop their personal and social skills. Attainment in the core areas of English, mathematics and science is strong and compares favourably with that reached in British independent schools.
Attainment in English is high. Pupils make outstanding progress from their starting points. Pupils have a rich and varied vocabulary and express their views clearly in discussion and debate. They listen attentively even when they disagree and rarely interrupt. Pupils have a very good understanding of the rules of conversation, such as tenses and the grammatical structure of sentences. Pupils develop good phonic knowledge in the early years and, by Year 2, this is excellent. By Year 2, almost all pupils read with accuracy and fluency across a wide range of texts. Pupils write fluently with interesting detail on a variety of topics.
Attainment in mathematics is high and progress is outstanding. The rapid progress children make in mathematics in the early years continues throughout Years 1 and 2. Results in 2014, for pupils at the end of Key Stage 1, confirm that they exceed UK standards by a significant percentage. Evidence from the inspection confirms that an even greater proportion of pupils are on track to reach the higher levels in 2015. Their excellent progress is maintained across all classes and year groups.
Children’s attainment is high and progress is outstanding as they build their understanding of the world. Many are on course to exceed the expected standards by the end of the early years phase. Their exposure to a rich array of resources and experiences underpins their achievements.
In other subjects of the curriculum, pupils achieve similarly high levels of attainment and rapid rates of progress, and benefit from specialist teaching. Year 2 pupils, for example, supported by ‘tech leaders’, demonstrate their computing skills as they use simple algorithms to help programme block models. The creative use of curriculum opportunities is illustrated by the way Year 1 classes progress as they pick up Mandarin vocabulary while learning how to ask for items to celebrate the imminent Chinese New Year. Music skills for Year 2 also tap into this as pupils engage in group compositions of Chinese songs with instrumental support.
An excellent learning support programme is provided for pupils who are identified as having additional learning needs. Specialist support is offered where needed and individual education plans are carefully tailored to meet pupils’ specific needs. Their progress is closely monitored and inspection evidence shows that almost all are making rapid progress from their starting points. Gifted pupils are challenged by appropriate extension work in most lessons and by the enrichment programme for the most able, gifted and talented pupils.
The quality of education provided by the school
The curriculum is outstanding. It develops the skills and attributes pupils need for life in a constantly changing global society. It meets the needs of the whole child, inspiring their curiosity, independence, and love of learning. It provides excellent opportunities for pupils to experience success and to express their creativity and individual talents. As a result, pupils achieve highly.
The spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of the pupils
Pupils’ spiritual, moral, social, and cultural development is outstanding. Pupils are courteous and behave extremely well. They support each other in lessons and during play. They respond enthusiastically to their various leadership roles and take their responsibilities very seriously, making important contributions to school life. The personalised curriculum provides excellent opportunities for pupils of all abilities and interests to excel.
Pupils’ strong moral sense is demonstrated through their exemplary behaviour and clear understanding of knowing what is right and wrong. Pupils welcome new arrivals into the school and include them in friendship circles. In lessons, pupils work together, sharing skills and knowledge. They acknowledge each other’s successes and are generous in their praise.
The welfare, health, and safety of the pupils
The welfare and safety of all pupils are given the highest priority. Parents and pupils comment favourably on how well pupils are cared for and appreciate the high-quality information they receive. The school is responsive to parents’ views and takes action where possible. Excellent use is made of the highly attractive and spacious accommodation and facilities. These are complemented by an impressive range of good-quality resources.
Pupils are exceptionally well cared for. The arrangements made by the school to ensure pupils’ welfare, health, and safety are outstanding.
The provision of information for parents, carers, and others
Provision of information for parents, carers, and others is outstanding. There is a wealth of information available on both academic and pastoral aspects of school life. The school uses a number of efficient channels of communication to keep parents informed. As a result, parents report that they are happy with the information they receive.
Leadership and management of the school
Leadership and management at all levels are outstanding and this is pivotal to the continuing success of the school. The head teacher and senior staff have set high expectations and a clear and aspirational vision for the school’s direction. The excellent leadership shown at all levels is energetic and well focused and has established a strong sense of harmony and unity of purpose among the staff. Governance is excellent and ensures that the educational priorities of the professional leaders are supported and respected, while their performance is scrutinised through regular reporting and appraisal.
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 and the Primary Science Gold Quality Mark.
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.