Family & Education

Chasidic school under threat of sanctions is criticised again by Ofsted

Inspectors find improvements in safeguarding at Satmar school where pupils previously reported being slapped - but remain unhappy with narrow curriculum


A Chasidic school in Stamford Hill under threat of sanctions from the Department for Education is still failing to comply with independent school standards, according to its latest Ofsted report.

Inspectors returned to Yetev Lev, an independent boys’ school which serves the Satmar community, to check whether it was suitable to remain on the official schools' register.

But despite tackling some of the school’s failings, leaders had not done enough to promote the wellbeing of pupils, Ofsted said.

Although the DfE told the school it would not be permitted to admit new pupils after it was ranked inadequate nearly a year ago, the decision has yet to be enforced pending an appeal by the school.

According to Ofsted’s previous report, some pupils had reported being slapped or pinched on the cheek.

But inspectors said after their latest visit that they had “heard no reports from pupils of inappropriate methods being used to discipline pupils”. Behaviour had improved.

They also said that previously raised concerns about health and safety in the early years’ section “no longer remain”. Premises “are clean, safe, uncluttered, welcoming and well maintained”.

However, despite improvements in the secular curriculum, it remained narrow and pupils still had “little experience of technological, human and social, and aesthetic and creative education”. English remained weak in the early years.

Although pupils contributed positively to the lives of those in their immediate community, Ofsted said, they had “little involvement with people in wider society”.

Leaders were clear they would not refer to all of the groups protected under equality law (which include people of same-sex orientation).

The school had 956 boys from two to 12 on the roll, despite being registered for a maximum of 567.

A number of older pupils aged 13 and 14 had been removed from the school since the last Ofsted visit as this contravened the terms of its registration.

However, Ofsted commented, “this was done despite the school being aware that these pupils were not enrolled at another registered school, or not electively home educated and notified to the local authority as required”.

At the time of the inspection, leaders had been unable to show they had notified the local authority about pupils who had been taken off the school’s register. However, the local authority subsequently confirmed receipt of the information in October.


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