Inspection Report

Cheltenham Ladies' College was inspected by the Independent Schools Inspectorate (ISI) in November 2022. The ISI carried out a full Focused Compliance and Educational Quality Inspection. 

The Educational Quality Inspection assesses the quality of the school's work and focuses on two key outcomes:

  • The achievements of the pupils, including their academic development, and

  • The personal development of the pupils.

The headline judgements apply one of the ISI descriptors 'excellent', 'good', or 'unsatisfactory'. 

Inspectors classified College as 'excellent' in every category.

The Focused Compliance Inspection assesses College's compliance with set regulatory standards and judgements are given either as 'met' or 'not met'. 

The inspectors found that College meets all of the required standards across these areas. 

Extracts and a link to the full report can be found below. 



The quality of the pupils' academic and other achievements is excellent.

  • Pupils' excellent academic and other achievements reflect their commitment to make the most of every opportunity offered by the school's extensive academic and extra-curricular provision. 

  • Pupils develop a comprehensive body of knowledge, skills and understanding across all areas of learning, enabling them to continually extend their range of achievements.

  • Pupils articulately communicate their ideas, views and feelings, listen attentively to others, read avidly and skillfully express themselves when writing or during discussion.

  • Pupils’ attitudes to learning are consistently positive. They show initiative, independence and leadership in their learning and also work creatively and supportively with one another.

The quality of the pupils’ personal development is excellent.

  • Pupils develop strong confidence. They eagerly and resolutely seek new challenges in order to stretch their immediate and longer-term personal boundaries and aspirations.

  • Pupils have an outstanding sense of what is right and wrong, fair and unfair, and examine ethical issues deeply with regard for all viewpoints.

  • Pupils respond well to, and fulfil, the school’s mission for them to become resilient and to value, serve and enrich the communities to which they belong.

  • Pupils demonstrate a responsible understanding of how to keep safe and healthy. They appreciate that well-being and mental health are essential for a balanced life.


Pupils’ excellent progress and attainment are assured because departmental monitoring of pupils’ academic outcomes and quality assurance of teaching and learning are thorough and consistent.

Pupils’ interests and choices of subjects are respected, pupils feel their preferences are valued and consequently they work hard to fulfil their personal goals and aspirations.

Pupils’ communication skills are particularly strong. They listen attentively, assimilating information quickly and thoroughly. They take good account of one another’s view and build on each other’s ideas.

Pupils’ digital literacy is well developed and strongly complements other aspects of their effective communication skills.

Pupils reflect critically on their work, challenge their own understandings, self-correct and engage in peer-to-peer evaluation of their fulfilment of lesson objectives.

Pupils’ attitudes to learning are consistently extremely positive.

Beyond the classroom, pupils participate in extra-curricular activities with enthusiasm, are duly competitive but are appreciative and supportive of others efforts. 


Pupils develop a strong sense of self-understanding of themselves as individuals and learners. They actively reflect on their capabilities, character, feelings and motivations. 

In their written work across all subjects, pupils demonstrate determination in taking account of teachers’ feedback and their own self-evaluation so that they continually improve their outcomes.

Pupils become excellent decision makers as a result of the school's challenging but supportive emphasis on pupils developing their own path. 

Pupils demonstrate independence in their learning and in the self-organisation of their daily life in school. 

Pupils respond wholeheartedly to the trust that is invested in them and as a result they behave well, are thoughtful, appreciative and engaged in the topics of the day and the world around them. 

Pupils develop a high level of understanding and respect for the diversity of race and culture, disability, gender and sexual orientation.


Ensure that pupils develop full confidence in their ability to raise matters of importance to them, knowing that they will be considered fully by the school. 


This section of the report assesses College's compliance with set standards and judgements are given either as 'met' or 'not met'. 

These standards relate to:

  • The quality of education provided

  • The spiritual, moral, social and cultural development of pupils

  • The welfare, health and safety of pupils

  • The suitability of staff, supply staff and proprietors

  • The premises and accommodation

  • The provision of information

  • The manner in which complaints are handled

  • The quality of leadership and management.

The Inspectors found that College meets all of the required standards across these areas.