St Mary’s has been on an incredible journey over the last 12 years, since it was judged ‘Outstanding’ in May 2009. It has continued to go from strength to strength, maintaining outstanding standards and continuing to further develop all areas of the school, sustaining high performance in all areas from 2009 to date. Since 2007 our academic progress has been significantly above national standards and our average Progress 8 score over the last five years is over 0.5, meaning that on average, every student leaves St Mary’s with at least half a grade more in every subject than similar students do nationally. This includes outstanding progress for our disadvantaged students and students with SEND. This outstanding progress for all students in the school regularly places us in the top 10% of schools in the UK and the top 5% of schools, of the 150 secondary schools, in the North-east. Due to this sustained high performance, St Mary’s plays a leading role within the Bishop Bewick Education Trust, leading significant school to school support within the Trust and more widely.
We are very proud of the truly inclusive nature of our school and we are blessed to have students from a range of socio-economic, faith, national and cultural backgrounds. We are delighted to have students from more than 40 countries, speaking over 50 different languages at St Mary’s. We are also very proud of our Catholic distinctiveness and we believe that each child, whatever their Faith background, is unique, with a unique set of God-given gifts and talents which we aim to nurture and develop fully. Whilst just over half of our students are Catholic, we welcome equally, students of other Faiths or none and aim for all students to live and learn together harmoniously, in a community inspired by, and imbued with, Gospel values of love God and love your neighbour. We are blessed to have many different faiths represented in our school, including students from other Christian faiths and students from Muslim, Hindu, Jewish, Sikh and Buddhist faiths. Our wonderfully diverse student body makes St Mary’s quite unique in the North-east of England.
For more detail, we would recommend reading the following document which outlines how we have sustained high performance since our last OFSTED inspection: