A popular Powys secondary school has received glowing praise from inspectors as a "caring and supportive environment where all are valued and encouraged to give of their best".

Estyn inspectors revealed their findings this week following their visit to Llanidloes High School in February.

Inspectors gave the school five recommendations about the precise prioritisation of aspects of provision and teaching, the co-ordination of skills provision, attendance, and a health and safety issue.

Estyn will work with Powys County Council to review the school’s progress.

Headteacher Daniel Owen told parents that staff "remain as passionate and excited as ever about ensuring your child enjoys their learning journey and realises their dreams and aspiration".


He added: "Staff are overwhelmed by your many kindnesses which helped make a potentially gruelling experience gratifying!"

The report, which was made public on Wednesday (April 24), highlighted the wellbeing of staff and pupils being the "highest priority", "polite and friendly" pupils, the bespoke Autism Spectrum Centre, and the school's "ambitious vision" for the Welsh language.

Inspectors found there was a "positive safeguarding culture" where pupils feel safe and free from bullying. The headteacher gained national praise after banning smartphones in 2022 amid increasing concerns about cyber-bullying, social media and gaming addictions with a few pupils displaying "extreme" reactions to having their devices confiscated.

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The school’s curriculum was also highlighted as a “particular strength” which “provides personalised opportunities which aim to engage, enthuse, and benefit pupils of all abilities”.

Estyn noted that in a few particularly effective lessons, teachers set high expectations, questions skilfully and pupils make rapid progress in their knowledge, understanding and skills. However, in some instances some pupils do not make enough progress “mainly because of teachers’ low expectations and weak planning”.

The report added: “Although leaders at every level have a genuine ambition to improve their work and have broadly identified the main areas requiring improvement there are shortcomings in a few areas of the school's work. These include aspects of teaching and the progressive development of pupils' skills.”

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Headteacher Daniel Owen said: “I would like to congratulate our wonderful pupils and staff on this smashing inspection report. It is heartening to read that inspectors agree that the school is a ‘welcoming community, which provides pupils with effective care and guidance’.

“We a delighted that they were able to see that our hard-working pupils are respectful, courteous and engaged in their learning, and that our staff are passionate, knowledgeable and able to inspire.

“The recommendations align with our self-evaluation, for example, we are already working with local authority colleagues to install new perimeter fencing to make the site more secure during the school day.”